View Full Version : Dell problem

04-15-2003, 04:41 AM
Hello there ladies and gentlemen. I am new to this discussion board and will endeavour to get to know you all in time.

For now, I am in a BIG spot of bother. I have a DELL Latitude C400 notebook, that requires an OS installation. I have not got some of the original components, as it was given to me after the carry bag with the accessories was stolen. I only have the notebook itself, a PCMCIA Teac External CD-ROM power supply and a spare battery. I need to be able to install Windows 2000 back onto it, and have no bootable devices. I am unable to get my hands on a floppy, as I don't have the cable to attatch an original one to the port. It is a slimline unit. In the boot options, it does not support USB floppy drives. And is also limited in other boot options thru CMOS.

I really would like to get this notebook back up and running as soon as possible, so I can enjoy the mobility of wireless networking etc.

Your help would be greatly appreciated. I have already tried hooking up the hard drive itself into a PC to get it to at least boot, but when it is placed back into the notebook, I get a "no operating system" message appear.

If anyone can help me here, it would be eternally appreciated.

P.S. I am new to this discussion group, and may not be able tofind any postings, so feel free to email me directly.
Again, a million and one thanks for any help...:)

04-15-2003, 08:12 AM
Welcome to PcGuide and the forums

Two things strike me on this.
The first is the No O/S found after installing the drive in another system
I will assume you installed this laptop drive using one of the cable adapters allowing you to use a standard 40 pin ide cable

In doing so and allow it to boot the other system.
Was it installed as Master on the Primary Channel ?
Were the drive options in the Bios set to those used in the Laptop bios?

The drive must be marked as “Active” during the setup.
I fit wasn’t it will not boot regardless of what is installed.
The Bios Must find the active marker in the MBR

If the drive was installed and the drive settings were not a match to those in the bios of the laptop
it can also cause problems.
Using auto detect in the Laptop for the Hdd make note of the drive settings
Then match those exactly in the other system.

With it installed as master on the Primary channel you should be able to install the required files needed to get it to boot once it is placed back in the laptop

04-15-2003, 01:27 PM
If you have access to a USB floppy drive, I would urge you to try it. Same thing for a USB CD drive. I use that laptop at work and it booted up with my USB keyboard without any trouble. The only other option I know is to buy the CD and floppy drives from Dell that have the connector designed for the laptop. You might also be able to find one or both on eBay....

04-16-2003, 05:16 AM
Dear Rick,

Thankyou for your response. I will try doing as you have described, however, I am not sure if it will work as such.

But then again, there is no harm in trying.

Thankyou again.

P.S. If anyone could perhaps provide a step by step guide to the process it would GREATLY appreciated.



05-28-2003, 05:07 AM
Try the following:

Test to see whether the external CD-drive support CD boot.
if then, install windows 2000 from the CD.
if no, then get a adapter which allows you to use the laptop harddrive on a standard desktop. Transfer the OS installation file to the laptop harddrive. Set up win2k on the laptop.

If you need further assistance, contact me at {you can do this off board, PM...also this board does on occasion get hit by harvestbots...email addresses are vulnerable, so if you like spam you can put it back...;)}
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