[K12OSN] sata as secondary HD - server won't boot [OT]

Carl Keil carl at snarlnet.com
Sun Oct 24 20:36:34 UTC 2004

I totally hear what you're saying.  There are a few problems when it comes
to my individual situation though.  I bought this dell on ebay, not through
dell.  It was only $349.  I had to upgrade the RAM and I bought the sata
drive, but still waaay shy of $2K.

I've been going through the bios for hours and I don't see much.  It is
incredibly simplistic.  Every option seems like either "auto" or "off".  The
thing that's killing me, I really believe is this "C:" drive as basically
the only HD boot option in the "boot options" menu.  There is a whole other
menu you can go into on boot, called "boot options" if you hit F12 instead
of F2 for the BIOS.  When I hit F12 I can see a better list of boot options.
Primary/Secondary SATA Primary/Secondary ATA etc.  If I select Primary ATA
from this list I boot up fine.  This is going to have to work for a while
for me, but I don't like not being able to just reboot and have it come up

I don't understand why I can't have this complete list in the normal BIOS.
Is there some trick?  I keep thinking there must be some kind of trick, like
holding down the option key or something when going into the BIOS or
something that puts it into expert mode, because the options are soooo


>-----Original Message-----
>From: Terrell Prudé, Jr. [mailto:microman at cmosnetworks.com]
>Sent: Sunday, October 24, 2004 1:15 PM
>To: carl at snarlnet.com; Support list for opensource software in schools.
>Subject: Re: [K12OSN] sata as secondary HD - server won't boot [OT]
>Carl Keil wrote:
>>Hey Folks,
>>I dropped a sata drive in my Dell 400sc k12 server and got the home
>>directory moved there.  Rebooted a few times, everything was
>hunky dory, so
>>I proceed with a clean reinstall of k12ltsp on the ata drive.
> Now, the
>>server will only boot if the sata drive is disconnected.  I
>think I hosed
>>the proprietary MBR on the "C:" drive of the server(the
>original ata drive),
>>so it thinks the sata is the "C:".  (There is very annoying windows
>>centricness in the BIOS where the "C:" is the only hard drive
>boot option.)
>>I really feel like this is a bios boot order problem, but I
>need to be able
>>to tell the dell to boot of the primary IDE before the sata.
>But wouldn't
>>it go there when it didn't find anything bootable on the sata
>buss?  Anyway,
>>does anyone have a clue what to do?  I need the sata back
>because it's got
>>/home on it.
>I'm not familiar with this specific Dell model, but after searching
>their site, it looks like a new enough model that it should still be
>covered under the Dell warranty.  Note, though, that Red Hat Linux 9.0
>and RHEL 3.0 are actually listed as supported OS's, so just tell 'em
>you're running RHL 9.  :-)
>There shouldn't be any "proprietary MBR" format, since Dell
>supports RHL
>on these beasties.  Remember that Windows OS's themselves need
>to run on
>multiple types of boxes and mobo chipsets, and thus for that, MS stays
>pretty vanilla.  Not to knock what you're saying; I'm just
>thinking that
>maybe there's a BIOS option that's getting overlooked.  I just built a
>box w/ both ATA and SATA, and, just having fun going through the BIOS
>options, I discovered an option for "replace primary IDE channel with
>SATA."  You might look for something like that as well.  I agree with
>you on that there absolutely should be the ability to boot
>from the ATA
>drive even when one or more SATA drive(s) is/are present.
>If Dell support cannot or will not help you, then I'd suggest
>sending it
>back, getting your money back, and rolling your own.  You
>*know* you'll
>have standard hardware that way, and I have yet to have a problem when
>going this route.  If that happens, we on the list can give you plenty
>of inexpensive HW suggestions for K12LTSP.  :-)
>BTW, I just built another Dual Athlon 2GHz w/ 4GB DRAM, this
>time using
>twin 160GB SATA drives for /home (software RAID 1) and one 40GB ATA
>drive for the OS.  This thing is a freakin' monster!  :-)  I haven't
>tried any timing tests yet, but it sure feels fast as greased
>including for disk xfers.  Yes, I know, SCSI RAID 5's
>better/faster, but
>since it came outta mah own pokket, SATA was good enough.  All in a
>really cool case...for less than $2000.  :-)
>Do you GNU!? <http://www.gnu.org>
>Be virus- and spam-free with Free/Open Source Software (FOSS).
>Check it
>out! <http://www.mozilla.org/thunderbird>

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