I have a DELL PowerEdge SC 430 running Fedora

Posted on 2006-04-22
Last Modified: 2008-01-09
I have a DELL PowerEdge SC 430 running Fedora my friend closed up his business and left them for me to re-format to XP and sell them for him.  Problem is I cannot get this computer to boot to my XP CD I use for installing the OS on my laptops.  I install from this CD all the time and I have others none will get past the SETUP if inspecting your computer screen and I never get the normal Blue setup screen,  now I would like to just open this in Fedora but we can't get past the user name screen.  The employees who were the actual "Users" were fired under less than friendly circumstances and won't give us the "User Name" or password so we can get in. This is URGENT as we need to do something so I can advertise and sell these "SERVERS"  here are the specs (says no OS but it boots to Fedora):

Intel® Pentium® D Processor 820 at 2.8GHz/2X1MB Cache, 800MHz FSB       

Operating System       

No Operating System, Other       


1G DDR2, 533MHz, 2X512MB Single Ranked DIMMs       

Primary Hard Drive      
80GB1, Serial ATA, 1 inch, 7.2K RPM, Hard Drive       

2nd Hard Drive      
80GB1, Serial ATA, 1 inch, 7.2K RPM Hard Drive       

CD/DVD Drive      
48X, Compact Disk Drive, Internal, Half Height, MG       

Network Card      
Onboard NIC       

Question by:reyeuro
    LVL 34

    Expert Comment

    by:Duncan Roe
    You can run linux standalone from e.g. a Knoppix CD ( ) and force the Fedora root password to be empty. If the former employees have passworded the BIOS you need to use the mobo jumper to empty CMOS (or maybe just take out the battery and short the holder but I've never tried that myself) (all these with power disconnected of course;). Once Knoppix is running you might want to re-partition the disk with linux fdisk so it is a single NTFS partition - the lack of an NTFS partition or any space for one may be confusing the Windoze installer).

    Author Comment

    pardon me?  The only thing I understood here was about the NTFS partition and the use of Windoze as a slight against Windows which I did not take on a personal level, problem is I do not have ANY Linux software or os disks floppy or otherwise, any other suggestions, I was thinking maybe I could download knoppix to a cd, but I haven't found a download site in English or that I understood as far as all the files in the ftp site, were they all to be downloaded?  If I do that can they then be burned to a cd on my pc?
    LVL 34

    Expert Comment

    by:Duncan Roe
    To boot off your CD, you may need to reconfigure the boot order in BIOS to be CD first. Depending on BIOS, that may be in the "Advanced" "Power-up" or other menu - you'll just have to search around in setup.
    Can you get into BIOS setup? That could be your first hurdle. When you power up, what do you see? If only the Fedora boot, what do you see if you hold a key down at power up? (try holding down F1 or DEL). You are looking for a message like "Press DEL for Setup".
    Sometimes the only way to reset a BIOS setup so you can get into it is to kill the power to its CMOS - that's why I described ways to do that in the first post. Usually on a motherboard there is a jumper to enable a tech to do this - it may be described in the specs you have or in other docn your friend have you. If you don't have that docn then you might have to resort to locating and ermoving the battery (a round silvery thing about 1.5cm diameter). Because there's a large capacitor across it you need to leave it out for a day or so to drain CMOS, or shorting the holder (preferably with a low-value resistor) may speed up the process.
    Hope you understood more of that - post again either way.
    LVL 34

    Expert Comment

    by:Duncan Roe starts in German but is very much multilingual - click on the US/UK flag for English, rising sun for Japanese etc.
    But having re-read your question it seems that your first problem is failure to boot *any* CD - hence my previous post.
    LVL 1

    Expert Comment

    BIOS setup is usually F2 on a Dell.  Press and hold while the DELL logo is on the screen.  Duncan is correct that you need to change the boot order.

    Dell keeps user manuals on their web site forever, so you should be able to find it if necessary,
    LVL 10

    Accepted Solution



    There are various solutions:
    - Software solution: Does it have a disktte drive?
      + if it does, you can boot from a Linux diskette
         and re-install Fedora from Web
    - Hardware solution:
      + Take the primary hard drive out, put it in another desktop,
         that can boot your XP cd, install XP then put it back,
         and XP should be able to reconfigure itself.



    Author Comment

    Actually I was advised elsewhere to get an ultimate bood cd which I did and it worked, but I also took one of the hard drives out and installed it in another computer and followed your instructions that worked well also...Thanks

    Featured Post

    How your wiki can always stay up-to-date

    Quip doubles as a “living” wiki and a project management tool that evolves with your organization. As you finish projects in Quip, the work remains, easily accessible to all team members, new and old.
    - Increase transparency
    - Onboard new hires faster
    - Access from mobile/offline

    Join & Write a Comment

    Suggested Solutions

    Have you ever been frustrated by having to click seven times in order to retrieve a small bit of information from the web, always the same seven clicks, scrolling down and down until you reach your target? When you know the benefits of the command l…
    The purpose of this article is to fix the unknown display problem in Linux Mint operating system. After installing the OS if you see Display monitor is not recognized then we can install "MESA" utilities to fix this problem or we can install additio…
    how to add IIS SMTP to handle application/Scanner relays into office 365.
    Polish reports in Access so they look terrific. Take yourself to another level. Equations, Back Color, Alternate Back Color. Write easy VBA Code. Tighten space to use less pages. Launch report from a menu, considering criteria only when it is filled…

    754 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

    20 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now