The disk drive numbers may not correspond as expected to the SATA channel numbers when you set up Windows Vista on a computer that has multiple SATA disks

The disk drive numbers may not correspond as expected to the SATA channel numbers when you set up Windows Vista on a computer that has multiple SATA disks

Article ID : 937251
Last Review : November 13, 2007
Revision : 2.0

SYMPTOMS

Consider the following scenario. You have two Serial Advanced Technology Attachment (SATA) hard disks attached to channels SATA0 and SATA1 on a Windows Vista-based computer. However, Disk 0 may not be assigned to the hard disk on SATA0, and Disk 1 may not be assigned to the hard disk on SATA1. You expect the disk-assignment numbers to match the corresponding SATA channel numbers.

When you set up Windows Vista on a computer that has multiple hard disks, you may experience this problem. Because you expect the disk assignment numbers to match the corresponding SATA channel numbers, you may set up Windows Vista on the wrong drive, or you may even try to format the incorrect drive partition. Therefore, you may lose important data.

You can see the assigned disk numbers by using any of the following methods:

• Run the Disk Management console. To do this, click StartStart, type diskmgmt.msc in the Start Search box, and then click diskmgmt.msc in the Programs list.
• Use the Diskpart.exe command-line utility to run the list disk command.
• During Windows Vista setup, the assigned disk numbers are listed when you are prompted to select a drive and a partition for the installation.

Note Under certain circumstances, it may be difficult to notice that the disk numbering does not match the corresponding SATA channel numbers. For example, if both SATA hard-disk sizes are identical, it may be difficult to tell the disks apart by using these methods.

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CAUSE

The disk-assignment numbers may not necessarily match the corresponding SATA channel numbers. There is no assurance of a consistent relationship between PnP enumeration and the order of the hard disks that are detected during setup. Devices are presented in the order in which they are enumerated. Therefore, the disk-assignment numbers may change between startups. For example, assume that you run Windows Vista Setup on a computer that has two unformatted SATA hard disks. In this situation, Windows may present the second hard disk as Disk 0 when you are prompted for the disk on which to install Windows Vista.

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RESOLUTION

When you set up Windows Vista on a computer that has multiple SATA hard disks, verify the disk drive on which you will set up Windows Vista by checking the disk information. For example, on the screen that lets you select the drive for the setup destination, verify the volume name and the available space.

Note You may not experience this problem when the Setup program runs on your computer. However, you may experience the problem if you configure Windows Vista during installation or if you perform a recovery process that was provided by the computer manufacturer.

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STATUS

Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the Applies to section.

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MORE INFORMATION

For more information about a related issue, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

937252 (/Feedback.aspx?kbNumber=937252/) Volume numbers in the Volume ### column may change every time that you run the List Volume command in the Diskpart.exe utility in Windows

For more information about PnP enumeration and hard disk drive letter assignments in Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

825668 (/Feedback.aspx?kbNumber=825668/)Overview of PNP enumeration and hard disk drive letter assignments in Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP

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APPLIES TO
• Windows Vista Ultimate
• Windows Vista Enterprise
• Windows Vista Business
• Windows Vista Home Premium
• Windows Vista Home Basic
• Windows Vista Starter
• Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit Edition
• Windows Vista Enterprise 64-bit Edition
• Windows Vista Business 64-bit Edition
• Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Edition

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Keywords: 
kbtshoot kbprb kbexpertiseinter KB937251

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Microsoft Knowledge Base Article

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