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Thread: Won't boot when USB HD plugged in?!

  1. #1
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    Won't boot when USB HD plugged in?!

    I'm slowly preparing my machine for a CF install.

    When I attempt to boot my computer with the media drive (external USB 40GB HD) it freezes at the VIA logo screen. If I unplug the USB HD (even without rebooting) the boot process continues. I've looked in the BIOS for a setting that would be making it do this but I can't figure it out?!

    Is the computer attempting to boot off of the USB HD, which only has media files on it?

    What BIOS setting is causing this to happen?! HELP!

  2. #2
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    Boot order

    Try checking the boot order in the BIOS, put your C: drive first, then CD-ROM, etc. Just remember when you go to format it that you have to switch the boot order again. If that doesn't work, some BIOS have a USB setting in them to boot up with the computer, turn it off, it should activate when windows calls for it. I'm not sure though.

  3. #3
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Also check to make sure USB boot is disabled. At the very least having USB boot enabled will add substantial time to your boot.

    Edit: I'm not awake yet, and can now see that Thanatos said the same thing. <pours more coffee>
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?



    Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

  4. #4
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    Sonicxtacy02's Avatar
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    it doesnt freeze... its just doin some type of drive check. Happens to my 120gig usb too. If you wait it goes away. I cant remember what the drive test is.. i think it starts with a d (DMA maybe? )

  5. #5
    FLAC IntellaWorks's Avatar
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    .

    I ran into this problem with a USB CDROM drive, with my via board. The USB drive wasn't working correctly with via's BOIS. The device worked with other machines but not my via board.

    If you have another harddrive try that. Obviously try the first suggestions posted as these should fix most common problems.

    Edit: The Cd-ROM drive actually died shortly after this weird problem so maybe it was on its way out to begin with. However my via board had the same behavior as your board... It was just a hard problem to trouble shoot.
    Progress [I will seriously never be done!]
    Via EPIA MII
    512MB RAM
    OEM GPS (embedded)
    nLite WinXP pro on
    1GB Extreme III CF card
    Carnetix 1260 startup/ DC-DC regulator
    Software: Still, re-Writing my existing front end in .Net

  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate knubile's Avatar
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    I had this same experience. Try turning off the via logo so you can see exactly what's happening. Mine was freezing during the ram test. I found no way to fix it, but when I tried a different USB enclosure for my laptop drive the problem went away. I found 2 enclosures that caused the problem, and now I have one that doesn't.
    These USB enclosures are surprisingly dissapointing.
    I have yet to find a really good one.
    Good luck.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for all the suggestions. So far Knubile's explanation seems best - I tried putting the laptop HD into a different USB enclosure and was able to get the computer to boot...

    BUT - once in windows, the USB is not recognised!!! WTF...any ideas? Would yet another USB enclosure act differently?

  8. #8
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    I just tried booting my computer with my ARCHOS G-Mini XS200 (MP3 player) plugged in and it didn't freeze, and windows recognised it once booted. Weird...

    I'm going to be using this Archos player as my media drive since in the winter I can take it out with me and use it as a regular MP3 player, but once plugged in, it keeps a directory structure of my music and acts as a regular USB hard drive so it works perfectly for Frodoplayer.

  9. #9
    Low Bitrate jadz's Avatar
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    I am having this same problem with a Nexstar 3 enclosure.

    Just as described, if the USB-HDD is plugged in it won't complete the memory, as soon as I unplug the drive it continues the boot process, so if I unplug the drive for a total of .5 seconds and then plug it back in everything works fine.

    Very odd.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jadz
    I am having this same problem with a Nexstar 3 enclosure.

    Just as described, if the USB-HDD is plugged in it won't complete the memory, as soon as I unplug the drive it continues the boot process, so if I unplug the drive for a total of .5 seconds and then plug it back in everything works fine.

    Very odd.
    I've experienced this on computers at home and at work. Seems like some BIOSes get stuck on external storage media. I've had this occur with USB drives as well as media card readers. Unplug them for a few seconds during POST and everything is fine. *shrugs*

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