clean reinstall of Windows XP

February 25, 2010 at 08:09:01
Specs: Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium, 3.166 GHz / 4093 MB
My neighbor has a Dell 8400 and is trying to do a clean reinstall of Windows XP. He has all the discs that came with the computer including the OS disc. When he tries to boot from the OS disc to start formatting his C Drive, he gets a message telling him that he can't do it because the installed OS is newer than the disc. He even tried to uninstall the Service Packs and it wouldn't allow him to do it. So, what would be the work around to reformat his hard drive short of using DBAN program to wipe the disc?

Added: No. Safe Mode has not been considered.

OS: Windows Vista 64/Ubuntu 8.04 64
CPU/Ram: E8500/8GB PC2-6400
Manufacturer/Model: AVA Direct / Built online


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#1
February 25, 2010 at 08:22:00
Have you tried to uninstall the updates in Safe Mode?

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#2
February 25, 2010 at 08:36:11
If you want to make a clean install use this
http://www.dban.org/
It will clean the hard drive
all you have to do is burn the program into a disk and run when you turn on your computer it takes about 4 hours for it to complete but I think its worth the wait.

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#3
February 25, 2010 at 09:50:41
Do the Dell supplied disks include a full OS CD; or is the OS disk a Recovery disks?

Typically these days one may get a recovery disk; one may be advised to make one (may turn out to be two or more if so needed) on receipt of new kit. Likewise many makes (Dell, HP/Compaq etc. ) have a recovery partition on the drive (a small hidden area at start of the drive). This hidden area can be accessed and used to restore the system to delivery status...


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Related Solutions

#4
February 25, 2010 at 10:07:23
Has he tried a restore to the factory image?
Hit F11 during boot up and follow instruction to complete the restore to factory default.

trvlr has also hinted at this. Note it will only work if he has not erased the special partition that is normally shipped with dell suupplied systems.

___________________________________________
When everything else fails, read the instructions.


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#5
February 25, 2010 at 10:57:05
I don't think that you should use Dban. I think it erases the entire disk, which would delete the recovery partition.

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#6
February 25, 2010 at 11:02:15
mmm agree re' DbBan... not a good idea... as "eveything" on the drive will go - including that hidden/recovery partition...

And again if any data on the system now that might be nice to preserve... first adress that issue. If current OS works well enuff... then use it to copy all data off the drive to optical -media; and verify those copies are truly accessible on at least one other system.

If current OS doesn't work... then boot with Knoppix or Ubuntu disk and access/copy data that way...

Then set about the rebuild etc. as per above posts?


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#7
February 25, 2010 at 12:41:55
Thank you all for your replies and suggestions. I have copied these responses and will work with my neighbor in accomplishing this task. I will come back with feedback as to the results. Thank you all, again.

OS: Windows Vista 64/Ubuntu 8.04 64
CPU/Ram: E8500/8GB PC2-6400
Manufacturer/Model: AVA Direct / Built online


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#8
February 25, 2010 at 12:44:18
knoppix.com

ubuntu.com

both have a downloadable ISO image which can be saved to a drive and then burned to a DVD; then boot with that dvd.

And they're both free...


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#9
February 25, 2010 at 13:50:27
Find out what make HDD he has & download the manufacturer's software. Or if the system has a floppy drive, boot off a WinMe boot floppy & run FDISK. Select option 4 & see how the drive is partitioned.

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#10
February 25, 2010 at 19:31:22
Hello all. Again, I want to thank all of you for your suggestions and help. We got his computer back to the configuration from the day he first brought it home. Recovery was successful. His owner's manual said he should depress F12 to get into the recovery, but the manual I downloaded from DELL said to depress both CTRL+F11 to get to Recovery. That one did the trick. Within 10 minutes his computer was back to day one. Again, thank you all for responding and helping out. My neighbor also says "Thanks"

OS: Windows Vista 64/Ubuntu 8.04 64
CPU/Ram: E8500/8GB PC2-6400
Manufacturer/Model: AVA Direct / Built online


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#11
February 26, 2010 at 02:44:37
Good to hear your neightbour is happy bunny...

Thanks for coming back too to tell us...

mmm - ctrl+F11 is the more usual one for Dell (currently)...


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