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Intermittent boot and other failures

By joehunter ·
For some time I had been having intermittent boot failures. During POST, sometimes I would hear a chirp a hard drive was trying a reseek of some sort. Other times, one or both hard drives would appear to take longer to be recognized or not be recognized at all.

The failure was traced to an intermittent flat cable connection.

These connectors used what is called "Insulation displacement" technology, where a small pointed pin makes contact "through" the insulation when the connector cover is snapped on.

Over time, the insulation tends to push back and the connection isn't as good as it was originally. New cables aren't that expensive, but if you can't get one in a hurry, you can usually fix the problem fairly easily and it can last several more months or even years.

Carefully, take a pair of pliers and squeeze the connector along it's width. Work your way across the full
width of the connector unless you have a tools designed for the purpose which exerts equal pressure over the entire connector at once.

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