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Dell dimension 3000 stuck at configuring IDE

JimS

Active Member
Have the old PC I run a small cnc mill with.  Put a real time version of Ubuntu on it to run steppers from the parallel port.  Haven't used it in some time and now it go to a configuring IDE message.  CMOS battery was dead so replaced it.  Still same.  I hit F2 during boot and it shows "entering setup" briefly before going to IDE config message.  Saw somewhere to try a live CD - no difference there either.  Any ideas?  I could try disconnecting the IDE drives and see if that lets me into setup.  Then once configured reattach the IDE drives. 
 

JimS

Active Member
That worked for getting into the bios.  When I reconnect the drives it doesn't boot but I can still get into setup.  Baby steps...
 

wkearney99

Senior Member
Drives die, as do various capacitors in power supplies and on circuit boards.  Drives that sat for a long time unused can sometimes get the heads 'stuck'.  Either due to lubricant drying up (used to happen on old Mac drives) or a rubber compound for how read/write heads get 'parked'.  It'd depend on the make/model of the drive.  I'd use that as a starting point for some Google searches.
 

JimS

Active Member
The drive isn't totally dead.  It partially boots or at least did.  Now that the bios seems to be working I can try a live cd.  Then maybe try the hard drive connected to another PC to verify it is working. 
 

wkearney99

Senior Member
Do not dick around with a drive that's on it's last legs. Get an image of the drive if you can.  Get a copy then you put that on something else.  

My go-to for this sort of thing is a GPARTED Live setup, either on CDROM or a USB key if the motherboard will boot from it. 
https://gparted.org/livecd.php

There's usually enough drivers on the Gparted setup to handle putting the image into a file on a USB key or over the network to a share.

Do not waste whatever limited cycles the drive has doing anything else, get a copy off it and then decide what to do next.
 

JimS

Active Member
I will give gparted a try.  I seem to be having trouble booting from this machine from CD also so there may be something else going on.  I will put it in another machine and try to copy.
 

JimS

Active Member
I substituted another hard drive and it booted (an old version of Fedora) although it reported that drive was going out and should be backed up (based on drives internal monitoring).  Also found my old system rescue cd was scratched up which explains the trouble booting from optical drive.  Was able to boot a different one.
 
Now to try to copy files and looks at my small stack of old HDDs to determine which to use. 
 

wkearney99

Senior Member
Tough call on reusing old drives.  Might just be jumping out of the frying pan.  

I'd be more inclined to swap out spinning rust platters for an SSD.   I'd probably use an IDE to SATA adapter board, as a straight IDE SSD would likely be more expensive. Understanding, of course, that you wouldn't get much in the way of speed increase as the IDE bus speed is your limited factor.  So don't spend more for SATA3, if you go that route.  But you CAN use a SATA3 drive, if it's cheaper, you just wouldn't get the SATA3 bump in performance.

The tricky part will be determining of the motherboard is limited in the max size of drive it can recognize.  Older machines had BIOS limits and couldn't use "larger" drives.  I'd venture Dell's website probably still has support literature online for that model, check there first.
 

JimS

Active Member
Haven't gotten back to this for a while...  Thinking about getting a IDE/SATA to USB adapter as I have a bunch of hard drives I have pulled from machines as I retired them that I would like to get some things off of and mess with.  Will this give me access to the drive health monitoring (on the drives that have it)?  Thinking of getting this one as it seems to handle many sizes and has a power supply:  
 
https://www.amazon.com/Vantec-SATA-IDE-Adapter-CB-ISA225-U3/dp/B01E7EPKUO/
 
Seems to have good reviews.  Any thoughts?
 

pete_c

Guru
Well it will give you a chance to scrub them before getting rid of them if they are still good.  If they are not just take a large horse magnet to them.
 
Yes you can see the Smart stuff on the HD with a USB to IDE / SATA adapter.  Make sure it comes with a good power supply.
 
Your link for the Amazon device is dead.  Do you have another link.
 
This is what I purchased for only SATA drives last year worked well for me.
 
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0759567JT/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
 

pete_c

Guru
Reading the IDE connections comments and see:
 
[SIZE=inherit]2.0 out of 5 stars[/SIZE] Do not buy if your drive's IDE plugs in next to the power plug
Reviewed in the United States on February 20, 2020
Verified Purchase
The design of the IDE connector sticks out making it impossible to plug in both the power and IDE connector. It should work on other IDE drives if they have a wider separation between the connectors (If your jumpers are between the IDE connection and the power you should be fine.) On a separate note unfortunately this didn't recognize either of my two old IDE laptop drives, even with them set to master. It does work with SATA drives but that's not what I purchased it for.
 
[SIZE=inherit]2.0 out of 5 stars[/SIZE]
 WARNING, dangerous product. DO NOT plug in valuable drives or to your main PC before testing.
Reviewed in the United States on October 25, 2019
Verified Purchase
Read this LEGIT review CAREFULLY because it will save you from trouble.
I will start off by saying I am not your average Joe Blow computer user. I am a sys admin at my day job and also run an IT sales and repair business in town. This IDE/SATA to USB 3.0 adapter is a substandard, low quality product. There is no way this trash passed any of of Quality Control standard know in the civilized world. I bought it to recover some valuable data from a few old IDE backup drives. Initially plugged it into a spare work laptop and the system froze. So I plugged it into a desktop with a dedicated USB 3.0 PCI card and windows recognized a "removable drive" has been plugged in. Within seconds, the machine started disconnecting and reconnecting the drive in Disk manager. In less than a minute, the computer froze and rebooted. I moved it to a 2nd desktop and same thing happened, windows crashed and machine rebooted. This piece of garbage is not built to USB standards. It is either causing out of spec power draw or a short in ALL machines I tried it on. Sending it back for a full refund. Avoid this trash at all costs or you might end up frying your computer and whatever drive you plug this adapter to.
 
Here many many years ago used to use a smaller footprint IDE only to USB 2.0 device that looks like this one:
Note both devices / reviews mention issues with power supplies.  Tested them and return them if they do now work for you.
 
https://www.amazon.com/Warmstor-Adapter-Computer-Connector-Converter/dp/B076WZ1N4K/ref=sr_1_20?crid=29EUJZ3YQD61P&keywords=IDE+only+hard+drive+reader+to+USB+adapter&qid=1641510012&s=electronics&sprefix=ide+only+hard+drive+reade+to+usb+adapter%2Celectronics%2C474&sr=1-20#customerReviews
 
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00BIE996S/ref=sspa_dk_detail_6?psc=1&pd_rd_w=V1VnT&pf_rd_p=54ed5474-54a8-4c7f-a88a-45f748d18166&pd_rd_wg=V2t4q&pf_rd_r=T2VG05DJDWT6R7CFYJA2&pd_rd_r=51930575-b7a1-42f0-95f5-13b6079598b7&smid=A1155GBV4DPEXU&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUEzSTA5UUpLNktPUjdEJmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwMTIwNzQ4MUlOSVQwWUEzMjlUUCZlbmNyeXB0ZWRBZElkPUEwOTU4MDc3MU4zWTZFUTFZRFM4NiZ3aWRnZXROYW1lPXNwX2RldGFpbF90aGVtYXRpYyZhY3Rpb249Y2xpY2tSZWRpcmVjdCZkb05vdExvZ0NsaWNrPXRydWU=#customerReviews
 

JimS

Active Member
I did see some comments about connector interference but the others are built very similarly with the case extending beyond the ends of the connector.  It looks like on any of them I might have to use a cable if the spacing is tight.
 
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