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Replacing or Adding a Hard Drive in HP Pavilion HPE h8 Desktop Series PCs

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This document applies to HP Pavilion HPE h8 series desktop computers.
HP Pavilion HPE h8 series desktop computer
Use the steps in this document to help replace a hard drive in your computer. If you want to add a hard drive with more capacity (upgrade), know that you can upgrade to any sized hard drive that meets the connection type in your computer. Most often this is serial ATA (SATA or eSATA). Also know that there are formatting limitations that may be encountered for drives larger than 2 TB. To access all the data on drives larger than 2 TB format the drive using GPT or create multiple partitions smaller than 2 TB.

Before you begin

  • You need a flathead screwdriver.
  • Turn off the computer. Disconnect the Ethernet or modem cable. Disconnect the power cord.
  • Transfer the computer to a clear, flat, stable work surface over a non-carpeted floor.
  • HP strongly recommends the use of an anti-static wrist strap and a conductive foam pad when working on the computer.
  • Do not remove a component from its protective packaging until you are ready to install it.
  • To add an additional Serial ATA (SATA) hard disk drive, an additional SATA data cable is required.
WARNING:The edges of metal panels can cut skin. Be careful not to slide skin along any interior metal edge of the computer.
CAUTION:This product contains components that can be damaged by electrostatic discharge (ESD). To reduce the chance of ESD damage, work over a noncarpeted floor, use a static dissipative work surface (such as a conductive foam pad), and wear an ESD wrist strap connected to a grounded surface.

Video overview

View the following video before using the steps in this article.
NOTE:For best quality on dial-up connections, wait until the video has fully loaded before viewing.

If you are adding an additional hard drive

When adding a hard drive, it is important to identify the connectors on the motherboard.
The hard drive connectors on the motherboard must match the type of hard drive you wish to connect. If your motherboard has SATA data connectors and one is not in use, you can attach an additional SATA hard drive. If your motherboard has an IDE connector available, you can attach an IDE hard drive.
NOTE:If you want to install an IDE hard drive to a motherboard that has only SATA data connectors, a third-party adapter is necessary.
Figure 1: Motherboard with IDE and SATA data connectors
Motherboard with SATA and IDE connectors
1 - IDE connectors
2 - SATA data connectors
Figure 2: Example of SATA connections
Hard drives with SATA data cables and connections
1 - Power cable
2 - SATA data cable
Figure 3: Example of an IDE connection
Hard drive with IDE data cable and connection
1 - IDE data cable
2 - Power cable

Removing the hard drive

Complete the steps in this section to remove the hard drive.
WARNING:Make sure the computer is disconnected from power before starting.
Step 1

Remove the side panel.

For more information about removing the side panel, refer to the HP support document Removing and Replacing the Side Panel .
Pulling off the panel
Step 2

Remove the front bezel.

For more information about removing the front bezel, refer to the HP support document Removing and Replacing the Front Bezel .
Rotating out the bezel
Step 3

Remove the two screws securing the graphics card retaining bracket to the computer.

Save the screws for hard drive replacement.
Graphics card retaining bracket screws
Step 4

Remove the graphics card retaining bracket.
Removing the retaining bracket
Step 5

Remove the three screws that secure the hard drive cage to the computer.

Save these screws for hard drive replacement.
Removing the screws
Step 6

Push down on the latch to the side of the hard drive cage, and...
Location of the hard drive latch
...slide the cage up.Sliding up the cage
Step 7

Lift the cage part way out of the computer.
Lifting out the cage
Step 8

Press the connector latches and...
Connector latch on the power cable and data cable
... remove the power cable and the data cable from the hard drive.Removing the power cable and data cable
Step 9

Fully remove the cage from the computer.

If you are adding an expansion hard drive and not replacing the current hard drive, skip to Installing a hard drive .
Fully removing the cage
Step 10

Remove the four screws (two on each side) that secure the hard drive to the cage. Save these screws for hard drive replacement.
Removing the screws
Step 11

Slide the hard drive down out of the cage.
Sliding out the hard drive

Installing a hard drive

Complete the steps in this section to replace a hard drive or add an expansion hard drive.
Step 1

Slide the hard drive into the cage until the screw holes on the side of the drive align with the screw holes on the cage.
Sliding in the drive
Step 2

Replace the four screws (two on each side) to secure the hard drive in the cage.
Replacing the screws
Step 3

If installing an expansion drive, repeat steps 1 and 2 for the drive.
Sliding in an expansion hard drive
Step 4

Connect the power and data cable to the rear of each drive.
Replacing the power cables and data cables
Step 5

If installing an expansion drive, attach a SATA data connector for the drive to the motherboard.
SATA connector
Step 6

Locate the five tabs on the back of the hard drive cage that fit into...
Locating the tabs
... five slots on the wall of the computer.Five slots on the wall of the computer
Step 7

Locate the six tabs on the side of the hard drive cage that fit into...
Locating the tabs
... six slots on the front of the computer.Six slots on the front of the computer
Step 8

Align the tabs on the back and side of the cage with the slots on the computer, and...
Aligning the tabs
...slide the cage down until it snaps into place.Sliding down the cage
Step 9

Replace the three screws that secure the hard drive cage to the computer.
Replacing the screws
Step 10

Find the two tabs on the side of the graphics card retaining bracket...
Tabs on the side of the bracket
...that fit into two slots on the side of the computer.Slots on the side of the computer
Step 11

Align the tabs into the slots, and...
Aligning the tabs into the slots
...swing the bracket down into place.Swinging the bracket into place
Step 12

Replace the two screws that secure the graphics card retaining bracket to the computer.
Graphics card retaining bracket screws
Step 13

Replace the front bezel.

For more information about replacing the front bezel, refer to the HP support document Removing and Replacing the Front Bezel .
Rotating the bezel
Step 14

Replace the side panel.

CAUTION:MBR or NTFS partitions are limited to 2 TB (without using dynamic disks and volume sets). If you are installing a hard drive that is 2 TB or greater, HP recommends formatting the drive using GPT partitions.


For more information about replacing the side panel, refer to the HP support document Removing and Replacing the Side Panel .
Replacing the panel