Vanishing HDD in XP

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YOS

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 11, 2005
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4
Hello all,

I have a bizarre problem which I can not solve - I am hoping that someone here has some idea about what's happened to me.

I recently installed a wireless broadband network in my mothers house and connected her PC to it. The specs are:
P4 1.5 with 512mb RAM
XP Pro
Primary disc - Western Digital 20gb
Secondary disc (slave) Western Digital 80gb

This machine is a couple of years old and has had no previous relationship with the internet so once the firewall was up and running and the anti-virus scan was finished I allowed the machine to DL all the required windows updates.

After installing SP2 and rebooting, the second hard disk (disk F) has vanished from XP. It's not in the Hardware Manager, it's not visible in the Disk Manager, it's just not there anymore. All the shortcuts to programs on it are still on the desktop although they have reverted to the default icon.

The disk is still visible in BIOS and the startup screen says it's attached and working ok. You can access it via BIOS and change things like the SMART settings (enabled) but once you boot XP it's no longer available or indeed even recognised as existing.

I have tried removing the disk and putting it in another machine under the same circumstances (i.e. as a slave to another master disk) and it works fine.

This disk contains all of mothers work files and is immensely valuable to her. I've copied the contents off it by installing it in another machine but the problem persists. I'm sure buying a new HD would solve the problem but I am curious to know what the hell has happened here and whether there is something obvious I have missed.

Any help would be very greatly appreciated.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2005
Messages
255
Right-Click My Computer
Select Manage
In the new screen Select Disk Management
Check to see if the drive can be seen in there and then come back to me
 

YOS

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 11, 2005
Messages
4
Hello and thanks for the response.

I have tried that and then I have tried it again - it's not in the disk manager in any way shape or form but it is available in the BIOS.

I've gone a bit further and tried a system restore (no luck) and some different cables (well you never know!) but again nothing happens.
 
Joined
Jan 12, 2005
Messages
200
You may try checking with the hard drive manufacturer. I have seen similar things with DVDRW drives and it ended up being a firmware problem.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2005
Messages
255
When you installed service pack 2 did you choose to archive the old files. If you did, then I suggest you uninstall service pack 2 for the moment and see if your drive is recognised again.

If it is, backup everything before moving on.
 

YOS

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 11, 2005
Messages
4
Thanks for all the answers. Already tried restore and backing up - no result.

Just tried booting in safe mode (duh - and I didn't think of that myself because?) and lo and behold there is the F drive in all it's full glory and YES I can boot from safe mode to full and keep the drive running.

So yes - I am having the same problem you are. I'm off to try the firmware updates - I'll let you know if that has any effect.
 

YOS

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 11, 2005
Messages
4
Quick update -

Before I got as far as firmware updates just booting in safe mode the once and then reverting to a normal boot seems to have fixed the problem. I am still clueless as to what caused it, but at least it's stopped!

Thanks to everyone that replied.
 
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