No thanks to anyone in the myriad of forums I posted this question to, I found my OWN ANSWER, and in the process the ideal backup software as well. FREE SOFTWARE called XXCLONE. This beautiful thing runs right inside your existing XP and creates a COMPLETE mirror image of your entire hard drive on any new hard drive attached to the same machine, IDE or SATA, and makes the new drive independently bootable if you so wish.
I tested the SATA drive after the install with all my other drives turned both OFF and ON in the bios, and it boots perfectly either way. I OWE MY SANITY TO XXCLONE!
This thing backup up my whole drive and WORKED in under 10 minutes flat with no extra work from me at all.
Oh, and by the way, I offer a special raspberry award to MICROSOFT for making their own help COMPLETE gibberish (their instructions to create an XP boot diskette are utterly USELESS), as well as for totally abandoning the tens of millions who still use XP. I'm surprised no lawyers have filed a class action suit over this yet. It seems patently monopolistic and unfair to me for any company to be able to tell you "you can no longer used the product you bought from us" when said product was never sold with an expiration date.
OK I know this is UNUSUAL, but here's what I want to do:
I have my XP installed on my primary IDE hard drive C:
I have a 2nd and 3rd SATA Hard drives D: and E:
I'd like to do a CLEAN install of WIN XP (I have the original system install disk and license key), so how best to do this?
Can I run the SETUP from within my existing WINDOWS on C: and tell it to install on E: without messing up my existing C:?
In the end, I just want to be able to boot from any of the 3 disks if the need arises.
I tried just copying WINDOWS from my existing installation, but that does not work because my main drive is IDE and the other 2 are SATA.