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OT: Saving and re-installing Windows XP Pro on existing or new HDD, Dell D600

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  • OT: Saving and re-installing Windows XP Pro on existing or new HDD, Dell D600

    I have been firing up some of my old laptop computers and swapping out various HDDs with different operating systems. Right now I have a Dell D600 laptop which has a 30 GB HDD and Windows XP Pro. It has a Pentium M processor 2000/600 MHz. On start-up, I have been getting "Disc read error - please reboot", but eventually it boots up and runs XP, although response is sometimes slow. I connected the drive to a USB adapter and it reads OK and passes a basic error check, but installed in the Dell it gives an error during the BIOS diagnostics.

    So I have found on eBay a 60 GB HDD for $18, and a 120 GB HDD for $39, which has Windows XP Pro loaded on it. I don't have a pressing need for this computer but I'd like to make it run well and be reliable. and perhaps use it for CAD or PCB design, and maybe software testing. I don't have the XP Pro install disc, but I do have the product key label on the bottom of the machine, so I should be able to do a legal re-install. However, Micro$oft no longer has the ISO image available for download, and I'm not sure I trust the unofficial sources, so I'd like to make a recovery disc. But the only thing that seems to be available is the backup utility, which stores the selected files and system state in a proprietary format.

    I have looked at Clonezilla, which apparently makes a bootable disk image, but the files on the computer are about 9 GB, and the USB seems to be limited to 8 GB FAT thumb drives. I can probably delete some document and program files to get down to 7 GB or so, but it seems that Clonezilla must run on reboot, and I'm afraid that it may fail again. So I wonder if I can just copy the root files and the Windows folder to the thumb drive, then format the HDD, and copy the files back to it. That seems like it might be easier and safer than the disk image.

    I have a few more 2.5" drives I could use in the Dell machine, but it is a special 10 mm slim package and the drives I have are 13 mm.

    Some resources I have investigated:

    https://www.wikihow.com/Reinstall-Wi...Without-the-CD

    https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/...f-82486379d1c8

    https://neosmart.net/blog/2012/windo...cds-available/

    https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/...d-19774e616ffb
    .
    http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
    Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
    USA Maryland 21030

  • #2
    If you can get an older version of "Drive image", it will back up the disk as an image on a terabyte drive, or even a large thumbdrive, which can be put back on any drive of at least the original size. Not just some files, it does the entire disk,with whatever is on it.

    There are others, but that is what I use.
    CNC machines only go through the motions

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    • #3
      Can't you remove the disk and use a disk adapter to clone the disk with a modern computer? That way you don't have the older OP system file size limitation.
      Helder Ferreira
      Setubal, Portugal

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      • #4
        It seems I'm limited to 8 GB FAT, but I'm cleaning up the XP disc so there should be only about 6 GB used. It's taking quite a while, though - mostly because it's compressing old files. I made a boot USB drive using Clonezilla, and AIUI the laptop will boot from that media and then I will be able to clone the HDD to (probably another) thumb drive. But I'm not sure how to reformat the HDD and transfer the system back to it.

        Maybe I should connect the drive to my main Win10 machine and extract a disc image from it, then reformat and reload the system if the drive is still OK. If not I can get one of the replacement drives and use that in the laptop. Maybe I'll try your Drive Image software:

        https://www.runtime.org/driveimage-xml.htm
        .
        http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
        Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
        USA Maryland 21030

        Comment


        • #5
          Your license key is most likely an OEM key. It's a cheaper version of Windows that is only sold to system builders. The system builder is responsible for support in exchange for the much lower price. An OEM key won't work with a retail installation CD. A hard disk that comes with Windows preinstalled is most likely a cracked copy, so it probably won't need a key. But generally speaking, Microsoft retail products won't accept an OEM key. You can probably buy OEM media on ebay (risk of viruses and all that). OEM media will say that the disk is only for distribution with a new PC.

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          • #6
            Switch over to Windows 7, I run most of my shop CNC on it.
            Retired - Journeyman Refrigeration Pipefitter - Master Electrician

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            • #7
              Originally posted by PStechPaul View Post
              Right now I have a Dell D600 laptop which has a 30 GB HDD and Windows XP Pro.
              That there's some serious Old iron disease.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Glug View Post

                That there's some serious Old iron disease.
                Yeah. I have one of them somewhere also. They just refuse to die. They also have connectors on the back for nearly everything you could get or might need at the time they were made. That can be good.
                CNC machines only go through the motions

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                • #9
                  I do like the fact that this machine has a parallel port, serial port, and video port. Also two USB, a modem port, a DIN video (or maybe mouse) port and Ethernet. And a PCMCIA slot. Today I copied the DriveImage XML software to a thumb drive, but I got an error "Drive not accessible due to I/O device error". However, eventually it came up as a valid disc drive, and I was able to install the program on my XP machine. Now I am creating the backup drive image on the thumb drive.

                  Hopefully the I/O error was due to the wonky HDD. But I suspect it may be something else, especially since the drive seemed to pass a scan when I had it connected to my Win10 machine. At least I will have a copy of XP Pro that I could load onto another computer if I find that the problem is actually on the mobo. Perhaps I can look at the error log to get a clue?


                  Thanks. This software looks pretty good.
                  http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
                  Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
                  USA Maryland 21030

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I was able to get the disc image on the USB thumb drive, and then I wanted to use a bootable media (WinPE - pre-installation environment) to perform disk diagnostics and formatting. I found several but they required purchase. Then I found a list of five best free bootable ISOs, and I selected the first (most recommended) Ultimate Boot CD, and I created the CD.

                    When I restarted the XP machine, with CD Drive for boot, the drive rattled a bit like it was reading, but then Win XP started up and ran OK (this time). I found the CD drive D: but when I used Explorer to open it, Internet Explorer was invoked and it tried to access "http://www.ultimatebootcd.com", which of course failed because I don't have an internet connection on that machine. The disk has an autorun.inf file which includes ShellExecute=http://www.ultimatebootcd.com, and icon=ubcb\ubcd.ico.

                    As a "sanity check" I tried again, this time with a Windows 95 CD that I have used on other computers to install that OS. But once again it just started up WinXP.

                    So it appears that the BIOS is not behaving properly. The CD/DVD drive seems to be OK. When I click on the Win95 CD it opens the main menu, so the drive reads OK. Perhaps the BIOS does not have the needed drivers for the CDROM drive?

                    So I decided to ask a question about the Ultimate Boot CD on their forum: https://www.ultimatebootcd.com/forums/index.php, and of course I need to register before posting. So I enter my username, a password, and my email address. But it has one more challenge:

                    What is the last word of the first category on the "Useful Links" page?:
                    This question is a means of preventing automated form submissions by spambots.
                    But there is no "Useful Links" page. The nearest I found was "Resources&Links", but none of the words seemed to satisfy this CAPTCHA daemon!

                    All this just to try to rejuvenate an old wonky laptop.
                    http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
                    Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
                    USA Maryland 21030

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      It seems that the BIOS does not recognize the CD/DVD drive OR the USB device as bootable media. I found this by using the setup menu and disabling the HDD but making sure the CD/DVD/CD-RW Drive and the USB Storage Device were enabled. Upon save and exit it reported no bootable devices. I have searched for similar issues but this was not among the working suggestions and fixes. I found a download for the latest BIOS for the D600, but it is also A16, which is what is installed. And when I tried to run the BIOS update it reported that it was older than what is already installed.

                      The HDD did have four folders which seemed out of place, and perhaps they were recovered when I may have done a chkdsk/f sometime ago.

                      One of them (448df45fca4efdbd34cfbaa806) appears to be files for internet explorer,

                      490aa17d9aabf408125a has folders for:
                      i386 and amd64

                      and two folders (c8b4387a2dba693485 and c90f9875c5ad544a1a00) have files for
                      wgasetup.exe
                      Last edited by PStechPaul; 05-19-2020, 08:50 PM.
                      http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
                      Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
                      USA Maryland 21030

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Normally, you SPECIFY the boot order in the BIOS. You should be able to specify that if you find the right BIOS entry. I am 99.99% certain the D600 has that option.

                        Have you found that BIOS selection? If you do, see what sources are selected. You should be able to select a boot order including as many of those as you wish.
                        CNC machines only go through the motions

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          There are two options on startup. F2 enters BIOS setup, and F12 allows a temporary selection of CDROM or USB device for initial boot. I have the CDROM as #1 in boot order in BIOS. If I disable the HDD from the list of boot devices, and exit setup, it immediately shows "no boot devices" and puts me back in setup. I found a thread by someone having a similar problem but on a desktop:

                          https://www.neowin.net/forum/topic/6...from-cd-drive/

                          I am trying again to burn a boot CD with UBCD538. I may have just copied the files rather than the entire ISO image. I also found out that apparently the Win95 install disc is NOT a boot disc.

                          [edit] Hooray! I was able to boot the Ultimate Boot CD V5.3.8!

                          The way to burn a CD with an ISO disc image is to right-click on the ISO file and choose Burn Disc Image.
                          Last edited by PStechPaul; 05-19-2020, 11:13 PM.
                          http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
                          Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
                          USA Maryland 21030

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by PStechPaul View Post
                            But there is no "Useful Links" page. The nearest I found was "Resources&Links", but none of the words seemed to satisfy this CAPTCHA daemon!
                            https://www.ultimatebootcd.com/resources.html

                            Last word of the first category is "only", or maybe "Virtualizers" if they are referring to the category name.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thanks for that. My question would have been "Why doesn't my CD boot?", and I figured out that it was because I didn't properly burn the ICO image. So they might have laughed at me for that. There are many useful functions on that CD, especially "Part Magic", which runs a form of Linux. I was also able to use DriveImage XML to restore the XML image to the C: drive. But it just copied the entire thumb drive and not the image, which was in a folder. So although I could read the files (using Linux), the HDD would not boot.

                              Eventually, I had to remove the drive and connect it to my Win10 machine, but it did not show up as a disc drive letter. So I had to use the Disc Management app to delete the (Linux) partition and reform it to be compatible with Windows, and have it assigned a drive letter. Then I was able to use DriveImage XML to properly restore the image to the drive. However, it still would not boot from the HDD.

                              So, I thought maybe I would just install Linux on this machine. But the current versions are all 64 bit, and the Pentium M and its environment apparently only supports 32 bit. I found some distros for "lite" versions, and made boot discs. But they did not work very well, if at all, although I was able to get a little further with a 32 bit legacy version of LinuxLite. It showed
                              "This kernel requires the following features not present on the CPU : PAE", and stuck there. However I found a way to "force pae", and it finally ran (although not installed). PAE is Physical Address Extension.

                              When I opened the lid, it informed me that the linux session was locked, and demanded a username and password, which must be some default which I don't know. I finally used "linux" as the username and that worked!

                              I found an app which displayed the info on the HDD as 30GB Master Boot Record with 52 bad sectors, 37 oC, HPFS/NTFS. There was a "Bootable" flag that was not set, so after setting it....

                              Yahoo! XP is finally alive and (hopefully) well!
                              http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
                              Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
                              USA Maryland 21030

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