Question Computer stuck during bootup due to identical hard drive enclosures?

hbenthow

Honorable
Dec 11, 2014
212
0
10,690
1
I currently have an HP Compaq 6305 Pro, which I have hooked to four hard drives in external USB enclosures. Two of those drives are differently-sized (one is 2TB and the other is 1TB), but both are contained in identical Inateck USB 3.0 hard drive enclosures.

As long as I'm careful to only leave one of the two always switched on, and only turn the other one on after logging into Windows and then eject it in Windows and then switch it off before rebooting, I have no problems.

But if I leave them both on and reboot, sometimes my computer will stay stuck on one of the first screens that pops up during bootup (I think it's the BIOS screen, although I can't recall for certain) forever until I press the power button to turn the computer off. If I press the power button again to turn it back on, it starts up with no problems - until I reboot again.

The other two hard drives (the ones not in Inateck enclosures) don't seem to make a difference, as leaving them switched on all the time doesn't change things one way or the other. However, unlike the Inateck enclosures, these are USB 2.0 enclosures. They are also two different brands.

My questions are as follows:

1. Is this likely due to my computer (perhaps the BIOS?) being confused by two hard drives in identical external enclosures? If so, is there a way to fix it other than the remedy of only ever leaving one on during reboot (like I do now) or getting rid of one of the enclosures?

2. Could it be an Inateck-specific problem, or is this likely to happen with any two identical external hard drive enclosures?

3. It is unwise to ever use more than one of the same kind of external hard drive enclosure for this reason? I need more storage and thus need to get some more hard drives and enclosures, but am worried about exacerbating this problem.

4. Most importantly, is this problem likely specific to my current computer or its brand (HP), or will it likely also exist on my new computer? I've ordered a Dell 9020 Mini Tower, and am worried that it could suffer the same problem (which is the reason that I'm posting this now).
 
I currently have an HP Compaq 6305 Pro, which I have hooked to four hard drives in external USB enclosures. Two of those drives are differently-sized (one is 2TB and the other is 1TB), but both are contained in identical Inateck USB 3.0 hard drive enclosures.

As long as I'm careful to only leave one of the two always switched on, and only turn the other one on after logging into Windows and then eject it in Windows and then switch it off before rebooting, I have no problems.

But if I leave them both on and reboot, sometimes my computer will stay stuck on one of the first screens that pops up during bootup (I think it's the BIOS screen, although I can't recall for certain) forever until I press the power button to turn the computer off. If I press the power button again to turn it back on, it starts up with no problems - until I reboot again.

The other two hard drives (the ones not in Inateck enclosures) don't seem to make a difference, as leaving them switched on all the time doesn't change things one way or the other. However, unlike the Inateck enclosures, these are USB 2.0 enclosures. They are also two different brands.

My questions are as follows:

1. Is this likely due to my computer (perhaps the BIOS?) being confused by two hard drives in identical external enclosures? If so, is there a way to fix it other than the remedy of only ever leaving one on during reboot (like I do now) or getting rid of one of the enclosures?

2. Could it be an Inateck-specific problem, or is this likely to happen with any two identical external hard drive enclosures?

3. It is unwise to ever use more than one of the same kind of external hard drive enclosure for this reason? I need more storage and thus need to get some more hard drives and enclosures, but am worried about exacerbating this problem.

4. Most importantly, is this problem likely specific to my current computer or its brand (HP), or will it likely also exist on my new computer? I've ordered a Dell 9020 Mini Tower, and am worried that it could suffer the same problem (which is the reason that I'm posting this now).
Check your BIOS settings to see if your permanent drive with OS on it is set to be default boot device.
 

hbenthow

Honorable
Dec 11, 2014
212
0
10,690
1
Check your BIOS settings to see if your permanent drive with OS on it is set to be default boot device.
I often need to perform a system image restore using a Macrium reflect DVD (especially in instances in which Windows has been damaged in some way), so I need it to check my optical drive first (which it currently does). Wouldn't making my OS drive default cause the computer to skip checking the optical drive first?
 
I often need to perform a system image restore using a Macrium reflect DVD (especially in instances in which Windows has been damaged in some way), so I need it to check my optical drive first (which it currently does). Wouldn't making my OS drive default cause the computer to skip checking the optical drive first?
Yes it would but putting ODD first could also cause your problems with booting. It may be expecting a disk in ODD.
 

hbenthow

Honorable
Dec 11, 2014
212
0
10,690
1
Yes it would but putting ODD first could also cause your problems with booting. It may be expecting a disk in ODD.
Whether or not I have a disc in my optical drive never affects the booting problem. I usually have no disc in the drive, yet never get the problem except when I've left the second Inateck hard drive enclosure running.

UPDATE: I checked to see what the BIOS boot order is. It has my optical drive at the top, then my OS drive, then the Inateck drive that I keep turned on.
 
Last edited:

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS