How to install a hard drive
If you are uninstalling the drive, just reverse the steps listed.
There is three types of drives.
- ATA Parallel drives
- SATA Serial drives (new technology)
- SCSI drives
This page will deal with the ATA drives and the SATA drives.
Choose the directions below for the drive that you have.
If you are installing a second drive, the instructions here applies to the second drive. However, one thing will be different
ATA Parallel drives - Click on the links for information on that step. (This link will open in a different window so you won't loose this page)
- Disconnect all cables in the back of the system (Including power cord)
- With power cord removed, push the power button for five seconds (still leaving power cord disconnected)
- Touch something metal on the system.
- Do not blow on the inside of the system. Your breath has moisture and electronics does not like moisture.
- Open the system (This link will show a few examples of computer cases. However there is too many to list here. Consult the manual, myself, or manufacturer for the instructions on opening your case.)
- locate the bay that is designed for a hard drive. (Some computer cases, require the front panel to be removed and some do not. Consult the manual, myself, or manufacturer for the instructions on the location of where the drive goes. There is too many variations of computer cases for me to give the steps here)
- Some bays use clips to connect the drive in the bay, others use screws. (Check your manual myself, or manufacturer for instructions)
- Check the jumper setting. There is three settings on the drive. MA - Master SL - Slave CS Cable Select Most systems accept Cable Select and if your system accepts Cable Select then set all drives to Cable Select. If your system doesn't allow Cable Select, set the primary drive to master and the secondary to slave (if you have a second drive).
Connect data cable to motherboard
On the motherboard there are two controller connectors. CD-ROM drives usually get plugged into the second controller usually called IDE2 (Some motherboards may only have one IDE port. Consult the manual, myself, or manufacturer for the exact location due to all motherboards are designed different)
- IDE port 0 or IDE1 - is usually blue (not always the case) and it usually gets used for the hard drive.
- IDE Port 1 or IDE2- is usually white (not always the case) and it usually gets used by the CD-ROM, Zip drive or other devices
- On the motherboard there can be two or more connectors for the SATA. Usually the first SATA connector is blue (not always the case) and the others are black. The motherboard may have them numbered as well. This determines what drive is the master and slave. Below is an example of a motherboard that has 6 SATA connections (the number of connectors depends on the motherboard you are using. Some can have only 2 and some can have more than 6)
- If you are using an ATA PCI card, the cable will be plugged into the card.
Connect data cable
- Connect SATA cable to hard drive
- Close the computer up, connect keyboard, mouse, monitor and power to the system.
- Boot to the BIOS and make sure it is seen in the BIOS.
- Now you have to setup the drive's partition depending on what you want it setup as.
The following is a list of well known third party companies that have the capability of restoring lost files.
Hard Drive - Troubleshoot hard drive not seen in Bios