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I have a Dell D600 computer. The hard drive slot is IDE. I have used two drives with the computer, one Hitachi 60 GB (original drive) and the other a WDC Blue 160 GB. I had cloned the 60 GB drive to the 160 GB drive and used the lower capacity drive as backup. The OS is Windows XP SP3. All was running well until last weekend, when the large drive would no longer boot. It was seen in the BIOS as a 137 GB drive but would not boot. I ran the Dell Diagnostics from the BIOS and received the message:


At the suggestion seen at other sites, I attempted to run chkdsk from the Windows XP installation disk installed repair / recovery console. With the drive in the IDE slot, the installation disk would stop running after the program attempted to identify the system hardware. I then put the drive into the USB cloning device (Apricorn), and this time the WXP installation ran and found a Windows installation on the large drive attached to the USB port. I got to the recovery console, ran FIXMBR, FIXBOOT, and chkdsk /r. After that completed, I reattached the drive to the IDE slot, but it still would not boot.

I placed the 60 GB drive into the IDE slot and the computer booted. While in WXP, I attached the 160 GB drive through the USB cloning device. The drive was recognized, and I could work with the files on it.

I attempted to boot from the large drive attached to the IDE slot once more, but again it failed.

So I have a drive that cannot boot from the usual IDE slot but can be seen when another drive boots the OS from the same IDE slot.

I would appreciate any furthers ideas to try out.

Thanks in advance.

share|improve this question
Sounds like a failing drive. Did chkdsk find any bad sectors? Are you still getting the DST STATUS TEST fail message? – Hefewe1zen Jan 15 '14 at 3:33
The drive has failed. You can try SpinRite but you need to replace the drive. – Ramhound Jan 15 '14 at 3:36
Clone the hdd ignore all errors to do so see if by doing so the new drive will boot – Ramhound Jan 15 '14 at 3:46

I have had to replace a number of drives that have had the same thing happen. The drive is on its way out, back everything up to a flash drive or external HDD. Also clone the old drive sector by sector, to the new drive, redundancy is good. I use Easeus, for cloning, it is a free download and run GParted to resize the partition if you get a different size HDD. Its free too.

In my experience when the HDD is cloned the bad sectors that are cloned with it will still not allow the laptop to boot, that's why the backup first, at least your data is saved. Also is good in case the HDD fails completely, cloning takes a long time. It is possible a repair can be done with an install disk, on the newly cloned drive. I don't remember that ever working for me though, maybe I simply never tried it, I dunno. But I always relied on the backup doing what I needed.

share|improve this answer
I attached the hard drive to my desktop via my USB cradle, then transferred most of the contents to a drive on my desktop computer. With the laptop drive still attached via USB, I did a full format of the laptop drive. After that I moved the laptop drive back to the Dell D600 IDE port. The drive was recognized in the BIOS. I then booted from a WinXP installation disk, and this time the hard drive in the IDE port did not interfere with loading the system configuration nor the installation process. I will do a complete installation of WinXP tonight and see how the laptop drive works. – user290077 Jan 15 '14 at 14:11
Sounds like good news on the backup, but is this the original drive you are still referring to about the reformat an OS reinstall? If this works out for you I really would like to know how you fare with it. The drive is on its last leg and needs to be replaced, but, it's your call.... – Jack Jan 16 '14 at 1:06
The drive I reformatted is the 160 GB drive, the one that would not boot nor allow a new installation if it was in the IDE slot. – user290077 Jan 16 '14 at 18:36
If you stay on as a member for a while, make a post every few months to give a status on how its doing, if it is not too much to ask, just a word or two. – Jack Jan 17 '14 at 14:51

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