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[SOLVED] no bootable devices on windows start up

This is a discussion on [SOLVED] no bootable devices on windows start up within the Motherboards, Bios|UEFI & CPU forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. some one gave me 2 dell computers and I'm trying to install windows xp on them but windows could not


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Old 06-19-2009, 03:02 PM   #1
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some one gave me 2 dell computers and I'm trying to install windows xp on them but windows could not detect a hard drive.

I went into the bios and for Master 1 it says "not installed" CD ROM is working fine.

What can it be what should I do it sounds like the HDD drivers are not installed.
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Old 06-19-2009, 03:05 PM   #2
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funny thing is that it happens to both computers same exact message comes up is this coincidence.....
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Old 06-19-2009, 04:23 PM   #3
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Did you look in the case for a HDD...many smart people keep the HDD when they are done with the puter?

They do not want others to search the data

Just reformatting will not wipe the data...a knowledgeable user could get personal info from a reformatted HDD
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Old 06-20-2009, 11:51 AM   #4
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Yes the HDD is in there and it looks like its all connected for both of them.
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Old 06-20-2009, 12:27 PM   #5
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Can you get to the Recovery console?
Description of the Windows XP Recovery Console for advanced users

Run fixboot or fixmbr

Run FDISK


Did he give you the restore disks?

If so you are good to go...just restore them to factory settings?

Otherwise;
I would do a clean install on both...you will need genuine windows licenses
or put Linux on them

The clean install will format the HDD and install a MBR (master boot record) and Windows
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Old 06-21-2009, 10:31 AM   #6
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Ok so I have completely exhausted my options in troubleshooting why no boot device can be found in this computer.

I cannot get into recovery console i get HDD not installed Please exit windows setop
OEM diagnostics disk says it cannot find HDD either.
BIOS says hard drive not installed.

Computer model # is DHP

I got the HDD model # which is WD400BB. I then made a bootable diagnostic utility disk when I run it. I get the same thing I'm getting from the bios and windows setup disks.
It says no HDD found.

I made sure the EIDE cable and molex connections were properly connected but still no luck.


Next I pulled the HDD out of the case and connected it to a USB External enclosure thinking well maybe the 12v rail is not pushing enough power for spin up. Since I do not know how to check for that this is what I did i connected the external enclousure with HDD attached to another laptop (IBM T41) and the laptop says found new hardware Mass Storage Media, Hard Drive but I dont hear a sound from the Hard drive no spin up, NOTHING!!

The AC adapter on my Sabrent external enclosure outputs 12v === 2A what ever that stands for.

Do you think this is enough evidence to say that there is a mechanical failure in the HDD ie. HDD motor is bad.

ohh I also checked the jumpers while the HDD was out and the jumper shunt was capping the CS label vertically on the 10 pin jumper box. all other triggers seem open so I doubt its the jumper configuration and also wouldn't the BIOS still detect the HD at least.


Please help I have run out of troubleshooting measures.

Power Supply model # is PS 5161-1D
PSU pulls out 160 watts old but this equipment is all OEM.
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Old 06-21-2009, 11:04 AM   #7
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Install them on another computer as a slave and reformat the drive

You can also run the reformat with the usb ext drive on another computer

I doubt both HDD are bad...you need to get the mbr installed ...so that it can point to the volume (HDD) and the Windows folder during the install

In summary
They need to be reformatted
This is a common problem with W2K...but happens in Win XP too

Edit: I have even booted from a Win98 startup floppy and run the old fdisk in Fat 32...then switched to NTFS during the WinXP install
Again, You need to Format the disks
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Old 06-21-2009, 01:00 PM   #8
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you are not understanding what I'm saying. The HDD will not spin up or do anything so even if I slave it on another computer the other computer will not recognize the HDD.

I have proved this by connecting the HDD with an external enclosure and I can't explore the drive in Windows Explorer.

there is only one HDD the other computer is missing the HDD which would explain why it has no boot device.

but the one I'm working on right now I don't know whats going on?
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Old 06-21-2009, 01:01 PM   #9
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sorry my title might be a little misleading it's no boot devices when trying to install windows.
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Old 06-21-2009, 01:08 PM   #10
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If your HDD is not detecting in another computer your HDD is defective. Check the power connection properly.
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Old 06-22-2009, 07:53 AM   #11
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Ok so I took the HDD out of Computer a and installed it into computer b(the one with a missing Hard drive) and the drive is now spinning up.

It booted to the screen where it says last known good configuration, safe mode, safe mode with networking.

I will reformat the drive and install a fresh copy of XP to see if this works. I'm thinking it was not spinning on the other computer becuase of the IDE cable was all crumbled up and looked really old. Or the 12v rail on this PC might not be outputting full 12v. Can some one direct me to a tutorial on how to check the 12 volt rail with a multi-meter?
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Old 06-22-2009, 10:26 PM   #12
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I took the PC with no drive and installed the HD on that one and it worked xp was installed sucessfully. What do you think it could have been.
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