Hard Drive Formatting Problem

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I installed a 40Gb Maxtor DiamondMax Plus 8 hard disk on an old PC.

I couldn't format it to 40Gb due to restrictions with the (old) motherboard.

I was able to format it to 10Gb.

Since then, I have fitted the drive to a different PC, but can't format it
to 40Gb as the BIOS 'sees' it as a 10Gb drive..

Is there any way I can fix this problem ?.



Re: Hard Drive Formatting Problem

There are two ways that come across. First try fdisk /mbr on the drive using
a Win98 startup disk.

If that doesn't work go to the Maxtor website and download its diagnostic
utility. Run the program that does a "0" write to the drive. It's not a low
level format but simply erases any instruction that the disk has written.
The bios should be seeing it as the original 40 gb again.

Jan Alter
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Re: Hard Drive Formatting Problem


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Just repartition/reformat it using the Maxtor utility. You can then
reformat it in Windows.

Another possibility is to delete the driver with Add/Delete Hardware
with Show Hidden Devices checked. Then delete the HD entries in


Don't delete the DOS entries.

Re: Hard Drive Formatting Problem

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I had that problem occur after using Powermax on a 250 GB drive to low level
erase it on a motherboard which only supported 128 GB - the result was my
drive was detected by the BIOS as 128 GB and couldn't be re-expanded to the
correct capacity (not even with Powermax being run on the drive connected
through an ATA 133 controller). In the end I had to get it exchanged by
Maxtor. If your BIOS is seeing it as a 10 GB drive the same may have
happened to you. I suggest attempting to run Powermax but if it shows the
wrong drive capacity it will likely need to visit Maxtor.


Re: Hard Drive Formatting Problem

You would have to find a newer version of the motherboard's BIOS that can
recognize a drive larger than 32 GB.  Not likely.


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Re: Hard Drive Formatting Problem

On Mon, 10 Oct 2005 15:56:58 -0700, "DaveW"

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Many if not most major brand boards have bios updates for
recognition past 32GB if the board is roughly '98 or newer.

Unfortunately we are a hardware group but weren't told what
this specific hardware (board) is.

Re: Hard Drive Formatting Problem

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Lots of older mobo makers do not provide upgrades for recognition of
larger hard disks. But help available over the web, at least for Award
BIOS. However the process is too involved for the non-techie.

This site has a large number of BIOS that have been modified to make
them recognize larger disks. (Standard warnings on upgrading BIOS



Sandy Archer
Reply to newsgroups only

Re: Hard Drive Formatting Problem

These days, motherboard manufacturers include large hard disk support by
default. It was in the crummy old days of Windows 98 that we had to go into
the BIOS and try to get flash updates just to get it beyond the 32GB limit.

So glad those days are gone!

Gary Hendricks, Build-Your-Own-Computers.com
Step-by-step guides for setting up your own computer:

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Re: Hard Drive Formatting Problem

U have to change maxlba.Use hddl

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