dell dimension 8400 desktop: want to reinstall win XP

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dell dimension 8400 desktop: want to reinstall win XP

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i have a dell dimension 8400,k and it has been giving problems.  I see a lot of popups and most of my programs have started crashing, a big mess

 

So I want to reinstall WinXP.  But when I put the disk in the drive and set the BIOS to boot from the disk drive, the installation seems to go smoothly for a while and then when I get to the screen after the initial EULA, where it says install a new copy of windows ..., delete partion,

the bottom box on the screen says there is no disk in the drive. 

 

And no matter which option I choose the computer crashes.  So what is this "No disk in drive" error and how can I install XP sucessfully

 

All Replies
  • Good day,

    What kind of crash do you get? is it a BSOD 0x....8B or 8E? if you are getting this blue screen of death then this means you have to install a driver for the drive during installation. If you are using the original disk that came with your dell computer this should already include it but if you are using a different version then during the setup process it will ask you to PRESS F6 if you need to install drives and you need to do it. You need to have a floppy disk with the driver on it. You can check support.dell.com and go to divers and download using your service tag. from the list of downloads you need to download the ide/sata driver and copy it on a floppy disk.

  • So I need to go out and buy a USB floppy drive or something?  That is kinda unfair on the part of Dell to make you want to buy stuff to just reinstall an OS.  As you know, nowadays most computers dont come with any disks, so I had to buy a new disk to re-install Win XP. 

     

    What is the difference of having RAID vs normal drives, which is a setting in BIOS under drives?

     

  • If your using a Dell disk to reload the os then the drivers should be on the disk all ready and you should not need to have a floppy drive.

    One thing to do is to boot into the bios and under the SATA see if you have an option to set the SATA to Raid autodetect/ATA. If so set it to that and then try to reload the os againg

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
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  • shashgo1

     

    So I need to go out and buy a USN floppy drive or something?

     

    It would be a USB floppy drive you'd need... if you needed one Wink

     

     

    shashgo1

     

    As you know, nowadays most computers dont come with any disks, so I had to buy a new disk to re-install Win XP.

     

    Actually... which you obviously didn't know... all Dell computers *should* be supplied with discs - including the OS disc, a 'Drivers & Utilities' disc (it might have a slightly different name), and discs for some of the programs pre-installed on the system - i.e. Roxio Media Creator etc, so you didn't have to go out and buy XP at all - unfortunately Idea

    You could've (probably still can?) request "backup" discs here.

     

     

    shashgo1

     

    What is the difference of having RAID vs normal drives, which is a setting in BIOS under drives?

     

    You don't need to concern yourself with RAID, if your system only has one hard drive (HDD).

    RAID is used in systems which are pre-fitted with two HDD's - either RAID 0 ('striped'), which means both drives will be seen as one larger drive... or RAID 1 ('mirror'), where everything on one drive, is automatically duplicated on the second drive Wink

     

     

    Regarding your problem with the OS installation:  Did you (quick-) format the HDD, before installing XP?

    What type of drive is it - i.e. IDE or SATA?

    If it's SATA, it *might* need a BIOS setting changing - although it likely wouldn't have been able to start the installaion in the first place?

    Nonetheless... go into the BIOS, and change the SATA operation mode from AHCI to ATA - if it isn't already?
    Scroll down to drives, expand the drive menu, scroll down to "SATA Operation", press Enter, and change the SATA operation mode to 'RAID Autodetect/ATA'.

    From experience, I've found that:   “Beauty is in the eye of the beer-holder”!!

     

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  • This is really quite a very frustrating situation but yes you need to get a floppy drive if you are going to intall a non DELL OEM Operating system. If you still have your DELL Operating system disk, i suggest you use it or request one from DELL so that you do not need to buy a floppy drive. This can also be the case with any PC brand becuase with Windows XP, microsoft designed it that if you need to install Hard drives during the setup, the only option is to use floppy drive, with Vista however there is an option to install the driver using a CD, DVD or USB.

    RAID vs Normal Drives:

    Depending on your storage needs you can use RAID or just normal mode. RAID is for multiple drives. Depending on the RAID Configuration you can get redundancy. For example. in RAID 1 or Mirroring, the data being stored on the first drive is exactly the same with the second drive. If one of the drive fails you still have a backup and can just use the other one. The problem is you only enjoy the size of one drive. if you have 2pieces of 160GB hard drive, you are only going to see 1pc of 160GB in windows. It's just like an automatic backup. Personally i do not want to use this becuase i am just wasting precious hard drive space. I could just use the other drive to manually store only important data and not everything that i have on the original drive. RAID 0 or Stripping on the other hand does not provide redundancy. data is split between two drives. if you have 2pcs of 160GB hard drive. it will show 1pc of 320GB hard drive insode windows, you get all available space but the problem is if any one hard drive fails yo lose all data.. And another thing, if you will use RAID, you will definitely need the floppy drive to install RAID driver if you do not have the original DELL Operating system disk.

    Hope this helps..

    lei_55

  • Guys,

    We are overloading the OP with too much info. I see nothing in the orginal post about a raid setup. I only mentioned in my post the way the SATA settings are listed in the bios.  The whole point of the setting is to make sure the SATA system is set to ATA not AHCI.

    We do need comformation from the OP as to wether the XP disk is Dell or Non Dell.

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • Hello,

    I dont know what an OP is, what is it?  But Im sorry, I had heard the waord RAIS somewhere and I thought it was relevant.  I meant to ask what is the difference if the SATA system is set to ATA vs ACHI, what are those terms anyway?

     

  • Thanks for your help, I was able to install the XP OS after I change the SATA from ACH to ATA like you said. 

     

    How does one install a RAID system?

    And finally, now that I changed the BIOS setting to ATA to be able to load the OS, can I just leave the setting as is, or do I need to put it back to how it was?  And why was it ACHI to begin with?

     

  • The 8400 is one of the models that has Symantec WIPE THE DRIVE restore.

    From Control F11 to return to factory spec.

    If you havent messed with the partitions I highly recommend you try that first after backing up your data.

    http://support.dell.com/support/topics/global.aspx/support/kb/en/document?dn=1090151&c=us&l=en&cs=19&s=dhs

     

    Report Unresolved Customer Service Issues here
    I do not work for Dell. I too am a user.
    The forum is primarily user to user, with Dell employees moderating.

  • Shashgo1

    OP = Orginal Poster..

    Glad you got it working.

    ATA   ACHI

    Basicly ATA is more related to a single drive configuration using a modified serial connection. ACHI is a more advanced disk drive controller. More commonly used when setting up Raid configurations, using multiple drives.

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003