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bbcmicro
April 4th, 2006, 11:10 AM
I was told by the friend who I aquired this laptop (T3100e, nineteen eighty something) off that the Hard Disk controller was broken.

He said he thought that the hard drive was still in there, but wasnt sure.

The system needed a new CMOS battery, which I installed.

If I tell the BIOS that there is a hardrive in there, on startup after memory check after 2-3 minutes it says "ERROR INITIALISING HARD DISK CONTROLLER" or something like that, im not sure. I opened it up and looked inside, lo and behold, no hard drive.

I knew the laptop was issued with either a 20 or 40mb hdd. The smallest I could find was 10gb. I installed it anyway, just to see what happened. I knew it probably wouldnt be able to do anything.

On startup the HDD activity light lit up for the first time i'd seen. Although, it stayed on, whirring away. presumably the computer was confused. I started up again but I couldnt recreate that first boot. The hdd activity light wouldnt light up at all. I couldnt access the bios to turn the hdd off,it would just freeze and not boot from the floppy either so i unplugged the CMOS battery and hard drive and the computer and tried again. Success, it forgot everything.

My question is this:

Is the hard drive controller really broken? or was it just brought on by the fact that there wasnt a disk. I'm not sure, because he said he took it to a man to be repaired (shocking job, btw. He hacked the screws out! Hacked!! nigh on all of them and there were only 5 screws in the entire computer, inside and out! and the monitor hinges are irreparably damaged), and it was he who told him the hdd controller was broken.

My other question is:

If it is not broken, what hard drive could I use to replace the non existant one? the bios only specifies 2 and I read they are damn near impossible to find, the grease hardened up in them and none or very few left actually work. I also read that one guy found an 80mb drive lying around and used that with no problems. Toshiba BIOS specifies particular ones with a capacity of 20 or 40 mb.

Luke
April 4th, 2006, 11:25 AM
It has normal IDE connector? It must be 5,25" or 3,5" disk?
HDD controller could be OK, but without a drive you can't check it.
Idea with connecting 10 GB hard drive was crazy ;)

Luke.

bbcmicro
April 4th, 2006, 12:03 PM
yes, its an IDE, with normal data and power connector.
Its 3.5"
Any idea where I could get one in the UK?

I'm a crazy sort of chap anyhoo :P

Jorg
April 4th, 2006, 12:55 PM
I've got a bunch of 40 mb HDD's (3,5", normal desktops ones).
Conner CP3000 and the like

Would that fit?

bbcmicro
April 4th, 2006, 01:02 PM
I have no idea.
Physically the 10gb one fit, and that was from a desktop.
If any are going to work then those should!
I'm definately interested :)