Product Type: other hard disk drives
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Maxtor Internal Hard Drive 20gig 5,400 rpm
Maxtor Internal Hard Drive 20gig 5,400 rpm
Date: 29/01/02, updated on 17/02/03 (56 review reads)
Advantages: It works
Disadvantages: Conflicting installation instructions
With my PackardBell imedia 6200 running Windows ME some 15 months old now, I decided to get myself an extra Hard Drive to use as a back-up and additional storage space. Currently I have a 20gig unit and a credit card that is a real wimp so I opted for a similar sized Disk and paid cash. I toyed with the idea of buying it on-line but I wanted it now and wasn’t prepared to wait for our esteemed postal services to try an lose it en route so as I was in the area of our almost local PC World I made my purchase there.
The selection was varied with a good stock of 20gig units at £79.99 and the salesman assured me that fitting it was simple enough with precise instructions included and all necessary bits and pieces to do so but he did add that for £24.50 the Hard Drive could be fitted for me. So I came away with a Maxtor 5,400 rpm Hard Drive and saved myself a few quid. After all just how difficult could it be to install an extra Hard Drive?
Encased in its own sealed anti-static bag, the Hard Drive was sandwiched between two large pieces of foam with the manual and install disk on top and the Interface lead, brackets and screws snuggle down to one side.
The manual named “DiamondMax Multi-lingual Hard Drive Installation Guide” was printed in 7 European languages with a set of FAQ’s to aid the new owner.
Apart from reading the manual the first step is to tell your computer that an extra hard Drive is about to be installed and for this purpose a floppy disk was supplied. I have always been in the habit of making a copy of any software that I have bought and I would suggest that the reader should make a copy of the install disk and use IT rather than the master. Put the master back in the box.
Booting up on the floppy enabled the user to go through the required procedure, which meant signifying that the additional Hard Drive would be the PRIMARY SLAVE and I was given the opportunity to print out all the instal
lation instructions. Except that for some reason the instructions would not print although there was nothing wrong with the printer etc. The instructions suggested that it would be prudent to allow the Hard Drive to reach room temperature before use but don’t be tempted to put it on or near a heat source, like a radiator. An hour or so next to your computer should be long enough. The instructions also stated that the Hard Drive should be handled with care, not dropped and the side with the printed circuit board showing should not be touched. It was OK to hold it by the edges. Off course wearing an earthing strap is recommended but not necessary unless you intend to finger the chips and things on the circuit board
The next stage was to set the jumper links to ensure that the Hard Drive would be the PRIMARY SLAVE and this is where there was a major conflict. The screen instructions showed one particular position for the jumper links, the manual had a different configuration and on the HARD drive itself was yet another different configuration. To cut a long story short it turned out that the jumper positions as displayed on the actual Hard Drive were the correct ones.
Ordinarily the Hard Drive would be secured into a vacant bay but when I installed it into such a spot the interface lead wasn’t long enough to connect both Disks together AND stretch to the motherboard. So plan “B” was brought into action. My existing Hard Drive was secured in a large “U” shaped bracket at the bottom of the tower well away from the bays but there was plenty of room to fit an additional unit, although it meant drilling four fixing holes in the “U” frame.
One thing that surprised me was that the existing power lead to the existing Hard Drive had a parallel off shoot ready to power any additional Hard Drive, as did other Devices in the tower. So before buying an extra hard drive I would suggest that you open up the to
wer first to see where you can secure it and to ascertain if your tower also has a power lead available. Some older towers do not. It could save you a special trip back to the store the next day.
The power and interface connectors can only be fitted one way and they should be pushed straight in firmly. The pins can be bent very easily so take a great deal of care in this operation.
With everything installed and secure I would recommend leaving off any removed covers for the time being on the off chance that you have to go back inside and push the leads in properly or adjust the jumpers as I had to do.
Booting up on the install disk gives you the opportunity to partition and format your new Hard Drive to your own requirements. Again the instructions were straightforward although the manual’s instructions didn’t work for me.
My original or PRIMARY MASTER Hard Drive has two partitions: Local Disk C: at 17.6gig and Local Disk D: at 1.37gig. Yes I know that that does not add up to 20gigs but the ‘missing’ 1.03gig is where the factory restore data is stored and it cannot be got at by normal means. So as I am intending to experiment with Amiga emulation I partitioned my additional Hard Drive into 3 partitions: Local Disk E: at 10gig for the Amiga emulation software, Local Disk F: at 5gig for data back-up, Local Disk G: at 5gig a a spare. However upon completion I noticed that Local Disk D: at 1.37gig had been re-named to Local Disk E: and Local Disk E: at 10gig had been renamed to Local disk D: Why this should be so I have no idea and maybe some genius out there can explain it to me.
Although in situ only for a few days the extra Hard Drive works well and data transfer from one to the other is as fast as it is transferring data from one partition on one Hard Drive to another partition on the same drive.