XP cd won't boot


I was trying too boot to the recovery console, but windows started loading its setup.  I cancelled that, now I'm getting "no OS found" when i try to boot to the HDD.  I now want to just do a clean install of xp, but now the pc won't boot to the cd.  I've checked the boot order, and everything looks fine.  does anyone know if i may need something else to boot to the cd?  drivers or something.  


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If the CD is a copy and it wasn't copied correctly that you will have a problem.

There is an Autorun.inf file on the CD while starts the CD automatically. Verify that the file is present.

Try the CD in another computer and see if it boots up from that if so that completely erase the HD. You can do so with a Windows 98 Boot disk.

The best thing to do is use Debug to completely clean the drive. To do so type the following at the A: prompt and some things are case sensative so type excactly. Press enter where you see [Enter]. At the end reboot the system with the CD and see if it works. The following rutine takes the drive down to low level format. To verify that the drive is clean type the following at the A: prompt    FDISK /STATUS

a 100
int 13
f 200 L 200 0

Good Luck

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> I was trying too boot to the recovery console, but windows started loading its setup.

Probably a piece of HW died, and you just have to fix it, such as PS, asking, why, what got you started? I think the recovery console is still best bet to fix it, if possible,.  You can try running HD in 2nd machine to see if it has files, and in process look to see if any cables got bumped loose, or look fried.  Also try  the refresh option of bios. Drivers go to HD so there's nothing you can do until you get that up.

One thing you must be sure of, is to use a bonafide CD from Microsoft. Have you tried booting any other CD that is bootable? Was the OS registered and "activated"?

Do not delete/erase the HD yet, for there may really not be anything wrong with it, given what we know. Try swapping it with another PC that is similar and otherwise in "good" shape.
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(you might need motherboard, but more often it is only power supply.  If it comes down to that, then you may well consider raising question in the Hardware area here)
zenlion420Author Commented:

thanks for the suggestion.  I tried it and i still can't boot to the cd.  This is driving me absolutely insane.  I don't think it is loading the cd rom driver.  Something is screwed with the HDD.  Says no fat32 volume.  Must be formatted with ntfs or something.  I think this is a software issue, sunray, but I'm still considering your suggestions as well.  Thanks for all of your time, looking forward to any more suggestions.


Dear zenlion420,
My recommendations:
1)After that step of leaving Windows Setup not complete normally your Master Boot Record is corrupted. I use a little piece of Norton Ghost features at such a point to refresh my MBR!
2)The question is that you can not boot from your CD-ROM drive. The suggestions are to try to use another boot CD, to check the CD on another computer, or to use a boot floppy, that you can get from, for example, www.bootdisk.com or so.
Wish I can help
PS:a little point! I haven't read what others had said as your reply, completely. I may have told things repeatedly! Excuse me for that!
Hello aloha,

If you have a windows 98 boot disk arround put this in and boot to this.

When the screen comes up saying would you like to intall win 98 press Shift and F5 together this will then give you a command line a:\

on this line type fdisk

Then just press Entre twice

You will know have 4 options i think it is option 3 delete partitions.

You will knoe have 4 more options i think it is option 4 delete non dos partition.

This will take about a secound.

Now go back to the main menu and click on option 1 to create a new partion

In this new menu click options 1 again to create a primary dos partion.

This will take about 10 minutes depending on the size of your drive.

Follow the instructions on screen.

Once that is done it will tell you that you need to reboot your computer and format the C:\ drive.

On the windows 98 disk there is no format command but you can add one.

This file is located on any windows 98 computer and is called format.com

Put this on the disk and format the computer.

You can then try the XP boot disk and CD and it should all work.

I hoped i help and sorry about the spelling.


zenlion420Author Commented:
Thanks for the help everyone.  I got the xp boot disks to work finally, but I'm getting an error when it finally gets the the place where I'd be able to read from the CD.  It's telling me that setup can't access the HDD.  After that message, if i hit any key, I get the Blue screen with a few stop error codes.  I'll be opening a new Q tomorrow when i get those codes written down.  Again, thanks for the time.

please leave a link to your next Q here as a comment, so that i can follow up!
zenlion420Author Commented:
The PC is hosed...

you need to use a win98boot disk or equivalent:


Then hose everything-

fdisk /mbr


fdisk the harddrive you are going to install on and reboot with the cd in the drive and make sure the bios has the boot order set to disk.

zenlion420Author Commented:
I've tried that.  Problem I'm now having is that I can't access the HDD.  Fdisk can't either.  I'm searching for a HD dianostic tool for the drive.  Thanks.

Then you have to use a friend/ work computer to do the job.... physically take the HD out of your computer, slave it out on another machine and boot to the A:\boot disk to do the job(fdisking) on the other machine(your drive will appear as D, or E depending on the number of hard drives) , bring the HD back home and start getting down to business.

Forget about the diagnostic tool, you just need to set the jumpers, slave it out - it'll take 10minutes.  Anyone who cares anything about the well being of your PC will let you do this.

zenlion420Author Commented:
Thanks.  I've got a PC at home.  Actually, the laptop is here right now.  I'm going to buy the adapter tomorrow.  I'll let you all know what happens.



If you cannot make FDISK on the laptop SEE the drive even with the BIOS correctly configured, BUT you CAN make a PC see it as slave drive, it is quite possible that the HD controller in the laptop is bad.  I said this earlier.

FDISK is a BIOS level tool that directly accesses the hard disk controller and the hard disk (int13 if I recall).  If FDISK cannot see it on the laptop, either the BIOS of the laptop is hosed (if so you need to re-flash the WIN2k bios that HP made for that model) OR the HD controller is (pitch it into a landfil).

zenlion420Author Commented:
Hello John,

This is a closed thread.  I posted in the open one earlier that there isn't an adapter on this island in ANY store.  I have to order one online, so it will be a few days. If the HD controller is shot, would it be worth getting a new MOBO?  It's not my system, I've never owned a laptop (or worked on one, prior to this).  Thanks,


hard to tell what is closed or not when you click on the links you get in email!

Anyway, you say 'the island', so I dont know exactly where you are.

The laptop is over a year old, so it's technically obsolite.  Don't know if HP even stocks replacement motherboards, but I'd assume that in the states they have to follow the 3 year rule (government requires them to keep parts for minimum 3 years after a produce is discontinued because they only allow businesses to depreciate the equipment over 3/5 years.).

New laptops are pretty cheap, but repairing that one might be cheaper.

Please triple check your bios before you do anything - a corrupted BIOS could screw up your diagnostic.

HP has a win2k valid bios on their website, and a manual too:

Good luck - keep me posted!

zenlion420Author Commented:

I didn't know you were subscribed to this thread prior to your first post, which was after this Q had been closed.  I'm not sure why you were getting notifs.  Anyway, I live on Maui, and it's next to impossible to find a lot of tech HW here.  It's not the most tech-oriented place in the world.  Anyway, I downloaded the BIOS, but it's for win2k.  I know this system has/had XP Pro installed, but it was a factory install.  The BIOS is surface-mounted, so I'm going to try a flash as a last resort, as I know an inproper flash could really make this thing useless.  Thanks for all of your help so far.

Win2k preceeded XP, so the BIOS should not be a problem.  There is NO XP bios, and the laptops originally shipped with win-me! if you believe that!

Ahh, Maui.  I'm in Georgia.  It's starting to get cold here. Anyway, good luck man.  Laptops are a bitch when they don't cooperate.

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