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A little help? Need to replace Windows NT OS with Windows XP

by melvillesmedley / September 24, 2007 4:24 AM PDT

I recently had to replace my failed hard drive in my lap top. I grabbed what I thought was the operating system disk for the laptop--Windows XP--and got as far as the prompt asking for the product code before discovering it was the OS disk from my last computer, which ran on Windows NT. I removed the NT disk and inserted and tried to run the XP OS disk, but the NT system keeps booting up at the product code entry screen (which I can't enter b/c I no longer have that computer). So--how do I override the NT OS to replace it with XP. Help?

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Presuming you're starting fresh
by Steven Haninger / September 24, 2007 5:34 AM PDT

and with nothing to lose, you should be able to set the boot device to the CD and have XP completely repartition, format and install. I'm guessing your boot order was C: D: so, when you first inserted the NT disk, your BIOS saw nothing on C: and went to the CD ROM drive. The partial installation created a bootable partition on C: and your BIOS is set to try that one first. Set the boot order so the CD ROM is first and you should be able to start over.

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can't change the boot drive
by melvillesmedley / September 24, 2007 7:52 AM PDT

Thanks for the reply. That's exactly the right idea--changing the boot drive--however when I entered setup, I couldn't navigate at all (no response to alt-p, or arrows). Is there another way to change it?

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Using PS2 Keyboard?
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / September 24, 2007 8:07 AM PDT

Occasionally, USB keyboards won't be recognized.

Once the BIOS is accessed, try the space bar, or the "tab" key to move between major tab sections, then use arrows and the "Enter" key to select items.

Hope this helps.


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One more idea
by Steven Haninger / September 24, 2007 8:56 AM PDT

If you have a floppy drive, you should be able to use fdisk to remove the NT partition. Another method might be to download the HD manufacturer's utility to wipe the drive clean. Most manufacturers have a file that creates a bootable floppy or CD to do this.

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