Using the Hard Disk Drive Diagnostic Tool for PXI/PXIe Embedded Controllers

Updated Sep 11, 2018

Reported In

Hardware

  • PXI Controller

Issue Details

My embedded controller with a Seagate, Fujitsu, or Toshiba hard drive is having a problem in booting up. I get an error saying the OS can not be found. What should I do?

Solution

You should use the Hard Disk Drive Diagnostic Tool to check to see if the issue is with the hard drive. NI provides a Hard Drive Diagnostic Tool for Seagate hard drives, for either an English and non-English (localized) operating system environment, which will check the PXI/PXIe embedded controller for actual hard drive failures before you send it in for repair.

NI also provides a Seagate Hard Drive Diagnostic Tool that can be used for Toshiba hard drives shipping with any NI embedded controller or Fujitsu hard drives that are installed in PXIe-8133, PXIe-8110, PXI-8109, PXI(e)-8108, PXI(e)-8102 or PXI-8101 controllers. This may work for controllers that have a Western Digital Drive installed as well. For all other controllers with Fujitsu Hard Drives see Fujitsu Hard Disk Drive Diagnostic Tool for PXI and PXIe Embedded Controllers.

Please follow the steps below to run the utility.

Creating a Bootable USB Diagnostic Disk for Seagate Hard Drive​
  1. Insert a USB flash disk into one of your computer's USB slots.
  2. After the OS has finished identifying the USB drive, run the SeaTools Desktop_beta.msi installer (see attachment). This will install the Seagate USB Boot Maker application to help you build a bootable USB hard drive.
  3. Select the USB flash disk you would like to make bootable using the drop-down list.
  4. After selecting the appropriate disk, click the Make Bootable button. The application will format the USB flash disk with a bootable DOS image and HDD diagnostic application. A progress bar will indicate when the application is finished formatting the disk.
  5. Close the application by clicking Close.
Creating a Bootable USB Diagnostic Disk for Fujitsu or Toshiba Hard Drives
  1. Insert a USB flash disk into one of your computer's USB slots.
  2. Download the file attached below titled Seagate Hard Drive Diagnostic utility - Text Based Version 1.4.zip and extract the files to a folder on your hard drive.
  3. Run CreateSeagateUSBDiagDisk.exe from the folder you just created and extracted files to.
  4. Select the USB flash disk you would like to make bootable using the drop-down list.
  5. After selecting the appropriate disk, click the Make Bootable button.   The application will format the USB flash disk with a bootable DOS image and HDD diagnostic application.  A progress bar will indicate when the application is finished formatting the disk.
  6. Close the application by clicking Close.
The USB flash disk should now be bootable. You can use this disk to execute HDD diagnostics on a PXI or PXIe embedded controller.

Note: When testing non-Seagate drives using this utility you may see a false warning message: "Drive Has Been Overtemp -- 100". This is due to the tool checking a register that does not exist on non-Seagate drives and should be ignored in most cases.

Using the HDD Diagnostic Application

Follow these steps and the corresponding hardware section to run the HDD diagnostic application on a PXI/PXIe embedded controller:
  1. Insert a bootable USB flash disk (created with the application described above) in one of the USB slots on the PXI/PXIe embedded controller.
  2. Boot the PXI/PXIe system and enter the BIOS by pressing the delete key as the controller boots to change the boot priority with the USB flash disk first:
PXIe-8133, PXIe-8110, PXI-8109, PXI(e)-8108, PXI(e)-8102 or PXI-8101

In the BIOS browse to the BOOT menu, select Hard Drive from the list and hit Enter. Place the USB device first on the list by using the + and - keys. Save and exit the changes.

Fujitsu or Toshiba Hard drives only: In the BIOS change the drive mode to IDE as opposed to AHCI, and place the USB device first on the list.

PXI-8174 through PXI-8176, PXI-8184 through PXI-8187

In the BIOS browse to the BOOT menu, select Hard Drive from the list and hit Enter. Place the USB device first on the list by using the + and - keys. Save and exit the changes.

PXI-8195, PXI-8196, PXIe-8103, PXI/PXIe-8105, and PXI/PXIe-8106

In the BIOS, browse to the BOOT menu, and place USB HDD option before the IDE Hard Drive. Save and exit the changes.

The controller should now reboot and open the SeaTools Desktop. 
If your hard drive is not recognized by the system, shut down and check the following:
  • All power and interface cable connections are correct.
  • All drive jumpers are set correctly.
  • System BIOS is setup correctly.

Additional Information

Certain disc drive or file system problems can cause the SeaTools to take a number of minutes to load, please be patient. Ones the status bar reaches 100% click on the Next button SeaTools Desktop.
Select the hard drive you want to test from the menu by expanding the My Computer tab and the Motherboard Primary/Secondary IDE Controller. Note that NTFS, which is a File Allocation Table for Windows NT and later (as opposed to FAT32 and FAT16 used on earlier OSs), is automatically selected for the diagnostic test ones you select the hard drive. The test for NTFS does not need to be run and can be ignored by unchecking the select box. 
After selecting the hard drive to test, click on the Select Test button. This will take you to a window where you can select any or all of the following tests to run:
  • Quick Diagnostic: This test quickly determines the overall status of the disc drive. You should run this test before running any other tests.
  • Full Diagnostic: Runs a complete scan and attempts to reallocate problem sectors on the disc drive. (Note: This may take considerable amount of time).
  • File Structure Test: Examine the FAT and NTFS partition, volume, directory, and file information. The test determines if there are data file structure errors in any partitions or volumes. (Note: This is not a recommended test and should not be run to determine the state of the hard drive. If however, you run this test and it fails, then the error message can be ignored as it is not an indication of a bad hard drive).
  • Controller Test: Determines that there is communication between the hard drive and controller.
  • System Memory Test: Writes and reads back data patterns in Random Access Memory. The test ensures that your system memory is okay.
If the disk fails either test please contact National Instruments Support to return the embedded controller for repair. If the disk passes both tests try restoring the original operating system (OS) to resolve the problem. To recover the OS use one of the methods described in Restore the Operating System of My PXI, VXI, cRIO-908x, and cDAQ-913x Controller.

KNOWN ISSUES
Some USB disks are not recognized by the BIOS and therefore you will not be able to boot from them even if you have made them bootable. If you cannot get your embedded controller to boot from the USB disk you have, try using a different USB disk.

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