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Installing second SATA HDD, cable question

DruhimDruhim Registered User, ClubPA regular
I'm installing a second hard drive in my pc (250 gig SATA) that I just got, and I just noticed that while my power cable has two SATA connectors on it, the data cable (smaller plug is data as I understand, correct?) only has one connector. Can I just buy a splitter or such that will just add another connector to it or is this a more complicated solution? Just seems really retarded that Dell would include two power connectors and the bay for a second hard drive, but not the second data connector. But then, Dell.

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Posts

  • SpamSpam Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Nope - one cable per hard drive.
    There should be 2-4 sata connectors on your motherboard, just get a new cable and plug it into a spare port.
    A new cable should only cost you £1-2 online, or ask anyone local who builds their own pc's / local computer repair shops - they'll usually have plenty of spares lying around since you get several for free with practically every motherboard these days.

  • Gnome-InterruptusGnome-Interruptus Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    All the power connectors come straight out of your power supply, so it is common to have way more power connectors than you need, and more than the power supply could even feasably support if each one was actually connected to something.

    The data cables are only used as needed, so when they sent you a prebuilt box, it would be highly unlikely for them to include extra cables for you to be cracking it open and modifying it.

    But like Spam said, it should be super easy to find some extra cables, and they should be very cheap. I think my Motherboard came with 6 SATA slots and 6 cords, so they arent some expensive accessory that manufacturers skimp out on.

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  • DruhimDruhim Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2010
    Hmm, looking at where the SATA data cable plugs into the motherboard, it appears that there's only one slot for a data cable on the whole board. Does that sound right?

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  • bigwahbigwah Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Druhim wrote: »
    Hmm, looking at where the SATA data cable plugs into the motherboard, it appears that there's only one slot for a data cable on the whole board. Does that sound right?

    No. What model Dell is it?

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  • DruhimDruhim Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2010
    bigwah wrote: »
    Druhim wrote: »
    Hmm, looking at where the SATA data cable plugs into the motherboard, it appears that there's only one slot for a data cable on the whole board. Does that sound right?

    No. What model Dell is it?

    Dimension E521. I suppose I'm overlooking something. The last time I added a second hard drive was about 6 years ago on an old pentium pc and I had to still deal with setting the master and slave drive.

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  • bigwahbigwah Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Druhim wrote: »
    bigwah wrote: »
    Druhim wrote: »
    Hmm, looking at where the SATA data cable plugs into the motherboard, it appears that there's only one slot for a data cable on the whole board. Does that sound right?

    No. What model Dell is it?

    Dimension E521. I suppose I'm overlooking something. The last time I added a second hard drive was about 6 years ago on an old pentium pc and I had to still deal with setting the master and slave drive.

    Looks like you have extra ports. Is yours currently plugged into a blue port? Should be a similiar port next to it that is black (along with 2 other black ones). Dont let the colors confuse you, its still a SATA port.

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  • DruhimDruhim Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2010
    bigwah wrote: »
    Druhim wrote: »
    bigwah wrote: »
    Druhim wrote: »
    Hmm, looking at where the SATA data cable plugs into the motherboard, it appears that there's only one slot for a data cable on the whole board. Does that sound right?

    No. What model Dell is it?

    Dimension E521. I suppose I'm overlooking something. The last time I added a second hard drive was about 6 years ago on an old pentium pc and I had to still deal with setting the master and slave drive.

    Looks like you have extra ports. Is yours currently plugged into a blue port? Should be a similiar port next to it that is black (along with 2 other black ones). Dont let the colors confuse you, its still a SATA port.

    yeah, it's plugged into a blue port but I don't see another one right next to it (there's a port right next to it but it looks like a power supply cable is plugged in there)
    I see two other L ports on a different section of the motherboard, one black and one white but they look exactly the same and I assume those are the other SATA ports

    so would this be all I need as a data cable to plug my second drive into my motherboard?

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  • DruhimDruhim Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2010
    correction, the cable plugged into the other (apparently SATA) port is for my dvd drive

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  • Gnome-InterruptusGnome-Interruptus Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Druhim wrote: »
    correction, the cable plugged into the other (apparently SATA) port is for my dvd drive

    yep, disk drives, which include DVD/CD-ROM Drives can also use the SATA ports to interface with the motherboard.

    So you would either need to find some other way of connecting the DVD drive to the motherboard, or else some type of SATA extender card that lets you connect more SATA devices to the motherboard.

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  • DruhimDruhim Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2010
    Well, I see two other ports about 2 inches away on the motherboard that also look like the SATA L port, just one is black and one is white. So I went ahead and ordered a SATA cable from newegg. Just wish I'd realized I needed it when I ordered the drive.

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  • Gnome-InterruptusGnome-Interruptus Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    I agree, it would be nice if HDD sales reminded us that we need to get a data cable.

    I just bought an additional SATA HDD 2 days ago, and if I wasnt a pack rat and still had a box full of all the extra cables and face plates from when I bought my Case & MB 3 years ago, I would have had to make an additional trip to pick up a cable, and would have been pretty annoyed.

    I would also advise you check and see if you can find an online instruction manual for your motherboard, to verify that you wont be messing anything up by plugging a new device into what you think might be a SATA port.

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  • Professor SnugglesworthProfessor Snugglesworth Bullied BatRegistered User regular
    edited January 2011
    On the subject, I've been looking to add a fourth HDD to my PC, as the previous three drives have been filled to the brim. What's the cheapest kind to get, and where to get it?

    I'm looking at 500gb or more.

  • wonderpugwonderpug Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
  • TofystedethTofystedeth veni, veneri, vamoosi Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    I agree, it would be nice if HDD sales reminded us that we need to get a data cable.

    I just bought an additional SATA HDD 2 days ago, and if I wasnt a pack rat and still had a box full of all the extra cables and face plates from when I bought my Case & MB 3 years ago, I would have had to make an additional trip to pick up a cable, and would have been pretty annoyed.

    I would also advise you check and see if you can find an online instruction manual for your motherboard, to verify that you wont be messing anything up by plugging a new device into what you think might be a SATA port.

    I think Dell has stopped building motherboards and PSU disastrously out of spec like they used to. If it fits the connector without forcing, it shouldn't break anything. It's not like years ago when they swapped wires on their power connectors without changing the keying on the connector, so if you bought a non Dell PSU it would easily plug in then burn out your mobo.

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  • splashsplash Registered User
    edited January 2011
    On the subject, I've been looking to add a fourth HDD to my PC, as the previous three drives have been filled to the brim. What's the cheapest kind to get, and where to get it?

    I'm looking at 500gb or more.

    I would say this one with the $10 promo code that ends January 10th
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

  • DruhimDruhim Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited January 2011
    oh, to update I should add that I got the SATA data cable and the second drive is working just fine now

    thanks!

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  • brownie224brownie224 Registered User
    edited March 2012
    I am also adding a second hard drive to a Dell Dimension E521 and need the second data cable. There are two empty plug in slots on my motherboard and it looks like the data cable would fit there.
    I don't know much about motherboards but looking at this it would appear that it would be ok to plug the data cable into any of the serial ATA drive connectors.
    http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/dime521/en/SM_EN/techov.htm#wp1053345
    Am I right?

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  • tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    Yes any of those ports marked "5" on the system board graphic will work.

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  • ceepeepeeceepeepee Registered User
    I came across this thread through a google search, and am hoping somebody's two cents will help solve my problem, somewhat similar to what has already been discussed.

    I have a Dell Dimension E520 with two SATA hard drives. For some reason I can't get the system to power all three SATA devices (2 harddrives and the optical drive). I have tried basic troubleshooting by switching the ports and cables, but still can't seem to load all three devices. I was running windows vista (same problem), now I am running Windows 7 professional and still the same issue.

    The current configuration is:

    Blue (sata0) --> HardDrive 1 (Operating System)
    Black (sata1) --> HardDrive 2 (formatted to NTFS)
    Black (sata4 or sata5) --> Optical Drive

    With this configuration the optical drive isn't recognized.

    Manual: http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/dimE520/en/OM_en/NH730A01.pdf
    Scheme on page 68

    Thanks in advance with any help.

  • ceepeepeeceepeepee Registered User
    I am all set with my problem above. In BIOS I had to turn on sata4 or sata5, whichever was connected to the optical drive.

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