Troubleshooting in Build: Hard Drive

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First make sure that the hard drive you are placing in the desktop computer is the correct size based on the spec build worksheet. Ensure the correct connections (ie SATA or PATA (IDE)) are available in the system, with the corresponding cables to each, for the hard drive available.

NOTE: if you are connecting a SATA powered hard drive that ALSO has a 4-pin molex power connection, DO NOT plug in both the sata power cable and the molex 4-pin cable. If there are SATA ports use only SATA connectors.

Common Issues

When starting up the computer, the hard drive clicks, chirps, or otherwise makes odd noises.

Something is not functioning as it should in the hard drive...recycle it and obtain another.

A SMART Warning on my desktop is telling me that the "Hard drive failure imminent", or some other indication the hard drive is dying.

Simply shut down the system properly, unplug the power chord, remove and replace the hard drive.

I can't find the hard drive in BIOS, and/or the computer doesn't load Ubuntu after BIOS screen.


1) Ensure that somewhere in BIOS the Hard Drive is detected or is set to Auto (for assistance, ask a neighbor or build instructor for navigating BIOS).
2) Make certain the Hard Drive is jumpered to the master pins and plugged in (and properly seated) to the primary SATA/IDE port. You may want to try plugging the cable connecting the Hard drive into another IDE/Sata Port on the motherboard.
3) Try replacing the IDE/SATA cable.


For general Hard Drive info:
For more troubleshooting info:
Or, just Google a description of the issue you're having!