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Hard disk size read wrong by bios

Have a 60GB IBM Deskstar IC35L060AVER07-0 harddrive installed as Master on it's own in an 8200 motherboard CPU Pentium 1.80GHz according to both Dell's manual and that of IBM. The BIOS is reading back a capacity of just 33820 MB. Is it a limitation due to the age of the motherboard. Can the BIOS be flashed safely? Regards, Sweet Chilli

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Re: Hard disk size read wrong by bios

You can easily flash the BIOS and see if that fixes the problem. Dell has a BIOS version A09 on their web site ( You could try that. Just make sure to have your computer on a battery backup (UPS) while flashing the BIOS. If the power were to go out in the middle of flashing, you may cause damage to the BIOS chip.

Posted on Sep 19, 2007

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Installing a new larger hard drive, and it will not accept it?

Wait a minute! Hold the phone!

HOW, are you trying to install this 320GB harddrive?

You cannot just grab a fresh, new harddrive, and put it in. There's no Operating System on it. It's on the 160GB harddrive.
(Windows XP?)

Not trying to 'sound' condescending, but I do not see anything to support that you know what you are doing.

If you are using a Western Digital 160GB IDE harddrive, you have a motherboard, and BIOS, that is past the size limitation for an IDE harddrive.
The size limitation was 137GB for motherboards, (BIOS program, actually), that had this limitation.

Size limitation isn't your problem.

Plus, LEAVE BIOS ALONE, as far as upgrading.

A) Power goes out while you are upgrading, and when asked, you do not save a copy of the original BIOS program, you can take your motherboard out, and use it for a Frisbee.

B) IF, there was a BIOS upgrade, AND it is NOT compatible, AND when asked you do not save a copy of the original BIOS program, you can take your motherboard out, and use it for a Frisbee.

Also, if it IS an IDE harddrive, and the old 160GB is an IDE harddrive, you cannot put both harddrives on that flat ribbon cable, AND use the 320GB as a Primary harddrive.

Want to use the 320GB as a Primary harddrive, (Master), and the 160GB as a Secondary harddrive? (Slave) There is a proper procedure.

No, I'm wrong? You have a fresh, new GENUINE copy of Windows, and are going to install it on this 320GB?
[Microsoft makes one Master disk. From it all GENUINE copies are made, and sold to the consumer ]

I hope it is Windows XP, (Home or Pro)
Because drivers are not be available for Windows Vista (Yecch!), or Windows 7.

What are drivers?
Small pieces of software that allow the Operating System to communicate with a device.
Windows XP and Windows 7, are just two examples of an O/S.
Harddrive, motherboard chipset, optical drive, (CD/DVD drive), audio (Sound), etc., are Devices.

Winfast is no longer in operation. No help from them.
(The motherboard manufacturer that made the motherboard for eMachines/Gateway. Confusing? Yes, I know.
eMachines sold out to Gateway. Guess what? Gateway SOLD OUT to Acer. Isn't this fun(?)

The motherboard is a Gateway MCP61SM2MA. Part number Gateway 4006232R.

1) Has one Parallel ATA connector on the motherboard.

[PATA. Term is also known as IDE. Just to be more confusing, it is also known as EIDE. Enhanced IDE brought out by Western Digital, back in the day. The reason PATA is used, is to help distinguish it from SATA.
Serial ATA. This will help you understand, ]

On the main Gateway support page I linked above, click on ->
Product Views.
In the list click on the blue -> Parallel ATA IDE connector.

2) The motherboard also has two SATA connectors,

On the Hardware Details list, click on the blue -> U - SATA connectors

Do not know if it is a PATA harddrive, (320GB), or a SATA harddrive?
Look at the label. Example on WD 160GB might be WD1600BEVT.
What is it on the 320GB?

Blank, new 320GB WD harddrive? BIOS isn't going to recognize it.
It hasn't been formatted.
WD does have a software tool to do this. Do I recommend this for a beginner? NO.

Better to install the 320GB in an economical external enclosure, and plug the USB cable from the enclosure into any available USB port on your computer.
Now you have a 160GB harddrive with WinXP on it, and 320GB's of extra storage.

Example (IMHO) of an economical external enclosure,

If you have no clue of what I have posted above, it is going to look like so much gibberish. Not my intent.

Not after 'Points'. Could give 2 cents.
{With this website you can rate ANY solution you see, and ALL solutions you see}

My intent is to teach. I have been at this for 8 years. (3 here, 5 elsewhere)
I want you to understand. Post back in a Comment, with the answers I need, from the questions I stated above.

We together WILL find a solution.


Jun 20, 2012 | E-Machines PC Desktops


How To Upgrade Your Own PC Hard Drive

At this point, the computer is powered off and I'm ready to add the new hard drive as a second hard drive. Since there is only one hard drive installed at the start of the upgrade, the old hard drive is already installed as the master hard drive on the first IDE cable. The new hard drive is added as the slave hard drive on the first IDE cable (the same IDE cable as the old hard drive, but using the slave IDE connector).

The first step is to set the jumpers on the back of the hard drive into the slave position. These pictures show the back of the hard drive which also contains a label indicating what each jumper settting means.


To get a close-up in which you can actually read the jumper label in the picture, I've taken two separate close-ups of the label and placed them side-by-side with the first showing the left-hand side of the label and the second showing the right-hand side of the label. Clicking on any picture makes an even larger image. For details of what each jumper setting means, see this Deskstar 120GXP Jumper Description at the IBM/Hitachi Storage Technical Support site.


It can be confusing to know how to set the jumpers just from looking at the label. As you read across the left-hand and right-hand pictures, you'll notice that a setting for "DEVICE 0 (MASTER)" appears twice. Same for "DEVICE 1 (SLAVE)". But the first mention applies to "16 HEADS" and the second mention applies to "32GB Clip". The Deskstar 120GXP Jumper Description does a good job of clearing up the confusion, so rather than repeat it here I'll just strongly recommend you give it a look.

Here are links to jumper information for other popuplar hard drive manufacturers. Western Digital Jumper Setting Information Maxtor. Once there, click on the particular hard drive model. Then select "Jumper Settings" and/or "Jumper Guide" in the [Technical Specifications] field. Seagate Jumper Setting Information. Look near the bottom of the page.
The default, shipped, jumper setting for the IBM Deskstar 120GXP 80GB jumpers is in the "16 HEAD", "DEVICE 0 (MASTER)" position and this is how mine arrived. Here's a close-up showing the jumpers circled in red. The IBM Deskstar 120GXP 80GB hard drive has nine jumper pins and two jumpers. The jumpers are white and rectangular in shape and are shown inserted over two pairs of pins. Notice the pins covered by the jumpers match the jumper label diagram as shown in the side-by-side pictures for "DEVICE 0 (MASTER)" next to "16 HEADS" . This is the correct jumper setting to use for the hard drive after the hard drive has been cloned and it is ready to become the Master hard drive.


But at this point in the hard drive upgrade procedure the new had drive is being added to my computer as the slave hard drive. Although the jumpers are small, you should be able to use just your fingers and move the jumpers such they are set into the slave position. In my case, that means setting them as shown here. Again, it can be confusing because the same picture shows, and right above the jumpers themselves, a jumper diagram labeled "DEVICE 1 (SLAVE)" which shows a different jumper setting. But that "DEVICE 1 (SLAVE)" jumper setting is for "32GB CLIP". Some computers (i.e., older computers) cannot use the whole 80GB and this jumper setting "clips" the hard drive down to a 32GB slave hard drive. My computer can use the full capacity of the hard drive. You'll notice the jumper positions in this picture match the jumper diagram for "DEVICE 1 (SLAVE)" next to "16 HEADS" shown in the previous side-by-side pictures.


Not all hard drives have the same jumper options and labeling as the Deskstar 120GXP. For example, here is a Western Digital WD1200JB (120GB) hard drive. Notice that the labeling is on top of the hard drive rather than on the rear. In addiition, there is only one jumper since the Western Digital does not support re-configuring the number of heads in the drive or the total size of the drive.




Hard Drive Upgrade Install Guide
The hard drive has holes on the side which are used for the mounting screws as shown here. Like most hard drives, the IBM Deskstar 120GXP 80GB has places for 6 screws, three on each side. On the IBM Deskstar 120GXP 80GB hard drive (and this was also true for my old IBM Deskstar 75GXP 45GB hard drive), some screws could be longer than others. In fact, three of the six screws could be longer since they had more clearance to the hard drive itself. For my hard drive upgrade and install, I used a total of six round-head machine screws, size 6-32. Three of the screws were 1/4 inch in length and three of the screws were 3/8 inch in length. Click on the picture to see it enlarged.


Here's a picture taken inside My Super PC before the new hard drive is installed. The case I use, the Antec KS-282, holds the 3.5 inch drives such as the hard drives inside a "drive cage". The drive cage is handy since it makes installing the hard drives a little easier. This picture shows the drive cage circled in red and the old hard drive which will eventually be replaced circled in blue. Click on the picture to see it enlarged.


Here's a closer view showing the contents of the drive cage before the new hard drive is installed and still containing the old hard drive. The backside of the old hard drive looks similar to the backside of the new had drive since both are IBM Deskstar hard drives, just different models. You can see the backside of the hard drive is in three sections. The leftmost section is where the IDE cable connects. The jumper pins are in the middle. You can see the jumpers on the old drive are set in the master position, which makes sense since it's the only hard drive in My Super PC. The rightmost section is for the power connector. Click on the picture to see it enlarged.


Install The Second Hard DriveLet's look again at the interior shot. I've circled the slave IDE connector. There are three connectors on the IDE cable and they are color coded. I've circled in red the gray connector on the IDE cable. This is the connector for the slave hard drive. The master hard drive connector is black and is still plugged into the old hard drive in the drive cage. The connector on the IDE cable which connects to the motherboard is colored blue. Click on the picture to see the picture enlarged.


The new hard drive will plug into this gray connector as the slave device. And you'll need a free 4-pin power connector like the one shown to connect the new hard drive to the power supply. Click on any picture to enlarge it. Like many things that connect inside the computer, both the IDE connector (the gray one, in this case) and the power connector are "keyed" by their shapes or some other means so that they cannot be plugged in "upside down". For example, if you enlarge the picture of the gray connector it's easy to see that the center of the connector includes a plastic bulge and a blocked out pin receptable to prevent it from being plugged in incorrectly.


This picture shows the backside of the hard drive where the connectors plug in. There are three sections on the backside of the hard drive. The leftmost section circled in red is where the IDE cable connects. The jumper pins are in the middle. The rightmost section circled in blue is for the power connector. Click on the picture to see it enlarged.


on Jun 29, 2010 | PC Desktops

2 Answers

Setting the second sata hard drive as main drive

In your BIOS there is a section on Boot Priority. Set it to where it always boots from your 1Tb hard drive and this will make it the master. Another thing I did before I installed mine was to take the side panel off (computer unplugged) and remove the little CMOS Battery. That causes it to loose volatile memory and gives you a fresh start.
It worked on mine, but don't do what I did, closely observe which way the battery is turned. You can put it in upside down!

Jun 07, 2012 | Sony VAIO VGC-RC110G (VGCR110G) PC Desktop

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Hi, I have destop[ dell pentium R 4 cpu 3 GHz 1.99 GB of ram and 40 GB rom . I want to now if can change the hard disk and put another of 160 GB. tanks you carlos.

A) If you have the Restoration Disk (CD), or a full installation disk of the Windows operating system, the answer is yes.

B) If you have an image backup program, such as Norton Ghost, Acronis True Image, or DriveImage XML, for example, the answer is yes.

The Windows operating system is copied over to the new harddrive.

It would be easier, and more cost effective to just install the 160GB harddrive as a Slave drive.

I don't know if your harddrive is an IDE (PATA) unit, or a SATA unit.

Here is more information on installing either an IDE harddrive, or a SATA harddrive, as a Slave drive in a desktop computer,

1) IDE {PATA} harddrive:


2) SATA harddrive:

IDE, also known as PATA is the older style of technology.
SATA is the newer style.

(Parallel ATA
Serial ATA )

The beauty of SATA is not only the faster speed, but if you connect a SATA cable (Data cable) to ANY SATA connector on the motherboard, BIOS will find the device.

BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) will find the harddrive with the operating system on it, first.
Then it will recognize that you have a second SATA harddrive also.

(BIOS looks at both SATA harddrives.
When it finds the one with the operating system on it, BIOS will disregard the other SATA harddrive)

For additional questions please post in a Comment.


Jul 17, 2011 | Dell PC Desktops

2 Answers

Ibm deskstar model dtla-307015 invalid system

For some reason, the computer isn't able to read the hard drive and Windows isn't being found. If this computer has a floppy disk drive, make sure there's no disk in it. (Some people still use floppies, and the normal setting for systems with floppy drives is to try booting from that drive first. You may have a disk in it that isn't bootable.) Other possible causes are hard drive failure, a virus or other malware program has damaged the drives boot sector, or a motherboard problem. The most likely cause would be the hard drive; as a mechanical device they are more prone to fail than other parts.

Mar 08, 2010 | IBM NetVista M42 PC Desktop

1 Answer

Dell2 2400 BIOS F2 reads backwords.

It sounds like you may have the IDE cables hooked up backwards on your motherboard.. The IDE cable slot on the motherboard labled IDE1 should be where your Hard drives are if you want them to read as primary. The Optical drives are usually on IDE2, designating them as secondary.
Let me know if you need more help.

Mar 12, 2009 | Dell Dimension 2400 PC Desktop

3 Answers


Also - if it is telling you to install a hard drive - then your bios is not reconizing that you have a hard drive installed. Go into your Bios to see if your hard is listed. if not - you need to open your computer to make sure all the connections are correct. if this doesn't work, you may have to buy a new hard drive.

Aug 09, 2008 | Compaq PC Desktops

3 Answers

Motherboard blew up

I would recommend buying a replacement computer, and install the Dell IDE drive in an external 3.5" IDE hard drive enclosure. This way you can pull your information off the the Dell hard drive, and then blow it away.

Keep in mind that new computers use a SATA drive, your old Dell '8200 has an IDE drive. Also keep in mind that your Dimension 8200 drivers won't work on the new computer.

You might be able to install your Dell drive as a slave if you have an open IDE channel available.

Good news is, your old Dell uses RAMBUS memory, which is worth a lot. It's a good parts computer, and most people who look for computer parts know of the bad capacitor issue on Intel made Dell motherboards from that era.

May 15, 2008 | Dell Dimension 8200 PC Desktop

1 Answer

I have a 60GB ATA/133 HDD How do I set it up for an AMD K-7 motherboard (jumpers would be for master hard drive

WHAT hard disk brand?
is your HDD a slim type? or the strandard

for hitachi, ibm, exeltor brand
change your jumpers to........ LIMIT CAPACITY probably 40gb reading.....

Apr 25, 2008 | PC Desktops

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