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YOu probably don't have enough harddrive space... 160GB s not enough these days to do anything. Buy an internal HDD adapter from Tiger Direct (it has a USB plug in that lets you read it like a flashdrive) and another NEW internal HDD for your laptop from them... remember there are two sizes, the smaller one is for laptops. Put the new HDD in, 500GB minimum please. A faster spool up speed is better than a slower one. Put the new HDD in and insert the original Genuine Windows CD ROM in the CD-ROM bay and install the operating system into you new HDD. (Make sure you have the activation code.) Go to Microsoft Update and let it update the operating system for you. You will have Internet Explorer only as a browser until you install another. Install Oracle's Java first, Adobe's Acrobat Reader and Flashplayer and go to the Gateway support site to download any specific hardware updates from your PC, if available. Then you can check Hardware Devices to check for any yellow marks. Finally, install an enjoy using MS Office 2010.
Why not install a new 2.5" hdd in your laptop caddy.I replaced my 40gb with a 160gb, works fine and the data tranfer speed is better than a slave configuration. The average speed of around 40mb/sec Is because of the smaller platter, the amount of cache, the firmware installed and so on.
If you have opened the hard drive case you quite likely have pooched the drive. This type of work is usually carried out in a proper "clean room" as even very small particles of dust that float around can cause destruction of a hard drive.
That is why they ALL carry a warning about opening them. some even have inert gases instead of air in them as an aid to keeping the inside clean and avoiding airborne corrosion.
Specialists are the only people I know who can dismantle and recover data from the platter but they are not cheap.
You are more than welcome to try yourself but you would need the EXACT control board right down to the revision number to stand even the slightest chance.
Of cause you can upgrade the hdd to 160GB, the system will detect it, don't worry.
Meanwhile, make sure you have the drivers ready for all the hardware, as new new hdd need to be install with a new windows, and u will need the driver for all the hardware to function properly, like wifi and video.
In case you lost your driver disc, here's the link for you to download
The device driver is causing a conflict with the system. If you have got any specific cd with hardrive install the driver from the cd. Otherwise , i would suggest try changing he manufacturer of the hdd and get a new one. If you have recently bought it.
Otherwise try creating a new account in windows vista on your computer and then try plugging in the drive
You computer need the oem driver for the sata controller to be installed before windows can be installed. It wont find the drive at all with out the driver. You have to use the factory restore disks or have a usb floppy drive and download the driver and put it on a floppy disk and change the bios to work with the floppy. The easiest way is to use the oem software.