Now it is my turn to beg, plead ignorance..:) this one has me beaten, and i am tired of googling for a solution.
I recently added a second SATA hd [my boot disk is also SATA, there are no IDE drives on my sys apart from my DVD combo on IDE secondary]. Anyway, my sys knows SATA.... so I plugged in the drive to SATA 02, connected power and turned on, went directly to disk management console and initialised the new drive and next dropped a couple of primary partitions onto it. They are listed as healthy, hardware manager, device manager see the new drive with no errors and enabled. But does Explorer know about it? Oh no, it refuses to list the drive or partitions as present. I could force them into it only by going back to disk management console and rclicking a partition [they are not Hidden..] and selecting Explore. Bingo. Now you see that one in Explorer. Or if you do it to another partition it pops up in a new Explorer window, but never is more than one available in any one Explorer window.
So I can use them... I can copy onto them, out of them, but not between them.... , one is even my working page file. But if I close the explorer window that partition is unavailable to me [but working in background with whatever process may be using a partition.. eg, playing music, or saving to at end of job].
Now I had a drive letter mis-ordering on my boot SATA, and thinking that could be the cause of it I fired up GParted on liveCD and did a rather massive reordering of both drives, copying to backup partitions from one drive to the other [tedious, but safe, and faster than resizing and moving, and you would copy important stuff anyway, wouldn't you, if resizing? Moved my apps partition, my temp partition [outlook folders, temp inet files, cookies, history, all that stuff], gave them both more room, gave windows OS more room in its partition - all this went without a hitch, not a single error or loss or hiccup. My drive letters are ordered now, also. But Drive 01 is still invisible in Explorer. Usable as before, paging happily in one partition, but invisible.
What am I missing here?
BTW, GParted is cool. My display hates it, have to force VESA, but I guess that's fine...

Yea, I use gparted often too..

I don't know what to suggest.. Are both hd SATA 3gb/s? Who is the manufacturer? Did you format the problematic hd using Windows? Check if it's drivers were successfully installed.. perhaps try driver and/or firmware upgrade. Can you not view any of the problematic drive's partitions in My Computer?

they are both WD, boot is 160GB, secondary? is 120GB, so no size issues [anyway]. SATA do not have drivers as such, it is all down to the chipset design. The second hard drive is basically a backup and page drive and once a pgm has it targeted it just uses it normally, no problems; if I want a file from it and it is listed in a pgm's MRU it just grabs it, backup works with it with no interference from me; what irks me is the convoluted way I myself have to follow to access it. And why windows is dumb like this!

Did you format the problematic hd using Windows? ... perhaps try driver and/or firmware upgrade. Can you not view any of the problematic drive's partitions in My Computer?

Check chipset drivers.. I know I had to update my chipset drivers once before the hd installed correctly..

Windows has special registry keys for manipulating the Drives as shown or hidden. One cool way of opening multiple drives (you said you could only open one drive at a time) is by opening My Computer window and writing the drive letter in the address bar e.g, if I want to open E drive, I will open My Computer, type E:\ in the address bar and boom ... the drive is wide open. You can open multiple drives this way.

As far as your problem is concerned, I can only redirect you to my article about hiding the drives in My Computer. You can check if the group policy has not restricted your drives access. Otherwise check the registry which I mentioned in the article.

If you still can't solve the problem ... then may be we can craft another solution ...

commented: The right help at the right moment makes all the difference, doesn't it? +4

Heya, nanosani....I tried the Expl address bar method - it works, thanks. I had not thought of it because I usually have that address bar hidden. Atm I have the whole drive imaged in a folder on the primary SATA which naturally works also, so I can see them all. They just cannot be placed into the root....
That was an interesting article you linked, unfortunately that DWORD was for hiding drives, but it's pointing in the right direction - something in registry perhaps is blocking those partitions. I have noticed that explorer auto-hides any drive that has a drive letter out of order.. eg C, D, P, E, F - the P drive will be hidden, at least on my sys. I used that method to hide my page file before I got the second SATA.
Where did you find that DWORD? I have reserved a couple of drive letters for imaging on my primary drive, and because all of its space is not allocated yet.. [just what do ppl put on 500GB jumbos??!!?]... I wonder if that drive mounting gap could be...?

Did you assign it a drive letter? Just making the partition wont make it show up.

yes, jb, it has four mounted [ie, drive letters assigned] partitions on it atm, and all are usable... one is my page file.

Nanosani!! WE DID IT!!!! THANK YOU!!!
DWORD NoDrives was rather the opposite of what I desired. But i created a DWORD NoDrivesAbsent, Value =1, and Yahoo!! There now are all my secondary SATA drives in Explorer! Thank you for pointing me in the right direction.
Wheeeee... so happy now.

There's more! When I added that NoDrivesAbsent = 1 I still had the other DWORD NoDrives in the key, set = 0. Got to thinking about it, deleted the NoDrivesAbsent Dword, left NoDrives = 0 there, and that does it, alone. Other DWORD is redundant.... which all, nanosani, fits in nicely with the intent of that binary drive nomination scheme.
I just gotta stop fiddling with these things....

Great to see your happy gerbil .. I just showed you one direction and you created another by yourself..

Nope, all credit to you, NoDrives = 0 is the solution.
I cannot help but think that that setting is over-riding something else.... but I am leaving the issue as it is. Actually, I am using it to hide my current page file. Neat. Thank you.