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I have kept the old hard drive and wonder how I can retrieve my photos.
I did buy a SATA cable but not quite sure how to use it.
Any Ideas ?

Well, what you need to do depends upon whether you are running Linux (or other *nix), or Windows. If Windows, it will find and mount the file system automatically, as drive E: or something. If linux, you will probably need to manually mount it on your file system. So, let us know what operating system you are running, and we can better help you.

Thanks Slavi,
no I haven't yet connected it to the Dell as
I left this at a friends place.
Will have a try as soon as I collect it.

Use a USB to IDE/SATA cable, such as this:

This one supports 2.5 and 3.5 inch IDE drives (PATA), SATA devices, and includes a separate power supply. Once connected it's no more difficult than using a USB thumb drive.

For more info try searching the web for USB to IDE/SATA cables....

Alternatively, to make use of the SATA cable you have already...

Start by opening your computer case and invalidating your warranty. Rummage a round for a spare SATA slot, taking care not to dislodge anything too important, and plug-in the SATA cable.

Attach the other end to the hard drive, assuming it has a SATA interface. If the drive is more than ten years old it'll probably have a PATA interface. Unfortunately PATA and SATA are totally incompatible no matter how far you bend pins.

The drive will also need power. Computer manufacturers know just how useful a spare power connector can be for users looking to upgrade their systems instead of purchasing new ones, so you might just get lucky. If not purchase a power cable splitter, or borrow the one from the CD/DVD drive.

On booting the system you may need to change the SATA configuration or BIOS settings to specify a drive letter for the disk. Choose a letter that is higher than any current drives. Refrain from changing the boot order.

Oh, and don't forget to switch your computer off before trying the above. Perhaps I should have mentioned that first.

Thanks...Gulp !.... as an (ancient) dummie I'll have to print and read this carefully.
However the offending machine is currently sat
sulking at a friends place. So shall try your advice when I collect it.

Something went missing from my last post...

Use a USB to IDE/SATA cable, such as this:

This one supports 2.5 and 3.5 inch IDE drives (PATA), SATA devices, and includes a separate power supply. Once connected it's no more difficult than using a USB thumb drive.

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