2 Replies Latest reply on Apr 29, 2014 1:01 PM by JTeagle

    Preparing New SATA HDD - Taking Too Long?


      I have a Dell Inspiron 7737, which has the 256 Gb SSD as its hard drive. I have replaced the optical bay with a 750 Gb HDD, as 256 Gb is not nearly enough storage on a modern laptop. It uses Rapid Storage Technology.


      When I first went into Disk Management on Windows, it obviously saw the hardware as it told me it needed to initialise it before it could be used. So I went ahead and let it do that - and the drive promptly disappeared. A refresh, rescan and reboot later, and nothing had changed. The BIOS knew it was there, but Windows did not. On top of that, my machine had slowed down noticeably, with System Interrupts now taking 10% of CPU time.


      I took the obvious step of going to forums to start asking for help - I tried a Windows 8 forum and a notebook / hard drive forum.


      Turns out the problem was simply that it was taking forever to 'initialise' the drive. This had been started around 4 pm, and finally when I came to the laptop at 8 am this morning, the system (Rapid Storage, I think) announced it detected a drive on SATA port 1. Since I don't know what exactly the system needs to do to initialise the drive, I accepted that that was simply one of those things.


      Now that it was showing in Disk Management again, I went to add a simple volume, which obviously includes the format; the drive promptly disappeared again. Four hours later, I'm still waiting. My machine is now barely usable because that process is hogging 25% of CPU time, and can't be lowered in priority. Apart from that CPU time in Task Manager neither Windows nor Rapid Storage is giving me any feedback whatsoever on what it is doing - Rapid Storage actually says port 1 is empty again.


      All the articles I have read after Googling suggest it should not take this long to format a 750 Gb drive!


      I do have a bunch of chipset updates to make (I didn't know they wouldn't be given as part of Windows update), but unfortunately I had already started the process before I found those. But even with slightly outdated chipset drivers... should it really take that long?


      Any way I can get any feedback on what it is doing?