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Installing a second hard drive

missing operating syetem



6:43 am on Sep 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hi I have just installed a second hard drive (20gb)and when I boot the pc back up the drive gets recognised but then all I get is "Missing operating system" I have changed the drives over to master and slave. I am running WWindows XP and the second drive I am installing was running windows ME. I dont really want to format old drive (20gb). Can anybody advise please.
Regards, Donal


12:31 pm on Sep 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

The old drive has an active partition most likely, if you have another box running win98 or ME, make a boot floppy and put fdisk on it. use this to boot the XP system and run fdisk from the prompt, check the status of the 20 gig and make sure that you do not have an active partition.

If it is not this, then most likely you have made a HD jumper error, you could try moving the 20 gig to 2nd ide slave behind your cd and see if this helps.


1:07 pm on Sep 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

my old drive doesnt have a partition but the one I am putting in does have a partition. What is fdisk and what way do i go about doing that you are talking to almost a novice here


1:48 pm on Sep 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

donal, you need to explain the problem a bit more clearly. Things like "when I boot the pc back" don't mean anything unless we know which drive you are trying to boot from, what the boot sequence in the BIOS is etc.


3:45 pm on Sep 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

my old drive doesnt have a partition but the one I am putting in does have a partition

The drive in the machine does NOT have a partition? How does it boot if there's no OS installed on the Master?

There are definately communication problems here, please try to rephrase what you are trying to say. I'm sure we can help you, but I for one don't really understand the problem.



6:11 am on Sep 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

sorry for the confusion guys.I will go from the start. My PC has a 20gig hard drive which is almost full and it is running Windows XP and the drive is not partitioned. I am trying to put in a second hard drive from an old PC which is 20 gig running Windows ME and does have a partitioned hard drive. I have set my old drive to master and the new one I am putting in I have set to slave. When I reboot the PC it notices the 2 hard drives and says press F1 to save changes but after that all it says is "missinig operating system" hope this is a bit clearer, sorry for the confusion. If anyone can help I would very greatful as I have just purchased a DVD writer and cant wait to get this baby in too.


9:53 am on Sep 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Does each disk work individually in this PC? i.e. if you set each one as master and try them one by one do they both work?

As stated before you can't boot from a drive that has no partitions. If you've got Windows on the drive then it HAS been partitioned but you have only one partition (partitioning in hard disks has a different meaning to normal usage).

If ME has a FAT 32 partition it won't recognise the XP partition which is probably an NTFS one. But if you boot from the XP drive it should recognise the ME one especially if the BIOS has picked it up (you have set the jumpers correctly), have excluded the drive and it's connections as being faulty, and have only the XP drive set in the BIOS boot sequence (to avoid confusion). Hitting F1 to save is usually a BIOS instruction. So all you have saved by hitting F1 is changed BIOS settings. If those changes happened automatically you may want to manually check the BIOS to make sure everything says what it should say.


8:24 pm on Sep 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

can you get into windows me? does the second hard drive appear in My Computer?

when do you get the no operating system error?


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