Replacing eIDE Boot drive with SATA - OS setup says "NTLDR is Missing" BIOS issues?

Discussion in 'Dell' started by tenor20, Jul 26, 2007.

  1. tenor20

    tenor20 Guest

    Optiplex GX270 512/p4 2.6

    HD crashed. I also have a EIDE 80g data drive.

    I bought a wd 160g sata to replace the maxtor 60g diamondmax eide that

    Ran the wd life drive tools to format and partition (137gig for
    windows 2000 - apparently there is a windows fix to recognize the
    whole drive once you are up and running.)

    Using windows 2000 bootdisk1 (because I am doing a clean install from
    the UPGRADE CD) - it stops when anylizing the Hard Drive configuration
    and gives me NTLDR is Missing.

    Though the bios setup recognizes the drive - the first message I get
    is "Primary Drive 1 not found". I believe the problem is here...with
    the bios.

    Help Please! already wasted 4 days googling for answers.

    PS FDisk recognizes the partition and says it is active, and Life
    Drive saw it and formatted and partitioned - so it isn't completely
    invisible. Also- Is there a problem having the IDE drive connected
    during this process - and how should i cable and jump it so that the
    SATA is primary?
    tenor20, Jul 26, 2007
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  2. tenor20

    Yes Baby Guest

    perhaps the BIOS is looking for a SATA driver before it finds the

    I know nothing about 2000 but under XP with some MoBo BIOS's you have to
    have the SATA drivers available on a floppy drive to be installed during the
    installation of the OS.
    Yes Baby, Jul 26, 2007
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  3. tenor20

    Ben Myers Guest

    If a motherboard requires XP drivers for SATA support, then drivers would be
    needed for Windows 2000 as well.

    My bet is that the Optiplex GX270 BIOS is old enough that drivers are required.
    The newer motherboards with Intel 900-series chipsets do not need special SATA
    drivers, as a rule... Ben Myers
    Ben Myers, Jul 27, 2007
  4. tenor20

    tenor20 Guest

    Thanks. I had this thought too - though when I checked the Dell
    website for SATA drivers there wasn't anything listed. maybe I'll give
    it a more thorough look.
    tenor20, Jul 27, 2007
  5. Hi!
    The fix is a registry value, and is only valid on SP3 and higher for Windows
    2000. You can change the value yourself if need be. There is a Microsoft KB
    article on what to do if you're comfortable working on the Windows registry.

    Let Windows Setup do the partitioning and configuration for the hard drive.
    You might be surprised at the results. I installed the "Gold" (SP0) release
    of Windows 2000 Pro on a Dimension 8300 and its 160GB Western Digital hard
    drive. It let me partition and format all 160GB of it in one sitting. I've
    never known why and adding a 200GB drive later (after the SP4 installation)
    required that I throw the bit in the Windows registry to get anymore than
    137GB of it to show up. Both drives crossed the limit, so why one worked and
    the other not...I can't say.
    Enter system setup and go into Drive Configuration. You'll see settings to
    enable and disable not only the SATA drives, but also the PATA (IDE) ones.
    Chances are good that one of the PATA device entries is set to "AUTO" and
    says "unknown device". Turn the offending port off in Setup, restart and go
    again. That should clear up the error.
    Let Windows Setup do the partitioning and formatting. Data Lifeguard tools
    isn't perfect and may be doing something that Windows doesn't like.
    No, you shouldn't have any trouble with a connected IDE device. You can
    remove it if you want to, but that is up to you.

    SATA drives operate on a "one device per channel" principle. If you're sure
    the drive is plugged into the right SATA channel on the motherboard (on my
    Dim 8300 it is the topmost SATA connector) then you have done all you need
    to do.

    William R. Walsh, Jul 27, 2007
  6. Hi!
    I didn't need any SATA drivers for Windows 2000 Professional on my Dimension
    8300. All the Intel *ATA controllers were recognized as such. Perhaps it
    isn't the most performing setup, but it works to this day.

    Most SATA controllers will emulate a conventional IDE controller and work

    You can, at your own risk, download the Intel Chipset INF file update from
    Intel (or Dell may offer it for your system). This will let your Intel SATA
    controller be properly recognized. As far as I know, no better drivers are
    available for Win2000/XP unless you have a RAID capable SATA controller and
    are using it as such.

    Updating to the latest BIOS would not be a bad idea if you haven't already.
    Have the system on backup power and running from a cold start if you do.

    William R. Walsh, Jul 27, 2007
  7. tenor20

    Tom Scales Guest

    Might never me W2K drivers.
    Tom Scales, Jul 27, 2007
  8. tenor20

    tenor20 Guest

    Thanks, William.This at least sent me down the right path. I
    eventually got things running - not optimally - but running. I was
    using a win 2k Upgrade disk - so booting from the cd wasn't an option.
    I used a win98 boot disk and ran winnt from the i386 folder. I had
    tried this before - but the drive wasn't showing up as large enough
    for setup to run. I did 2 things - first I jumpered the sata drive to
    150 - whether or not I needed to do this I don't know - because in the
    same operation I partitioned and formatted from the win98 fdisk/format
    in fat32. Then I let setup convert to NTFS - something I really didn't
    want to do. I am now showing a 149 GB capacity on a 160 gb drive. Good
    enough I guess.
    Anyway - I've ordered a XP OEM disk from ebay and I plan on upgrading
    as soon as it gets here. This will be my first OS that wasn't an
    Upgrade disc since win95 - so at this early stage I may just wipe the
    disk and start again if XP can format NTFS from the start.
    I appreciate your help.
    tenor20, Aug 1, 2007
  9. Hi!
    That's quite odd, as the upgrade discs are bootable. At least every Windows
    2000 upgrade disc I ever came into contact with was startable. If you don't
    have an OS installed at that point, you'll be asked to provide a valid CD
    from a supported previous version of Windows.

    Good luck with your next step. I'm glad to hear you got it working, even if
    it wasn't really optimal.

    William R. Walsh, Aug 4, 2007
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