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Dell XPS l421 - Dell Recovery and Restore USB hanging forever.....

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Hi all,

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

I upgraded (seemingly free) to Windows 10 (from 8.1 but suffered with various non-responsive issues so tried to install Win 7 from external usb  DVD drive. No luck here as windows would not recognize any internal drive. My  next thought was to try and use Dell provided USB recovery and Restore USB. This starts to work but than hangs about 20 minutes in and just doesn't move, tried waiting overnight etc.

I have previously done a FULL system diagnostic check and nothing indicated wrong with hardware.

Any help would be very appreciated. I don't mind Windows 8.1, 7 or whatever - this is just a laptop for tethering my digital cameras to while shooting.

Tom

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RE: Dell XPS l421 - Dell Recovery and Restore USB hanging forever.....

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Hi Tom,


Welcome to our community. The system that you own is not compatible with Windows 10. That is the reason of the system being nonresponsive as there are lot of application that requires the right type of a driver compatible with Windows 10.


In regards to the troubleshooting, run the hardware diagnostics once again to check if there is any hardware damage. Share if you see any error code and a validation code.


Also, share the service tag, registered owner of the system via private message, so that we can check for more details. To send a private message, click on my name and select ‘Send private message’

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RE: Dell XPS l421 - Dell Recovery and Restore USB hanging forever.....

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Hi Tom,


Welcome to our community. The system that you own is not compatible with Windows 10. That is the reason of the system being nonresponsive as there are lot of application that requires the right type of a driver compatible with Windows 10.


In regards to the troubleshooting, run the hardware diagnostics once again to check if there is any hardware damage. Share if you see any error code and a validation code.


Also, share the service tag, registered owner of the system via private message, so that we can check for more details. To send a private message, click on my name and select ‘Send private message’

View solution in original post

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RE: Dell XPS l421 - Dell Recovery and Restore USB hanging forever.....

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Hi Lijo,

I got the problem solved by removing the HDD and formatting in my pc via a caddy. The Dell recovery worked no problem. So despite the hardware test coming back OK there was obviously something wrong with my HDD, I actually re-installed using a 120GB SSD which works lovely and quick now! Just another question, maybe two...

I would love to run Win 7 on this machine, is that possible? and widows asked my for my windows 8 key, which I never had, can I get this somehow or am I stuck with constant reminders (and no updates probably)?

I hope I can run win7 otherwise Dell have confined me to windows 8 😞

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RE: Dell XPS l421 - Dell Recovery and Restore USB hanging forever.....

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The XPS L421x likely came with Windows 8.x (Home Non-Bing). You can Download a Windows 8.1 .iso from Microsoft and Clean Install:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/download-windows-8-1-retail-and-oem-iso/ 

You likely lack the SLIC required for Windows 7 Pro OEM because Windows 8.1 (Home) Edition does not posssess downgrade rights:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/uefi/#OEMSLP 

Therefore you are constrained to Windows 8.1 (Home) or Windows 10 (Home).

From answering posts on the forums I believe the XPS L421x and XPS 2710 are the only Dell systems which came with Windows 7/8.1 that do not run Windows 10 very well. People have experienced black screens (no UEFI BIOS splash screen) which they cannot escape after installing Windows 10 on these models.

Dr Philip Yip
Tech Enthusiast and Author of the Unofficial Dell Windows Reinstallation Guide

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads


#IDoNotWorkFor Dell
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RE: Dell XPS l421 - Dell Recovery and Restore USB hanging forever.....

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the whole thing is a bloody nightmare!

I used a clean SSD to install from the Dell provided USB. This worked fine but I have since spent about an hour on the phone to Microsoft AND Dell to learn that the BIOS keeps record of the HDD that was used during the original install and activation wont happen with a different HDD.

Dell support suggested that I pay them £39 for a remote assistance session to force the BIOS to recognise the new HDD and allow the embeded Windows key to activate.....I asked support if Id need to go through this scenario every time I upgrade/swap a HDD and he said yes. Basically I am being held to ransom by dell (really Microsoft and their stupid BIOS key)......'Any way round this' I asked him and he told me that I could take a support subscription out....

If I don't activate after 30 days my laptop will shutdown every hour so I am told

I have tried to find out if I could alter the HDD serial number in the BIOS so it can be recognised as the 'original' one but you can only change the Volume ID which changes everytime you format...Basically I'm stuck.

I am now trying to install with the original (now formatted) HDD, (spinning and slow) to see if that puts things back to normal....

Any other ideas would be great.

I did upgrade to windows 10, but things got sluggish and I ended up trying to re-installing from the USB.

God I hate Microsoft sometimes !

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RE: Dell XPS l421 - Dell Recovery and Restore USB hanging forever.....

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This worked fine but I have since spent about an hour on the phone to Microsoft AND Dell to learn that the BIOS keeps record of the HDD that was used during the original install and activation wont happen with a different HDD.

Dell support suggested that I pay them £39 for a remote assistance session to force the BIOS to recognise the new HDD and allow the embeded Windows key to activate.....I asked support if Id need to go through this scenario every time I upgrade/swap a HDD and he said yes. Basically I am being held to ransom by dell (really Microsoft and their stupid BIOS key)......'Any way round this' I asked him and he told me that I could take a support subscription out....

This is nonsense... The UEFI BIOS SLP key is tied only to the motherboard not the HDD/SSD.

Dr Philip Yip
Tech Enthusiast and Author of the Unofficial Dell Windows Reinstallation Guide

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads


#IDoNotWorkFor Dell
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