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Installing XP on Dell Studio 1555

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Installing XP on Dell Studio 1555

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Hi, Recently i have bought Dell Studio 1555 laptop. By default it comes with Vista Home SP1. I was not happy with this OS as it fails to install so many softwares that i wanted. So i have decided to go for XP. Could anyone please tell me the following

1) Before installing XP what steps do i follow ?

2) After installing XP in which order should i install the drivers. I have found some 30 drivers files from Dell website for my tag number but dnt know in which order and which all among those 30 i need to install ?

Also if anyone have any experience installing XP on dell studio 1555 please do share ur thoughts on this.........Smile


Below the configuration my laptop:

* Intel(R) Core(TM) 2 Duo Processor T6500 (2.10GHz/ 1 800 FSB/ 2MB Cache)
* 15.6 " 720p WLED (1366x768) Display with TrueLife
* 4GB Dual-channel DDR2 SDRAM
* 320GB SATA 7200RPM Performance Hard Drive
* Slot Load 8X DVD + /-RW Drive with DVD + R double
* 512MB ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4570
* Intel(R) WiFi Link 5100 (802.11a/g/n) Half Mini-c ard
* 9-cell Lithium Ion Primary Battery
* Dell(TM) Wireless 370 Bluetooth Module
* Dell(TM) Backlit Keyboard with Touchpad (English)

All Replies
  • Your best option, and what many do, is to buy a new hard drive and use that for XP and leave the original Dell with Vista (and the Dell recovery partition).  That way if you ever want to go to Vista and/or Windows 7 that will be the easiest way, or if you ever want to sell the PC you can install the Dell hard drive and it's back to the original factory configuration.

    THIS is the Dell procedure to install (reinstall as they call it).   You will need the XP drivers on the Dell site, the Vista drivers (probably what is listed using your Service Tag number will not work).  HERE is the XP drivers

    I am not a Dell Employee

    Dell forum member since 2002

    Dell Inspiron 15 - 5577 Laptop

    Home Built Desktop PC with ASUS Z170, i7 6700K CPU

    Windows 10 64 bit Pro and Windows 10 Insider Program Beta Versions. SSD drives.  Studio One 3 Recordng Studio Software.

    Dell SE2717HR 27" Monitor


    Member of Nashville based R.O.P.E.

  • Yes that another way. Thanks for reminding me of that but what all problem i should face if i install XP on the Current HardDisk of my DELL STUDIO 1555 ?

    Has someone with this issue has faced any problem please do share with me as i want to be 100% sure before i go ahead and install XP


    Thanks in advance




  • If you install XP on the existing hard drive (reformat it then install XP) it will work, but the Dell Recovery Partition will be corrupted and you won't be able to use that if you ever want to go back to Vista, or restore the PC to the original factory condition for sale.  Basically be 100% sure you want and need to "downgrade" to XP before you do it.

    The programs that won't run in Vista, have you tried running them in a compatibility mode?  ALL the programs I had running in XP except MusicMatchJukebox worked when I upgraded my XP machine to Vista.  In fact some of the old games were originally written back in the Win98 and Win ME days and they worked OK using the compatibility mode.  Also, have you checked the program's vendors to see if they have program updates that allow them to run in Vista?


    I am not a Dell Employee

    Dell forum member since 2002

    Dell Inspiron 15 - 5577 Laptop

    Home Built Desktop PC with ASUS Z170, i7 6700K CPU

    Windows 10 64 bit Pro and Windows 10 Insider Program Beta Versions. SSD drives.  Studio One 3 Recordng Studio Software.

    Dell SE2717HR 27" Monitor


    Member of Nashville based R.O.P.E.

  • Can you tell me whats so important about "Dell Recovery Partition " i have seen that in my other i.e D drive but didnt got it why it is of so much importance even i can create a sytem restore point in XP. Can i burn that drive onto a DVD's and then can use it if something goes wrong

  • The Recovery Partition allows you to restore the PC to the original factory condition, including all program applications and without the need for any Discs.  In 99% of the cases if the Recovery Partition is corrupted it cannot be recovered.  The only way I've found is with Acronis True Image and do a complete backup of the entire drive including all partitions.

    It's your PC, you can do what you want and if you want to completely wipe the hard drive and all the partitions you can do that.  However, if you have a warranty problem, Dell could make you put it back like it came from the factory before they will do anything - I'm not saying they will, just that they have the option if they want to.  For that reason alone, it would be worth it to just install a new hard drive and install XP on that.

    I am not a Dell Employee

    Dell forum member since 2002

    Dell Inspiron 15 - 5577 Laptop

    Home Built Desktop PC with ASUS Z170, i7 6700K CPU

    Windows 10 64 bit Pro and Windows 10 Insider Program Beta Versions. SSD drives.  Studio One 3 Recordng Studio Software.

    Dell SE2717HR 27" Monitor


    Member of Nashville based R.O.P.E.

  • Hello,

    I have recently purchased the same laptop. Vista didn't serve my purpose cos I wanted to install Visual studio 2005 on it but I ran into some compatibility issues with vista so I decided to setup dual bootable system. The first problem you will face is while installing XP is it will crash while installing as it canot find your SATA hard disk so you would have to slipstream the SATA drivers into the XP bootable disk and install it. Luckily Dell has released XP drivers for this laptop you can find them in the suppport section->drivers and downloads. There are a lot of blogs that will give you an idea how to slipstream the drivers into XP disk or you can even find video tutorials on youtube. You could try searching for 'slipstreaming SATA drivers in XP' in youtube. This one was particularly helpful.

    Although I do agree with what everyone else has said here, your dell recovery wont work once you create another partition. So its all upto what you want to do. I didn't want to purchase another hard disk for XP so opted this way.

    Good Luck

  • Contents of this post have been deleted. Refer post below.

  • Hi. So I finally finished the dual booting process successfully.!

    Following are the steps for successfully dual booting XP and Windows Vista on Dell Studio 1555 which comes with Vista, factory fitted. Things that you  may keep beforehand: 1) EasyBCD Utility (for fixing MBR), and 2) Your Laptop's SATA Drivers (thanks @adlops). So, now the steps:

    1. Shrink Volume (if factory settings of Vista from Dell have used the entire hdd for the OS) using Computer Management > Disk Management Utility in Windows Vista to create necessary disk space for installing XP. (Source of the following information: this site)
    2. Restart Computer. Press F2/F12 and go to BIOS.
    3. Set the flash cache option as NO (if any).
    4. Change the mode of harddrive from AHCI to ATA/IDE.
    5. Save and exit the changes and restart the laptop.
    6. Load XP Setup Disc, run setup and install windows XP successfully. (You wont be able to boot Vista yet. It's perfectly alright. Nothing to worry)
    7. (Preferrably) Install all drivers in your system.
    8. Extract the SATA Driver that you've downloaded.
    9. Now to install AHCI/SATA driver for XP (Source: Expertester):
      1. Go to Device Manager (My Computer > Manage > Device Manager)
      2. Right click on Primary IDE channel and choose Update Driver
      3. [Choose No, not at this time]
      4. [Install from a list or specific location (Advanced)]
      5. [Don’t search. I will choose the driver to install]
      6. [Have Disk]
      7. Point to the directory where you've extracted your SATA Driver and choose the appropriate INF file. (For me it was iaAHCI.inf )
      8. If there is a list of drivers displayed, choose the appropriate driver to be installed. (Now how to choose the correct one is another story):
        1. For me it was like, just above the Primary IDE Channel, there was this one more controller, namely, Intel(R) ICH9M-E/M SATA Controller.
        2. The text in bold above is the one that needs to be noted to choose your driver!
        3. If these things are not visible, try restarting again. If still not showing, then I'm sorry, even I don't know.
      9. Click Next (You'll be prompted by windows saying the driver cannot be verified and al. No probs. Click OK).
      10. Finish it. Restart your system. 
      11. Change harddrive mode in BIOS back to AHCI. Let XP boot. It will update those drivers now (and will ask for another restart).
      12. That's it. XP work is done. Now you want to fix Vista.
    10. Load the Vista setup disc and repair Windows Vista. (a 5 min job. And now XP wont boot. No worries. We're gonna fix that in the next and final step)
    11. Run EasyBCD Utility on Vista. Go through the steps and change the boot loader settings as required. (fixing MBR can also be done using commands, refer @ninthjarl's posts)
    12. There you go.!

    Guys.. Above is the procedure i followed. But i think Step 10 seems to look unnecessary now (I haven't tested it though, but please let me know if this works). So, directly go to Step 11, but install the Utility on XP and try fix the boot loader. (It should work. Idea thanks to @ninthjarl. n if it doesn't, no worries; above steps are tried and tested) So,, one step lesser to your GOAL Smile.

    Thank you all for your support and help. And hope this procedure above is useful for all Smile

  • Hello Everyone,

    RE: DUAL BOOTING XP AND VISTA for dell studio 1555

    I will mention how I setup dual boot system on my Studio 1555 laptop without need of any third party software like Easy BCD or Vista Boot loader to fix the boot records(all you will need is type a few commands and you are good to go.) You will need to have both the XP and Vista CD's with you for this procedure to work.

    1. Find XP drivers for your SATA drive - Dell has released the XP drivers for this model so you do not need to scout around internet for those free download websites. You can find them in support and drivers section. ( I would suggest not to put in your service tag if you have purchased a customized version of the laptop. What I mean to say is you have bought a 7500 rpm drive instead of the standard 5400rpm version.)

    2. Install nLite and create a bootable disk - You will find a lot of tutorials on the internet on how to slipstream your XP SATA drivers into your XP bootable disk using nLite. The most important thing to remember in this process is to select text option while slip streaming the drivers as opposed to the PNG.

    3. Shrink Volume (if factory settings of Vista from Dell have used the entire hdd for the OS) using Computer Management > Disk Management Utility in Windows Vista to create necessary disk space for installing XP. Remember the partion letter as you would need to install XP on this partition. Do not worry about formatting the disk at this point. Restart the system.

    3. Install XP - Go to the boot menu and make CD/DVD drive as the boot priority. When you save changes and exit the boot menu, the system will ask you if you would like to boot from the CD. Press any key to boot into XP. Now you will end up at the prompt that will ask you which partition to install XP on. Select the partition you just created earlier. Now it will ask you whether you would like to format the disk. Perform a full format as opposed to quick format. Once it's done system should restart automatically. System will ask again if you would like to boot from the CD press any key and proceed. Now windows will ask you which partition to install XP on select the partition you created for XP and proceed. After installing XP load the Vista CD in the DVD drive and restart the system.

    4. Repairing Vista: Once the system starts you should get a prompt where it will ask you if you would like to repair vista. Select this option and proceed. This should take you to menu with several options. Select the option that will start the DOS. It is usually the top option. Now once the DOS loads up type these commands one after the other



    bcdedit/set {ntldr} device partition=c:  (<--Presuming Vista is loaded in C: or change this to the drive where Vista is installed)

    bcdedit/set {ntldr} path\ntldr

    bcdedit/displayorder {ntldr}/addlast

    After each command DOS will acknowledge that the action has been performed. Type exit and exit from the dos prompt and restart the system.

    5. Now in the boot menu you should get a dual boot option.

    Hope this helps!

  • hello everyone...

    i have recently purchased studio 1555.its already pre installed with vista. then i want to make the dual booting option as mention as ninthjarl. the problem is, when i slipstreaming sata driver I thought it would be fine. then the bluescreen come out when it want to enter windows XP. it comes out error on vgafon..i dont remember what it state there. can someone help me.... please..

  • so have you installed xp using the slipstreamed setup disc successfully? Try setting the Hardware Option in BIOS as ATA/IDE (it may be AHCI). that should solve the problem. (but pls read my above post to learn its drawbacks)

    But i'm a bit confused. If you've successfully installed xp after slipstreaming sata driver, you shouldnt be getting this error.

    And if you have been getting this blue screen error WHILE trying to setup XP, then i suppose the SATA drivers havent been slipstreamed into the setup disc properly.

    @ninthjarl, i think you can guide him better.

    cya :)

  • yeah. i thought it have been successful. n then when it want to applying the setting for wondows it make the xp sound n then the bluescreen comes out. it says that have error on vga driver sort of like that. i hope this info is sufficient to improve my situation here. or do i need to slipstream all the driver for this lapi into the installation disk??

  • this just clicked in my mind. May be you need to slip stream the display drivers too.. :D ... nah.. dont try that out yet. keep it as ur last resort.

    hmm.. i'm intrigued.......... Just try setting the SATA Mode to ATA/IDE n see what happens? (if it crashes even before XP loads, then slipstreaming n win xp installationz have been fine i guess :) ... if not, then see how far the rabbit hole goes).

    Oh, and regarding MY technique of installing XP, earlier i said that it has a "drawback". Well, i just found out that That too can be solved. Here's the link to enable AHCI in Win XP. . Just browse through it (that is - if your OS loads in the first place by doin above settings), and see if anything comes of use. Look for the 'Alternative Answer' in that page.

    mmmmm... could you also post a screen shot of the current error you're getting? (Like take a snap from your cam n upload it here) Or type down ALL the things that u see on the blue screen.

    (also could pls do me a favor and paste the link from where you got the WinXP_SATA_Drivers_for_Dell_Studio_1555? I couldnt find any proper site for it. Thx)

  • hi all,

    well krislogy, what version of service pack of windows xp do you use??i edi install sp3, but still not working. already slipstream the driver for SATA n still not working. do i need a clean copy of sp2 to install here.

    as for the bluescreen it doesn't just freeze like that it keep restarting after the bluescreen comes out. i don't know how to get it posted here.

    n then for the win XP Sata Driver for dell studio 1555 i get it here all the driver for this lapi are there.

  • Hello adlops,

    I have been observing your posts here but I was waiting to find out if you have managed to successfully install winXP or you are facing this blue screen error while booting into XP.

    If you are facing this blue screen error whilst trying to install XP then you haven't slip streamed the drivers into the XP CD properly or you haven't slip streamed the right drivers. (Do not worry it does take a few times attempts before you might get this right. I wasted like 6 CD's and all the spare time in a week Big Smile)

    If you have managed to install XP and are trying to boot into it and facing this problem of system restarting continously then do not worry just proceed with the later steps on my tutorials and setup the dual boot first as you can still install the display drivers after setting up dual boot. Load the vista CD in the DVD drive and boot into vista. Then follow the procedure where you need to repair vista and type few commands into the DOS. OR If you want to install display drivers right away before setting up dual boot you need to start XP in safe mode and install the display drivers from a USB stick. I think you need to press F8 at the boot menu to get the option to start XP in safe mode.

    Good LuckYes