New Hard Drive not Booting

Hi Guys,

I was wondering if someone could help with an issue I have with a Dell Inspiron M5040 laptop that recently went kaput.

Initially it started making some scratchy noises, and wouldn't boot (the progress bar would not move), and the F2 set up showed that the Hard Drive wasn't recognised. I ran a diagnostics scan and it skipped over the Hard Drive part of it.

I decided to buy a new hard drive to see if that would work (incidentally, not sure if it's significant but the old hard drive was 5400RPM, the new one is 7200RPM).

I installed it and turned the computer on. The Progress bar filled in double quick time but it went straight to the following message:

PXE-E61: media test failure check cable


Reboot & Select proper boot device or insert boot media in selected boot device and press a key

I figured that maybe the new hard drive wasn't recognised so went to the F2 set up. It was recognised in the Fixed HDD section. I then ran a diagnostics scan and while it didn't seem to finish the Hard Drive part in sequence (it started with System, then Cables, and Hard Drive only completed after the memory test at the bottom finished, it did have a green tick though).

I looked at the results and it said: Hard Drive 0, DST Short Test Test results, Pass.

So the HDD seems to be recognised but I have no clue as to how I can get the system to boot.

I bought the new Hard Drive from Ebay and so I guess its formatted. Would that have something to do with it? Do I need to get a version of Windows on a disc and maybe boot the system via that?

Any help you guys could give would be very gratefully received!

All the best,


Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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@markaty @rwalden is correct. Your HDD has no operating system install. It has nowhere to boot to.


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1 Answer

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Mark --

You have answered your own question: Yes, you need to get a boot device (either USB or CD) for Windows, then install the OS on your new hard drive.

Good luck,


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Mark will be eternally grateful.
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