Help! I've burned up 3 SATA drives today

I got a used computer on Saturday at a yard sale. I bought it for the case, although it came with a motherboard and power supply but no drives or video card.

I put a video card into the machine, along with an IDE drive and the system ran fine.

I replaced the motherboard with one known to be good: I pulled it from a working computer. I wanted to be able to use SATA drives in the "new" case. The power supply did not have any SATA power cables so I used the molex-sata power adapter cables.

When I turned the system on with the first SATA drive in the system a component on the drive smoked and the drive is dead. The component is a surface mount plastic two-terminal (I think) device about 1/8 x 3/16 inch. I can just barely read C651 on the device.

I swapped out the power supply for a second unit, and put in another SATA drive. I checked voltage to the molex and it was 11.86 volts and 5.09 volts.

It happened again, when I turned on the power I killed the second SATA drive.

I took my motherboard out of the new case and put it back in the my old case. Everything runs fine.

I put another power supply in the "new" case, this power supply did have SATA power cables. Back into the case went my motherboard. Again, upon power up a third SATA drive was blown. The SATA cables coming from the power supply had an extra orange wire that the molex adapter cables do not have.

Three SATA drives down the drain. IDE drives work fine.

The last drive that burned up had only the SATA power cable connected. That means the motherboard is out of the picture.

I have run out of expendable SATA drives. Any idea of what might be the problem?

Reply to
root
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En el artículo , root escribió:

If the drives had both Molex and SATA power connectors - not all do - and you were connecting both (you don't say), that would damage it. Connect either the Molex or the SATA but never both.

I would have said you might have a mis-wired Molex-to-SATA adapter (it's not unknown, especially with cheap crap coming out of China), but you ruled that out by using the PSU's own SATA connector.

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Reply to
Mike Tomlinson

Thanks for responding. A long time ago I had a SATA drive with both power connectors. None of the drives I ruined were the dual power socket types. I have a lot of the Chinese adapter cables, and the ones I used were from China: Deal Extreme.

I have put a brand new ThermalTake power supply in. I have to wait until I can round up some old SATA drives for testing.

Reply to
root

En el artículo , root escribió:

OK, so that rules that out. Worth mentioning though.

I've bought stuff from them via ebay and have been happy.

I can't imagine what the problem might be, but hope you don't blow up any more drives ;o)

There's some knowledgeable people on

news://comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.storage

Suggest you post there. Beware of the group troll, Rod Speed. Best killfiled.

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Reply to
Mike Tomlinson

So, the motherboard works in another case but causes problems if installed in this one? When you checked the voltages with the data lead disconnected, was the motherboard still connected/powered?

Pure conjecture of course, but maybe there is a partial short causing an odd voltage issue at the sata connector, sata drives in general do seem to be more prone/sensitive to power issues than ide ones.

Reply to
Lee

Did that years ago.

Reply to
root

Yes, when I checked voltages at the molex connector the motherboard was still powered up and running.

Reply to
root

Big advance since my last post. I scrounged up another expendable SATA drive and powered up the system with the new ThermalTake PS. All went well. That gave me the courage to put in two more SATA drives and the system is running now with all three drives in.

No progress in resolving the 3 burned drives but my immediate goal of bringing up the system in the new case is near complete.

All this, BTW, was because of the case: it is a D-Vine Home theater case. Something suitable for putting in a living room home entertainment system.

Reply to
root

In article , root writes

:o)

You and a thousand others, I suspect.

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Reply to
Mike Tomlinson

In article , root writes

this is the one with the included SATA power plugs?

Perhaps you should check the Molex-to-SATA power adapters you were using previously. It isn't unknown for that sort of thing to arrive incorrectly wired. Quality checks - they've heard of 'em.

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Reply to
Mike Tomlinson

Yes, this PS has the SATA power plugs.>

Before closing up the new system, I tried the Chinese molex-SATA cables and they were OK.

I intend to pursue an explanation of what happened. If I find out I will post here.

Thanks for the suggestions.

Reply to
root

root Inscribed thus:

Possibly open circuit grounds on the power connector...

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Best Regards:
                          Baron.
Reply to
Baron

root Inscribed thus:

In that case please ignore my last post. Thanks.

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Best Regards:
                          Baron.
Reply to
Baron

Using my last expendable SATA drive, I retraced my steps as closely as I could remember what I did on Saturday. Starting with the original MB that was in my new case, I put back the original power supply, and plugged in the SATA drive. No Problem. I used the same Chinese SATA adapter cables as I did. I have no idea of what the problem might have been since it is not reproducible.

It might be that, in my haste, I didn't push the SATA power plug all the way in and it might have been askew. This is really a stretch because I have pushed on SATA cables for a long time, and I would have had to repeat that screw up two more times.

Reply to
root

En el artículo , root escribió:

Thanks. Would be very interesting to know what it was.

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Reply to
Mike Tomlinson

Having read this, it seems that most "normal" possibilities have been eliminated.

It's not known though if you are mounting the drives or letting them hang around, but if you are actually mounting them in the case you might actually have a ground fault.

Now nothing has changed inside the case and the problem is gone, but what about outside the case ? Grounds can be funny things at times. What's more, there may have been some sort of ground fault that eventually got blown out. The problem with that theory is that a ground fault would almost for sure be in the PS, at least in an ATX case right ? I mean the wires to the power switch are not on the hot side.

I have seen some strange ground fault problems. Try to think back, if the drives were not mounted, were they in electrical contact with the case ?

And of course don't forget what might have been plugged in. Hell under certain conditions a ground fault in the monitor might cause something like this. Not to coin a phrase LOL - but think outside the box. I think that somewhere down the line you might wind up blowing another one. What would be interesting to know is if there are any significant differences in the architecture of the power distributoin between IDE and SATA drives. How many grounds and where ?

Whenever a problem seems to cure itself I get butterflies in the ulcer. (I don't have an ulcer, that is a PutneySwopeism)

J
Reply to
Jeff Urban

One of the drives was in my hand when it burned out. That is the one whose C651 melted. In the other two instances, the metal of the drive was in contact with the metal of the case.

I share your worry when a problem just seems to go away.

Reply to
root

root Inscribed thus:

The mental picture was of an OC ground could put 7volts on the drives 5V rail. As an aside I suspect the device which let out the smoke could have been a transient voltage protection device. A bit like a pair of back to back zener diodes. These tend to go SC when they fail.

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Best Regards:
                          Baron.
Reply to
Baron

On Tue, 14 Feb 2012 01:36:27 +0000 (UTC), root put finger to keyboard and composed:

I see this problem several times per week in various storage forums.

In fact it's a FAQ:

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Here are several photo clips:

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- Franc Zabkar

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Reply to
Franc Zabkar

Thanks. I will clean out the debris and see if the drive works. I had already put the drives in the recycle bin.

Reply to
root

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