Avatar of jwmorgan77
jwmorgan77 asked on

Can't install OS

One of our clients brought in a Sony vaio pcg-z505ls laptop with a bad hard drive. We replaced the drive but now cannot reinstall the OS. The unit only has one usb port and no optical drive. It originally shipped with windows ME. We tried using boot floppy disks for both ME and XP with a usb floppy drive but cannot get the usb cd-rom drive to recognize when we swap. We also tried using a powered usb hub but then it does not recognize any device. The bios sees the usb drive(s) when plugged in standalone. Please help us figure this one out.
Windows OSWindows XPMicrosoft Legacy OS

Avatar of undefined
Last Comment

8/22/2022 - Mon

Can you change the BIOS to allow boot from CD and then just insert the appropriate OS CD in the USB CD drive and go from there?

It is set to that, will not boot from CD. We have tried several external drives with no luck.

the bios has to support booting from a usb device which more than likely it doesnt.  If you dont want to get a cd rom drive and slap it in long enough to do the install you could do a few things.  Do a network install if you have a server available.  Make a partition and create an install there.  just depends on how you would like to do it.  The easiest way would be to temperarly place a cd rom drive in the machine for install.
This is the best money I have ever spent. I cannot not tell you how many times these folks have saved my bacon. I learn so much from the contributors.

Venom has a point about the BIOS, but if you were able to boot from a USB floppy, I'd think that same thing would work from a USB CD...perhaps not. What is the boot order in the BIOS?

If you can boot from floppy and recognize the hard disk then if the Sony has a standard parallel port you could transfer the CD contents via a parallel cable from another computer.

Use a Laplink cable or something similar.

Use File Maven (free) or something similar to do the transfer.  http://www.briggsoft.com/fmdos.htm

You only need the i386 folder to be copied across.


From the floppy disk you'd format the hard drive to be bootable  

format c: /s

Use File Maven to copy the 1386 folder from another computer.

Remove floppy and boot from hard disk.

cd   \i386

This is one of those tiny sony laptops. No Parallel port only 1 USB and a pcmcia card slot. No onboard eathernet.
Get an unlimited membership to EE for less than $4 a week.
Unlimited question asking, solutions, articles and more.

Log in or sign up to see answer
Become an EE member today7-DAY FREE TRIAL
Members can start a 7-Day Free trial then enjoy unlimited access to the platform
Sign up - Free for 7 days
Learn why we charge membership fees
We get it - no one likes a content blocker. Take one extra minute and find out why we block content.
See how we're fighting big data
Not exactly the question you had in mind?
Sign up for an EE membership and get your own personalized solution. With an EE membership, you can ask unlimited troubleshooting, research, or opinion questions.
ask a question