troubleshooting win xpo pro installation

Posted on 2004-10-24
Last Modified: 2007-12-19
was running home edition(have upgrade cd but not previous 98se cd) reformatted and tried to do clean install of brand new xp pro oem version.  Got thru 80% of files being copied and recieved message saying that setup cannot copy file: ****.inf.  tried reformatted numerous times and several other ideas.  Nothing has worked.  Any suggestions?
Question by:pjbilek
    LVL 1

    Expert Comment

    Hi pjbilek,

    1. Check the CD for smudge marks or scratches
    2. Clean the Install CD
    3. If you have an extra CD-Rom, try a different one.
    4. Run from a boot diskette and a scandisk on your HD.
    4. Very rarely, an IDE cable can go bad.  Reseat or replace the IDE cable.
    LVL 40

    Accepted Solution

    This is copied directly from my page on XP Installations:

    Troubleshooting Installations

    The most common installation problem is the result of a Hardware-related issue that causes the system to stop responding.  In these cases, Setup is supposed to identify the problem device and skip the that device on the next restart.  Of course, the operative words here are 'supposed to'.  These lockups usually occur with 34 minutes left for installation, as this is the time that hardware is detected and the drivers are loaded.

    First try restarting the setup 2 or 3 times to give Setup the opportunity to correct itself.  If this is not successful, detach all hardware devices that you do not need for installation.  This includes any USB devices attached at this time, with the only exception being your mouse and/or keyboard that may be USB.  (If it continues, you may need to substitute PS2 devices in their place.)  The only devices necessary (in a standard installation) for loading the OS are the keyboard, mouse, hard drive, CDrom drive, and Video Adapter.  All other Add-on Cards (PCI Cards such as Sound Cards), secondary drives, DVD drives, and externally connected devices should be disconnected.

    If you still continue to experience the system lockup, you will need to examine the setup log files for indications of what is causing the system lockup.  There are 4 setup logs that you may need to review:

    Pnplog.txt            Created only if there was an issue with hardware, this log defines the device that should be skipped on the next reboot and Setup Restart.  (This is the first log you should view).

    Setupapi.log        Records Device and Driver installation information along with Service Pack and HotFix installation.  Entries are generated each time an .inf file is executes.

    Setupact.log        Records a list of actions that occurred during the installation process, such as file and registry changes.  Error log entries are also contained in the file.

    Setuperr.log        Hold information regarding repair operations of the Operating System.  Includes the list of errors that occurred during installation, along with the severity of the error.      

    To examine these logs, you will need to access them from a Command Prompt.  All these logs are placed in the %SystemRoot% folder (usually \Windows).  To access these files, press SHIFT + F10 as your setup starts which will take you to a Command Prompt (or use the Recovery Console), and then navigate to the proper location:

    C:\cd windows    (Change Directory to Windows)

    C:\Dir    (To show the files in that directory)

    C:\Copy Pnplog.txt A:    (Copy pnplog.txt to floppy for viewing on another system, as I find it easier to examine these files this way).

    Examine the last 10 or 15 lines in the log files, and once you find the Device that is causing the problem, then detach it, or disable it in the BIOS.  (In the BIOS you can usually disable Ports, Power Management Features, and On-Board devices that are not required for setup to complete, such as modems).  If the device is a PCI card that is needed for setup (Video PCI for instance) reseat the card or move it to a different PCI slot.


    Author Comment

    That's so much for the quick response, it's deeply appreciated.  I've been working on this for 2 full days and am about to go crazy.  In response to your answer, the boot disk will do the same thing as the cd.  It will get to the point of getting files copied but will still fail to copy all files.  If I have wiped out all previous operating systems by reformatting, partitioning, etc... then why do all three of my win xp pro cd's (all legally purchased thru my company) hang up during this process.  Now, I can't even install my upgrade home edition cd because I no longer have my original 98se cd.  98 boot disk will not work because I get error message "replace non-system disk".  Just tried another xp pro disk and got the same response "setup cannot copy the file: sysfiles.inf".  If I skip this file, it just comes up with another file it can't copy.  For some reason I can't get past this point no matter what I've tried and I've tried pretty much everything a google search can come up with.
    LVL 65

    Expert Comment

    Hello pjbilek =)

    If i will ask to take out ur RAM stick and hook another one to try with it.... will it be possible for u to try? :)
    LVL 40

    Expert Comment

    You might also want to run some diagnostics on your hard drive...  The manufacturer has these available on their websites..

    Author Comment

    Inresponse to all answers.  Can't review any logs. Can do DIR only.  Have 2 totally different hard drives and same thing happens on both.  Changed ram sticks to no avail.  Have all hardware disconnected except what is needed and even changed mouse to PS2 instead of USB.  Have cleaned disk and used other disk that I've have currently installed on two other computers in my home(which is currently 4 computers total).  Using SOYO Motherboard SY-P4VGM on this particular computer and had no problem with home edition.  All the usual suggestions have been tried and tried again.  I hope reformatting my drives 20 ump times is not hurting them.
    LVL 3

    Expert Comment

    try this before the intstall make a folder on the drive in dos at the root called I386 and copy the files from the I386 folder on the CD.  This will pre copy the files needed for setup and should bypass your problem.  It will only check to verify all files are there and is a common fix for file copy errors during setup.
    LVL 40

    Expert Comment

    Hope you finally got it..  been afk for the past day..

    and thanks..


    Write Comment

    Please enter a first name

    Please enter a last name

    We will never share this with anyone. Privacy Policy Terms of Use

    Featured Post

    Why You Should Analyze Threat Actor TTPs

    After years of analyzing threat actor behavior, it’s become clear that at any given time there are specific tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) that are particularly prevalent. By analyzing and understanding these TTPs, you can dramatically enhance your security program.

    Can I legally transfer my OEM version of Windows to another PC?  (AKA - Can I put a new systemboard in my OEM PC?) Few of us are both IT and legal experts but we all have our own views of Microsoft's licensing rules and how they apply.  There are…
    If you have done a reformat of your hard drive and proceeded to do a successful Windows XP installation, you may notice that a choice between two operating systems when you start up the machine. Here is how to get rid of this: Click Start Clic…
    This video is in connection to the article "The case of a missing mobile phone (". It will help one to understand clearly the steps to track a lost android phone.
    Internet Business Fax to Email Made Easy - With eFax Corporate (, you'll receive a dedicated online fax number, which is used the same way as a typical analog fax number. You'll receive secure faxes in your email, fr…

    875 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

    Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

    Join & Ask a Question

    Need Help in Real-Time?

    Connect with top rated Experts

    14 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now