How to Connect a SATA Hard Drive

Level of difficulty: Intermediate

SATA hard drives are storage mechanisms used in a computer. They are widely used to communicate via a high-speed serial cable and are made for storage purposes. Installing SATA hard drives is different from installing other hard drives. Following the steps here will help install a SATA hard drive on a computer.

Materials Needed:
- SATA hard drive
- data cable
- computer
- screwdriver
Step 1
Choose a SATA hard drive; take note that it has a wide variety of choices for its capacity and drive speed. Depending on the computer, some motherboards cannot read a SATA hard disk drive. If the motherboard has a socket or port for the SATA hard drive, then it is suitable to detect your SATA hard disk.
Step 2
Shut down the computer and unplug it from the power source. Wait for 10 seconds before opening the casing. This is done to allow the motherboard’s capacitors to discharge. Disconnect all the cables attached to the computer. Once the plugs are removed, remove the casing. To protect the motherboard and other peripherals, touch the Power Supply Unit (PSU) to remove any static electricity.
Step 3
Properly screw the SATA hard drive to the computer. Make sure that the hard drive is screwed securely but not too tight. Find the SATA connector ports on the motherboard and insert one end of the cable in that port. Some motherboards have different port locations. Check the motherboard’s manual for specific instructions in locating the ports.
Step 4
Connect the larger end of the SATA cable and connect it to the back of the drive itself. Connect to the 4-pin connector that serves as the power cable. Double check if the cables and the power adapter are securely connected. If they are, you can proceed to the next step.
Step 5
Select an available drive and insert the hard drive. Mount it in place with four screws provided. Follow the instructions provided with the hard drive. Insert the screws on its allocated holes to secure properly.
Step 6
Ensure that all cables are properly attached. You may now return the casing.
Step 7
After installing the SATA hard drive on your computer, turn on the computer. While the computer tries to boot, press the required button to enter in the BIOS mode. It will open a program that can check if the SATA hard drive is properly connected and detected by the computer. There is an auto-detect feature on the BIOS option. It can detect the hard drive that was just installed on the computer.
Step 8
If the computer does not recognize the hard drive, turn off the computer and unplug the computer from the outlet. Check again the power and the data cables from the computer and make sure that they are tightly plugged in and correctly connected.