Windows XP doesnt install

#1
Hi,

Hope you can help me with this so I can get it finally done.
Situation:

-WIN7 installed on c: and want to install XP on d:
-XP copies the files to d: but after first reboot shows: error starting OS
-WIN7 is repaired by using command bootrec.exe / fixmbr

So I am unable to finish the XP installation.

Where to go from here?
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
Have you got your BIOS set to boot CD before HDD ?
If not (and you used a temporary Fkey override to boot the installation CD), then the 1st reboot during install will not return to the CD (as it should to work properly), but try to boot the (incomplete) HDD.
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#3
So you get through the first step of the process where XP is on the blue screen and it copies all the files over and then from there it says it must restart to continue the process. This is when you get the message that there is an error starting the OS correct?

You still have the CD in the drive right?
 
#4
Have you got your BIOS set to boot CD before HDD ?
If not (and you used a temporary Fkey override to boot the installation CD), then the 1st reboot during install will not return to the CD (as it should to work properly), but try to boot the (incomplete) HDD.
Yes, CD is set before HDD.

So you get through the first step of the process where XP is on the blue screen and it copies all the files over and then from there it says it must restart to continue the process. This is when you get the message that there is an error starting the OS correct?

You still have the CD in the drive right?
Yes, you understand correctly. The CD is in the drive.

Imporant detail might be that even when I format all partitions bringing it back to one, I get the exact same error when I try to install XP only.
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#5
What type of format are you using on the drives? You must not do a quick format but a full format. Quick formats are junk and dont prepare the drive properly for installs.
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#6
Since you've apparently completed the first part of the install you can remove the CD now. Boot into Windows 7 and with EasyBCD add a new XP entry. Reboot and select this new entry from the menu in order to complete the installation.
 
#7
What type of format are you using on the drives? You must not do a quick format but a full format. Quick formats are junk and dont prepare the drive properly for installs.
Tried both to no avail.

Since you've apparently completed the first part of
the install you can remove the CD now. Boot into Windows 7 and with EasyBCD add a new XP entry. Reboot and select this new entry from the menu in order to complete the installation.
Ok, I will try this and report back.

Cheers guys.
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#8
Since you've apparently completed the first part of the install you can remove the CD now. Boot into Windows 7 and with EasyBCD add a new XP entry. Reboot and select this new entry from the menu in order to complete the installation.
Sorry to contradict you, but this is not right mate. :wink:

This is Windows XP not Vista or Win7. In XP you get the blue screen that copies the first set of install files over. Then it reboots to the XP loading screen where it does the Network, Drivers and other files. Then it finally loads to the desktop. The disk is still needed till it reboots after the 2nd time.

http://neosmart.net/wiki/display/G/Installing+Windows+XP

The CD is needed for everything but the final step listed in there. So he is not ready to remove the CD. In Vista/Win7 you can remove the disk cause it copies all files over right away. XP it doesn't copy all files and needs the disk almost till the end.

@moriez-

You need to go to the recovery console and trype in chkdsk /r /f and check the status of your hard drive. There is no reason why even after a full format that it still does this. I am thinking bad drive.
 

JustinW

Super Moderator
Staff member
#9
You boot from the install on the system after its copied the files in the first step. I don't think theres any other files it needs from the disc at this point??...

Its probably reporting a bad install because it was never completed and hes continuing to boot from the disc.
 
Last edited:

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#10
It's still booting the CD Jus.
The "press any key to boot from CD" is a bit of a red herring.
It's already booted the CD when you see it. It should more accurately say "press any key to start install from the beginning"
The first time you see it, you either start the install, or setup knows to abort the boot and go to the HDD.
The subsequent times, you either restart the install from scratch or setup recognizes that it's part-way through and continues with the next step until such time as it has enough of an OS to boot the HDD.

@moriez
do you see the "press any key...." message when it reboots ?
 
#12
Havent done anything yet. Will try tonight though.

@moriez-

You need to go to the recovery console and trype in chkdsk /r /f and check the status of your hard drive. There is no reason why even after a full format that it still does this. I am thinking bad drive.
Ok, can do this. But why then can I install WIN7 without a problem?

@moriez
do you see the "press any key...." message when it reboots ?
Yes, its always been like that if I remember correctly.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#13
If you see the "press any key..." message, that shows you are booting CD before HDD (you don't press any key though, except for the 1st time - see previous post)
That would indicate a disk problem which should have been cured with a full format, or possibly a problem with the CD or the optical drive.
If you can install W7 (uses a DVD) but not XP (from CD) then it might be a problem with one of the lasers, though why it does anything is a puzzle.
Can you check the CD by trying the install to some other device, (or on another PC) just to check whether it always hangs at the same place.
 
#14
I dont have another computer unfortunately. Is it possible to install XP (as a test) to my external USB HDD? I would have to create a partition to do so because its my backup drive. If yes, would 5GB be sufficient?
 
Last edited:

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#15
I wouldn't try to run XP from 5Gb, but it should install easily in that for a temporary test.
(the SP2 CD says 1.5+ Gb)
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#16
You boot from the install on the system after its copied the files in the first step. I don't think theres any other files it needs from the disc at this point??...

Its probably reporting a bad install because it was never completed and hes continuing to boot from the disc.
There are still files on the CD that you need. The Network drivers, the stuff for the start menu and so on all still come from the CD. :tongueout:
Ok, can do this. But why then can I install WIN7 without a problem?
Because XP and Win7 are 2 fully different OS's. I bet you could install Linux if you tried as well. What XP is detecting might be an issues on the drive with a specific sector it is trying to use for its install. That sector is not in use in Win7 which is why you could install Win7 cause it never scanned that sector or had to use it. Check Disk will scan this sector and attempt to fix it. If the sector cant be fixed then it will be marked as bad and the system will not use it anymore for anything. So XP will not try to continue to use it for its install.

Another thought just came to me. What version of XP are you using for the install? XP, XP SP1, XP SP2 or XP SP3? If you have anything prior to SP2 you need to make sure that the amount of space used is less than 137GB. That was the HDD Limit back then as well.
 
#17
I wouldn't try to run XP from 5Gb, but it should install easily in that for a temporary test.
(the SP2 CD says 1.5+ Gb)
I want to run XP in a minimal state, only for an older game. Dont know if it needs a service pack.

What XP is detecting might be an issues on the drive with a specific sector it is trying to use for its install. That sector is not in use in Win7 which is why you could install Win7 cause it never scanned that sector or had to use it. Check Disk will scan this sector and attempt to fix it. If the sector cant be fixed then it will be marked as bad and the system will not use it anymore for anything. So XP will not try to continue to use it for its install.

Another thought just came to me. What version of XP are you using for the install? XP, XP SP1, XP SP2 or XP SP3? If you have anything prior to SP2 you need to make sure that the amount of space used is less than 137GB. That was the HDD Limit back then as well.
Good, I wil for sure try the diskcheck. XP cd-rom is without any service pack I believe. Total disk size is 80GB.

Btw, installing on an external USB HDD will work?
 
Last edited:

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#18
Okay if the total size of the drive is only 80GB then that is not a factor. I would just use the chkdsk /r /f to verify that there is no bad sectors that is causing this issue. If you still have issues after the chkdsk is run, then you could have bad media. Might need to find another copy of the XP CD.
 
#19
Well, ran the check from XP cd-rom and was able to only perform chkdsk /r. Hopefully this is what you meant and not from the WIN7 DVD. Guess what, it found errors but didnt mention any repairing. I am not doing anything till you tell me to. So whats next? :smile:
 

Mak 2.0

Mod...WAFFLES!?!?
Staff member
#20
Well the /f is for full fix and repair. The /r is repair. Some say that the /r command does both or that it what is intended. I dont tend to think that way. After all this is Windows. :wink:

So my suggestion would be to boot into Win7 if at all possible. If so go into Win7, use the command prompt and have it scan that drive with the /r and /f parameters. After that i would then attempt to reinstall XP at that time and see if there is any issues.

Technically you could try now as the /r command should be good enough. I just tend to lean more toward the cautious side as a bad sector on a hard drive is only the beginning. After that you start to get more failing sectors until the drive itself goes bad.