The hard disk access panel can be found on most laptop models by removing the battery
Q I have a sturdy seven-year-old Acer Aspire 1524WLMi laptop but its 80GB 2.5in Enhanced IDE hard disk has finally stopped functioning. Irrecoverable bad sectors mean it won’t boot up or, if it does manage to, it shuts down after only a very short time. As the case is still in absolutely superb condition (it was used as a desktop replacement), I’d like to retain it and replace the hard disk with a new one, so I can install and experiment with Ubuntu Linux.
Can you advise me if it is possible to access this laptop’s hard disk without removing the entire bottom of the case? The two panels on the underside offer access only to the memory slots and another part of the motherboard. A pointer as to where I might be able to acquire a similar hard disk would be welcomed, too.
A If a laptop’s hard disk doesn’t have its own direct-access panel then there are usually other ways to get at it. Typically, for example, removing the laptop’s battery will reveal a hard disk access panel or area – and this is true of the Aspire 1520 series. To remove the hard disk, pull firmly on the plastic tab that projects into the battery bay and the drive’s caddy should slide out.
From there, the drive can be detached by removing the retaining screws and a replacement unit seated in its place (fitting is simply the reverse of the above). As for replacement drives, though 2.5in Enhanced IDE hard disks aren’t as abundant as once they were, they’re still available; visit any of the well-known online retailers and search for a suitable model.
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