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Maxtor 300GB Bios detection SOLVED!

edited Jun 2005 in PC Building
:)

Applies to all Maxtor DiamontMax & MaXline SATA drives! (Mine is 300 GB, 7200 rpm, 16 MB Cache SATA on Gigabyte 7N400 Pro 2 rev. 2)

Many people including me, can not recognize this drives or their motherboards are recognizing them hard, and mainly have problems with detecting them when cold boot.

All this drives have feature calld "Staggered Spin-up Detection". This feature is for servers &/or more than 2 drives to power up one by one, this makes the power supply's work esier when turning on such a system. This also makes it possible to run machines with multiple HDD's with lower power supplyes. They are cheaper also. Anyway this feature must bi off (Disabled) on PC's, or when there are one or two HDD's on the system.

By the SATA specifications the SATA HDD power cable is with 4 pins on the PSU side & 15 pins on the HDD side. By this specifications, Pin 11 is reserved (not used), and should be grounded or pulled low.

These series of Maxtor SATA HDD's are using this pin 11 for turning that feature on & off. When it is on, the HDD is waiting for more initializations more time that any standard Sata controller, Bios & motherboard will wait. So when it is off, the HDD acts like normal PC SATA drive.

Because this pin 11 is reserved for future use by SATA specifications, many SATA power cable manifacturers leave this pin going nowhere instead of grounding it (because it is not supposed to be used), but in our case it automatically enables the feature. So this drives auto sense if pin 11 is connected to power, not connected or grounded.

IMPORTANT: If Pin 11 is not connected or connected to power supply, that means that "Staggered Spin-up Detection" is enabled, & your HDD will NOT be recognized or not recognized all the time by the bios!

SOLUTION: Pull ot the power cable from the PSU & the HDD, and count 11th Pin, start counting from the side with the adge. Ground this pin to your case for example (to some screw)

More Info: http://www.maxtor.com/_files/maxtor/en_us/documentation/white_papers_technical/staggerd-spin-detection-pin11.pdf

Hope it helps everyone, sorry for the long POST & for my english, remember... I'am Bulgarian :)

Comments

  • ShortyShorty Manchester, UK Icrontian
    edited Mar 2005
    Your english is very good.. and the information you have just posted is top notch advice! :D

    Cheers and welcome to Short-Media :cool:
  • SpinnerSpinner Birmingham, UK
    edited Mar 2005
    Shorty said:
    Your english is very good.. and the information you have just posted is top notch advice! :D

    Cheers and welcome to Short-Media :cool:
    Indeed. I think that will help a lot of people round here. There are tones of people who suffer from that problem.

    Great discovery mate. :thumbsup:
  • SpinnerSpinner Birmingham, UK
    edited Mar 2005
    Shorty said:
    Your english is very good.. and the information you have just posted is top notch advice! :D

    Cheers and welcome to Short-Media :cool:
    Dan' can you sticky this so we can see what reaction it gets? I don't want this information slipping away into the depths of the forums. It's the first I've heard of it.
  • primesuspectprimesuspect HumanGarbageDisposal Detroit, MI Icrontian
    edited Mar 2005
    Thread stuck. EXCELLENT information. Thanks, and welcome to short-media :D
  • profdlpprofdlp The Holy City Of Westlake, Ohio
    edited Mar 2005
    That's a great find, djvga. I am sure that this is going to help a lot of people. :thumbsup:
  • SpinnerSpinner Birmingham, UK
    edited Mar 2005
    Link to a sister thread detailing information on driver configurations on the Gigabyte 7N400 Pro 2 rev. 2 motherboard under Windows XP: http://www.short-media.com/forum/showthread.php?p=254490&posted=1#post254490
  • edited Mar 2005
    Ok, I have 2 x Maxtor 10 250GB/16MB drives that would not be recognized on my MSI Neo 4 Platinum and after sending the board back as defective and getting it cross shipped and replaced (Thanks MWave.), then flashing the MB and NVidia RAID Bios no luck, even with the latest BIOS version meant to specifically address this issue. The drives run fine in RAID 1 on the SiL RAID5 controller but not on the Nvidia, anyway after much research I found a BIOS flash for all of these Maxtor 16GB drives that fixes the problem absolutely. Rebooted cold and they are now always seen on the NVidia RAID so tomorrow I will be moving off the SiL to full NCQ goodness at last... Oh yeah the fix.. well I am afraid you are not going to like it, this flash will not work on the controllers you probably all have, basically the same limitations as the Maxtor Powermax utility. If you are running on any type of RAID controller the flash utility will not run, or worse partly flash and kill your drive, you need to find find a Motherboard with just a plain SATA controller, such as on the SOYO Dragon KT 600 that I happened to have on my spare computer... If you can find / beg / borrow or steal such a beast then go here MSI Forums and download the Sabre 1B Code Zip File It might be a good idea if anyone can host this so there are multiple places it is available.

    Here is the text from the original post in case it disapears also
    There is known issue with the combination of a K8N Neo platinum and the new series of Maxtor SATA HDD's.
    The symptoms can be hangup during POST and not being able shutdown / restart.

    It occurs with the new DiamondMax10 and MaxLineII disks.
    To solve this, two things are needed:
    Bios v1.4
    New Maxtor Firmware

    Quote from Maxtor:

    Quote
    All model which model name start with 6B or 7B can use new firmware even though different size.
    For example, DiamonMax 10 model name start with 6B
    Maxline II model name start with 6B
    So same 6B can use same firmware

    I've posted mentioned firmware here:
    http://www.xs4all.nl/~ofj/MSI/Sabre%201B%20code.zip

    This firmware update has solved a lot of previous unexplainable problems for Dutch members, hope will it have same effect here
    Anyway, the general process involves

    1. Unzipping the files to a boot floppy
    2. Boot to floppy
    3. At the A prompt type g.bat
    4. Dont touch it until it says it's finished.

    Finally once again.. DONT DO THIS IF YOU ARE ON A RAID CONTROLLER!!!! I could not get it to recognize the drives on the NVidia or the SiL, my guess is, if you can use the Powermax Util you are fine, if not DONT RISK IT...

    Good luck.. This finally does really once and for all fix the issue....

    One final note, if you guys and Gals can cross post this on any other Forums you frequent we might finally get this issue put to bed once and for all.

    :cool:
  • zokzok
    edited Apr 2005
    question for djvga:

    After reading "staggerd-spin-detection-pin11.pdf" document your solution
    looks ok. But i am still wondering how is it possible to connect pin 11 to
    the case?? On one side there are 4 wires connected to power supply,
    i guess they should be left alone. It is easy to locate pin 11 on the other side,
    but pins are so small that i dont see realy much chance to connect wire
    from outside on it. Also don't imagine connecting power cable on disk with
    outside wire being sticked on pin 11 at the same time???
    Can you add any pictures how you did it?

    Did anybody get any information if there exist cables that already have
    pin 11 grounded?
  • MikeybobMikeybob Middle o' Farmer Land
    edited Apr 2005
    Yeah, I'm in the same boat. Thanks for you help Djvga but I'm not sure what you want me to do. I'm looking at the hd now and don't really see a way to ground it.
  • zokzok
    edited Apr 2005
    mikeybob,

    looks Djvga doesn't apear here much lately, but have found him on
    another forum where (it looks) people are having same (or at least
    similar) problems:
    http://www.techspot.com/vb/archive/index/t-18228-p-2.html

    Meanwhile i got answer from Maxtor support:
    1. they are confirming what djvga said about Staggered Spin-up Detection':
    "Your enquiry has been responded by one of the senior consultant. According to
    his reference 'delayed detection' can't be disabled with jumper, it can only be
    disabled if pin 11 is low or grounded.' "

    but
    2. "Maxtor does not support such amendment and you will need to speak to 3rd
    vendor of this issue."

    I realy wonder what did they think when applying new feature on disk and
    not thinking how is possible to enable-disable it on 'real life'.
  • MikeybobMikeybob Middle o' Farmer Land
    edited Apr 2005
    That's rediculous. Is it possible for me to use the 'PNY Initialization' to make the hard drive work from my other two IDE drives? I don't really want to but I'm not sure if I can get it working otherwise ... the pdf also mentioned something on straining my PSU if I spin-up three drives at boot up. Do you think that's a big issue with a couple of smaller IDe drives spinning up at the same time?

    Thanks for the reply btw.
  • MikeybobMikeybob Middle o' Farmer Land
    edited Apr 2005
    Right, I got mine working not sure if it gets rid of the staggered spin-up but here's how I did it:

    1. Install hard drive into computer and apply leads etc. and enable the SATA on the mobo with the jumpers.

    2. Go to this link (Maxtor website) and download MaxBlast 4 and run it. It will want a formatted floppy disc to install itself onto so have one at the ready

    3. Stick it in the floppy drive and reboot. Follow the on screen command prompts and unless you want a clean install of windows on the new drive make sure you choose to make the new drive added storage or extra storage. Be careful and read the on screen prompts properly.

    4. When this is complete click Finish and hit Ctrl + Alt + Del to reboot.

    5. When you get into Windows let the wizard look for drivers.

    I didn't need to earth or pull pin 11 down I don't know if that's because of the power lead I'm using (one from Maplins) or if it's not neccesary with the MaxBlast 4 but it works :P
  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Pokémaster, Watch Slut Austin, TX Icrontian
    edited Jun 2005
    What the bloody hell is the point of quoting the entire post... And then saying nothing?
  • edited Jun 2005
    I have an ASUS P5AD2-E Premium motherboard that's loaded with SATA capability...and I've got 8 of the Maxtor 6B300S0 drives. I have actually found a way to enable an individual drive activity LED indication for each drive! It incorporates the use of Pin 11 described in this thread, which also is used for staggered startup.

    The main problem with using Pin 11 is that your typical SATA power connector from the power supply, whether you're using a 4-15 pin adaptor or native power supply connector, grounds pin 11 when you put the connector on. The only time this is not the case is if the drive is connected to a custom SATA backplane interface connector.

    I found that I had to put my SATA controllers in native SATA mode or RAID mode, instead of IDE mode, through the BIOS in order for these drives to be properly detected, regardless of whether the staggered start option is enabled.

    That done, I saw a white paper about Pin 11 on Maxtor's site that referred to drive activity signal in a table at the end of the document. Only their SATA II drives, such as the DiamondMax 10 and Maxline III, have this feature. Yippee!

    Okay, now I had to find a way to isolate Pin 11 from being grounded by the power supply connector...here's where the surgery comes in...and it's not for the timid.

    You have to cut through the Pin behind the connector (really not that hard if you have a really small pair of wire cutters) and then solder a wire to the pin on the drive-side of the cut. I then connected that wire to the negative side of an LED, whose positive side goes to +5v through a 90 ohm, 1/8 watt current-limiting resistor.

    That's all there is to it!

    Have fun!

    Kguneng.
  • edited Jun 2005
    Thrax said:
    What the bloody hell is the point of quoting the entire post... And then saying nothing?
    Perhaps because the person in question wasn't aware of the proper use of this Forum's reply editor.
  • SpinnerSpinner Birmingham, UK
    edited Jun 2005
    kguneng said:
    I have an ASUS P5AD2-E Premium motherboard that's loaded with SATA capability...and I've got 8 of the Maxtor 6B300S0 drives. I have actually found a way to enable an individual drive activity LED indication for each drive! It incorporates the use of Pin 11 described in this thread, which also is used for staggered startup.

    The main problem with using Pin 11 is that your typical SATA power connector from the power supply, whether you're using a 4-15 pin adaptor or native power supply connector, grounds pin 11 when you put the connector on. The only time this is not the case is if the drive is connected to a custom SATA backplane interface connector.

    I found that I had to put my SATA controllers in native SATA mode or RAID mode, instead of IDE mode, through the BIOS in order for these drives to be properly detected, regardless of whether the staggered start option is enabled.

    That done, I saw a white paper about Pin 11 on Maxtor's site that referred to drive activity signal in a table at the end of the document. Only their SATA II drives, such as the DiamondMax 10 and Maxline III, have this feature. Yippee!

    Okay, now I had to find a way to isolate Pin 11 from being grounded by the power supply connector...here's where the surgery comes in...and it's not for the timid.

    You have to cut through the Pin behind the connector (really not that hard if you have a really small pair of wire cutters) and then solder a wire to the pin on the drive-side of the cut. I then connected that wire to the negative side of an LED, whose positive side goes to +5v through a 90 ohm, 1/8 watt current-limiting resistor.

    That's all there is to it!

    Have fun!

    Kguneng.
    Thanks for the info bud, not for the timid indeed, but the more info we can correlate on this subject the better in my opinion. Thanks for taking the time to share your findings with us. :)
  • edited Jun 2005
    Spinner said:
    Thanks for the info bud, not for the timid indeed, but the more info we can correlate on this subject the better in my opinion. Thanks for taking the time to share your findings with us. :)
    You're welcome, Spinner. Just modified 8 more drives this morning. When you've done it before, each drive modification takes less than 5 minutes, provided you have the wire attachment ready to solder to the isolated Pin 11.

    Evidently, this business with the grounding of Pin 11 to provide staggered spin-up of the drive does not seem to have much to do with the drive's recognition by the BIOS. I've set up three RAID arrays with the 6B300S0 Maxtor drives, using both the Sil and ICH6 controllers on the ASUS P5AD2-E system board, and all the drives are recognised by the BIOS, even though Pin 11 is not grounded (due to its use for LED activity signal).

    I think for the BIOS to recognise the drives, the controller to which you attach your SATA drives must be set for native SATA mode, not IDE mode. Usually, setting the controller to anything but regular IDE mode will place it in native SATA mode.

    Hope this helps!

    KG
  • GobblesGobbles Ventura California
    edited Jun 2005
    Ive got 5 maxline 300's and 5 250 dm10's

    not a single problem with any of them.
  • sfleurietsfleuriet Texas
    edited Jun 2005
    Gobbles said:
    Ive got 5 maxline 300's and 5 250 dm10's
    holy crap- why do u need so much?
  • GrayFoxGrayFox /dev/urandom
    edited Jun 2005
    Thats not that much Ive seen a machine With 7.8 (I think) TB total space
    All 500gb ibm death stars ! (When I asked what drive)
  • sfleurietsfleuriet Texas
    edited Jun 2005
    well thats just a LOTT
  • CBCB Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ @TheButterflyman Icrontian
    edited Jun 2005
    Bible music.
  • sfleurietsfleuriet Texas
    edited Jun 2005
  • GobblesGobbles Ventura California
    edited Jun 2005
    They are not all in 1 machine... :D

    The 5 250's were in a raid 5.. as a test box.
  • sfleurietsfleuriet Texas
    edited Jun 2005
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