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Cannot find Boot Drive

HP Recommended
HP Pavilion 17-e049wm
Microsoft Windows 8 (64-bit)

After solving the issue with the administrator/power on password, my notebook is now telling me:

 

"Cannot find boot drive, please install operating system....

Hard Disk (3F0)"

 

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That message could mean the hard drive has failed, but it could also mean the boot manager was corrupted so it cannot find the Windows install.  Start by looking in the BIOS to see if the hard drive is still recognized.  If it is there, run the diagnostics for the hard drive.  This error might have something to do with the method that was imployed to solve the administrator/power on password problem.  If the hard drive is found and passes the diagnostics, then post back for help on the next steps.


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There is an F2 option to perform quick check or extended check on the HD, however I get the response:

 

"Smart Check:   not installed"

"Short DST:  Not installed"

-------------

For more information, please visit:  www.hp.com/go/techcenter/pcdiags

*Back to Main Menu*

 

I am assuming that this is the BIOS Check....I could be wrong.

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That result would seem to indicate the hard drive has failed or became disconnected.  In the previous encounters was any opening of the laptop case made?  Even if the answer is no, you will need to get inside to replace the hard drive. With the access to the hard drive, first verify the connections.  Assuming those to be good, then the hard drive needs to be replaced.


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Just FYI, when I turn the laptop on, I do hear the harddrive 'trying to spin'.  Sounds like its winding up making an attempt to spin at full RPM but stops after that and I get the aforementioned dialogs.

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That would indicate the power connection is probably OK but the possibilities of a loose connection on the data lead or the hard drive has failed are still real.  It will still require opening the laptop.  You might as well prepare for the hard drive replacement.


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