Adding a second hard drive

  Alien463 12:33 12 Aug 2003


I currently have a Compaq Presario 5000 Model 5146EA Windows ME computer with 256mb RAM.

I want to add a second slave drive to the computer (to store more stuff!) and need some help.

I was thinking of purchasing the WesternDigital Hard Drive 80GB 7200 RPM for £129.99 from PC World, and was wondering if the two were compatible.

You can find the product spec here:

click here

Will I need to purchase a PCI to IDE interface card to prevent upgrading my bios? And is the drive external or internal. How would I go about installing it?

Any help would be much appreciated,

Thanks in advance,


  Lozzy 12:37 12 Aug 2003

You won't have any problems with compatibility but you will need to partition the drive.

  Ben Avery 12:41 12 Aug 2003


To add a second HDD is easy. Inside your PC you have an IDE connector (or 2). Assuming you have a CD Drive and maybe also a DVD/CDRW drive one of these cables will be connected to these 2 drives. The other cable should have a plug at the end which goes into the Motherboard and 2 plugs at the other end. The middle one will be empty and the end one will be plugged into your current HDD.

The slave drive is set with jumpers (a small plug which shorts out 2 pins on the new HDD) and instructions on how to set this are usually found on the HDD itself. This HDD will be then plugged into the middle connecter on the IDE cable.

Once installed you need to activate it in the BIOS. Some are very simple and have an auto detect for HDD's.

You then need your Windows Installation disk and need to boot up from the floppy/CD where you will then run an FDisk program which will format your drive. Once your drive is formatted you can reboot windows and hey presto the drive will be there! It should take the next available drive letter, e.g.:

C: Original HDD



F: New HDD (Will be E: if you only have 1 CD drive)

Western Digital drives are allegedly OK - I use Seagate Barracuda drives myself (Just boughta 60GB one from dabs, worth checking out their prices as you drive seems rather expensive).

Once you get cracking post back for detailed explanations of how to perform each part of the operation.


  Ben Avery 12:46 12 Aug 2003

Seagate Barracuda 80GB 7200rpm £61.48 inc VAT click here

Western Digital 80GB 7200rpm £64.00 inc VAT click here

Just gives you an idea!


  Newuser3068 13:11 12 Aug 2003

The last HDD failure I had was a Western Digital. It lasted just 13 months, with no abnormal or intensive usage. It was maybe a rogue, but I thought you'd like to know.

  TBH1 13:16 12 Aug 2003

Yes, price does look a little, well, 'pricey' - - -
I think the new drive, in the above configuration, will become the D drive and optics E and F - - don't mean to be picky.

  SEASHANTY 13:27 12 Aug 2003

If you want the screws, cable, installation floppy, and full instructions then purchase a RETAIL BOXED hard drive. Note that many of the ones advertised on the internet are OEM drives. OEM means you will just get the BARE DRIVE - not even the fixing screws. I use MAXTOR hard drives which are very reliable. PC World also sell these retail boxed but note that PCW are probably the dearest outlet to obtain them. Most if not all HDD come with a low level format already done. The software that comes with a boxed drive will take you thru the complete install including formatting and transferring all your info from one drive to the other should you so wish. See TECHRESCUE for fitting a new hard drive <click here> Its easier than you probably think.

  SEASHANTY 13:35 12 Aug 2003

Yes you are correct. Windows assigns preference to hard drives over CD-ROMS. The newly fitted drive if fitted as slave will become "D" then CD-RW and DVD-ROM drives will become E and F. It gets a little bit trickier if your C drive is already partioned (into C.D.and E. for example.. .. This can sometimes cause a little havoc on your PC if applications are already programmed to look for a particular drive or CD-ROM. Partition Magic if used for partioning will sort out these difficulties. Just go ahead and fit your new drive but for a first time effort ITS FAR EASIER USING THE DRIVE INSTALLATION SOFTWARE which you get with a retail boxed drive.

  Alien463 16:09 12 Aug 2003


Just to let you know that I appreciate everyone's input.

I think i'll purchase a retail boxed hard drive as Seashanty suggested - it makes more sense.

Any suggestions on which one to buy?


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