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Thread: clean install trouble




  1. #1
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    Default clean install trouble

    I've got a hard drive in trying to install Windows on and it's proving to be really frustrating. At first, my motherboard was having problems detecting the hard drive at all, but I managed to get the sata control driver and now it's active on my bios menu. I even got another sata and sata to mullex cord to make sure that wasn't the problem. The disk spins up but when Windows asks me where I want to install and I select that drove it says that it needs to be active in the bios menu. Also, I can't set up a partition on the drive, I'm not sure why. The last time I installed Windows with this same usb it went much more smoothly. I'm installing windows 7 home premium 64 bit and my motherboard is the asrock z77 extreme 6 if that helps.

  2. #2
    parsec's Avatar
    parsec is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: clean install trouble

    Your hardware information is very important, even if it seems not to be, and may not be related to the problem in the end. We still must know what some of it is, even just to dismiss it as related to the problem.

    Since you did not provide this information, here I go:

    What make and model is the "hard drive" you are trying to use? Is it new, never used before?

    Your board has two SATA controllers, the primary Intel and the secondary ASMedia. Which one are you using? What SATA driver are you using?

    Your Windows installation media is on a USB drive, that you've used in the past, correct? What type of USB port are you using, and where is it, on the board's I/O panel, etc?

    Have you changed any settings in the BIOS, particularly in Storage Configuration? What SATA mode are you using?

    Why did you need to get new SATA power cables for the drive? What PSU are you using?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: clean install trouble

    I have never used this hard drive before, I just got it a few days ago. I mentioned the cables purely to discount that as a possible issue. The hard drive is a Seagate barracuda, model number St3000dm01. I'm using the asmedia and I've got the newest sata control driver for this motherboard from asrock's website. The usb is plugged into the motherboard directly. I haven't changed anything in the bios menu except the boot order. The sata mode is in ahci. In the bios menu the drive shows up as a boot option, but when the windows installer asks me where to install Windows, I see a partition of 120 unallocated gbs. When I select it Windows won't do anything from there, it says that the hard drive needs to be active in the bios menu, which it definitely is. I'm not sure what kind of power supply I have, but it's relatively new and I know it's 750 watts. If there's any other information I can give to help just let me know, and thank you for your time.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: clean install trouble

    Easy fix for you, do not use the ASMedia SATA controller, particularly for an OS installation or for an OS drive.

    The Intel SATA controller is far superior to the ASMedia so-called "SATA 6Gb/s" controller, which in reality it isn't. The Intel SATA controller on your board and its SATA 6Gb/s ports are the fastest and most stable SATA interface that is available for use on PC mother boards. Any testing of SSDs or HDDs on PC hardware review sites use Intel boards and the Intel SATA interface, 99.99% of the time.

    None of the add-on SATA controllers like ASMedia or Marvell are superior or equal to the Intel or AMD SATA controllers. The ASMedia SATA chip is connected to the board with one PCI-E 2.0 lane for input, another for output, or one lane may be shared for both purposes. The maximum speed of one PCI-E 2.0 is 5Gb/s, certainly not the 6Gb/s of a true SATA III interface. Regardless of the claims for these chips in the information about the mother board, they do not provide a true 6Gb/s interface. Benchmark testing of SATA III SSDs on these chips has proved that they do not perform at the same level as the Intel or AMD SATA III chips. SSD enthusiasts have known this for years. This is one of the biggest bold faced lies that exists in PC hardware.

    Connect your HDD to any of the Intel SATA ports, and you won't have anymore problems. You should either format the HDD before you install Windows, or delete any partitions that were created during your previous attempts, just to be sure nothing remains on the HDD to confuse the installation. You won't need to install a driver when using the Intel SATA ports, Windows has both AHCI and RAID drivers that work with the Intel SATA interface.

    Any of the secondary, add-on SATA chips are at best used for data storage drives, that are not continuously in use like an OS drive. Some of these chips will not work with BD/DVD/CD optical drives at all. Connect any optical drive to the Intel SATA ports and you'll have no problems.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: clean install trouble

    I'm still getting the same error message when I select the drive for Windows installation. The exact error message is "Windows cannot be installed on this disk. This computer's hardware may not support booting to this disk. Ensure that the disk's controller is enabled in the computer's BIOS menu." I tried both of my Intel ports and ran into the same issue. Is there any setting in BIOS I should change, I tinkered with a few of them trying to get this to work. The sata mode is still ahci and I have the "SATA boot rom" setting disabled. I've also developed another strange issue that may be related. When I turn my computer on the hard drive isn't listed in my storage configuration, but after pressing the reset button on the motherboard it will register. Even though it registers in storage configuration, now I can't list it as a boot option at all. Do you think the drive might be defective?

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    harleymike is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: clean install trouble

    After upgrading motherboard and processor I connected Hard drive. Worked but had hiccups from new MB driver disc I used. Decided to reinstall win 7 pro. Selected boot order in bios and sata ahci was selected. Could not get it to boot from win7 disc for anything. Finally clearing cmos and selecting F2 on start up. I looked thru Bios. Default settings were on with AHCI still. Changing AHCI to Sata IDE mode, then save and exit bios it booted up and a driver was installed. I restarted, in to bios, and selected boot from disc,save and exit. Booted up and I was then able to start reinstalling Win 7. wiping and reformatting hard drive. I had this problem before and remembered I had to go to Sata IDE mode first. Then change back to AHCI after reinstall. Worth a shot. Also my USB plugin devices would not work in USB 3.0 ports. No video or keyboard/mouse. Plugged them into 2.0 ports on back of MB and they worked. After reinstall switched back to 3.0 ports, they work fine.

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    Default Re: clean install trouble

    Thanks for the advice. I actually just solved my problem though. Earlier today I grabbed another HDD and installed it, but for some reason the usb that I had windows on changed names in the bios screen between the last time I booted it up and just now. I formatted a different usb with Windows and gave it a shot. It worked on the first try without a hitch. I'm confident the issue was my usb, because I tried to format that one again with a different Windows iso and both the windows usb tool and rufus wouldn't work with it. I'm installing windows on the new drive because I'm not in the habit of looking a gift horse in the mouth, but after the install I'll turn my computer off, reconnect the other drive and let you guys know if it seems to be functioning normally.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: clean install trouble

    It sounds like the first USB flash drive was the issue, as you said. But there is more to it than that, given your 3TB HDD, which I just noticed*****. It is a ST3000DM001 3TB Barracuda, correct?

    I don't know if you are aware of this or not, but any HDD larger than 2.2TB must use a different type of partition table (GPT) rather than the standard, default Windows partition table (MBR). If the default MBR partition table is used with your HDD, you won't be able to access the full capacity (3TB) of the HDD. MBR partition tables can only address disks up to 2.2TB in size.

    You can configure an HDD as MBR or GPT in Disk Management, or using the Diskpart command.

    Not done yet, a disk configured as GPT cannot be used as a boot/OS drive in Windows, unless Windows is installed for UEFI booting. That takes some configuration in the UEFI/BIOS, possibly in your Windows installation media, and there is a video source requirement that must be met when UEFI booting.

    The Seagate DiscWizard software apparently will configure these drive to provide their full capacity, but does not fix the non-OS use only unless UEFI booting. That is a Windows/OS limitation, not an issue with the drive. All HDDs over 2.2TB are limited by Windows in this way. They can be used a data drives fine.

    ***** Yet another example of why listing the hardware used in the PC is important if not critical in finding the issue.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: clean install trouble

    UPDATE: I found out that some motherboards have an issue working with 3tb hard drives, and I'm currently jumping through the hoops to use it with mine in Windows 7 x64. Other than that the drive seems to be fine.
    Last edited by miniminotaur; 04-15-2014 at 01:03 PM.

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