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Quick Power On Self Test is a little too fast

"DISK BOOT FAILURE, INSERT SYSTEM DISK AND PRESS ENTER"

That was the greeting I got when I turned on my computer today. Recently, I had installed an older 12 GB hard drive into swapable drive tray, and into my AMD Athlon XP 2200+ desktop computer. I wanted to try a few things on it. But today, the boot failure message struck me as odd. I turned off the computer and turned it back on a few times. Each time I got the same error message. So I pressed the reset button on the computer. The computer then was able to identify the drive and continue to boot the operating system.

This symptom gave me an idea. The BIOS is not able to find the drive via a cold boot, but is able to after a warm boot. Could it be that the power-on self test is too quick? Could it be that the drive was still spinning up?

I proceeded to disable the "Quick Power On Self Test" under the "Advanced BIOS Features" in he Phoenix AwardBIOS CMOS Setup Utility. By disabling this feature, the power-on self test will test the installed memory first before identify all the drives. I saved the configuration setting and turned the computer off. Then I turned it on and the computer proceeded to test all 1.5 GB of memory three times! Nevertheless, the motherboard was successful at identifing the drive and continue to boot the operating system without any failure.

Chieh Cheng
Sun, 11 Mar 2007 19:59:14 -0800

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