Thursday, 30 August 2012

No Drives were found - installing Windows 7

So, just trying to fix a friends computer. There's just one SATA HD inside, and he wants it nice and fresh, so I just started the windows 7 install disk and, after booting off the disk and getting to the "Disk Selection" stage it came up with the information:

No drives were found, Click Load Driver to install a Mass Storage Driver

Ridiculous I thought. I had a quick look in BIOS and found it not listed in the HD's. I later found out that it was originally RAIDed with another (which broke) so I turned off RAID from BIOS so that it treated it as a normal HD again. It now appeared in the HD list in BIOS.

But still the same error in the Windows installer! So, now BIOS can see it, what is the problem. Well, I finally found this forum which suggested looking at this Microsoft Help Page, particularly Method 8.

  1. Insert the DVD into the DVD drive.
  2. On the disk selection screen, press SHIFT+F10. A Command Prompt window opens.
  3. Type diskpart, and then press ENTER to open the diskpart tool.
  4. Type list disk, and then press ENTER. A list of available hard disks is displayed.
  5. Type sel disk number, and then press ENTERnumber is the number of the hard disk that you want to clean. The hard disk is now selected.
  6. Type det disk, and then press ENTER. A list of partitions on the hard disk is displayed. Use this information to verify that the correct disk is selected.
  7. Make sure that the disk does not contain required data, type clean all, and then press ENTER to clean the disk. All the partitions and all the data on the disk is permanently removed.
  8. Type exit, and then press ENTER to close the diskpart tool.
  9. Close the Command Prompt window.
  10. Click the Refresh button to update the disk selection screen. This step lists the disk.
  11. Run Windows Setup to perform a clean installation of Windows.
Firstly I couldn't believe the fact that you still need to use a Command Prompt for such a simple thing as cleaning a Hard Drive. Mac OS users have had a "Disk Utility" on the install disk since OS X came out, which was 2002, maybe even "Drive Setup" which came out in 1995! 12 years on and Microsoft still uses a command line utilities on it's install disk for disk formatting!

Not only that, but SHIFT+F10?! Why not a button which says "Command Prompt"! Have they ever heard of of the word "Intuitive".

And now I've just got to step 7, typed "clean all" and it looks like it's frozen. No user feedback to say what is happening!

Microsoft, can you please design things, it'd make everyones jobs and home life much better. Instead you seem to have just patched things together. I guess at least you seem to have created a large job market for computer technicians, but you seem to make their lives pretty hard too.

After waiting 25 mins on a none-changing screen, it's finally popped up saying "Disk Part succeeded in cleaning the disk". A little long for a simple clean. It now appears in the list. But now another error!

Windows cannot be installed to this disk. This computers hardware may not support booting to this disk. Ensure that the disk's controller is enabled in the computers BIOS menu.
So, after restarting the machine, it seemed to accept the disk.

It's now installing, I need a coffee.

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