|Which hardware ? The SATA drive(s) ?|
Installing XP and SATA drive controllers, SATA drives; the SATA drive controller bios settings.
See response 2:
After you have read that.....
If the bios has the SATA controller(s) in SATA or AHCI mode, you must install the SATA controller drivers for the motherboard in Windows.
If the bios has the SATA controller(s) in an IDE compatible mode, the SATA drives will be recognized, as IDE compatible drives.
XP doesn't have the drivers built in for most things that first came out after XP was first released, circa 2001, and it doesn't have some of the drivers built in for things made before that.
Whenever you load Windows from a regular Windows CD (or DVD) from scratch, after Setup is finished you must load the drivers for the mboard, particularly the main chipset drivers, in order for Windows to have the proper drivers for and information about your mboard hardware, including it's AGP or PCI-E, ACPI, USB 2.0 if it has it, and hard drive controller support. If you have a generic system and have the CD that came with the mboard, all the necessary drivers are on it. If you load drivers from the web, brand name system builders and mboard makers often DO NOT have the main chipset drivers listed in the downloads for your model - in that case you must go to the maker of the main chipset's web site, get the drivers, and load them.
If you have a Dell Recovery disk labeled - "XP Pro (or Home) Re-installation CD" or similar, that's used the same way as a regular Windows CD - it DOES NOT have extra drivers built into it for your specfic model.
How To Restore or Reinstall Microsoft Windows on a Dell Computer
Your hard drive may or may not have a Recovery partition that has all the data needed to restore the original contents of C.
Many Dell computers that had XP on them originally that I've come across came with at least one Dell Recovery disk labeled - "XP Pro (or Home) Re-installation CD" or similar, when they were new. If the model came with that, the original software installation DOES NOT have a Recovery partition that has all the data needed to restore the original contents of C.
(Sometimes there is a second Dell CD or DVD that has Drivers and Applications (Programs) or similar on it too.)
That "Re-installation" CD can be used the same way as a regular Windows CD, BUT it can probably ONLY be used with the Dell model it came with, or with one of a a small group of models made at about the same time, to install Windows from scratch, or to run a Repair installation of Windows procedure.
Or - if you can borrow a Microsoft OEM XP CD that has the same version of Windows - XP Home or Pro - as on the official Microsoft label on the outside of the computer case, you can use that to install Windows along with the Product Key on that label.
A Microsoft OEM XP CD has "For distribution with a new PC only." printed on it, and the Microsoft holograms.
In any case....
If you don't have the Recovery disk(s) for your model, you may be able to buy it (them) at one of these web sites:
In at least some cases, you can download the *.iso file(s) to make (burn) the disk(s) as soon as your online payment clears (is approved).