Best for you to read the XPS 420 manual, especially the section About Your RAID Configuration and System Setup Options.
<ADMIN NOTE: Broken link has been removed from this post by Dell>
Now if i understood you correctly, your motherboard SATA ports were set to RAID mode within the system BIOS and you are getting a missing BOOTMGR error message at system boot. You have also replaced one 'old HDD' with a cleanly formatted 'new HDD'.
If you were actually using the RAID features on your motherboard, you would have had to have two old HDD configured in a RAID array but by removing one old HDD, you have broken the array and compromised/lost your data.
If you can live with the data loss, the real question is do you need RAID? If not, the simplest thing to do is set the 'SATA drives 0-4' to 'ON' rather than 'RAID' within system BIOS. Then install Windows as normal emoticon.Smile.title
If you want RAID and have two HDD, then you need to configure the raid array within the RAID Option Rom BIOS before you can begin to consider installing any OS. To enter the RAID Option ROM BIOS you normally press CRTL-I keys during the system boot process. Then from the RAID BIOS page you need to initialize the RAID array by define the RAID configuration required (0= stripped, 1=mirrored) and which HDD are included in this array. When you create a RAID array it wipes all data from the HDD included in the array so be warned! RAID0 and RAID1 require 2 HDD be installed in your system. Once the RAID array is defined, you may also need to install the appropriate raid drivers during the OS install process itself. This is so that the Windows OS can see the RAID array you have defined, otherwise it will not see any bootable disks hence the error message you are getting. You can install the appropriate RAID drivers for your motherboard during the OS install process by pressing F6 and pointing to the location of the driver file (you loaded them onto USB stick didn't you). The OS install process will then load the drivers at which point it can then see the RAID array (it sees it as a disk drive) and the OS install can proceed. Once the OS install process is complete, you will need to instal the RAID management software (e.g. Intel Rapid Storage Technology) and any other software specific to your system.
Alternatively, you may be able to recover the old RAID array if you have not wiped the old HDD by installing the old HDD back where it was removed from and attempting a recovery using the Windows install disk in combination with F6 driver install. But i have not attempted anything like that so not sure if/how it will work.
Best rule, if you don't know about RAID, stick with ATA or AHCI mode or play with it on a test system (where you don't care about data loss) + back up often emoticon.Smile.title
Thanks for the help. Let me try to help explain the problem to make sure I understand what your telling me.
First, the original HDD failed, It simply would not power up. I replaced the original HDD with a new one. The system only has one HDD.
Here is the data from the "DRIVES" from the System Setup page:
Diskette Drive is set to USB, per factory default settings.
SATA -0 is on, controller = Serial ATA, PORT = SATA -0, bios = "this drive is controlled by the RAID BIOS"
SATA-1 is on, controller = serial ATA, port = STA -1, this drive is a DVD-ROM
SATA -2 is on, all data is the same as SATA -1
SATA 3 and 4 are off
I will read up on the system setup and RAID set up and get back to you tomorrow.
According to the System Setup Options link i provided, the SATA operation can be set to 'Off', 'On' or 'RAID On'. So with only one HDD, setting RAID makes no sense so SATA-0 operation should be set to 'On' and not 'RAID On'.
Try setting SATA-0 to Off, save and exist BIOS, then again set it to ON, save and exit BIOS. Hopefully it will no longer indicate the drive is controlled by the RAID BIOS.
Mind you, the documentation i linked to may be for an earlier version of your BIOS or the text within the documentation may simply be wrong. Whatever, you need to set the SATA port to not use any RAID features, then install Windows again.
I think I have the fix! Disconnected all SATA drives and connected a external hard drive. It loaded. It appears that the SATA port is bad and I need a new motherboard.
When the HDD dies, it may have also killed the SATA port at the same time emoticon.Sad.title
But all is not lost, rather than spending money on a mobo, just set SATA-0 to OFF in BIOS and use SATA-1 for your primary HDD and SATA-2 for your ODD emoticon.Smile.title
Welcome to the Community.
Please set the hard drive as the first boot device in the BIOS setup. You can also try a Start up repair by trying these steps: support.microsoft.com/.../2622803
You will need to have the Windows 7 installation disc or perform Start up repair or check method 4 in the above given link.
Kindly reply with the results.