SCSI Boot with IDE, old CMOS

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Compaq Deskpro EN 733/512 with Windows 2000 Server booting on 9GB SCSI drive, Adaptec controller. Active Directory, Domain Controller, WINS, file/database server. Drive getting full, Non-Profit on the Cheap, picked up a large IDE drive hoping to simply add it. Life is for learning, now I understand that unless the BIOS allows you to set SCSI to boot, the IDE will want to boot. Made a ROMPaq disk with the latest firmware upgrade on the slim hope they've added that capability. Still don't know, ROMPaq wouldn't boot, will try making another today. Was hoping to have the new drive online Wednesday... Words of wisdom, please, from those who have been through similar situations. Assuming the CMOS update does not change the situation, are there any workarounds (preferably Open Source/Freeware)? A bootloader I can install on the IDE drive to boot the SCSI with Win2K Server? Should I spend tomorrow re-installing W2K on the IDE drive? (If so, how best to transfer the AD/domain configs to the new install, or better to start fresh - currently only 5 clients are accessing it.) Or should I blow the deadline, order a smaller but comparably priced SCSI drive, and just plug them in when they arrive? I am the IT Department and DBA, along with several other functions. I have plenty of other items on my agenda, so while this is a high priority I've already spent hours learning a lot but accomplishing nothing. What do you see as the most efficient approach to accomplishing the goal of expanding this server's capacity? Thanks for your ideas! -Bob
ASKED: August 22, 2005  10:03 AM
UPDATED: February 3, 2009  3:30 PM

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You don’t say which Adaptec controller is being used for the SCSI drive. Some have addins to the BIOS at startup for pre-emptive boot. With no IDE drive it wasn’t a problem, but with one added you got bit. Look for message during start up to access the adaptec controller, Usually ‘Ctrl-A’. As to getting the romPaq to load, check that in the BIOS (system) the Floppy drive is still before the HD. Usually I find it got pushed down the list while switching between CD, HD, other.
Hope this helps – Good Luck.

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  • VietBob
    Not at work to give you the model, but I did look it up at the Adaptec web site and they gave me the strong impression that this controller is not involved in my problem, it's simply the CMOS. Reading some other sites, I think I'll put an image of the SCSI onto the IDE, assuming the firmware update doesn't help. The floppy was first, maybe bad disk so I'm making another one today at home. Thanks for the quick response! -Bob
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  • Joelsplace
    If you don't have a device priority even with the new BIOS then try a cheapo PCI IDE controller. The BIOS *should* see the PCI controller after the SCSI one if you have the IDE one in the correct slot. I've had the same problem and just juggled the cards until it would boot. I'll assume you have good backups in case something gets hosed. I've had really bad luck with Maxtor drives even in mirrored sets. I've had good luck with Silicon Image controllers over Promise.
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  • VietBob
    At this point, unless flashing the BIOS update provides me with the solution, I'm leaning toward putting an image of the SCSI on the IDE and letting it boot. Estimating this system to be several years old, we may be better off moving it to a new drive. I may try your idea, though, if I put the storage upgrade off to next weekend. I'll let you know! Thanks for the suggestion! -Bob
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  • VietBob
    ROMPaq issue was not disk, I overlooked a 'disable removable media boot' option in the setup. However, indeed the upgrade didn't address SCSI boot issue. Imaged SCSI partition, put image on new drive, no boot. Using System Rescue CD (GPL)- warnings that it wasn't the same drive as the image was taken from, but appeared to restore image OK. Linux/NTFS issue probably. Will try a boot loader, I guess, next. If that doesn't work, I'll just add another small SCSI from another Compaq workstation, consider it a learning experience, and buy a SCSI drive next time...
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  • Ve3ofa
    Depending upon the drive manufacturer you can get a utility from the manufacturer of the drive to copy over your older drive. A straight copy (remembering to copy hidden/system/readonly) files followed by a repair install of the OS might get you around this problem. (2nd repair option) even maybe a fixmbr from the first repair option might fix your problem.. You could also do a minimal install on the IDE and edit the boot.ini to point to the 9G drive and once it boots off the 9G drive (all it needs is a proper mbr, ntldr and boot.ini and then you can delete 99.9% of the install on the IDE and use it as your DATA drive..
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  • Ve3ofa
    ntldr, Ntdetect.com, and the Boot.ini is all that will be needed on the boot ide to then boot off of the SCSI disk
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  • VietBob
    Thanks!! It's done (I thought it was done Wednesday - booted up fine, moved the data files from the SCSI to the IDE, set up new shares, updated pointers in the existing Access front end, and the database was fine and all the other shares were now available on the network! Psych!) Why does Murphy stick so close to me? Thursday, to complete the installation I had to power down. Powered back up and *POOF* all f* up!!! Gone. Tried W2K Setup to no avail. After a fruitless hour or two I used a WD utility to re-partition and format the drive, booted up OK, W2K saw the 320GB drive but the logical disks weren't ~150GB, they were ~1.5 GB. Finally repartitioned within W2K, creating a single ~310 GB partition! Formatted, set up directories, set up sharing once again, and finally all appears to be good! (I used gag bootloader to point the boot block to the SCSI, since it was handy and I already knew how to install it.) I'm still not sure why this was such a nightmare. In hindsight, I would have saved a great deal of time if I'd immediately installed W2K on the IDE, pointed it to boot the SCSI, then deleted the W2K installation. And I would have saved COUNTLESS HOURS if I'd simply purchased another SCSI drive! While I visited several forums and did many Googles throughout this adventure, most of the best suggestions I found came from you folks. Thanks for the help! -Bob
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