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Computer not detecting OS/ Hard Disk

ShinyRedKnightShinyRedKnight Registered User regular
This morning my brother tried to start up his computer. However, once he did, the computer simply went to a black screen with the words 'Primary Master Hard Disk Error'and 'Press F1 to resume'. After trying to restart his computer, he also got the message 'A disk read error occurred, press CTRL+ALT+DEL to restart'.

When trying to go through his list of boot devices in the bios menu, we noticed it only allowed him to pick one of his hard drives. However, on the list of SATA devices connected, it showed two hard drives, one connected to Sata 1, another to Sata 5, but the number that identified the hard drives was the same on each (I'm not sure if they are supposed to be the same, as the hard drives are of the same type). Never mind, one started with 3M another with PM.

He also stated that Windows has been very slow within the last few days, since a recent Flash update, but he is not sure if it is related.

One thing that should be noted, he got these two hard drives within the last few months. When he installed them he also reinstalled Windows. For some reason, Windows named the hard drive with the OS 'E', rather than 'C'.

To me, it seems that either the OS hard drive (E) is bad, or that the system got confused and is looking for the OS on the C drive. I cannot be sure at all, so any ideas are very welcome. Thanks!

EDIT: My brother is also getting this message, 'PriMasterHardDisk:S.M.A.R.T. CommandFailed'.

EDIT: Another update, my brother is noticing that often he can't get into the bios to check the boot priority, and instead just gets a message saying to reboot or to choose a new boot device.

EDIT: After going through the bios several times, we've noticed that the hard disk drive option, under bios->boot->, disappears and reappears every once in awhile.

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  • TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu ___________PIGEON _________San Diego, CA Registered User regular
    Likely a dead hard drive, but hook it up to another computer just to be sure.

  • ShinyRedKnightShinyRedKnight Registered User regular
    edited August 2011
    Likely a dead hard drive, but hook it up to another computer just to be sure.

    That's what I'm thinking, we can get a spare one in. However, I just updated the OP, he also has trouble getting into the bios. Sometimes, instead of taking us to the bios when pressing del, it takes us to the black screen with the system info and it may or may not get to the bios after a few minutes. I'm not sure if that would still be a hard drive issue or a motherboard problem. Thanks.

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  • SpudgeSpudge Registered User regular
    It could be a SATA controller failure

    Try swapping the disks to other SATA ports (if available) and see what happens

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  • ShinyRedKnightShinyRedKnight Registered User regular
    Spudge wrote:
    It could be a SATA controller failure

    Try swapping the disks to other SATA ports (if available) and see what happens

    Hmm I'll try that as well. When we try both switching ports and hard drives, I'll update you guys. Thanks again.

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  • ShinyRedKnightShinyRedKnight Registered User regular
    I switched the ports before I switched the hard drive out, and it works! Thanks guys!

    I'm guessing that means a motherboard replacement would be a good idea for my brother, at least down the road.

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  • FoomyFoomy Registered User regular
    I switched the ports before I switched the hard drive out, and it works! Thanks guys!

    I'm guessing that means a motherboard replacement would be a good idea for my brother, at least down the road.

    pretty much, if one port is dead that's generally a sign that more trouble is coming down the road. But you might as well keep using it until either it dies, or you see a new mobo on sale for a great price.

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