View Full Version : Toshiba T3100e HDD woes

May 31st, 2006, 05:52 PM
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...
A telephone company that went by the name of GTE got bought by Verizon. Thanks to inside knowlege at one of the local telephone remotes, I was able to pinpoint the exact time to go dumpsterdiving after they cleaned shop. Out with the old, in with the new kindof thing.

The best version of "old" was a laptop from '84 as best I can tell. It boots into freedos (amazing peice of work, even though I'm a Linux/BSD advocate, GPL is GPL!) and even runs vim!

But for the LIFE of me, I can't get the harddrive to work at all. I found out that it uses a proprietary harddrive and controller, and that at least 3/4th the time, it's the controller that's going bad due to bad airflow.

The BIOS *does* say something along the lines of "HARD DRIVE CONTROLLER ERROR" and then proceeds to boot from floppy, even though I can hear the HD spin up (but no clicking as if it were reading).

I'm basicaly stuck with freedos as far as an OS goes, since this is 286-based. DOS-based operating systems go by what the BIOS tells them. BIOS says "no hdd", the OS is going to believe it. Linux (for example) on the otherhand, completely ignores the BIOS after it's been bootstrapped into the system. If I could get Linux or something else that does this, I could find out for sure if this system is worth salvaging.

Otherwise, if there's someone out there with one of these but with, say, bad everything else on it aside from the system board, I'd actually be willing to pay for the part (or the luggable as a whole) as long as the board works 100%.

I have grand plans for using it as a serial console for a slew of headless servers I run here at the house, and it's two serial ports (and beautiful amber screen) would do me quite well in this endevour. Not to mention the keyboard is a pleasure to type on.

I did find a repair guide for the luggable incase anyone else would like to know how to pull stuff out of it by-the-books. It's at http://www.laptopsolutions.plc.uk/toshiba_t3100e_manual.htm .

Thanks everyone, and happy hacking!