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Scott ThompsonFlag for United States of America

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How do I put XP Pro on a Dell PowerEdge 2600 Server?

I have a Dell PowerEdge 2600 Server that came with Windows 2000 Server on it.  The RAID was corrupted and needed to be re-initialized.  That part went without a hitch.

I attempted to install XP Pro on it and the setup CD would not recognize the LSI Perc 4/Di RAID Controller.  I went to LSI's website and downloaded the appropriate drivers onto floppy and loaded them with the setup CD (F6 during bootup).  The drivers loaded, but setup would not recognize the RAID controller.  I then attempted alternate drivers and tried to reload with Windows 2000 and Windows 2003 Server editions.  They all hit the same brick wall.

I called Dell and was informed that they do not support XP being put on this computer but knew that it could be done.  One tech even gave me a link to download their System Builder CD, but that CD, while it recognizes the RAID controller, only supports certain versions of 2000 and 2003, which I have been unable to find.

I would really like to put XP Pro on here if anyone could help me.

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Could you run it with Windows 2003 Server as a member server and use it as a workstation, if that is desired?  Just a thought...

Another thought: Have you tried going to and using your service tag to download the RAID drivers (for Windows 2003 and/or Windows 2000) to see if they will work with Windows XP?
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As a further note, I have seen a video that was explaining how to use the System Builder software and I saw that Windows XP was one of the options on their CD.  Does anyone know where I could even get that CD from?  I have System Builder v5.5.0.
Yes, we attempted Dell's support site and were able to use the Service Tag to access the drivers, to no avail.  We even attempted to slipstream those drivers onto the Windows XP CD and that did not work either.  A very frustrating problem.
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It is a server platform.  An option you might consider is setting up a linux OS like centos. and then setting up vmware's server (virtual environment.) then you can load the windows XP as a virtual machine.  
You have already done the correct steps; it's my guess you're either not using the correct drivers or you're not putting them on the floppy correctly. I've put XP Pro on a 2650 before. Definitely use the service tag to get the drivers from
I have taken the drivers from the Dell website and loaded them onto a floppy, which then was loaded during the Windows XP setup, however, even though it recognizes the drivers as usable, it still says that there was no Hard Drive found AFTER the screen comes up to install Windows XP.
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Check your controller and make sure that 1. you've created the array and 2. you've specified a logical drive. 3) Make sure you initialize the logical drive -- this could be a simple oversight.The second is usually done automatically when the array is created but perhaps not in this case. I don't have any 2650s not in production right now so I can't get you the walk through. Check those things and make sure all is in place. Although it really shouldn't make a difference, try selecting the RAID controller as the first drive controller in the BIOS also. Let us know

Justin Chandler
I agree with Justin.  You can even start the installation with the Dell System Manager as if you were putting on Windows 2003.  This will prep the RAID set.  Then reboot the server when it asks for the Windows 2003 CD and start the Windows XP process (and use the Dell driver download previously that works with your RAID controller).
Arkware, I attempted your idea, and yet the Windows XP Professional setup does NOT recognize any logical hard drive.  If you have any other suggestions, please let me know.  I've been banging my head up against the wall on this one.  Even if it's not possible (which I've seen people say they've done it) to put Windows XP on this server, why can't I even get Windows 2000 to recognize it either?  The RAID array has been set up and initialized (System Builder see it just fine), but not a single installation CD will see it, even with drivers loaded from floppy.
Save yourself the headache and use VMWARe's esxi and setup the windows XP as a virtual machine.
This way you can see whether the RAID volume you created is seen by something else as well as determine whether the winXP in VM is good enough for your purposes.
Okay, I will try with the VMWARe's esxi.  I've never set up a virtual machine before, but I'll let you know if this works and/or if I need help still putting Windows XP on it.
Using a VM is a good idea as long as the constraints of it are reasonable (such as direct access to hardware resources).

I agree that it seems strange that Windows XP isn't able to see the volume.  Is this being done with Windows XP with SP2 or SP3 slipstreamed into the installation CD?
It turns out that VMWARe's ESXi requires me to have 1GB? of memory, even though it says the minimum is 256MB.  I have 512MB installed, but it requires a certain kind of RAM to add more.  I can't just throw in my 512 DDR 400MHz, because PowerEdge disables them, claiming they're not usable.  I'm trying to slipstream SP3 on Windows XP Professional now and going to see if that works to recognize the drive.  Any other suggestions?
I did finally get XP Pro up and running on this machine.  It wasn't my ideal solution, but it did work.  For some reason, the setup CD would not recognize the RAID array (although Dell System Builder saw the array just fine) and once I separated the array and ran it in BIOS as straight SCSI for the boot drive, it worked just fine.  I am planning on making a RAID 5 array out of the other 3 drives and storing all my important data on there (as if my OS wasn't important!).  Thank you everyone for your help.  Although a lot of the ideas didn't work, they did make me think about this problem in different ways, and I've learned a bit about Virtual Machines, too!  :)
Thank you for making me look in the BIOS again.  Although the RAID was showing properly, I saw that I could just try to read it as SCSI as well.  Once I did that, XP had no problem seeing the 4 drives and I installed to the 1st one.  Thanks again.