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cannot reinstall windows xp from cd on dell e520 cpu.

rberke
rberke asked
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Last Modified: 2017-03-30
This 7 year old machine has been mothballed for over a year, but now i want to use it.

I logged in as mydomain\rberke but I ran into some minor issues, so i used msconfig to set safeboot and restarted.

Oh crap -- I forgot the administrator password so I can not log in !!!!  (Next time I will try to remember to use safeboot with networking!!!)

I tried every possible password I might have used including blank password. Tried booting to last know good configuration. I tried booting to safe mode with networking.  Unfortunately, the msconfig setting takes priority and overrides all those tries.

I then tried booting to an xp pro service pack 2 CD hoping that the recovery console and BCEDIT might save me.

I cannot get it to boot from the cd. I think the cd drive might be misconfigured.

When i hit f12 during boot I get to the boot menu and tab down to select "onboard cd" the computer freezes.

I then retried using the actual dell re-installation disk that came with computer. still no luck.
I also tried setting bios to only boot from the onboard cd, but the boot hangs when it tries the cd.



I suspect the cd drive may not be configured correctly, but I can't see any obvious bios settings to tweak.
 I am willing to take the hard drive out and mount it into a USB case if needed.  But, I am not willing to replace the cd drive
 
The computer is not worth a lot of work, but I hope somebody has some suggestions.
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RaminTechnical Advisor
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dbruntonQuid, Me Anxius Sum?  Illegitimi non carborundum.
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rberkeConsultant

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Commented:
its a dell e520. I ran hardware tests, but there does not appear to be anything to test the CD.

 I wonder if I can boot from USB like a flash drive?  I tried using an 8gig win 10 upgrade flash drive but CPU was totally non functional with stick in front panel, and stick was ignored when the back panel.
Perhaps a smaller USB stick would work?

I also have some scrap dell computers, and I suppose I could try swapping in the CD.
I also have an old floppy drive that I could put in (there is an empty slot that could take it.

Th
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dbruntonQuid, Me Anxius Sum?  Illegitimi non carborundum.
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rberkeConsultant

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Commented:
I'll put in a cd and floppy drive tomorrow and post back the results.

rberke
rberkeConsultant

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Commented:
I made the win 10 stick last year and it worked fine for upgrading 5 Windows 7 computers to windows 10.  But, I am pretty sure that 8gig sticks are too big for a 7 year old bios to handle.
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rberkeConsultant

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Commented:
could not boot the computer even with a new CD.

but, I stuck the harddrive into another computer and used a Linux based password zapper to blank the password.
Returned the harddrive to the original cpu and now all is well.

I will give points as best I can.
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tx for feedback, and glad its running