Hi all! I'm writing this almost 2 years after you've all moved on so I hope someone checks this from time to time. I'm working on a Dell Inspiron 1545 that likes to "not boot" when the power button is pressed, so I am replacing the HD but can't get an OS to load!
I partitioned the new HD just like the old one and copied the factory.wim (image file) from old D: to new D: but when I apply the image I get errors like "ntldr is missing" or "not a bootable disk".
This originally had Vista Home on it which I don't have, but I have a few old original XP disks laying around. When I try to install XP I get a blue screen of death right before it actually starts installing. I've tried 3 different disks, all of them have same result.
Do you have any x64 versions of this winpe? the dell computer i am attempting to repair has a 64-bit system, not a 32-bit. If so, please post it so that I could use it. Thank you very much for your assistance.
You do not need a x64 bit version of the WINPE. All you are using that for is to restore the factory image. If the factory image is x64, then that is what will be installed. So using what I posted should work with no issues.
Sorry for the several month delay, but let me know if you are still working on this and I will look into providing additional information.
Could not boot the recovery disk either. Upon receipt of the laptop (alienware, dell) I did create the dell Lap Recover USB thumb drive. So, start recover sequence by plugging in the thumb drive, restarting the laptop, pushing F12 for boot options and booting from USB. Hopefully, you did create the recovery DVD or USB media at purchase.
I know I'm a little late to the discussion, but boogiemunster your directions were right on the money (providing the recovery partition is still there. Worked like a charm for me.
I needed to revert from Windows 10 back to Windows 7 after 5 months of running the "upgrade". Microsoft says you can only revert back if it has been less than 30 days since the upgrade.
After that time has expired, the default recovery options are lost (deleted or modified not sure). Windows 10 would not respond to F8 commands during boot-up or the DELL Ctrl+F11 or Alt+F11 or Alt+F10. However, I could see the RECOVERY partition under disk management, which was marked as ACTIVE.
This solution worked perfectly on a clients INSPIRON ONE 2320 to downgrade from Windows 10.
Thanks for your sacrifice of time BOOGIEMUNSTER!