SATA Data connectors: SOLVED, I hope!

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Forum' started by priscus, Sep 12, 2017.

  1. priscus

    priscus

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    One of my machines has been giving me problems for quite some time.

    Have finally isolated the source.

    The SATA data cable to the drive containing the operating system, over a period of time, looses the integrity of its contact at the motherboard connection.

    Cable itself is not faulty, and if I manually reconnect, is OK again for some months, but will eventually once more loosen.

    It is possible that there is wear in the mobo socket. (But swapping cables/socket not relieving issue)

    However, I have come to the opinion that the problem is, airflow from the CPU fan causing vibration of the cable, resulting in slowly working the electrical connection apart. In a system which has been heavily overclocked, I do have non-standard cooling: one of those 'Zalman', big barrel of copper fins, with fan driving air through them.

    Currently, am trying re-positioning of respective disk drive, and re-route of SATA cable, with increased use of cable ties to anchor it.

    Have others ever come across such a problem?

    It has been very misleading: when it occurs, system throws BSODs, so I waste time searching for the error cited, and running system repair chkdsk, to have it tell me corrupt boot sector, which can't be repaired! So wanted to share on here, in case anyone else finds solution relevant.
     
    priscus, Sep 12, 2017
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  2. priscus

    priscus

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    ps I guess I should add, this is device dating from 2005, so does not have latching SATA connectors.
     
    priscus, Sep 12, 2017
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  3. priscus

    cornemuse

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    I had that same problem, the latching sata cables solved it fine.
     
    cornemuse, Sep 13, 2017
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  4. priscus

    Mike_Walsh

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    Priscus, I know it sounds like a bit of a 'bodge', but had you considered using a lump of 'BluTak' molded around the connector and socket to hold things together.....in addition to the extra cable ties?

    The mobo in my old Compaq desktop has both IDE and SATA connectors. It's from 2004/5, and was manufactured around the point when SATA was coming onto the market for the first time. The original HDD was an IDE WD Caviar 'Black', which eventually gave up the ghost two years ago, and was replaced with a Caviar 'Blue'; much more modern, with SATA connectors. I originally used a 'straight' SATA cable, but was alarmed at how loose it seemed.....so I tried a 'latching' cable.

    It worked fine.....and I've had no problems with it at all. If you decide to try the 'BluTak' bodge, make sure you work it well first, getting it warm and quite sticky. It should do the job.


    Mike. ;)
     
    Mike_Walsh, Sep 15, 2017
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  5. priscus

    priscus

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    Thanks for replies.

    Will see how it goes, having just done a 'fix' is probably going to be OK until around Christmas time, by which time it is likely to be apparent if action described has sorted it or not.

    I guess that I should try a latching SATA cable, though I am not sure if there is any anchorage on these early connectors for the latch to secure with. In any case, I will need to shop around to find a long cable, as the housing is one of those huge 'Lian-Li PC V2100B Plus' cases: the drives are a long way from the mobo connectors!

    [​IMG]

    In the past, I have struggled to find PSU's that have sufficiently long leads!

    This is the cooler that I think is driving the cable to vibrate.

    [​IMG]

    The machine is no longer overclocked, well, it is now more than twelve years old, but in the interests of low noise, I am keeping this cooler. (Has been modded to use Abit speed control rather than unit supplied with the device, yielding near silent operation.)
     
    priscus, Sep 17, 2017
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  6. priscus

    Mike_Walsh

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    I believe you'll find that the lip that the 'latch' locks onto is actually inside the rim of the SATA connector, so it may not be immediately apparent upon inspection. All I know is that my ports are extremely early ones, and the 'latching' cable appears to work well.

    My scenario is pretty much the exact opposite of your own; I'm lucky in that the SATA ports are virtually right next to the hard drive, so I've been able to get away with a teeny 6" 'super-slim' cable, with one straight and one right-angle 'latching' connector. Tidiest set-up I've had for a long while, helped no doubt by the fact that I dropped the drive down one bay to get it as close to the SATA ports as possible anyway.....


    Mike. ;)
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2017
    Mike_Walsh, Sep 24, 2017
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  7. priscus

    Mike_Walsh

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    Something along these lines, I reckon... You're in the UK, I think, yes?

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/90cm-LONG...248618&hash=item3a708f05a6:g:UZIAAOSwMmBVqNmS

    You can clearly see that the catches are located such that they're internal to the mobo port when in position. 90cm=just under 3 feet. Long enough? I seriously doubt you'll find anything very much longer; 1 metre appears to be the longest 'off-the-shelf' cable I can find anywhere.

    You may be able to find a company that'll make up custom cables to your own requirements. They are out there; it's just a case of tracking 'em down.

    I know one thing, at any rate; once the darn things are seated, and 'locked' in position, it's an uphill struggle getting the buggers out again..! They won't come out except by deliberate intent... :p


    Mike. ;)
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2017
    Mike_Walsh, Sep 24, 2017
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  8. priscus

    priscus

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    Cheers.

    Had just ordered something rather similar to give it a whirl. No great expenditure, and will find use for it elsewhere, if it does not provide solution here.

    This case is probably unusual, having the drives in the bottom of the case. It means that a right-angle SATA connector cannot be used, as the cable will emerge downwards, ie 180 degrees wrong direction.

    Not sure if mounting the drives upside-down to overcome this would be a good idea.
     
    priscus, Sep 24, 2017
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  9. priscus

    cornemuse

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    Actually, they make them to angle either/both ways.

    -c-
     
    cornemuse, Sep 24, 2017
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  10. priscus

    priscus

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    I have not searched with any great diligence, I must admit, but the items I see listed in Amazon & eBay do not give an indication of which sense the right angle consists of.

    I have about a dozen or so SATA leads with right-angle connectors (Used in OTHER machines), but they ALL bend in the opposite direction to that which would suit this machine.

    Guess that I could search for those with angle contrary to the most common direction: busy at the moment, but will see (eventually) what I can find.

    Given the length requirement also, my choice is already severely reduced.
     
    priscus, Sep 24, 2017
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  11. priscus

    Mike_Walsh

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    @priscus:-

    Shouldn't pose a problem. What type of angle are you looking for?

    This type?

    [​IMG]

    ...where the connector's in line with the cable.....or this sort?

    [​IMG]

    .....where the cable comes out to the side?

    Cornemuse is quite right; It is possible to get the first type with the right-angle pointing in either direction (if you need opposite to 'normal', that is!) I'm guessing that if your drives are at the bottom of the tower, you need one where the cable comes upwards from the drive, rather than heading downwards, yes?

    I don't suppose it would exactly hurt to turn your drives upside-down, though I can't imagine it would do them much good, either! Kinda reminds me of some of those hifi turntables from the late 80's/early 90's with the 'linear' tracking tone arm, many of which were designed to sit vertical, rather than horizontal, as you would expect.....


    Mike. ;)
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2017
    Mike_Walsh, Sep 26, 2017
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  12. priscus

    priscus

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    Cheers, (Yes, the variety which you suggest) as said, will have a search when less busy. (Fortunately is not my main machine)
     
    priscus, Sep 26, 2017
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  13. priscus

    priscus

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    priscus, Sep 26, 2017
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  14. priscus

    Mike_Walsh

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    450% delivery charge..?? Ouch. Rip-off central, mate..!


    Mike. ;)
     
    Mike_Walsh, Sep 29, 2017
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