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Can't See hard Drive to install new o/s

Posted on 2006-11-19
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Last Modified: 2012-08-14
Just purchased Philips X56 laptop supplied with MCE which I thought would join a domain - it won't! Therefore want to install XP Pro. On other machines I have been able to boot to CD and install the new o/s, however while the laptop will boot from the CD it can't see the hard disk to load the new o/s to. I suspect (but don't know) that it has something to do with the pre-installed "Soft Thinks" recovery software which is stored in a separate partition - or at least the way the recovery software is set up on the laptop's one hard disk.

The only other issue may be that the supplied hard drive is SATA and this may be an issue but as you will gather this is way above my competencies.

I need to get the XP install to "see" the hard drive please...

All suggestions welcome... answers as to a small child please!
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Question by:Simon_Webster
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by:blandyuk
ID: 17975971
It may have something to do with the fact that the SATA drive needs to have drivers installed in order for Win XP install to see it. There should be a mobo disc which should contain the drivers.
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by:simpswr
ID: 17975974
See this for help installing on  SATA drive:

http://xphelpandsupport.mvps.org/how_do_i_install_windows_xp_on_a.htm
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by:oppugnant
ID: 17976011
If the SATA drivers aren't on a cd that came with the laptop and you don't have a floppy on the laptop to follow Simpswr's advice then you could try slipstreaming. Info can be found here http://maximumpc.com/2005/01/how_to_slipstre.html. You could google "slipstream sata drivers xp" if that page doesn't suit. Why not try Nlite, info and download here  http://www.nliteos.com/.
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by:kcg-witchdoctor
ID: 17976283
Check the BIOS. Usually you can change the BIOS looks at the hardrive by putiing it into combination mode. It will then treat the SATA drive like and IDE drive. I am not familiar with your particular laptop, so forgive me for the non specific instructions.

We had this problem with new Dells that we were reimaging with norton ghost that didn't support SATA drives. After windows is installed then change the mode back. The feature may be referred to as a "Legacy Mode"
 

I will see if i can dig up more specific instructions.
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by:kcg-witchdoctor
ID: 17976306
I have another suggestion: Use Ranish to blow away any existing partitions with a ranish boot disk.
You can download one from here http://www.ranish.com/part/

Keep in mind that it will remoave all data from the drive when you re-partition. But that goes without saying.
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Author Comment

by:Simon_Webster
ID: 17976440
It is now a quarter past midnight in UK and I am off to my bed! Thank you all for helpful suggestions so far. Blandyuk put me on the right track and simpswr's link to installing SATA drivers seems to be a further move in the right direction. I have to confess slip streamoimg everything sounded great but looked a bit daunting for me as a novice.

This particular machine (Philips x 56) runs a T5600 Core2 Duo Processor and the SATA drivers seem to be bundled with the Intel chipset driver so the resultant file is too BIG to fit on a floppy (the system can see the USB floppy drive) I have here, but won't let me tell it to look at the optical drive for the driver. in addition according to windows install the SATA driver needs to be called TXTsetup.oem and there is no file of that name in the compressed or uncompressed version of the intel chip set driver in any event.

Is there an alternate driver that will get the install going and I can then downlaod the correct drivers once I have widopws running? The hard disk is a Fujitsu MHV2080BHPL.
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by:simpswr
ID: 17976554
Look on their website for a "press F6 driver" that you can download to a floppy . .
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by:Phadke_hemant
ID: 17977766
just go to Bios and disable the native support for SATA and boot from CD, it will find the HDD
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by:Sripad78
ID: 17985480
Go to the BIOS settings and go to the section where it lists the Hard disk, there will be two modes there change the settings, i have forgot the mode, change the mode to the other one i am sure it works. i had the same problem with my IBM X60 laptop
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by:mike_at_software
ID: 18014261
Hi Simon,

I have exactly the same problem - bought the same machine in the UK a few days ago. Do you have a working fix yet which you could share?

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by:blandyuk
ID: 18014377
If the SATA drivers do needputting on while installing XP, you need to press F6 when asked by the XP install. From there, you will be asked to provide a Floppy Disc (<-- How annoying of Microsoft to only install the drivers from a floppy) and then you can select the SATA drivers. Windows XP will then be able to see the HD. This also goes for RAID.
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by:mike_at_software
ID: 18014445
Hi Blandyuk,

Thanks - but the strange problem is, I can boot from the CD, with an XP Pro CD in the drive, but when the "Press F6 to install additional drivers" question appears, no amount of pressing F6 causes it to do anything - it's as if F6 has been disabled at that point. Booting from the CD continues, with messages about various drivers laoding, but eventually XP set up stops, complaining that it cannot find any mass storage device, or any floppy from which to install drivers. I've got a working USB floppy attached at that point, with the correct drivers on the drive. I'm compltely baffled. Could you please suggest any workaround?

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by:simpswr
ID: 18014448
Do you have a usb keyboard? . . try it with a ps/2

Nothing will happen when you press F6 . . later in the installation, XP loads them from the floppy
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Expert Comment

by:mike_at_software
ID: 18014480
Hi Simpswr,

Thanks for your comment. The machine is a Philips X56 notebook. I don't have a spare USB keyboard at the moment, so I'm just using the standard keyboard.

The sequence is: boot from CD; windows loading messages; Press F6, then several other loading mesages, before the first stop point, which is an XP setup message: "Setup could not determine the type of one or more mass storage devices.... to specify additional  press S etc". Pressing S displays the message "Setup could not find a floppy drive on your machine" (but it's there). Pressing Enter to continue setup displays various "loading driver" messages, eventually the message "Welcome to Setup appears, with the option to "Setup" or "Repair". Selecting Setup immediately displays the message ""setup did not find any hard disks installed in your computer. ... Setup cannot continue".

I'm not sure what to try next.
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Author Comment

by:Simon_Webster
ID: 18018106
Thank you everyone for all you help on this. As a financial rather than an IT specialist I am afraid I gave up and sent the machine back. I just bought a Samsung Q35 with XP Pro supplied and I was up and running in 90 minutes. Sometimes cheap kit is a false economy. I reckon it cost me 2 days of my time - which at even £50/ hour was significantly more than the original cost of the machine.

For those with a similar problem installing a new o/s the issue seems to be finding the correct correct SATA driver. But I now believe the best way forwards is to download the M/S patch that allows MCE to be added to a domain. I am not sure where it is but I think that is probably the only workable answer for the technologically challenged such as myself. PCWorld/ Dixons sells a sealed package & that package is 100% designed to run MCE and that only. Phillips offers no support and thus finding that driver is a real challenge - Intel couldn't help either.

I am now certain that there is nothing in the BIOS to change in terms of hard disks supported and no driver shipped with the kit supplied by Dixons who would not supply a separate driver other than a windows executable also downloadable from the PC World site (not much good when trying to load from boot) and I could not find anything else that worked.

Is there a way of extracting the necessary driver from a working MCE install?

On a housekeeping note I am sure that several of the contributors have taken time to make valuable contributions to the debate but I am not sure what to do about points - if anything - if anyone would like to advise me I would be pleased to take appropriate action.

sw

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Expert Comment

by:mike_at_software
ID: 18021305
Thanks Simon,

Like you, after much frustration, I've given up - but in a different way.

I think the issue may be that, according to Microsoft technical suport, it's not possible to install XP Pro over the top of MCE - you have to wipe MCE from the drive first. The comment from karl dubendorf in this forum : http://forums.vnunet.com/message.jspa?messageID=326057  (" ... Microsoft Tech Support indicated that I can't just upgrade Media Center to XP Pro, I had to wipe my system clean and install XP Pro ... ") suggests that a clean drive is the only option. I think I may stick with the machine, but change the drive for a new blank one, and install XP Pro on that.

Mike

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by:simpswr
ID: 18064156
. . " I am afraid I gave up and sent the machine back. " . .

Very smart move . . that one waws just too strange!
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by:simpswr
ID: 18064163
"... Microsoft Tech Support indicated that I can't just upgrade Media Center to XP Pro, I had to wipe my system clean and install XP Pro ...    suggests that a clean drive is the only option"

It is indeed . .

Why are you wanting Pro? . . NCE is XP Pro with certain networking features disabled ( but which can be restored with a few registry hacks )
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by:mike_at_software
ID: 18064277
Hi Simpswr,

Thanks - you're correct, MCE has almost everything I need from XP Pro ... except the ability to join a domain, and as I'm running clients on an SBS network, joining a domain is not essential, but useful. If I run MCE as it is, then the proxy server asks for a login on each first attempt in a session to reach the internet, and attempting to browse network shares also presents similar dialog boxes - not an insurmountable problem, just more key strokes which could be avoided if MCE could join the domain.

What are the registry hacks you mentioned?
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by:simpswr
ID: 18064292
This fellow does a better job of explaining it than I could . . http://extended64.com/blogs/rafael/articles/404.aspx
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by:mike_at_software
ID: 18064347
Ah. Thanks - I tried that one. Followed it the letter. Didn't work for me.

The recovery console installs OK, but when selecting it (step 7), a blue screen always results, complaining about hardware problems. At this point, like Simon Webster, you've got to just accept this isn't going to work, and just live with the extra key strokes !
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by:Simon_Webster
ID: 18207238
Hi rindi,

Don't really have a a proboem with the adjudication but  for the sake of completeness did you see my comments in the community support area?
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by:rindi
ID: 18207823
No I hadn't seen it. Normally after such a post the support people would post a new comment here informing the people of your request, maybe they just haven't had time yet, and after all, my recommendations and your post was only about 1 day apart. I'm sure your request will have precedence.
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by:Simon_Webster
ID: 18207917
sorry so to be clear what happens now - do we just wait for community support to adjudiucate?
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by:rindi
ID: 18208467
yes.
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