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Old 12-24-2004, 03:01 AM   #1
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Fedora 3 cannot find SATA?

Fedora 3 cannot find hard drivers on my system and exit the installation.
Dell dimension 8400
first SATA 160 G from Seagate for WinXP
2nd Ultra ATA 120 G from Seagate converted to SATA through a "bridge board" from SIIG, Inc. It is empty for Fedora 3, formatted in NTFS.
Fedora 3 recognizes monitor, mouse, etc. But it doesn't find harddisk.

How should I do to allow Fedora 3 to recognize the 2nd SATA?
Old 12-30-2004, 08:17 AM   #2
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Don't format the second drive in NTFS. I would leave it unpartitioned and formatted and then do all that using Disk Druid during the installation.
Old 12-30-2004, 10:50 AM   #3
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Thanks godhugh! Yes, that helped. But actually Dell Dimension 8400 bios has 4 options for SATA: 1)Raid Autodetect/AHCI; 2) Raid Autodetect/ATA; 3)Raid on; 4) Combination (SATA/PATA). It defaults to 1) and XP was installed using 1). Using 1) no hard drives (c: and fcan be seen by FC3. That was the situation I was asking help. Changing it to 4) hard drive c: can be seen by FC3 but my empty 2nd hard drive (f cannot be seen. Using 2) FC3 can see both c: and f: and thus I installed FC3 using 2) on f: successfully of course leaving f: unformatted). However, I cannot switch back to 1) to boot to FC3. I cannot use 2) to boot to XP either, XP shuts down due to system errors.
Now, I have to switch in bios to 1) to use XP and 2) to use FC3. I updated to kernel-2.6.9-1.681 which claimed that it solved ahci problem, but I still have to do the bios switching in order to boot to XP using 1) or FC3 using 2). I guess I need to wait for FC4 and reinstall FC4 to hopefully solve this "fedora cannot recognize ahci" problem.
Old 01-07-2005, 08:12 PM   #4
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I've been able to get FC 2 to work with my Dimension 8400 with AHCI by doing the following:
1) Switch the BIOS SATA setting to Raid Autodetect/ATA (N.B. this makes Windows temporarily unavailable)
2) Installing FC2 (presumably any other distribution would work)
3) Get a kernel with AHCI support (2.4.29+ and 2.6.10+)
4) Edit /etc/modules.conf by changing "alias scsi_hostadapter ata_piix" into "alias scsi_hostadapter ahci"
5) Rebuild your initial ram disk "mkinitrd -f /boot/<kernelversion>.img <kernelversion>"
6) Switch the BIOS SATA settings back to Raid Autodetect/AHCI (N.B. Windows should work now)
7) Boot into your new Linux kernel
Old 01-08-2005, 04:07 AM   #5
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Thank you jbetten.

Did you make a ext3 partition on disk1, or did you install all to a separate disk leaving the Windows stuff alone ?

I would like to add a second SATA disk and make my system dual bootable (windows XP on disk1 and linux on a partition of disk2) with a lilo or grub setup to ease non-expert startup, without the BIOS switching back (autoraid/AHCI for windows) and forward (ATA or combination for linux).

It appears that the new kernels allow this ? Any idea whether it should work for new Suse (or other distro's) too ?
Old 01-22-2005, 09:21 PM   #6
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Hi guys

I followed Jbettens instructions, and i get an

insmod: error inserting /lib/ahci.ko: unknown symbol in module

im compiling a 2.6.10 kernel.

has anyone else had success with this, such that they can set their bios back to the ahci mode?

thanx in advance...
Old 01-23-2005, 08:21 PM   #7
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Found a lot of BIOS anomalies were created by FC3 install, maybe reset your bios, get the autodetect working to detect your 2nd drive, then retry. It incorrectly recognized the logical geometry of my maxtor drive.
Old 03-07-2005, 11:45 AM   #8
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Talking Installing SuSE Linux 9.2 + kernel 2.6.11 on a Dell Dimension 8400 with SATA disks

I installed SuSE Linux 9.2 on a Dell Dimension 8400 with SATA disks and added kernel 2.6.11. It worked.

Based on notes that I took from ,
I installed Suse 9.2+ kernel 2.6.11, but likely one can do the same with debian, knoppix, redhat or fedora.
The notes at the URL go much further, and describe also how to install MythTV.

My system is a Dell Dimension 8400, BIOS A03, 2x SATA WD160GB, ATI X300.
On both disks a bootable Windows XP, and both initially with 2 partitions:
partition 1 is Dell Utilities Fat16, partition 2 is NTFS.
SATA on the Dimension 8400 is based on the Intel AHCI controller chip ICH6R.

I added linux to disk 2, with BIOS drive settings initially set to "Autoraid/ATA". SuSe 9.2 (kernel 2.6.8-24 installs and runs fine. Kernel 2.6.11 from, and compiled.
This kernel boots also from "Autoraid/AHCI". I can choose Grub to choose between XP and linux. Display for 2.6.11 in menu.lst set to "vga=normal", rest as default Suse 9.2.

The SATA part in .config (made with "make cloneconfig" and using the defaults suggested in "make xconfig") used for compiling kernel 2.6.11 was

I will post detailed instructions for this installation at a different forum.
URL will follow here:

Last edited by rolflist; 03-08-2005 at 04:20 PM.


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