First of all, I'm not sure if I'm posting in the right section. If not, feel free to move the thread with my apologies.

I have a Dell Computer - probably around 4 years old. A week ago, when I came home from work, their was a screen telling me I had an error and had to reboot. I thought it was no big deal - so I proceeded to reboot. When it started to boot up - all I heard was a clicking noise and then received this error:

Primary 0 drive not found

It gave me the option to press F1 to continue or F2 to run the setup utility

Either pressing F1 or F2, it brings me to the BIOS screen.

I looked though the setup section and under drive configuration it lists my Primary master drive as "unknown device"

In the boot sequence section as number 2 it says "Hard disk drive (not installed)

Anyone have any suggestions on what I should do? I'm concerned with trying to get some of the data off of the hard drive as well as whether it is really dead and if I need to buy a new hard drive.

While searching, I came across this thread. I'm having the exact same problem. The only difference is, my Dell Dimension is a 4600 and was made in 2003. Yes, it's old as the hills. At any rate, I've purchased a new harddrive for it already. The harddrive that came with it originally is a Maxtor 3.5 Series (DiamondMax Plus 8). The one I bought is a Western Digital WD Caviar SE WD2500JB. Honestly, I bought it about a year ago because I was having issues and thought the harddrive could be the problem. Only, I could never get it to install. I went to the installation site that was listed in the paperwork that came with the new harddrive. It seemed to physically hookup just fine, it would just never install.

Now, I just tried to do it again and the computer isn't detecting it. Any suggestions would be extremely appreciated.

Note that this is just a temporary fix. I intend to buy an entirely new computer at the beginning of the year. That's a good 3 to 4 months away, though, and I might as well use this new harddrive that's never been used.

Which brings me to my next question:

I don't much like Dell. They seem to be poorly made. I'd like for my next computer to last a while. Are there any particular brands of computers that are generally well-made at around a $1500-$1700 price range?

Thanks much

Well, don't I feel silly. After searching for hours, I -hope- I've figured out why I couldn't get the hard drive to install back over a year ago when I bought it. It seems that the drive is a SATA and the old drive wis an IDE. I need a tiny $6 cable kit. I also found instructions for installing. And honestly, they're about as complicated as it comes.

At any rate, sorry for clogging up the forums like this. I may be back if I can't get it to work after these cables arrive.

Thnanks again.

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