Problems with format and windows xp installation

  [DELETED] 10:16 27 Oct 2003

Hi guys, I've been having serious problems trying to get my friends PC working again after reinstalling the OS. Heres what's happened...

Original XP install on C: drive (80gb) starts playing up. Probably due to virus and also due to haing loads of rubbish installed.

To fix - Installed a fresh copy of XP on the slave HDD (120gb WD partitioned into 2 x 60gb D: & E: [OS on D:, E: not formatted yet)

Result - duel boot to either original XP or new xp at start up

After I copied all the neccessary files accross to the new install of XP I tried to format the C: drive, but could not do it from inside windows (logged into the D: OS)

Tried using the windows recovery CD to format C: - Deleted partition; formatted C: (ntfs)

BUT - cannot finish format. It almost finishes and then a blue screen comes up saying that the PC has to be shut down to prevent damage to the computer.

After this, I cannot get into the PC at all. Have tried disconnecting the C: and just using 120gb as master but this just gets "press and key to reboot" ie no windows (I changed the bootup sequence in bios to use WD HDD & tried all jumper options)

Anyway, I'm now stuck. If anyone knows what i've done wrong and/or how to fix the problem I'd be very greatful.



  [DELETED] 12:38 27 Oct 2003

If you've got all data off 'c', maybe if you edit your boot.ini to delete 'c' os, it may kickstart it, but be careful and backup boot.ini 1st. (Unless 'c' hd is caput.)

  [DELETED] 12:52 27 Oct 2003

Agree with Michelle, boot to D and edit the boot.ini file.

Right-click My Computer, and then click Properties, then click System.
On the Advanced tab, click Settings under Startup and Recovery.
Under System Startup, click Edit.

Remove the entries for the other XP installation.

  [DELETED] 12:53 27 Oct 2003

firstly take the files you want and put it in the master drive, then use windows 98 boot disk and format the slave drive then fdisk it and format again after. then copy the files you want to the slave again, and finally format the master drive with the windows 98 boot disk then fdisk and format again, and then install the OS on master and that will work probably.

  [DELETED] 12:54 27 Oct 2003

btw what i just said is basically formatting both drives totally and then installing fresh OS/

  [DELETED] 13:09 27 Oct 2003

Disconnect the D: drive with all of its newly installed files and whatnot. Removing the power cable should be enough.

Start the computer from the Windws XP CD and follow the installation prompts to delete existing partitions, create a new one, format it and so on.

You may need to make certain that the jumpers on the rear of the C: drive are set to Master - No Slave Present. You can see the hard disk documentation, the label on the hard disk itself or the manufacturers website for instructions.

Once the install is complete, set the jumpers back to Master with Slave for the C: drive and make sure that the jumpers on the D: drive are set to Slave.

When the process is this far you can boot into C: and open your Control Panel, double click the System icon, click the Advanced tab, under Startup and Recovery click the Settings button. Edit the boot.ini file to include the D: drive Windows installation by reading the information at click here



  [DELETED] 13:11 27 Oct 2003

You may have to manually set the CD and/or DVD ROM drive letters since you don't want to reconnet the D: drive after a clean install to C:, only to find that Windows has allocated D: to one of the optical drive bays.

  [DELETED] 13:11 27 Oct 2003

be warned, when you installed windows xp on d: drive, some files were placed on drive c:, if you format drive c: then you may lose windows altogether.

if you are just trying to get drive c: to be the main windows then go ahead and format.

you will then need to re-install XP onto drive c:

before doing this, move all the saved data you want from drive c:, then follow the good advice of WaiKent's regarding using a windows98 startup disk to format drive c:,

then set your bios to boot from cd first, and install win XP from the cd.

good luck.

  [DELETED] 18:37 27 Oct 2003

spikeychris -Would love to boot to D: but at the moment cannot get into either/any OS install.

Would also love to format the C: and reinstall windows on that HDD but I have tried this several times (using the XP recovery cd supplied with the PC, not Win98 boot disk - does this make a difference?) but as I said above, it will not format!!

"It almost finishes and then a blue screen comes up saying that the PC has to be shut down to prevent damage to the computer." (Mr Scone, 10.16)

Is it worth trying the Windows 98 disk if XP cannot do it?

paperman27 - "be warned, when you installed windows xp on d: drive, some files were placed on drive c:, if you format drive c: then you may lose windows altogether." - I have already deleted the original partition on the C: drive and now cannot access either drive. Does this mean that I have deleted some of my D: installation of XP when I deleted the C: partition (to get rid of C: OS)?

Oh dear!

  [DELETED] 21:36 27 Oct 2003

put your win xp cd in the drive and try to install back over the drive d installation, or just install win xp on drive c:


put the win98 start up disk in the floppy, set your bios to boot to floppy first, shutdown/restart your computer and wait until the menu appears.

choose option 2, "start computer without cdrom support (you dont need cd at this stage)"

once you have the A:> prompt,


format c:/u

then wait, drive c: will be formatted, then when done, change the bios boot order to cd first and put in the winxp cd

restart your system, follow the instructions for re-installing windows.

good luck

if you need more help you know where to come

  [DELETED] 10:56 28 Oct 2003

Also check whether the motherboard BIOS has a "virus protection" feature which "write-protects" the boot sector and the Master Boot Record. Go into Bios settings and see if it has this feature. If so, and if enabled, disable it, save settings and exit, insert XP CD and try formatting the disk and reinstalling XP.

If it does't apply, try this. Make the computer boot from the new disk. The new disk at the moment has a primary partition (where XP is) but it's not set as active. It also has no boot files necessary for booting into XP.

Disconnect old disk. Set new disk as master. Restart computer with XP CD. At this stage, youi can either select a repair reinstall (by selecting to go into XP Setup, the option is always to install a fresh copy of XP until you get the option to install over the existing copy). This is paperman27's suggestion above. You will need to go through the whole installation, but it's simple enough.

Alternatively, go into Recovery Console and do things manually (should be quicker, if it works), but it's up to you.

Go into Recovery Console. Enter the number of the Windows XP installation (should be 1) and press Enter. You should get to the C:\WINDOWS> prompt.

At the prompt, type map and press Enter.

You should see the name given to the hard disk (should be \Device\harddisk0), the XP partition should be C, and the drive letter for the CDROM (might be E, since there's another partition, though unformatted).

Then type:

copy x:\i386\ c:
and press Enter, where x is the letter of the CDROM drive.

Then type:

copy x:\i386\ntldr c:
and press Enter.

Then type:

bootcfg /rebuild

and press Enter. This is intended to write the boot.ini file.

It should scan for Windows installations and then says (1) C:\Windows, and ask you whether to add installation to boot list. Say yes.

When asked to enter load identifier, just type:

Microsoft Windows XP Home

and press enter.

When asked for Load Options, just type:


and press Enter.

The above copies/creates the 3 necessary boot files on to the new disk.

Then type:

fixboot c:

and press Enter. If you get a warning, confirm the action. This creates an XP boot sector for the C partition.

Then type:

fixmbr \device\harddisk0

and press Enter. When warned, confirm the action. This re-writes the mbr so that it contains the information that the c partition is now the active partition.

Then just type exit and press Enter. The computer will restart. Remove the CD and see if the computer will load XP.

If it does load XP, whether after a repair reinstall, or via Recovery Console, (and you may be prompted to activate XP, not sure, but do that later if you can), turn off computer.

Reconnect old hard disk as slave. Go back into BIOS to make sure the slave is detected, but also make sure that the computer is booting from the master. Exit BIOS settings and let the computer boot into XP.

Back in XP, click Start, Run and type diskmgmt.msc and press Enter. See what it says about disk1 (the old disk). If there's a partition, right click and delete it. Then right click the unpartitioned or unallocated space and select create partition and follow the prompts and ultimately format the new partition. If you right click and the only option you get is to initialise hard disk, do that first. Then create partition.

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