I am repurposing an old Alienware desktop as a home media server. The PC is based on the Shuttle FB51 motherboard. The BIOS is a Phoenix Version 6.00 PG, release date 12/16/2002. I have loaded Ubuntu 12.04 LTS on the internal hard drive.
I am using a Western Digital WD Elements 1.5 TB USB 2.0 Desktop External Hard Drive for media storage. When the external drive is plugged in and the PC is powered on, it freezes very early in the BIOS self-test, even before it begins the memory test. If I unplug the drive, the self-test proceeds without further problems. I can plug the USB drive back in when the self-test is complete, and Ubuntu will boot and find the external drive normally. I have checked the BIOS boot settings to ensure that no USB device is enabled as a bootable device.
I've tried several changes to the BIOS setup without finding a cure for the boot issue. Any assistance gratefully accepted.