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bgeiger
1 Copper

Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

After a couple months of intermittent problems the hard drive in my Inspiron 530 failed.  I purchased a new one from Dell (the one they recommended) and installed it.  It is recognized but now I can't get the CD drive to boot from the Vista reinstallation DVD.  The error message is "Boot Device Not Available   Hit any key to retry"  It almost seems to me like the drive thinks it is only a cd drive not dvd.  I've tried every solution I can find online both here and elsewhere to no avail.   And it's out there a lot!   Has anyone ever actually solved this common issue?

By the way, I got the same error when I tried to reinstall Windows from the DVD when my hard drive was failing but blamed the problem on that. 

Ideas?

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9 Replies
laveranues
1 Nickel

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

Because you didn't specifically state otherwise, I have to ask if you changed the boot order in the BIOS to boot from the CD/DVD first?  It sounds like it is checking the hard drive and finding no valid boot loader (as would be the case on a clean drive).

If that's not it, another option would be to put a restore disk .iso on a usb key and boot from that, then see if the dvd will run from the command prompt.

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bgeiger
1 Copper

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

Thanks.  Sorry I wasn't clear.  Yes, I did change the boot order.  I've even tried removing the hard drive from the boot order completely but I get the same message.  Your idea of making a bootable USB key is one I plan to try today.  Thanks.

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bgeiger
1 Copper

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

Update: I am having trouble creating a bootable USB key.  I did narrow down my issue a little though.  I tried a Windows XP bootable cd and it read it fine.  I believe that my initial thought was correct and that for some reason the drive can't read the installation DVD but can read CDs.  Pretty frustrating since this is the equipment and the software that was shipped together.  You'd think it would work.  I guess the most obvious solution is to put the DVD onto multiple CDs.  I know I can probably use someones computer to do that and know that there are programs out there to help but I'm quickly getting beyond my knowledge level.  Any advice would be appreciated.

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GreenInNYC
1 Copper

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

I'm having nearly the exact same issue as I'm trying to do a factory reistall of XP to a Dimension e521.  I'm using the XP reinstall disk that came with the machine, but the BIOS doesn't recognize that that my DVD is "not present."  My BIOS is updated, and my CD-RW/DVD-ROM is reading disks just fine when XP is booted. 

I've read the documentation for the CD-RW/DVD-ROM (a Hitachi GCC-h10n) and can't find anything useful.  I suspect that (even though the DVD was shipped with my e521) that something with this motherboard doesn't allow booting from DVD.  I'll contintue looking and let you know if I find something.

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GreenInNYC
1 Copper

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

This thread may be of interest to you (although it doesn't bode well for our success...):

http://en.community.dell.com/forums/p/19285561/19521941.aspx#19521941

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Dr. Lawrence Ho
4 Ruthenium

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

Have you looked at Dell tech help?  See this page.  http://support.dell.com/support/topics/global.aspx/support/dsn/en/document?docid=361935&type=force&l... .  You need to turn the player "on."  Are the DVD-CD drivers intalled?

 PainDoc 

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GreenInNYC
1 Copper

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

Thanks for the link.  I've checked out that page.  In my case, I'm trying to install XP onto a newly formatted disk, so there aren't any drivers that come into play yet.  If anything, it might be the firmware for the BIOS.

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GreenInNYC
1 Copper

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

Thanks for the link.  I've checked out that page.  In my case, I'm trying to install XP onto a newly formatted disk, so there aren't any drivers that come into play yet.  If anything, it might be the firmware for the BIOS or DVD-ROM.

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bgeiger
1 Copper

Re: Replacement Hard Drive Installed but DVD/CD Drive won't boot to reinstall Windows Vista

Here's what I finally did.  

Wasted $49 on Dell tech support who basically figured I needed new everything.

Successfully created a bootable USB key with Vista installation DVD (on a borrowed laptop with a working DVD player!)  There are lots of instructions out there online to do this using 'diskpart' and 'xcopy' from at the command prompt -- just don't forget to create bootsector on the USB drive.

Created a second bootable USB key with the contents of the resource DVD containing all the drivers.

Used the USB key to install Vista on the new hard drive.

Used the second key to install drivers then had to actually go to Dell website and download updated drivers for chipset, ethernet controller and firmware for DVD player before I could do much else.

At present, this DVD player will read all CD's and DVD video, and will burn data disks that work on other players but it won't read them.  Writes but won't read.  Go figure.  Thank goodness for cheap USB keys as I'll be relying on them for backups now.  

 

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