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Thread: GDG: How hard/easy is it to install a new hard drive?

  1. #1
    Kristie Wilder
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    Default GDG: How hard/easy is it to install a new hard drive?

    Apparently I am the queen of destroying hard drives...

    This time, it's my office computer, which is used for virtually nothing except quickbooks, printing contracts and looking at weather... Go figure.

    It's a dell desktop about 5 years old, but in brand new condition, short of having a corrupted hard drive. I tried to kill it all and reinstall xp from scratch, but it says: setup has determined that drive C: is corrupted and cannot be repaired.

    how exciting! So I'm going to head to best buy tomorow and get a new drive.

    I think it's as easy as pulling the case off, pulling the current hard drive out and putting in the new one and then reinstalling xp and my other software, right???

    Thanks as always for the non-retriever help.

    -K

  2. #2
    Senior Member WingsAtDawn's Avatar
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    Yes - it is pretty much that easy. Typically, Inside the case there is a power cord that plugs into your hard drive and a data cord.

  3. #3
    Senior Member AmiableLabs's Avatar
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    Actually, given the age of your system you do need to determine if you need an IDE or SATA to replace the old one.

    Hopefully it is SATA which is a snap. IDE is slightly more involved.
    Kevin Walker

    Drive is the manifestation of Desire, and measured in Style.
    Thank you judges who score Style, you are preserving Desire!

  4. #4
    Senior Member Mike Boufford's Avatar
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    Just make sure that your pin out is lined up properly. When he was much younger, my son learned a valuable lesson when he accidentally flipped the wire tape the wrong way, which had an identical pin out top and bottom. He fried the wire and the drive. Good thing we had a spare drive and wire harness around.
    Mike Boufford

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  5. #5
    Senior Member YardleyLabs's Avatar
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    Actually, it depends on the type of hard drive on the machine since interfaces have changed and the older IDE and EIDE drives may be difficult to find. Do you have the model number or serial number of the PC? If so I can check to see if there is an easy source for a replacement drive. Alternatively, for little more than the cost of the drive you can buy a new computer that will be better.

  6. #6
    Senior Member kimsmith's Avatar
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    I would say if the computer is 5 years old it has to be an IDE drive. You will need to see if the cable is shared with the cd rom drive. Also when you are plugging in the ribbon cable make sure the colored wire on the ribbon cable is facing the Power Cable to the HD. Some cables and drives have a Key on the connector so you can't plug them in wrong, but some don't. If your IDE HD drive is sharing the CDrom cable or even if it's not you will need to check the jumper on your old drive to see if it's on cable select, shared or master. This will need to be set up on the new drive or it will not work. When you were setting up your old drive did you try to format the drive or did you do a repair?

  7. #7
    Kristie Wilder
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    Quote Originally Posted by kimsmith View Post
    I would say if the computer is 5 years old it has to be an IDE drive. You will need to see if the cable is shared with the cd rom drive. Also when you are plugging in the ribbon cable make sure the colored wire on the ribbon cable is facing the Power Cable to the HD. Some cables and drives have a Key on the connector so you can't plug them in wrong, but some don't. If your IDE HD drive is sharing the CDrom cable or even if it's not you will need to check the jumper on your old drive to see if it's on cable select, shared or master. This will need to be set up on the new drive or it will not work. When you were setting up your old drive did you try to format the drive or did you do a repair?
    Tried the repair and then tried to just overwrite the whole thing, which is really what I wanted to do anyway... then got the msg that the hard drive is corrupt, which doesn't suprise me given the nature of the messages I was getting (cyclical redundancy, files not found, etc. etc.).

    So, you are all correct... I will have a hard time finding a hard drive to fit the CPU... I'm probably just going to buy a new one. I just hate it. Just had to buy a new washing machine and now a new computer. Hate doing it all at once...

    I only run 2-3 programs in the office (quickbooks, ms word and internet for weather)... So I hate spending money on it...

    Thanks all for the great advice as always!!! Now I'm trying to find a good deal online. There are several, but buying computers is like buying cars... tedious and frustrating!!!

    -K

  8. #8
    Senior Member AmiableLabs's Avatar
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    Kristie,

    Another option to consider. Taking the computer (less monitor and keyboard) with you to Best Buy. For the cost of the hard drive and about $45 they will install it for you. Call ahead to confirm the price.

    Personally, I hate to see you get a whole new new computer.
    Kevin Walker

    Drive is the manifestation of Desire, and measured in Style.
    Thank you judges who score Style, you are preserving Desire!

  9. #9
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    Kristie, you can find a good repairman who can get the info off your old drive. He/she can get new harddrive and reinstall as well as format.
    A 5 yearold pc is in line for several repairs. Motherboard/video card/soundcard/ lowvoltage ps, to name a few. You can buy a cpu (computer tower) for 200 to 300 from walmart. It has xp or vista.
    PS try to stay with XP.
    Good luck
    Old Xerox repairman
    Jim
    Last edited by rds7015; 07-28-2009 at 12:09 AM. Reason: add

  10. #10

    Default

    You can still find plenty of IDE hard drives (if that's what you have), especially on the internet. A quick search of shopping.google.com confirms this. Go with a quality brand, such as Western Digital, Seagate, etc., and you can get one with at least 160 Gigabytes of space for around $50. Pull the old one out, pop the new one in, plug it in, turn on, enter the BIOS (usually F2 during bootup), and make sure it recognizes the hard drive. Then boot to your XP cd, and you're off and running.
    El Matavenados
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