PC Maintenance Tip: A Complete Guide to Change Hard Disk on a Desktop Computer

A PC guru will always recommend you changing the damaged or broken computer hardware to avoid any severe performance or functional flaws. All computing devices require regular PC maintenance session to ensure their longevity and trouble-free performance. If you’re looking for some quick steps to change hard disk of your desktop computer, then follow this guide to do the same.

PC hangs, unresponsive screens, frequent lags and sudden shutdowns can be the result of a damaged hard disk drive. Running your computer with broken or damaged PC parts can result in serious performance issues and might result in irrecoverable data loss. There are numerous computer components whose failure might result in a complete shutdown or no boot situations. Hard disk drive damage is one of such components, and you might need to exchange it, in case you suspect any serious virus attacks, performance failure or functional flaws. Sometimes, you might just want more storage space and faster computing so just quickly follow these steps to change hard disk of your PCs.

1. Find Your Hard Drive

An internal 3.5-inch hard disk drive is typically mounted in a drive cage or drive bay so replacing or upgrading it can be a challenging task. The placement and orientation of the drives as well as of cages or bays might vary from computer to computer. The lower front, near the intake fans, is one of the most common hard disk drive locations and the drive cages/bays usually mounts perpendicular to the bottom of the chassis.

2. Unscrew the Cage

Your PC vendor of the OEM might follow the screw-based architecture to fix your initial hard drive into the CPU case, so remove the cage by unscrewing the nails. You can use the magnet-tipped screwdrivers to avoid dropping screws while removing them from the cage. The drive connectors will typically point either to the rear or the right side of the cage so be highly patient while removing them.

3. Mounting Your Hard Drive

Physically mounting the hard drive is the most difficult part of the entire HDD installation process. Some cases might not feature screws or nails, but they take advantage of simple pins, clips, tool-less and other such features to mount the hard drives easily. Flip the drive upside-down to see its parts including screw holes, SATA power and data connections. Always remember to leave significant space between the drives while mounting them on a system tray to maximize airflow over its tops and bottoms.

4. Connect the Hard Drives with SATA

Once you’ve successfully mounted the drive, try connecting it to your system. Use the SATA cables to key fit the drive and the motherboard connector easily. Connect one end of the cable to the drive and the other end to the port on your motherboard. Once done, connect the drive to your power supply unit (PSU) to ensure that optimal electric charge passes through the drive, ensuring its proper functioning.

5. Prepare the Hard Drive for Use

• Once you’ve mounted and connected everything, turn on your system and enter the ‘BIOS/UEFI’ mode

• Press the ‘DEL’ or ‘F2’ keys repeatedly, right after powering up the system to enter the ‘BIOS/UEFI’ mode

• Enter the BIOS, go to the standard ‘System Settings’ menu. Or you can go to the ‘Integrated Peripherals > SATA menu’ to have a look of all of the drives installed in the computer.

• Observe your new drive in the SATA menu and if the drive isn’t listed there, immediately shut down your PC

• Open the case again and double-check all of the connections to ensure nothing is left incomplete

• Boot into the BIOS once again and check the SATA menu entries to look for your newly attached hard disk drive

• If the drive still isn’t showing up, try plugging the SATA data cable into a different motherboard port

• Now, open the Windows Device Manager to check whether Windows recognizes the drive or not.


Installing an internal hard drive is one of the most straightforward computer hardware upgrades, but you can also opt for external drives and cloud storage for ensuring complete data storage and security. The entire process requires no mounting of the hard disk drive, connecting it with a couple of cables, and formatting the drive for the final use. In case you confront any computing error regarding the change hard disk issue, immediately access your motherboard manual or manufacturer website for details.