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Topic:

PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

Posted by: Alison C.      26 Jul 2011 @ 00:02
PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

Don't know if I've posted into the right section or not, but I bought a cheap PB laptop (DOTS E2) with 250HDD.

From looking at disc management, the HDD is split into 3 sections, and I want to join these together to make it one partition. However, there is one section which doesn't give me the option of shrinking the volume as it's saying it's a recovery partition (to run a reload as I didn't get any backup CD's with the laptop).

I want to do make one partition on the HDD then create an image using Ghost. Then I want to put in a larger HDD and put the image onto that.
There's also an issue with that - as the laptop is so small, there's no optical drive, so I'm kind of hoping that Ghost will boot from USB so I can put the image onto that new HDD. I've been using Ghost for years now, but my previous laptops/PC's all have optical drives. Gonna check that out separately with the Ghost files on a USB stick and see if, on startup, I can go into the BIOS and set it to boot from USB.

Finally, the laptop doesn't have a separate section for the HDD; what I mean by that is there is only one panel underneath the laptop, but I tried to take it off, and the seems to be something sticky holding the insides to this panel; I'm assuming it's glue for the fan area - so I'm guessing I'll need some new glue for that.

Are PB's difficult to upgrade like that? (looking to increase the RAM too).

Lots of questions.....but this site's been helpful so far in the ones I've asked.

Reply by: Jon S. PCIQ IT ProfessionalIT Professional in Morecambe, LA3      26 Jul 2011 @ 01:12
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

1) which model of PB Notebook? That'll help us to find out just what you're dealing with in taking it apart
2) Really not a good idea to delete the recovery image. If the machine goes wrong PB tech support will expect you to run their recovery as part of the diagnosis process. If you can;t do that, they may give you hassle
3) I'm not convinced you'll be able to create a Ghost boot USB drive and then create an image on the same USB stick. Something you need to check, but I have my doubts
4) are your sure the machine has a "normal" hard drive and not a solid state one?

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Reply by: Alison C.      26 Jul 2011 @ 02:28
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

thanks for the reply

1) model = PAV80 machine type = DOTS E2 with an intel (yuck) R Atom CPU @ 1.66GHz 1.67 GHz. RAM is 1GB

2) I see your point - I thought with Ghosting it,
I wouldn't need the restore bit anymore, but if I need to contact them, then I suppose I'd better keep it. If I ever need it, then it'll be a pain to ghost the files back again, but hey.

3) I have doubts too, hence the thinking out loud bit about the USB stick. I know past Ghosts (10 years ago) you could ghost from network, so I was wondering if you could now ghost from USB

4) I never thought it would be a solid state HDD....not had a laptop with one of them before so it hadn't crossed my mind (!). Looking at the device manager, it's WDC WD2500BEVT-22A23T0, which I've goggled (gotta love goggle) and it says it's a SATAII 5400rpm 8MB Cache.

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Reply by: Jon S. PCIQ IT ProfessionalIT Professional in Morecambe, LA3      26 Jul 2011 @ 02:52
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

looks like the DOT SE2 is really an FIC machine, so you can expect tech documentation to be a bit sparse
However I found this on Tom's hardware at
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/286131-30-packard-bell-memory-upgrade

"Hello,How do you upgrade the RAM on a Packard Bell Dot SE? There are no access panels on the bottom of computer. Any advise will help."

"1.Use a credit card or Screwdriver to remove the top edge of the keyboard at the 5 main indents (above F1, F4, F8, F12 and Ins Keys). Carefully lift keyboard forward and release the flat part of the cable by gently pulling the white connector forward until the flat blue cable pops out.

2. Undo all the black screws under the keyboard (a diagram printed on the metal case shows you how to do this). Store the screws in order for later.

3. Turn the machine over and the base should pop off easily with a little leverage.

4. The single RAM slot is now visible. Carefully prise the left and right metal holders apart and pull out the RAM, then replace and follow the steps back through."

I assume you get at the hard drive the same way

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Reply by: Alison C.      26 Jul 2011 @ 02:58
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

Cheers Jon. I'll look to do that tomorrow; I couldn't find information like that when I searched, so I guess you're better at it than I!

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Reply by: Alan B. PCIQ IT ProfessionalIT Professional in Cambridge, CB22      26 Jul 2011 @ 08:20
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

If searching the Internet was a competitive event then Jon S. would win prizes!

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Reply by: Alison C. PCIQ IT ProfessionalIT Professional in Jersey, JE2      26 Jul 2011 @ 21:53
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

Well I tried a dry run on Ghost booting the laptop from USB - it didn't work. However, it did work from an external HDD, so I'm ok to swap HDD.

I was a bit worried that Ghost wouldn't back up the protected part of the drive, but it seems to have been a success too.

By the way Jon, what does FIC stand for?

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Reply by: Alan B. PCIQ IT ProfessionalIT Professional in Cambridge, CB22      26 Jul 2011 @ 22:34
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

Hmm, sounds a bit like a swear word, but I think it's First International Computers. Jon means that Packard Bell just put their name on a computer made by somebody else.

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Reply by: Jon S. PCIQ IT ProfessionalIT Professional in Morecambe, LA3      26 Jul 2011 @ 22:55
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

FIC - First International Computer
One of the bigger Taiwanese ODM (original design manufacturer) of laptops. They design and build laptops for other companies, often at a kit of parts for final assembly in local markets.
That way imports only get charged import duty as electrical components, not as the higher-taxed finished product
Although they're Taiwanese, most of the production is in China. They also make motherboards for desktops, though I've not seen many in the market recently.

There are around 40 Chinese / Taiwanese ODM companies, most of whom you'll never have heard of. One you may have come across is Foxconn - responsible for much of Apples production

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Reply by: Jon S. PCIQ IT ProfessionalIT Professional in Morecambe, LA3      26 Jul 2011 @ 23:08
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

just been on the FIC website and FTP site
The support situation is even worse than I expected: not a single mention ANYWHERE of laptops or netbooks. They list tablets, motherboards, IPX (small form factor) machines - and thats it. Not a single hint that they make laptops
The old PCG-FIC site has gone completely

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Reply by: Alison C.      27 Jul 2011 @ 00:01
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

Heard of Foxconn, in fact, it was my motherboard on the first computer I built from scratch. At least this thing's got Packard Bell on it, so if anything does go wrong (within the 1st year) I have them to fall back on.

Interestingly enough, my last laptop (which I've now handed down to my partner) I bought was from Aldi, which had a 3 year guarantee on it; and I needed it in year 2 when the motherboard had to get replaced. Had it another 2 years now, and not a problem, just too big and they keep on hogging it, playing Bejewelled Blitz on Facebook!

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Reply by: Jon S. PCIQ IT ProfessionalIT Professional in Morecambe, LA3      27 Jul 2011 @ 00:49
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

tracing the origins of the Aldi ones is often a problem
They're all assembled in Germany at Medion's plant - but are sourced from several ODMs. However usually then turn out to be ...... FIC

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Reply by: Alison C.      27 Jul 2011 @ 01:04
RE: PB laptop with a protected section of HDD

I KNEW you were going to say that!

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