BIOS Not recognising HDD

  joethebow 21:45 21 Oct 2005

Turn the PC on and it tries to boot from Floppy, CDROM, SCUSI then it says please insert a boot disc.

Go into the bios and it says no HDD installed. Autodetect and it doesn't find HDD.

Go to advanced settings and there is no HDD option in the Boot Devices.

Disconect power cable, remove battery, use jumper to clear BIOS. HDD now found and everything works as advertised.

Around 10 days later the same thing happens again.

It's a Sempron processor running on a PC Chips K7 Motherboard with 512Mb Ram and an 80GB HDD, all are reasonably new.

I was wondering if updating the BIOS might help but trying that frightens the life out of me.

Any Ideas?

  woodchip 21:48 21 Oct 2005

You have ether not set the jumper correctly or its a faulty Data cable

  joethebow 22:12 21 Oct 2005

If it happens again I'll change the data cable.

  phono 23:43 21 Oct 2005

How old is the computer? Is it possible the CMOS battery on the mobo is dead?

If so you will lose the BIOS settings.

  DieSse 23:57 21 Oct 2005

I agree with phono - it may be a battery problem.

  joethebow 08:13 22 Oct 2005

It's less than 3 months old. But even if we lost the BIOS settings that shouldn't stop it recognising that there is a HDD fitted until I clear the CMOS memory should it?

Like I said above, when I get the problem the only boot devices listed as available are Floppy, CDROM and SCUSI, No Boot From HDD option until I clear the CMOS.

  DieSse 10:47 22 Oct 2005

If the BIOS loses it's settings and/or becomes corrupt, then it can indeed not find a hard drive.

In the BIOS under the drives section - the entries are normally set to AUTO - this means the BIOS will look for drives in the POST. If these settings become changed to NONE - then the BIOS won't even attempt to detect any drives.

If the motherboard is only 3 months old, then really this is not your problem - and you shoud be contacting the supplier about a replacement.

  phono 22:15 22 Oct 2005

I agree with DieSse, his diagnosis seems spot on, I would remove the CMOS battery and check its voltage, I would even go as far as buying a new battery and trying that before asking for a mobo replacement.

It may cost a few Quid for a new battery but it would certainly be a lot less hassle than having to swap a motherboard only for the supplier to test it and say it is okay and that it was the CMOS battery that was defective.

I could be wrong but I don't believe the CMOS battery is included in the manufacturers warranty.

  joethebow 23:50 22 Oct 2005

The Bios is set to Auto when the problem occurs but, as I said before, There is no option for HDD in the Advanced settings and when the BIOS autodetects it doesn't find the HDD. Once I clear the BIOS all is well untill the next time.

It's happened again so I'll try a new battery tomorrow and let you know the outcome.

It's a long and involved story but this is the second new mobo of the same make and I'm not prepaired to change it again no matter what.

  phono 00:22 23 Oct 2005

Just a thought, have you checked for a short circuit between mobo and case, I vaguely remember a PC Advisor forum on a similar topic and the solution turned out to be such a problem, a short circuit that was constantly draining the CMOS battery.

Better still I think I have just found the item concerned, see if this link helps in any way click here

  DieSse 02:05 23 Oct 2005

Try a new cable to the HDD - then try a new HDD.

In the BIOS set the Quick Test to DISabled - then the hard drive has a longer time to get up to speed before the BIOS gets to the drive detection phase.

Some BIOS also have a delay setting on hard drive detection, for the same purpose.

If the setting is set to Auto, and the BIOS is not finding the drive - then either the BIOS is becoming corrupted in some strange way, the drive or cable is faulty, or the motherboard/BIOS chip is faulty.

If you can identify the BIOS chip, it's suggested by some motherboard manufacturers to give it a good push into it's socket before fitting the board. Make sure the power is disconected at the mains if you try this. (or before changing/moving anything inside the tower).

Why was the motherboard changed in the first place?

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