Posted by: silverstar98121 | November 24, 2008

Silverstar’s Guide to Installing a Hard Drive

1. Download the manual. Read same.

2. Backup the computer.

3. Find that your backup disk is full. Of old backups. Format disk. Hope there wasn’t anything but old backups on it. 

4. Backup computer. Wait. And wait. Go cook something.

5. Wait some more. Go cook something else. 

6. Go to bed. 

7. Get up. Finally the backup is done. 

8. Procrastinate two days, because the truth is you are scared spitless every time you open up your computer case. 

9. Get prodding from hard drive donor. Decide to do the deed. 

10. Find manual you downloaded and printed days ago. 

11. Find tools you will need. 

12.  Shut off computer. 

13. Disconnect all the gew-gaws and take computer out.

14. Read the fucking manual again.

15. Open computer. Decide there is indeed a space for a second hard drive. Take front panel off computer.

16. Pry faceplate off bay where new drive will go with screwdriver (as directed.) Cut finger when screwdriver slips. Bleed all over computer. 

17. Open package with hard drive. Read the fucking manual. 

18. Insert guide screws. Wait, what fucking screws? There’s no screws with the hard drive. Oh, wait a minute, these eight screws just seem to be hanging out, not doing anything. Use four of them.  There’s six holes. Put screws in like it looks like in manual.

19. Slide hard drive in. Figure out you have it in backward. Take it out again. It won’t go in the right way with where the screws are. Reposition 2 screws.

20. Try to hook cable up. Can’t get it in there. Take hard drive back out, and put the cable back on before putting it back in.

21. Find second cable, already in computer. It’s tied up in a bunch with other unused cables.  Cut plastic strip holding them together, preferably without cutting any wires. 

22. Plug in second cable.  Plug first cable into what you hope is the right place on the motherboard. Tie other unused cables back up out of the way.

23. Put on front panel. Put on side panel. Put back in it’s space and hook up all the gew-gaws. 

24. Turn computer on. Try to figure out why drive isn’t showing. Find drive in device manager. Finally figure out it’s not initialized. 

25. Try to find out how to initialize it. No luck on the on-board help. Turn to Google. Find out how to initialize it in XP. Hope it works the same way in vista. 

26. It’s a liiiiittle different in Vista, but close enough. Initialize disk. Format disk. Yeah, it’s working and the computer didn’t blow up. 

27. Go eat ice cream to celebrate.


  1. That’s pretty much how I do it every time, except it’s funnier when YOU do it.
    I am DEEPLY impressed with your geekitude.

  2. Ice creamy goodness!!! Yum!

  3. You READ the manual??? Wow. I usually go with ‘intuitive geekitude’. The manuals just confuse me.

    Anyhow, congratulations on a job well done!

  4. doubly impressed over here

  5. mostly impressed by your lack of swearage… i can’t unlock the front door without dropping a few f-bombs! i’d have probably quit at step fourteen and gone for the ice cream…

  6. Thank you, ladies, thank you one and all.

    Beth- I’m starting to impress myself with my geekiness. I think that might be dangerous. I mean, really, if I’m impressing the geeks in the crowd…

    Azahar- I used to think you really couldn’t mess things up on a computer, because all the connectors were different shapes, so you couldn’t get them wrong. Until a friend of mine managed to hook a male connector to another male connector, thus frying everything. Since then, I read the manual.

    Nurse Myra- But you knew I was geeky. It is just unfortunate that when I was young they didn’t have degrees in computer science. Or if they did, they never suggested them to girls.

    Daisy Fae- Who says I didn’t swear? Especially when I cut my finger and started to bleed all over the place. I just didn’t record them all for posterity.

    Hi, Katt.

  7. I would only have done steps (11), (12), (13), (15), (16) [without the finger cutting and bleeding], (19), (22) and (23).

    But then, I’m a god when it comes to these kinds of things.

    Presume it’s an ATA/IDE drive (you hooked up power and IDE cable, right?) and it looks like you lucked out on having the proper jumper settings for Master/Slave.

    Great work!

    Doesn’t having the ‘nets come in handy when you’re doing these things? Although there are times it only helps if you have more than one computer; if you have just one and it’s “broken” and can’t access the ‘nets, then one is pretty much hooped.

  8. Sorry Rob, it’s a SATA drive, no jumper settings needed. However, even if it was a parallel or IDE drive, I would have known to use the “cable select” setting, because I read the fucking manual.

    I agree, I’m pretty much hosed without the intertoobs these days.

  9. You are a brave, BRAVE woman! Hats off to you for doing something I would never have attempted!

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