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Tech Helproom

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extra SATA drive prevents booting


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Hi. New build, Gigabyte GA-Z77 D3H mobo, installed Windows 7 on new SSD, no problem. Added new SATA3 hard disk, then one SATA2

disk from old PC, again they worked. But when I try either of two more SATA 2 disks from old PC, Windows won't boot. It tries to

install files, then just asks me to reboot from a proper boot disk; sometimes it tells me NTLDR is missing. Simply unplugging disk

lets it boot OK (I've tried different cables etc)

I have checked BIOS and the first boot device is Windows Boot Manager; changing this to the SSD with the OS doesn't let the PC

boot (even without the extra hard drives). I have even disabled all drives except the SSD but no different, and when I go into the

BIOS again, it has changed the settings back. It seems Windows Boot Manager insists on looking at the new hard drives before the

SSD (that's my guess, anyway!)

It's driving me mad! Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks


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Good morning all!

lotvic - thanks for that, in fact I've 'cured' the problem by restoring my PC to an earlier time and reinstalling Norton. But I'll look at what you say if (and when!) the problem reoccurs.

rdave13, fruitbat - to my original problem. Here's something odd: I tried booting (as normal, without the problem drives connected) and entered boot manager during POST. I selected my SSD (with the OS installed) and it refused - it told me NTLDR is missing. It seems it will only boot from Windows Boot Manager. So I presume that any messing about with the drive/boot order won't fix it.

Here are two more things that occur:

  1. reformat the drives on my old machine and try again

  2. Load up windows as normal then connect the drives, maybe then reformat etc. Yes, I know I shouldn't hot swap, but is it worth taking a chance?

ANy other ideas?

Thanks, ROger

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Hi Everyone - just thought I'd let you know, I've resolved this. The hard way: I stuck one of the problem drives back in the old PC, backed up, then deleted partitions and formatted, using Windows disk management. When I plugged it into the new PC, it booted fine and let me partition the extra drive.

Then back into the old PC and copied the backup files etc. That's taken me most of the day, and I've yet to do the procedure with the other hard drive. Lucky I still had another working PC, if not I guess I would have had to chance plugging it in while windows was running.

THanks to everyone who posted, it's been a valuable lesson, and I've learnt new things. Very much appreciated



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