VOGONS


First post, by heretyk

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie

How to get details about my hard drive like cyls, head, precom, landz, sector?

I got an old PC with Samsung SV1604N 160GB hard drive which turns out to be way too big for a '98 computer.

The BIOS freezes during POST or upon HDD auto-detection. It starts fine when I set the values manually but then windows crashes probably because of random values I've set in BIOS. After '00 manufacturers stopped putting this data on labels
- how to get it than?

Reply 1 of 10, by RetroGamer4Ever

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member

Connect it to a modern computer and there are plenty of HDD utility programs that will tell you everything about the drive and test it for functionality/damage. Otherwise, this is the only data available for the drive family in question...

https://www.hdsentinel.com/storageinfo_detail … MSUNG%20SV1604N

Reply 2 of 10, by Sunoo

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member

Does it even matter for modern drives? My understanding was that after a certain point, drives only really spoke LBA, and CHS values should just be maxed out to get as much of the drive usable as possible.

Reply 3 of 10, by dormcat

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
heretyk wrote on 2022-05-03, 11:59:

The BIOS freezes during POST or upon HDD auto-detection. It starts fine when I set the values manually but then windows crashes probably because of random values I've set in BIOS. After '00 manufacturers stopped putting this data on labels
- how to get it than?

Looks like your BIOS cannot handle HDD > 137GB/128GiB. The majority of consumer-grade computers of 1998 had HDD capacities from 4.3 to 8.4GB; got my very first 160GB HDD in 2009.

There are ways to bypass those limits but only if you want to challenge them; for practical usages you can just use a smaller HDD or even a CF/SD card.

Reply 4 of 10, by Cuttoon

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Most Socket 7 systems would take only 32 and maybe up to 128 with the right bios update, some of those custom modded.
Many drives around 100 GB could be jumpered to appear as 32 GB, it's printed on them, example:
https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/0FcAAOSw9CtfpZ1D/s-l1600.jpg

In a system this "modern", if the drive isn't recognized correctly in the bios setup, it probably won't work natively.

I like jumpers.

Reply 5 of 10, by Disruptor

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Yes and if that is the problem in your system there are several ways:

1) Update or patch mainboard BIOS.
2) Install smaller HDD
3) Limit current HDD (by jumper or by a program that can set MAXLBA)

And a 160 GB drive does not use CHS. You have to get proper LBA support.

Reply 6 of 10, by Gmlb256

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Another way that isn't mentioned yet is using a ODD like OnTrack Disk Manager, which allows using larger HDD without requiring a BIOS update or limiting the maximum capacity size.

Since you're planning to install Windows 98 on a 160GB HDD, you must get the updated FDISK which allows creating partitions >64GB. To get it search for 263044usa8.exe.

Reply 7 of 10, by heretyk

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie

I cleared CMOS once again and set CHS parameters to reasonable values and now I've got my PC back up and running. I guess it somehow prevents BIOS from performing auto-detection or doing some kind of checkup which always fails.
It's a kind of workaround and It would be better to get something smaller but I don't want to invest any money in this crap. I confirm Windows 98SE runs on 160GB HDD with no problems.

Reply 8 of 10, by weedeewee

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

FYI ,

https://www.win.tue.nl/~aeb/linux/Large-Disk-4.html

though that doesn't mention the 64G limit. 😀

Right to repair is fundamental. You own it, you're allowed to fix it.
How To Ask Questions The Smart Way
Do not ask Why !

Reply 9 of 10, by Gmlb256

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
heretyk wrote on 2022-05-03, 15:24:

I cleared CMOS once again and set CHS parameters to reasonable values and now I've got my PC back up and running. I guess it somehow prevents BIOS from performing auto-detection or doing some kind of checkup which always fails.
It's a kind of workaround and It would be better to get something smaller but I don't want to invest any money in this crap. I confirm Windows 98SE runs on 160GB HDD with no problems.

Reminds me of a hack I did months ago. Which works but programs relying on INT 13h without any extension would have trouble getting the proper HDD size if the CHS aren't set adequately for LBA translation, which could be verified with Speedsys and the DOS version PartitionMagic.

Reply 10 of 10, by Repo Man11

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

Recommended viewing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xh6j5tW0iwU

"A lot of times when you first start out on a project you think, This is never going to be finished. But then it is, and you think, Wow, it wasn't even worth it." - Jack Handey