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Old 19 March 2008, 22:45   #1
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Question PC not recognising amiga hard drive

Hi All... hope you can help...

I'm having trouble getting my PC to recognise my old amiga hard drive....

I have plugged it into the IDE socket on my motherboard via a 3.5-2.5inch converter. I can hear the drive spinning up, but the disk is not recognised by the BIOS on startup. I've tried every BIOS setting (Access mode CHS/LBA/Large/Auto; PIO mode Auto/1-4; LDMA disable/auto) but still no joy. I've also tried both IDE ports on the motherboard.

Interestingly, when the drive is plugged into an IDE port, my motherboard does not recognise the CD drive that is plugged into the other IDE port.

I've run winUE, but ubviosuly it cannot find the drive since the motherboard does not even recognise it! (I've also tried with the -disableharddrivesafetycheck)

The cable i'm using is brand new (bought today!).. so unless i got a faulty one (possible!!!!).

When I last tried to boot my amiga up it didn't boot!.. just kept reseting itself over and over.. not sure if that was due to my hard drive being duff or due to amiga-death!

Any suggestions???? I really want to get my old octamed songs off the disk!



I'm running:
Amiga 127MB HD (Seagate ST9140AG) from my old amiga (that I have not used for donkeys years)

ASUS A8N-SLI motherboard
Athlon 64 1700 processor
Serial-ATA PC hard drives.
nvidia graphics card
soundblaster sound card
Old 19 March 2008, 23:15   #2
Monochrome and 8 bit

Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Underbarrow, Gods Country
Age: 52
Posts: 592
Have you set the master/slave/CS jumper correctly?

The PC IDE cable looks like this


The first connector attaches to the motherboard. The middle connector is for *slave* devices, the far end connector for *master* devices.

When you install only one IDE device (HD, CD or DVD) it must be set to *master*, or CS (cable select; the bus is just about intelligent to work out which device is which when two are attached).

When you add a second device, set it to slave (or CS), and attach to the middle connector.

Some gotchas

Now, 99% of all "modern" IDE devices work fine set to CS. Some older stuff doesn't. If even one device does not have a CS jumper, then you have to use master and slave jumpers, set accordingly on each.

Some very old kit (8+ years) doesnt like working with other devices. Some, iirc maxtor drives, didnt even like working with another drive from the same manufacturer... so if you set the jumpers on the drive and the CD, and still no luck, try removing the CD.

What I would do:

Google on the make and model of the 2.5" drive. You are looking for jumper settings, and drive geometry (cylinders, heads, sectors). If the drive is <512MB it will use CHS, and not LBA or Large mode. Also, what mode it uses (if its old, prolly not DMA, and possibly not PIO if it is *really* old)

Power down and remove mains plug from PC. Remove the CD from the cable. Check the jumper setting on the amiga drive (ensure it is set to master). check any jumpers on the 3.5-2.5 adapter. Put back in. Power up, and enter the BIOS. Try autodecting the drive. If fine.. good, if not try setting it as CHS using the figures from googling.

If you still get stuck, post drive model details here.

edit. Just looked on seagates site.. crikey, this is an OLD drive! circa 1991, 1995?
Possible geometry.. use "custom" or "user-defined" entry in BIOS, and 980 cyls, 15 heads, 17 sectors. If BIOS wants a "landing zone" and/or write pre-comp, enter 981

I'd also double check the floppy power connector, given the drive does not use the power interface. And I'd defintately install it on its own, as it appears that it may not like working with any other type of drive.


if you get really stuck, I'm in in Bournemouth in 3 weeks time...

Last edited by alewis; 19 March 2008 at 23:22. Reason: missed the drive details
alewis is offline  
Old 19 March 2008, 23:18   #3
Toni Wilen
WinUAE developer
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Hämeenlinna/Finland
Age: 43
Posts: 21,915
CHS or LBA is irrelevant if BIOS does not detect it.

It is either broken or too buggy to work with modern chipsets. Try it on other PC (preferably with different IDE chipset)
Toni Wilen is offline  
Old 20 March 2008, 00:20   #4
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Thanks for the reply Alewis..

yeah.. it's a pretty old drive from my childhood A1200! I have also found this product manual, which isn't any more useful http://www.seagate.com/support/disc/...a/9190revb.pdf

I had already tried just just the amiga drive on it's own, and set to master (i.e. no jumpers) but that didn't work...
The power connector works fine, and I can hear the drive spinning and the heads moving.

I can't actually alter the BIOS settings for the drive heads etc, since the BIOS doesn't detect the drive so those options are unavailable !!!!!!

It does seem strange that when the amiga drive is in the IDE2 slot on the motherboard the IDE1 (CD drive) slot is not detected (and vice-versa).

I think Toni may be right.. it's just too old/broken to work with my PC!!

I do have an older PC which I will try it with tomorrow, but I am not getting my hopes up! It may be time to retire it!!

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