External Sata Hd detected in windows, not in BIOS

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jack4324

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I want to be able to boot my Toshiba Satellite laptop P205D-S7436 using an external sata hard drive using an enclosure connected to an Esata express card. The hard drive is detected in windows, but not in the first screen of the BIOS. The BIOS does not allow search for additonal hard drives. I have a internal Hitachi 120 gb hd installed. The external hd is a Hitachi 500 gb 2.5 sata hd. If I use a USB cable, the drive is detected in the boot section of the BIOS but will not boot. From what I have read on the internet the USB is too slow to boot, but a sata drive should be capable. I don't understand why the esata connected drive is detected in windows, but not in the BIOS. I have looked for BIOS updates that address this problem but have not found any. Any sugestions?
 
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It probably is detected in the bios, but some bios's mask some hardware, they just don't let you see it or configure it in any way, did you do a thorough navigation of the bios, it may not show on the first page since it is connected to an express card.

The bios must support booting from add in cards, yours may not.

Bios updates do not usually add these features either.
 

jack4324

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Thank you for your reply. So far, the only hard did capable of being detected in the first BIOS screen is the internal HD. I have connected various hard drives via USB or esata, but they are not detected in the first screen of the BIOS. In the boot screen of the BIOS, the USB disk is detected, but not esata. I have a partitioning software (boot) CD. The patitioning section of the software detects the internal and USB hard disks, but not the esata connected hard drive. The data backup section of the software program detects the internal hard drive, USB and esata. In windows, the computer detects all three disks. However, the partitioning program creates a pq error and does not load in Windows. In windows, the program does detect all three hard drives in the data backup section of the software program. Tech support for the partitioning software is researching why it creates a pq error.
 

jrbuergel

Jim
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Have you checked and set your BIOS drive boot order, and does that motherboard have the support for SATA ? You can try hitting the F key for your boot order options menu, such as on my Gateway it is the F10 key, and some other computers are F8 or F12 keys. And if it does detect that eSATA external drive then just arrow down to it, and hit enter if it does have a bootable operating system installed on it, such as a popular Linux.
 

jack4324

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Yes, I have checked the boot order, but the esata connected drive is not listed. Windows detects the drive and I can transfer files to and from it and write to it, but it is not detected in the BIOS. Is it possible for a drive to be fully functionable in windows but not motherboard supported?
 
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Is it possible for a drive to be fully functionable in windows but not motherboard supported?

It probably is detected in the bios, but some bios's mask some hardware, they just don't let you see it or configure it in any way
 

jrbuergel

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Is that laptop internal hard drive a SATA type, and if so then that Toshiba motherboard does support SATA, so during the BIOS POST boot process it should flash the name of that 500 GB Hitachi drive as it is detected. The master boot record partition table can get corrupt or just deleted which makes a drive hard to detect. What is your main goal with that external hard drive ? When you said; "I want to be able to boot my Toshiba Satellite laptop using an external sata hard drive", do you plan on installing a operating system and a boot loader on it or just use that drive for file storage ? You can multi-boot with Linux using the grub boot loader installed on the internal drive MBR, and grub onto the external drive Linux root. Is the Laptop running XP or Vista, and what is installed on the external drive ? There is a bootable CD disk called; System Rescue CD here; http://www.sysresccd.org/Main_Page , it has tools on it such as the GParted, and TestDisk, which can fix partition tables, and change or create more partitions on that drive. Or here; http://gparted.sourceforge.net/
 

jrbuergel

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The eSATA express card for laptops acts as both a connector adapter and eSATA interface and uses the built in motherboard SATA controller then, is that right ?
 
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The eSATA express card for laptops acts as both a connector adapter and eSATA interface and uses the built in motherboard SATA controller then, is that right ?
I don't think so, the expresscard has its own Sata controller built in. That is why it does not show up on the first bios screen, and if the bios does not support booting from add in hardware like the expresscard, then it cannot be done. If the OP would post the make and model of the expresscard, then we could look into it further, but me thinks it is a no go to boot from it on that PC.
 

jack4324

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The express card is an IOGEAR 2 port esata Express card/34. The model number is GPS702e3. My original intent was to partition my internal hard drive on my laptop. The operating system is Vista Premium. I have Windows 2000 installed on a desktop computer which has some programs that are not supported in Vista. I wanted to partition the laptop hard drive and install Windows 2000 on one of the partitions and be able to boot this drive or install it on an external esata connected drive. However, my motherboard does not support booting the two different systems. I now intend to upgrade to Windows 7. I have purchased a partitioning/backup program, but the software installation has problems and the company's tech support are looking into the PQ error. Both the internal and external drives are Sata. I cannot boot from the external drive using USB or Esata. It is my understanding that USB is too slow to boot and since the esata connected drive is not detected in BIOS I cannot boot it. When I am ready to upgrade to Windows 7, I intend to install it on a partition and keep Windows Vista on another partition unless I continue to run into problems. I still would like to be able to boot from the external drive, but it doesn't look promising.
 

jrbuergel

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Do you really mean to say; you want to boot to rather than from the external hard drive ? Most common is to have the main boot loader installed on the internal drive, so you can boot to the external, or boot the internal drive with out the external drive turned on or connected. That is the way I do a multi-boot setup with an external esata connected drive, with several of the Linux, and windows XP, using the grub boot loader. See here; http://www.gnu.org/software/grub/grub.en.html
 
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Iogear GPS702e3

It is classified as a "storage controller" so yes it has its own sata controller chip in the expresscard, that is why the bios does not see the hard drive connected to it, and cannot boot from it.
 

jack4324

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Thank you for the information. I am now deciding how to proceed. Yes, I want to be able to boot from the external Sata drive. However, that does not appear to be a viable option with this laptop.
 

jack4324

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I forgot to mention that I am looking at the Gnu.org/Grub websites to see if it can help resolve my problem.
 
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