Insert Boot diskette

Dell / Pc-old
April 29, 2009 at 23:30:38
Specs: Windows XP, enuf
Ok, So i am cleaning off an old dell PC for someone. I am going to list all of the troubleshooting steps i have tried below so please take a look and help me figure out this problem. Before all of this started the PC would boot fine the system was just bogged down with trojans and spyware. I tried to boot from the windows home cd to just do a clean install. No matter what i have tried i cannot get it to boot from the CD

*Replaced cd-rom drive
*Replaced hard drive
*Changed boot order in BIOS
*removed hard drive entirely
*Changed ide cables for each IDE channel
*Tried to use winME boot diskette to run install from DOS using I386/winnt.exe - failed
*Moved cd-rom and hard drive to same channel - ensured master and slave settings were correct.
*used hirens boot cd (which booted perfectly from drive) to wipe drive off
*Changed OS install feature in BIOS
*Kicked it across room

I'm not sure what else i can do. This PC is older and originally had windows ME on it. But when i got it windows xp was installed. Holla at me and give me some ideas as i am totally mind boggled.

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April 29, 2009 at 23:48:18
Try using this Win95B/98 boot disk to see if it "sees" the CD-Rom drive (it'll have to be written to a floppy, and if the CD-Rom works, it should be recognized as "R"):

If the machine finds the CD-Rom drive, but doesn't read a disc, then likely a bum drive or disc.

Should you get it working (and I know this works on 98 but never tried it on ME), you could move the contents of the installation folder to the formatted drive and install from there...

If it doesn't see the CD-Rom drive, then could be a bad drive, wrong settings (though you said you've checked that) or something else (maybe kicking it across the room wasn't such a good idea)...

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April 29, 2009 at 23:59:06
*Changed OS install feature in BIOS

You might want to make sure this setting is back to default.

Also....the installation CD..have you checked it to see if it is still bootable.? Is it an original or a copy? A copy may be unreadable to any certain drive simply because of media conflicts.

Change Is Good

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April 30, 2009 at 00:02:20
Thanks for your quick reply.

I did try that. I can read the CD and all of it's directories. I am able to start the XP installation but it then tells me the hard drive (which it does recognize by name) doesn't have the necessary space to run the program without smartdrive. I have established that the HDD and the optical drive can be accessed via partition magic (which was autobooted from the very same drive). I formatted the drive fat32 and cleared all of the contents. Still wouldn't recognize as a drive.

I should also mention that the computer would never recognize the winXP home and autorun the disc even prior to wiping of the original HDD. It would however boot the Hiren's boot cd.

Whatcha think? Finish it with a baseball bat?

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April 30, 2009 at 00:05:21
To answer the next gentleman:

I did change back that setting, thanks for the reminder. The installation discs i have used, which have been numerous for this problem, have all been certified genuine.

This is crazy.

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