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mikesw
Posts: 2
Member Since: ‎10-08-2010
Message 1 of 17 (4,182 Views)

p6142p hard drive controller problem

 

My computer started up and continued startup into various stages.  Sometimes windows would start and other times the hard drive would not be found.

 

Since then I put my harddrive in another computer of the same model and it works fine.  So the hard drive appears to be working decently.

 

Now on the bad computer, without a hard drive, there would be times when the bios code would lock up before identifying hard drives.  Another problem was that the IC on the motherboard that has the heatsink would be getting very hot.

 

Then also I ran PC Doctor diagnostics on the bad computer.  The computer would stop testing after doing the memory test and before checking the hard drive controller.  So it seems that the hard drive controller of the motherboard is not functioning most of the time.  I think even if the worst problem is caused after the computer heats up, there still is a problem in the diagnostic testing when the computer is cold.

 

As a minor note, the PC-Doctor diagnostics (aka HP Diagnostic Tools), was able to proceed to the disk drive controller test after I disable the disk drive controller in the bios settings.  A warning (error code: BIOHD-2) is given to show that access to a hard drive was not possible. (This of course was expected.)

 

This computer has only been in operation since november but has already had this severe problem.  I am wondering if this problem is somewhat common on the P6142p.  Has there been any product recalls due to this or similar issues?  Maybe more important is whether this problem can be fixed by a bios upgrade so as to avoid more complicated repairs.  I also am curious whether I can just leave the on-board drive controller disabled and then add a plug-in SATA cotnroller.  But the problem of this last option is whether there will be additional failures that would likely occur in connection with the hard drive controller.  It would be of little value to get a hard drive controller just to find that the USB or ethernet wasn't working or that worse problems soon happen.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Regards,

 

Mike Whitney

 

 

 

Honor Student
mikesw
Posts: 2
Member Since: ‎10-08-2010
Message 2 of 17 (4,159 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

 

Is this an expected failure?  The failure didn't even seem to happen during a hot day of summer.  A monitor went bad during the summer one time.  It was cool cause there was a replacement of capacitors that was the typical repair needed -- and it worked for that monitor.

Honor Student
mgwelch
Posts: 2
Member Since: ‎12-19-2010
Message 3 of 17 (4,039 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

My HP p6142p is having what appears to be the same hard drive controller problem.  Occasionally, more and more frequently, the computer will lock-up while I'm using it.  At other times, the problem will manifest itself while the computer is booting (can't find the hard drive).  I've also run the HP Hardware Diagnostic Tools and, quite often, it can't connect to the hard drive.  I'm wondering if a bios flash update might help, but haven't yet tried it.

 

Anyone else had/having this problem?

Regents Professor
Hanspuppa
Posts: 4,494
Member Since: ‎09-04-2009
Message 4 of 17 (4,026 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

[ Edited ]

Hello All, It does appear there has been a new BIOS release for this system.

 

Here  is the link for this BIOS update.

 

I would try this BIOS update and see if it resolves the issues. It does mention some hangs during startup.

 

The system cannot boot or even be tested with the hard drive controller disabled.

 

You might want to check the memory for faulty memory also.

 

Here  is a link for Memtest that can be used to test the system memory. If you receive even one memory error, I would remove all the memory modules, and insert one of them at a time and run Memtest again on each individual module to verify which module has become faulty.

 

Hope this helps.

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Honor Student
mgwelch
Posts: 2
Member Since: ‎12-19-2010
Message 5 of 17 (3,982 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

After posting about this earlier in the week, I realized that this might be an overheating issue, so I opened my computer case and used a can of compressed air to blow out the dust that might be trapping heat.  There wasn't all that much in there (I've definitely seen much worse in other computers that were still functioning), but a small amount of noticeable dust was removed. 

 

Its only been a few days, so the results are inconclusive at best, but I haven't experienced any problems since the clean-out.  If that trend continues, it might be worth a try for other people who are experiencing this problem.

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Hanspuppa
Posts: 4,494
Member Since: ‎09-04-2009
Message 6 of 17 (3,972 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

[ Edited ]

mgwelch wrote:After posting about this earlier in the week, I realized that this might be an overheating issue, so I opened my computer case and used a can of compressed air to blow out the dust that might be trapping heat.  There wasn't all that much in there (I've definitely seen much worse in other computers that were still functioning), but a small amount of noticeable dust was removed. Its only been a few days, so the results are inconclusive at best, but I haven't experienced any problems since the clean-out.  If that trend continues, it might be worth a try for other people who are experiencing this problem.

Hello mgwelch, Thanks for this update. Many of the HP systems are right on the edge of overheating when shipped, due to the design and components installed, so even a small amount of dust/dirt, especially on the CPU heatsink/fan assembly can cause the CPU to overheat that results in system shutdowns and other issues.

 

I would suggest cleaning an HP computer at least one time every year to avoid this continous heat condition which could cause a component failure, even before it causes shutdowns and other issues.

 

 

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ridicker2
Posts: 1
Member Since: ‎01-28-2011
Message 7 of 17 (3,815 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

A client brought me their p6142p which originally I thought had a corrupted MBR.  But as I continued to work on it I began experiencing most of the same problems stated here.  Interestingly enough though, if I pulled the drives and connected them back as USB, I could access them.  Leading me to believe the on-broad SATA controller had failed.  Unfortunately, even after avoiding the SATA, I too began to see lapses in the BIOS.  And incidentally, this was on a VERY clean computer, with side panel and without.  I'm informing my client they're looking at a new MB to fix the problem.

Regents Professor
Hanspuppa
Posts: 4,494
Member Since: ‎09-04-2009
Message 8 of 17 (3,811 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

[ Edited ]

Hello ridicker2, Did you try updating the BIOS for the system?

 

Here  is the link for the BIOS update.

 

This may or may not resolve the issue. Can you advise what lapses in the BIOS you were seeing?

 

Also, to use the AHCI drivers instead of using the Sata mode, you can download and install these drivers from this Link.

 

After the drivers have been installed, reboot the system and enter the BIOS and change the setting from Sata to AHCI, save these settings and reboot.

 

This may resolve the issue.

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Top Student
sgtmike44
Posts: 3
Member Since: ‎01-12-2011
Message 9 of 17 (3,780 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

[ Edited ]

The problem is related to the SATA controller but is not the root cause of this issue.  It is actually caused by the Northbridge (i.e., the onboard Nvidia chip) overheating, that, in turn, burns out the SATA controller on the motherboard as it is directly adjacent to it.  This is definitely a known defect on the Pegatron M2N78-LA motherboard contained in our respective PCs if the number of threads on this forum and others is any indication.  The flaw becomes apparent just after HP's one year warranty expires;  I truly believe that HP has specifically engineed it this way so that loyal customers will buy another computer from them.  Otherwise they would offer a recall on affected machines even after the warranty has expired.

 

If this problem is just beginning to occur for you, I would suggest changing out the stock heatsink with something more substantial or 'jerry-rigging" a fan to blow directly at the heatsink to help prolong the mobo before the eventual blowout.  If it has already killed your computer, your only recourse is to replace the motherboard.  If you can find a replacement for the same model mobo (about 100-150 dollars on eBay), note that it will still have this inherent flaw still in it.  If you replace the motherboard for another model, you will stll have to supply your own new copy of the Windows 7, currently priced at about $130.00.

 

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b747pete
Posts: 1
Member Since: ‎02-01-2011
Message 10 of 17 (3,755 Views)

Re: p6142p hard drive controller problem

I repair computers and I now have seen 2 of these M2N78-LA (Violet) motherboards with the same fault, i.e. unable to recognise the SATA drives.

 

This is obviously a faulty design as there is a lot of information out there. There are a lot of these board for sale but most are a later version and use DDR3 memory whereas the P6142p uses DDR2.

 

There is Violet and Violet and at least Violet, so be careful. A replacement runs $400+ dollars which means they are in short supply, but they can be repaired, of course, expect the same thing to happen again.

 

HP should address the issue with a recall, both the units I have worked on are less than 16 months old, ie.e just out of warranty.

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