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Is this too wide of a question?

by redjade559 / December 15, 2005 3:39 AM PST

After other problems earlier this month. I finally am trying to re-install windows on my computer. Yet my so called PC friend, opened the cabinet and must of unplugged some wires, or maybe did not plug them back in right? When I use the 98 startup disk, The program tells me, there are no drives. I have a hard drive? lol and 1 generic disk drive and a sony cdr. Can someone help me?

I looked in the cabinet myself..and I can see power is plugged into each drive, the flat cable is plugged in (with red strip to pin 1) there are two little plugs that plug into motherboard? One has a catch and the other does not, there are three little places for them to plug into. One is green and the other two are black in color. I have tried switching these around and still nothing shows in setup.

Ok I won't confuse you anymore... with more details. Please do ask me anything... I despretely hope to fix this?

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The cable for the floppy drive
by TONI H / December 15, 2005 4:11 AM PST

has a twisted end that gets attached to the drive itself and is skinnier than the gray cable that attaches to the harddrive and cdrom.

For the floppy to be read, you will need to enter the bios (using a keyboard only to navigate with using arrow keys, Enter key, and ESC key). Once you get in there, first check to make sure that the floppy drive is listed as a 1.44MB drive...then go to the boot sequence area and make sure it is seen as the FIRST BOOT DEVICE, with the harddrive next, and the cdrom last.

Use the ESC key to get back to the main page and choose SAVE and EXIT. The computer will boot up automatically again.

Regarding the gray cables. Make sure that the red line down the side for the harddrive and cdrom is facing the red wire of the power connector. The floppy drive cable is a little trickier in that the power cable is normally placed on TOP of the cable, so you might have to check the gray cable to make sure it is secure in its connector and that no pins have been bent. There is usually only one way for the cable to be connected because of a notch in it, but there have been a few that we've found over the years where it's notched on the wrong side and you would have to file off the notch and turn it over instead. If it was working before, you probably don't have that problem.


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Your response
by redjade559 / December 15, 2005 8:37 AM PST


First, I have all ribbons plugged in as you suggest. I found no notches on the ribbon cables. I did not understand about the twisted part you mentioned.

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By "generic disk drive" do
by Ray Harinec / December 15, 2005 4:32 AM PST

you mean a floppy drive???

Are you able to ask your friend what changes he had intended to make??

Any chance that you can tell us more about the model of the computer???

Personally, the reference to the IDE connectors [the ones that the ribbon cables (hard drive and CD drive) plug into] being little makes me wonder. I would think that you might have SATA drives, except that is not likely if you are using Win 98.

The startup disk [a floppy disk??] tells you that there are no drives. Can you please provide the exact text of the message that you get??

Can you get into the BIOS??

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Generic drive?
by redjade559 / December 15, 2005 8:33 AM PST

Yes one is a floppy drive (cds) The only thing that I know what he did was...He removed my hard drive and replaced it with his... Then he put my own drive back. He did say he moved anything else but I found cables loose and not put in correctly... He said he did not move

I have bad eye sight and reason being to have son in law look at my computer. He has a mac and I hoped he would be able to fix my problem.

My computer is a Gateway. I have lined up all the proper cables...the ribbon ones, on the floppy and cdr there are two plugs I do not know what they are, and where they should go. They are gray and sm black plug at the ends. They go in audio? But on the motherboard? I have no clue. I found one plugged in and one not. The area has three places to plug this type of plug in. One is green and the other two are black. One of my plugs on both ends has no catch to it. But the other cord has catchs on both ends... I hope this helps..

I am assuming since he removed my hard drive that he erased everything? The bios only shows 1 floppy drive A. I did manage to get power to the floppy and cdr - but computer does not recognize it.

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First, your statement
by Ray Harinec / December 15, 2005 10:00 AM PST
In reply to: Generic drive?

"Yes one is a floppy drive (cds)" is very confusing. A floppy drive takes the small square disks [inside the package, of course, is a round floppy disk, however you normally will not be able to see it]. A CD is something entirely different. The floppy is read and written to magnetically, the CDs are devices that get written to and read by laser beams [the drives are called ATAPI, Optical, CD-ROMs, CD burners etc].

Toni's comment about the ribbon cable to the floppy is that at the end that connects to the floppy drive is split near the end so that a small section of the ribbon can be twisted do that the connections are recersed. [Just as info]

No reason to assume that removal of the hard drive removed everything. If he didn't mishandle the drive [drop it bang it around] it should be fine.

However I need a more complete/detailed understanding as to exactly what works at this time.

It seems that you can get into the BIOS which is great. Most systems nowadays only have one floppy.

Maybe best to first work with the floppy only. Do you have a boot floppy? What do you mean by the startup disk?? Is that the restore/recovery CD that came with the computer from Gateway?

I think that we can help you. however it may take a series of posts and replies. No problem doing such from this end. I'm east coast time, retired and will be around virtually all day the next three days.

Keep all discussions in this thread, don't worry about how long it gets. If it says no more posts, don't believe it, it simply means that the next post should be moved so that it moves to the left side. You do this by simply making it a reply to the very first post you made in the thread. In the subject line simply refer to the post that you are actually replying to.

For me to understand and help, I need you to tell me why you wanted to reinstall the Operating System, and then the first few things that were done. Understand, that to reinstall the Op Sys there was no reason to open the computer. From there we should be able to go styep by step and get you running again.

Since you can apparently get into the BIOS, let us know what boot sequence is set, i.e. A, C, or C, A or ???

Also check what settings are in there for the four IDE ports, the Primary Master, the Primary Slave, The Swecondary Master, and the secondary slave.

Besides the ribbon cables the floppy and the CD drive need a power connection, usually a small white four pin connector in the bundle from the power supply. The CD drive also get the little 3 or four wire cable that goes from the CD drive to the sound card [this brings the audio from the CD to the sound card], of course the sound card may actually only be a chip on the mobo, rather than a plug in card.

So whenever you get a chance provide the info requested and we can go from there.

Alos, you might choose to enable receipt of emails in your profile. We don't get your email address, but can have CNet forward emails to you. There are times when this can save time.

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I do appreciate
by redjade559 / December 17, 2005 5:15 AM PST
In reply to: First, your statement

I do appreciate your help. I had been asking the questions via a rental ocmputer. I had to return that on Thurs. I am now out of town for Christmas, but will be able to respond in a few days. So far, I got everything situated and have win 98 installed and getting ready to install win xp. As far as I can see, everything I had on this computer is gone and I have used a file recovery program to see if there were any files to save, but nothing looks familar. I will get back with you soon. Thanks,


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Your help is appreciated !
by redjade559 / December 15, 2005 8:43 AM PST


Thanks to all who are responding. What I am doing is, I put the win 98 start up disk in, as there is no OS in it right now. When it boots from the little square disk, the BIOs shows and it does see the cd drives, the hard drive and floppy. It starts to load drivers and then shows - Drives not found, installation aborted.

There is power to the drives, I have a cd floppy, then a sony cdr, then the little square floppy. The Hard drive is a Max Blast Plus II ver 1.30. If that helps.

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WiYou have two disc,one Windows Stars Here and
by Earth911 / December 21, 2005 11:33 PM PST

Windows 98 OS,are trying to use the start-up disc to install Windows 98?That start-up want install Windows.You must use the Windows 98 disc....

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