[dba-Tech] Bootable CD for WinXP?

Arthur Fuller fuller.artful at gmail.com
Thu Aug 28 13:53:20 CDT 2008

There is also an article on TechRepublic that gives instructions how to
create a bootable XP memory stick, if that is useful to you.

-----Original Message-----
From: dba-tech-bounces at databaseadvisors.com
[mailto:dba-tech-bounces at databaseadvisors.com] On Behalf Of Tina Norris
Sent: Thursday, August 28, 2008 11:20 AM
To: Discussion of Hardware and Software issues
Subject: [dba-Tech] Bootable CD for WinXP?


I'm trying to bring back to life a little Gateway laptop that somehow no
longer boots to Windows XP.  Here's what little I know of the history of
its going bad:  It was last used to play a game called Roller Coaster
Tycoon (which had been played on that machine many times before), then
nobody used it for about a week.  At that time it would no longer boot.

When I got a look at it, it was trying to run setup, and hung at the
same spot every time the machine was powered on.  Absolutely no response
to anything.  The only way to get out of the frozen screen was to power
off.  So, I tried the system recovery trick.  The recovery runs and
displays the message screen that the system has been successfully
recovered.  WinXP appears to try to start, then switches to WinXP Setup
with "please wait" and the hourglass, and hangs there.  Tried booting to
Safe Mode, got the message that Setup cannot run in Safe Mode.

Tried the full system recovery, the one that scratches everything and
starts over.  Again, appeared to fully recover, began the setup process
anew.  I did all this about nine times.  There were two places the
process was likely to hang - 1) at the point where Setup is installing
devices, would get about halfway along the progress bar and hang - 2) if
it made it through the installing of devices, it got to performing final
tasks Register Components, about a third of the way on the progress bar
and hang.  A couple of times, it did the "one or more of your disks may
have errors on it" and checked for errors, never finding any.  But,
oddly enough it was checking disk D:

In desperation, I took my bootable Win98 install disk and - after making
sure the boot sequence would check the CD first - put it in and
restarted the computer, thinking I could at least install Win98.  This
resulted ultimately in the message that there was no hard disk present.
Looking in the BIOS, under the Standard tab I find Pri Master [IDE HDD],
Sec Master [CD/DVD], under the Boot tab I find 1st Boot Device [CD/DVD],
2nd Boot Device [FDD], and 3rd Boot Device [IDE HDD].

I have an emergency WinXP startup floppy diskette for my machine, so I
thought maybe I could copy it onto a CD and have an emergency WinXP
startup CD.  But, that does not seem to work.  Can anybody tell me how
to make a bootable (not Autorun) CD so I can at least have some portion
of a system alive for looking around in that machine?

Oh, of course, before you ask - no she does not have any idea where her
original disks are that came with the machine.  Of course not.  As I
consider the life this little machine has had, I can't help wondering if
it's been dropped or something and the C: drive MBR is destroyed - and
whether there's any point in trying anything more with this poor little

TIA for any advice.


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