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Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

Okay, folks, I know there are a zillion online posts and pages covering this topic and everyone who suffers from it thinks s/he is special, but I SWEAR I have tried all the tricks to solve the problem and NOTHING WORKS! Auugh!

I have a Dell XPS 720, Intel Core2 Q6850 quad core processor, 4GB RAM (but only accessing 3), running Windwos XP Media Center Edition right now. It is getting soooo slow (freezes left and right, literally takes fifteen minutes to boot to a functional desktop) that I backed up everything, thoroughly formatted a fresh drive, removed all my other drives, and booted from a new Windwos XP Pro 64 bit disk. Drivers all loaded fine and when it got to the "Starting Windows" portion - the BSOD rears its ugly, corrupting head!

I have flashed the BIOS, made sure it was the latest, reverted to two previous versions. I have run checkdisk on my new disk - no problems there. The XP CD installs fine (up to the "Starting Windows") so those drivers shouldn't be an issue, should they? I don't have any RAID setup on the harddrives, but even toggling THAT did nothing. I don't know what possible system drivers could be the problem (how does one find that out?) so hitting F6 on Windows install doesn't do any good because I have nothing new to give it (although I did try by inserting the original Dell drivers CD - but the F6 function demands a floppy drive).

So, I am at my wits' end. All I want to do is start from scratch and begin anew (isn't that the way life goes?) but I seemed doomed to the BSOD hell of computing. If anyone has any sugegstions for me that do not involve firearms, I would really appreciate the advice. Thanks, and may your lives be bug free!

Tom

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17 Replies
ieee488
5 Rhenium

Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

If it is running Windows Media Center right now, why are you attempting Windows XP Pro 64-bit?  Not saying it wouldn't work. I'd have gone for XP Pro 32-bit.

 

 

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fireberd
6 Indium

Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

The motherboard chipset drivers and device drivers are loaded AFTER Windows is installed.   I'm not sure what sequence you are installing or trying to install, but the correct and required install sequence is (1) Install Windows (2) Install Dell Desktop System Software (3) Install motherboard chipset drivers (4) Install Device Drivers including video, sound, ethernet, etc. 

 



I am not a Dell Employee

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Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

Media Center has always struck me as being quirky, and since it is running so slowly (likely my fault for overloading the system with junk, but still...) I figured I'd reinstall fresh. I have been told that a 64 bit OS will make better use of my processors and RAM... True?

Thanks for the input.

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Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

Fireberd:

Thanks. That gives me somewhere to start the trackdown process... Questions remain from a more-than-novice but not-supremely-advanced techie -

1.) Since the install process from the CD seems very automated, how can/do I initiate a process that will do these steps you suggest without the system moving on to the next (and, it seems, getting BSOD'd)? There doesn't seem to be any method of halting the install process once it has loaded all those drivers from the XP CD BEFORE it automatically kicks into the "Starting Windows."

2.) I'm assuming at this point that once I can get Windows going, I install the Desktop Software and the Motherboard Chipset Drivers from CD? My previous experience with reinstallation has always been that Windows installs itself quite nicely and THEN I set to installing my video drivers, audio drivers, etc. Where I am obviously stumnped now is JUST getting the system to let me install XP, period...

Once I can get Windows to actually begin installing, I am very familiar with reinstalling everything else to get my system going (I seem to end up doing it pretty annually - probably more out of boredom than any real need).

Thanks again for the help and sugegstions.

Tom

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ieee488
5 Rhenium

Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

Media Center has always struck me as being quirky, and since it is running so slowly (likely my fault for overloading the system with junk, but still...) I figured I'd reinstall fresh. I have been told that a 64 bit OS will make better use of my processors and RAM... True?

Thanks for the input.

http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/desktop/f/3514/t/19052308.aspx

 

 

 

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theflash1932
5 Iridium

Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

XP doesn't know what a SATA drive is, so you need to give Windows a driver to tell it how to use it.  Not having the correct storage driver (or one at all) can result in Windows telling you nicely that it cannot find any hard drives or rudely by BSOD-ing.  XP also can only pick up drivers externally from floppy, so you will need to either load the driver from a floppy at F6 or use nLiteOS.com to integrate the driver into the installation media.

Your chipset/SATA controller looks to be the nVidia MediaShield.  The driver is below, but it doesn't have the textsetup.oem file, which I thought was required for F6 use.  When you hit F6, it will not immediately ask to load the driver but it will before "Starting Windows".
http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/download.aspx?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs&releaseid=R164976&Syst...

If the above driver doesn't work, you can try this one from nVidia (this is an executable ... you will need to run this on another system to unzip the files, then copy the files in the SATA folder to floppy or nLite from C:\nvidia):
http://www.nvidia.com/object/nforce_winxp64_15.46.html

Alternatively, there is a chance that you can set the SATA controller to ATA/IDE or Compatability Mode in the BIOS (F2).  You can give it a shot, but I wouldn't run your XPS permanently in that mode - it cannot take advantage of the improvements offered by SATA technology, which might not be so important in any less of a machine.

Good luck.

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Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

ieee and theflash:

 

Thanks LOADS for the explicit info. This gives me some rgeat advice and a processs to really nail all the hassle down.

Will implement these and get back ,if only to let you know it worked...

Thanks again!

Tom

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Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

Okay, gents - this has given me some playtime the past weekend... I have been able to get past the initial setup on the Windows install disk, it prompts me after F6 to direct it to the floppy (I have attached a USB floppy drive, but ALSO tried nLite, neither of which ahs worked). In both instances, I get to the scsidrv is corrupt. I have searched around for info on this, most of which say it is a bad disk, but, again, chkdsk says the disk is fine.

I went to the disk manufacturer's site to download specific drivers, but it is a Seagate (ST3750630AS) which Seagate claims does NOT requrie a driver, so they don't provide one.

Am going to play around with installing the TEXTMODE and/or another scsidrv file(s) on the floppy or even making another nLite disk. It seems that SOEMWHERE along the line it's got to work...

Tom

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ieee488
5 Rhenium

Re: Stupid STOP 7B on XP (re)install

I doubt you'll get the USB floppy drive to work for this.

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