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  1. #1
    Plutonium Lounger
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Thanked 7 Times in 7 Posts

    Non system disk or disk error

    I thought I would share this story so that other people could learn from my mistake.

    About two weeks ago I bought a new hard disk for my main PC at home, the one we use as a server. I installed this as SATA3, already having disks connected to connectors SATA1 and SATA2. When I restarted the PC it all looked fine. I formatted the new disk as one enormous 500GB NTFS partition, and ran a full CHKDSK, including a surface scan, before moving data onto it. The PC has worked fine ever since, with lots of laptops and other PCs storing all their data on its capacious disks.

    This morning I had a problem on the PC, and the mouse froze. This happens every now and again, so I just rebooted the PC to reset everything. As it powered up I saw the dreaded message

    Oh dear, thinks I. Maybe the frozen mouse was symptomatic of something more serious.

    I booted my BART-PE recovery disk, and ran a full CHKDSK, which showed no errors, but it still won't boot.
    I checked the BIOS boot order and it is set to CD, then Hard Disk which seems OK to me.
    Since I don't keep any data on the system/boot partition I wasn't too worried, and I just restored it from a 7 day old Acronis backup and rebooted

    I was now starting to get very worried.

    Eventually I discovered a completely different BIOS screen which set the order for trying to boot Hard Disks, and for some unknown reason SATA3 was at the top of the list, I moved SATA1 to the top and everything worked fine. I guess it booted fine last time because there was no file system on this disk then, but now I had formatted it the BIOS tried to use it as a boot disk.

    Lesson learned: Look at all the BIOS setup screens, not just the obvious ones, when a PC won't boot.


  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Lexington, Kentucky, USA
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: Non system disk or disk error

    Thanks for the "story" Stuart! Great lesson learned.

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