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Laptop Hard drive dead? :(


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#31
wannabe1

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It looks to me like it's looking at a floppy drive instead of the HDD. :confused:

Were you even given the opportunity to select the WD HDD?
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#32
owen5

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Yeah, strange......

No, I wasn't given any option which drive to select. In the BIOS there was only the HDD and CDDVD listed
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#33
owen5

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By the way, I forgot to mention that I now have a Windows 7 disk. No key though obviously.....
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#34
wannabe1

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Is the Win7 disk you have a retail version or is it an OEM version from another "branded" machine?
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#35
owen5

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A retail version I believe
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#36
wannabe1

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Boot to the disk and select the option for Command Prompt.

Try running the chkdsk /r c: command again with this new disk.
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#37
owen5

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I get the same message as before: "Cannot open volume for direct access" :(
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#38
owen5

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I tried Startup repair too - it said that the root cause is:

"A hard disk could not be found. If a hard disk is installed, it is not responding"
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#39
wannabe1

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Yeah...I don't think we need to kick this horse any more...it's dead.

I guess the next thing you should do is contact the manufacturer and see if they offer a system recovery disk for that machine. They may even have a pre-imaged HDD for it.

If they don't have the recovery disks, you'll have to purchase a license to legally install from the borrowed disk...or purchase a retail version of Windows 7 for yourself, which will come with the product key.

In either case it's pretty obvious. at this point, that you need a new HDD. :(
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#40
owen5

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Agreed. Very annoying.....

I contacted them a week or so ago to ask the question. The do have a recovery disk, but they will charge £60 for this - cheaper than the retail version, but still more than I want to pay. I registered the laptop when I bought it, and have asked them if they can let me have the product key; they won't.

Plus there's then cost of a new HDD. I'm not sure that I want to spend that much money.

Are there any other options? Such as a free OS, or I have seen a link somewhere for a "trial version" of Windows 8 (I know it won't be free forever).

Another silly question now: I know how to put the new HDD in, but do I need to do anything else or do I simply boot the machine from a W7 (or whatever other OS I decide on) and let it do the rest?

Thanks again for all your help so far :)

Edited by owen5, 07 April 2012 - 09:53 AM.

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#41
wannabe1

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Windows 8 Consumer Preview is available as a free download. It's buggy and it's time limited to about a year. I find it to be quite clunky myself, but others seem to like it. Keep in mind that Windows 8 is geared more towards tablet PCs, but it does have a desktop interface, as well. There is a lot of useful information on the paged I linked you to.

All you need do is install the new HDD, boot to the disk, and follow the prompts to install the OS. Should be a piece of cake.
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#42
owen5

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That's great, thanks!

One final silly question and then I'll leave you in peace: Is there anything I should look out for when buying a new HDD? It doesn't need to be particularly big as I'm only really going to use the laptop for the internet, streaming movies etc.

The existing one is fixed in place with a couple of little screws; do they all have similar fittings?

Sorry, that was two silly question! :blush:
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#43
wannabe1

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2.5 inch drives are pretty uniform and you should have no problems fitting things.

Most laptop HDDs are in a mounting chassis that is specific to that machine or machine series and it may be secured to the machine with one or two small screws. The HDD chassis will transfer to the new HDD with just a few screws.

Now...most newer lappy drives are straight forward SATA drives. Some, however, are IDE drives with a connection adapter to either drop pins or to SATA. If you are unsure of which you have, take it with you when you buy the new HDD (assuming you'll buy locally) and have them help you pick the correct drive.
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#44
owen5

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Ah yes, it was in a mounting chassis!! :blush:

Thanks for the advice. I'm pretty sure mine's a straight SATA drive. Link to a similar one: http://blog.aleutia....tag/wd3200bevt/

btw can you recommend any free data recovery software? A friend has said that they have a USB to SATA lead that they can lend me - might as well give it a try to see if I can get anything off the old HDD.
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#45
wannabe1

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You can try Recuva. If it will detect the disk, it may be able to recover the data.
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