Seagate 120gb hard drive

Hi all

I am in the process of building a new PC but when I try to boot from my XP CD it doesnt recognise it in the disk drive. The drive is set to boot first but it is as though the disk is not bootable.

I installed a copy of server 2003 to try and gain access to the disk which worked as I was hoping to install XP that way but on the menu "Install Windows XP" is disabled so I cannot click it. I have since tried the disk on another machine and it works fine.

My question is, I have installed and formatted the hard drive as NTFS but not partitioned it. Do I need to partition it and if so what size partitions please? Is this also likely to be why XP doesnt want to install?

Any help appreciated,

Thanks in advance
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XP always installs a default IDE control driver for your computer. You need to install the driver that is meant for your IDE controller in order to use that drive. Usually that is the problem. If you can boot up, then make sure that you install the correct IDE driver that is usually located on your Motherboard CD. Hope that helps you.
In regards to the partitions... are you going to multiboot Windows 2003 and Windows XP? If so, it is advised to make sure you have at least 2 partitions (I would make them equal size if you are only doing 2). Each operating system creates its own set of folders, and occasionally you can experience an overlap if you have both OS on the same drive (meaning, on Drive C). You can get away with only a single partition, but I would recommend at least 2. If you are worried about sizing... make the one you use most, the largest.
Ok, parts of your question are the problem you are having with the CD booting, or with the hard drive booting?  From reading your post, it appears you installed Server 2003 with no problems on a computer you want to install XP on; is that true?  I'm also understanding that you have booted to the xp cd on another computer and it worked fine, correct?  From there we can continue.

let me know.
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saffcossieAuthor Commented:
Slaid99 - Many thanks for the replies. The drive works as I installed Server 2003 and was able to boot from it for that. When I try the same for XP I get an error message saying something like insert media to boot from or select drive to boot from.

I am only planning on using XP but as this is the biggest hard drive I have used I wasnt sure if it needed to be partitioned.

I have been searching on the net but cannot find any info on the problem.

If it helps, when I try viewing the XP CD after I installed Server 2003, under Additional Tasks "Check my System Automatically" is also disabled as well as "Install Windows XP" on the main menu.
saffcossieAuthor Commented:
huntnman - the problem is with the CD booting but I am not sure if it is as a result of the hard drive not being set up correctly.

Your other assumptions are correct -

"From reading your post, it appears you installed Server 2003 with no problems on a computer you want to install XP on; is that true?  I'm also understanding that you have booted to the xp cd on another computer and it worked fine, correct?"

Thanks for the reply
OK...there isn't really a reason that the Hard drive not being configured would stop the CD from booting, unless you have the hard drive setup as the 1st boot device in the BIOS and the CD drive as the second.  If this is true, change the CD to the 1st boot device and put the disk second.  

I'm also a little confused with the comment:  "I have installed and formatted the hard drive as NTFS but not partitioned it"...if it's formatted NTFS, there is some kind of partition on it.  Was it ever setup as a dynamic disk in another computer?  That can cause some issues on occasion.

What kind of computer are you working with?
saffcossieAuthor Commented:
huntnman -

With the comment below I meant it is not partitioned into 2 or 3 seperate partitions, it is just one large partition. It is a brand new Seagate 120gb drive with 8MB cache.

The computer is a custom built pc with an Asus Motherboard and P4 3.2Ghz. I did notice the CPU getting very hot but the fans are working.

"I'm also a little confused with the comment:  "I have installed and formatted the hard drive as NTFS but not partitioned it"...if it's formatted NTFS, there is some kind of partition on it.  Was it ever setup as a dynamic disk in another computer?  That can cause some issues on occasion."

Not sure if this will help you:
1) Separate?
There's no need for more partitions. XP has no problems at all. I had XP installed on a 120GB (1 HDD) single part. with a 400GB RAID array(4 HDDs behaving as a single disk). ASUS MB. No prob there... and on numerous other installations w/single-partitioned high-capacity drives.

2) "No boot device..."
If you have the option to throw away all data on your Seagate120, try a new clean installation. Boot form XP CD. When choosing target, Delete all partitions and Create one big (primary) partition and select it for installation. Quick Format and NTFS shall be enough. After restart, if the problem persists here are some suggestions.

a] check your cables;) if you have a RAID MB. Don't confuse RAID from standard UATA/SATA - there may be a different port for each one of them. Boot drive should be connected to the non-RAID. port.

b] check your pins (ran myself into this one lately):
  The HDD may be pinned wrong. Make sure it is found by the BIOS immediately after startup(=if the BIOS has no problems finding it autom. within few secs). I had an HDD pinned as a Master and I overlooked a different pinning for Single(single drive on cable). It kept being found in a weird way - XP Install found a drive and installed and then HDD failed to boot(wasn't found).

c] something is corrupted/faulty:
You said it worked elsewhere - tried BOOTING from it on a different PC?
If it worked elsewhere, there is most likely NOT a problem w/HDD.

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I have had problems booting up using a hard drive formatted for NTSF before now that I think of it. I remember, that after trying everything I could think of, I reverted back to FAT32 until I had the OS on it, then made it NTSF. If nothing else works for you, you may want to try that. I believe I used Partition Magic to convert it back to FAT32, but I cant recall if I lost all the data on the drive.
Btw... those pins and cables again. There is a difference between ATA and UATA cables when pinning HDD as Cable Select. CS selects MA/SL according to position on the cable. UATA have these CS recognized positions swapped (the diff. is based on el. resistance measuring = cable sturcture). But this is really off-topic, sry ;o)
saffcossieAuthor Commented:
jurri - Many thanks for all those suggestions. I shall try some but it is on my home PC and I am at work. Answers below:

1) Excellent, thanks that is partly what I am after.
2) I would gladly throw away the install on the HDD but it just wont boot to the XP CD
a)Not quite sure which I have but it is an Asus P4P800 Deluxe thing. It has two IDE ports and a floppy port.
b) My HDD is on a seperate ribbon cable to one port with my burner and rom on the other cable to the other port.
c)my worst nightmare but possible. Not sure how likely though as I have installed server 2003 without any problems.

Your second post - The HDD is pinned as Cable Select currently.

I am going to award the points to you but thanks to everyone for replying. Awarding because you have in part answered my post with a) and given several suggestions for other things.

jurriCommented: very first Accepted Answer ;o)

I believe the second part won't be much helpful, as I thought of a different problem. Sry.

As you managed to install Server 2003, there is most probably not a problem with HW or BIOS. Try to actually boot some other machine from your CD. If it won't boot the CD, then there's your problem - unbootable CD. If it is a backup copy of XP CD, it may have been burnt wrong.

I have no idea where's the problem if it manages to boot elsewhere.

Anyway - there may be a (temporary) solution. Install XP using a different CD-ROM, different PC on your HDD(connected as a Prim.Master) and than connect it back intou your PC... or get some other copy of XP. Should be perfectly ok, as long as licence is bound to the "CD-KEY" of yours and the WinXP CD itself is only an installation kit. So, borrow a CD from your friend or collegue and use your CD-KEY.

New installation CD itself w/o licence costs pretty much :/

If license is not a problem, then get somewhere a new copy of the CD;) This time make sure it is burnt properly (disc copy 1:1 in Nero or other burn SW).

Wish I could help you better... and good night. It's 5AM where I am now...
saffcossieAuthor Commented:
Just to let anyone know who is interested - I tried booting from the 6 XP floppies and it worked up until the CD prompt. At this point it said the the CD could be damaged and to insert another. I will use anther CD and try it but as to why it booted on another machine, I have no idea.

The hard drive bit was my main concern incase it was damaged or needed seperating. O.S if the worst comes to the worst I will install 2000 for the interim.

Cheers all
You may need to point to the motherboard IDE driver in order to get the CD drive to recognize the CD... I have to with 2 of my systems, but that is installing Win2k... dont know if WinXP would be affected by that or not.
oops... should have mentioned... if you dont know what I mean, or how to do it, please ask. :)
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