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Trying to Install XP home from 2GB USB flash drive

Poker-Dude asked
DVD drive is shot. Have copied all contents of XP install cd to flash drive on another computer. Boot Order is setup to try USB device first but no luck.

What to do??
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the XP CD has some 'boot code' in the first sector to enable the PC to load the programs
I don't think you can boot off flash drives (would have to format them to be bootable
I would imagine that you are missing the boot code on the USB device. There is a certain code that makes a CD bootable - without this you basically just have a copy of the CD files (i386, etc).

In order to do this properly, you will need to setup your USB stick to be bootable and behave as a windows install CD, which is certainly not as easy as it might sound. one example of a person who did it may be found here:


Honestly, though, if your dead DVD drive is in a desktop and you can swap a good one from another computer, even if only for the install process, you will have a faster and, likely, easier time accomplishing your install that way. Though, the USB stick install seems like a fun project.

Hope that helps


No problem.
Happy to help. Thank you.

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