My Inspiron 7559 won't boot, giving the message that hard drive not present/not found. This happened just after I received the laptop back from Dell. I had sent it to Dell without the hard drive for an ethernet card replacement. When I re-installed the drive, it would not boot. It was fine before I sent it.
However, BIOS identifies it as a Seagate Sata drive while Dell Diagnostics declares that all laptop components, including the hard drive are fine.
I first got the PXE-E61:Media test failure, check cable error. I soon learnt that this merely meant Bios could not find an internal hard drive and was searching for a network boot. Once I turned off networking in BIOS I went to a simple, no hard drive found error, which is where I am now.
The hard drive may or may not have failed. I've run six hard drive testing programs on the drive in an external dock. The results are ambiguous. Three (Macrorit, EaseUS Partition Master and Western Digital Drive Tester) all give the drive a clean bill of health. Three others (HD Sentinel, HDD Scan and Crystal Disk Info), however, all reports various degrees of ill-health. Copies of the results of these tests are attached in a PDF file.
Anyway, I can read and navigate the drive with Windows Explorer in an external dock.
I don't want to abandon the drive as I have a lot of software loaded that I can't easily or plain can't reload.
I Googled this boot problem with mixed results. I've tried various changes to Bios with no luck.So I am writing here to ask the following:
It could be that the boot files themselves or the Windows operating system has become corrupted. In which case I will have to re-install Windows. However, I would like to see if I have any other options before taking this drastic step. I find it odd that the laptop stopped booting after I removed the hard drive and sent it to Dell. I wonder if Dell Technicians inadvertently reset some boot settings external to the hard drive. Is this possible?
Also, does anyone know of any ways or software with which I could repair corrupted boot files or corrupted Windows files?
I thank everyone in advance for whatever suggestions and advice they can give.
Does the system also have a small SSD (for cache purposes)?
The default settings from Dell should be UEFI, Secure Boot ON, and the drive is usually set in RAID mode. Are these settings in place?
No SSD, just a 1TB SATA Smart Drive
I have tried using these settings, but to no avail.
Thanks for your advice and information.
If the drive is still working from a dock but some applications are reporting that it's not in great health, then ESPECIALLY if you haven't backed it up yet, I would strongly recommend that you capture an image backup of that hard drive before you do ANYTHING else. In that case, even if the drive turns out to be too dead to boot (or completely dies later), you could restore that image backup to a new hard drive and not have to go through reinstalling everything. Assuming the drive is healthy enough to survive a full image capture, Macrium Reflect would be capable of doing this, and even its Free version will do what you need. Just run it from the PC connected to your drive dock and capture all partitions on the disk, then if you need to restore it later, you can also do that through the drive dock, and if it still won't boot, create Rescue Media from its wizard and boot the laptop from the DVD/USB drive you create and run its "Fix Boot Problems" tool.
If you've already verified that your BIOS is set up for UEFI booting, then it's likely that there's an issue with the drive itself. You could TRY switching it to Legacy to see if that makes a difference, just in case the disk turned out to have been set up that way, but that would be unlikely, and if that does not work, switch it back to UEFI since that's the better mode anyway for Windows 8 and newer.
Other than that, some Dell BIOSes allow you to individually enable/disable SATA ports, so obviously make sure the one for your hard drive is enabled, which will probably be SATA-0. I'd be amazed if that was disabled, but you never know. If that was already set properly (or changing it doesn't help), then UEFI/Legacy boot mode and the SATA port enable/disable options are the only ones that could cause that type of message, so there's nothing else to check there and no real value to resetting your BIOS to factory defaults, although if you really wanted to do the latter, you should see a button or menu item somewhere that says something like "Load Defaults".