View Full Version : Installing Windows XP??

02-23-2004, 07:54 PM

Twice I've assembled my new box; made it thru 1st and 2nd boots; and then been unable to install XP. The first time I kept getting the message "NTLDR is missing". Since I couldn't connect to the internet to learn how to get around this, I had to re-constitute my "old" system.

The second time I tried applying the fix I had found. Namely, starting from a Win95 boot disk, changing attributes and "Transfering System".
That had no effect.

I obtained a floppy containing EZ BOOT from a local Comp store and was finally able to access my CD-ROM. I then tried to install XP again. This time I got a message "Error loading OS". Nothing I could do would let me progress further.

I have been able to use the Western Digital Data Lifeguard CD to partition my HDD. So I know the CD-ROM works with the hardware. I've also tried using FDisk to setup the HDD.

The Microsoft Knowledge Base says to make sure the BIOS is up to date. Should I load the latest BIOS BEFORE trying to install XP.

The Specs for the system I'm trying to put together:
Epox 8KHA+ mobo Rev. 2.0
Athlon 1600+ XP
Acer 8X CD-ROM
Nvidia AGP Card 32MB

Temps are great CPU=38C
Monitor, Mouse, Floppy, CD-ROM all respond properly (in fact these things are in use right now as part of the "old" system).

It is very frustrating that all the hardware seems to be performing marvelously but I can't get an operating system to work.

Any suggestions??

Much Thanks!

P.S. Sorry for the length but I wanted to provide as much info as I could.

Paul Komski
02-23-2004, 08:59 PM
Disk Concepts and Troubleshooting (http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/techinfo/reskit/en-us/default.asp?url=/windows2000/techinfo/reskit/en-us/core/fncb_dis_eudu.asp)

Suggest just using the WinXP installation's Disk Management for partitioning formatting etc.

Boot to the Install CD and choose new installation. Delete any existing partitions. Follow the promts to install the OS.

If that fails suggest running the diagnostic utility on the HDD and/or zeroing it before retrying installing from the WinXP CD.

Fruss Tray Ted
02-23-2004, 10:27 PM

Questions: How many jumper shunts are on the harddrive? One? And it's the only drive on the cable? If you answered yes to all these,
Reply: That's one too many. Western Digital's are notorious for BIOS 'read' probs if the jumpers aren't just right. I had a case that it installed but wouldn't read, so no progress was made and it wouldn't run after the cd was removed either. A simple jumper removal and it booted.

If you made it through a reboot or 2 and it seemed to be getting nowhere, the time remaining is always the same, or if it fails to complete the install, look to your hardware's configs as the first culprit. Just personal experience on the few drives I've used. The prob may be something else but look there just for me, ok? I promise to leave you alone after this... :) ;)

Oh, Paul,
That's some 'mean' info. You're in the 'Top 10' as usual, I'm just on a 'hunch'.. ..that is, if I'm ontrack, or not (http://www.co.yamhill.or.us/pics/logging/trainwreck12.jpg). :D

02-23-2004, 11:04 PM
Fruss Tray Ted

Ok I looked 'cause you asked so nicely :>)
No shunts and it is the only drive on the cable.
I tried to follow the documentation that came with the drive as closely as I could. The only other thing I considered is jumpering for "Cable Select". Since I couldn't determine if my system supported "Cable Select" I chose NO JUMPER, ONLY DRIVE.


Initially, I ran the WD Data Lifeguard program and used it to partition the HDD into 7 parts, the first NTFS and the rest FAT32. That did NOT work. I got further by using FDisk to create partitions and set one Active. But that only got me to "Error loading OS".
I've looked at Data Lifeguard and didn't notice a way to total wipe the HDD but I'll look again. I had read that XP was the way to go in partitioning the HDD but the WD program seemed so easy. Also, I was advised to run the diagnostics while the HDD was empty, i.e. make sure the HDD is good before you start loading stuff on it.

I am waiting on a new Lite-On CD-RW from newegg before I try assembly #3. AND I'm trying to get as much info on this issue as possible before making another attempt. Thanks for the LINK. I will study it closely to see if anything jumps out at me. I'm getting quite a file on NTLDR and boot.ini and such as I research my problem.

Thanks both of you for your replies and PLEASE, PLEASE, don't go away!


Paleo Pete
02-24-2004, 02:35 AM
I've looked at Data Lifeguard and didn't notice a way to total wipe the HDD but I'll look again.

It's there, the option is "Write zeros to the drive" or very similar. You probably just ran the drive installation utility, the zero fill won't be there for that operation. When Data Lifeguard initially loads, you get a menu, EZ Install I htink is the default option. Scroll down to Test the drive, then you should be able to see the other options not available during the EZ Install.

Yes, the XP installation will give you the opportunity to partition and format the drive, and is probably the best way to go with a new drive, you just have to read the prompts closely and follow the instructions. It will partition and format then proceed with the installation, and works pretty well.

Paul Komski
02-24-2004, 03:20 AM
FTT Nasty Accident - Nice Pic - Don't go there. Those Tech and Reskit pages from MS are very informative but only seldom seem to crop up in Net-Searches nor do they have a ref number such as the MSKB ones. I have all of them on the MSDN Library CDs, which is another very valuable source of information. I finally found a way to find the equivalent www pages by taking a literal string from the relevant page on the MSDN Library CD Help File, enclosing it in inverted commas and then searching for it on Google. In this case it was:- "the system BIOS code identifies the startup disk and reads the MBR" and up comes Google with just two answers.