Installing the Seagate Barracuda ST315005N1A1AS in a Dell Precision 670.
For those of you that have been following the series of articles I have written, you may remember that my current computer is a Dell Precision 670. It has dual Xenon 3.0 GHZ cpu’s with 3 GB of RAM. It currently has 3 hard drives, an 80 GB fast SATA Western Digital Raptor for a boot drive, a second Samsung Spinpoint SATA F1 HD103UJ terabyte drive and a third Western Digital Caviar GP WD10EACS 1TB HD. Both 1 TB drives are about 90% full with mainly home movies, photographs and music. The computer is my movie and photograph editor and acts as a media server for the rest of the house. All the photographs, Music and video are accessible anywhere in the house on Hi-Def Televisions, computers and laptops. Based on the above, I have needed some additional storage space for a while. I also just purchased a Hi-Def camcorder of which I will review soon. The old movie clips took vast amounts of space, but that appears minimal compared to the files that the Hi-Def camcorder creates!
I was not looking forward to spending any more time on the PC even though I needed the space. I was stalling. several weeks ago while downloading a song, the PC locked up. Over the last 5 years, it had locked up twice. This was a very rare occurrence. I rebooted, and it refused to fully boot. It got stuck trying to load Windows. I tried disk repair, nothing. I tried the windows repair, nothing. I tried the in-place upgrade, nothing. I tried reinstalling Windows, and it refused. It would continually get stuck at the same place during the install. As if, there was something wrong at a particular spot on the drive. I didn’t know for sure, but I needed more space, so I decided to purchase a drive. The drive I decided on was the Seagate Barracuda 1.5TB ST315005N1A1AS.
The motherboard only supports two SATA drives so I purchased an additional SATA controller card to control the additional drives some time ago. Luckily, the PC can hold 2 additional drives. The PCI-X SATA II controller card I purchased is the Syba SD-PCXSA2-2E2R which I highly recommend. The Syba card is running the two terabyte drives and the WD raptor is connected directly to the SATA controller on the motherboard. The plan was to make the boot drive a secondary drive. Hopefully I would be able to access the contents that way and then make the new drive the boot drive.
Unlike prior drives, I purchased the Seagate ST315005N1A1AS in a consumer kit. It came with the drive, software, a SATA cable, a power cable and mounting screws. The Seagate ST315005N1A1AS drive is a SATA II drive that I had intended to install onto a SATA controller. So these were the steps:
1. Install the jumper onto the drive to disable SATA II operation
2. I opened the PC
3. Move the existing drive to the other free SATA cable
4. Plugged in the drive
5. Turned on the PC and entered the CMOS to make sure it would boot from the DVD drive first
6. Restarted the PC and booted from the Windows install disk
7. Told the MS Windows installer to partition the drive and format the drive. This took over an hour! I used a single partition and allocated it to Windows
8. Completed the Windows installation which took several more hours
9. Installed software that I use on a daily basis
That was it.
The computer boots up faster than I ever thought it could. The 7500 RPM Seagate 1.5 TB drive is much faster than the 80 GB Western Digital Raptor I had prior. It does not seem that there is a price to pay by running the drive in SATA mode vs SATA II mode. The computer is amazingly fast. As a bonus, all my files are available to me on the that Western Digital Hard Drive. No critical data was lost!
Great drive! Highly recommended!
You can see the other related entries at:
Home video transfer - Terabyte Hard Drive