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  1. #1
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    Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    My problem is this:

    I had to buy some cheap Dell laptops to run a particular legacy application at work. The application ONLY runs on Windows XP SP1. How can I re-partition the C: drive and get rid of Vista altogether so I can install XP SP1 onto that drive? Thanks in advance for your help.

    John

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    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    AS long as you have a legit copy of XP available, I don't see why you can't just boot to it and use it to install a clean copy of XP from there. Once you blow away a partition, everything is GONE.

    So, Re-partition, re-format, re-install, this time with XP.
    BOB
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  3. #3
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    Thanks for your reply. I do have legit, licensed copies of Xp SP1. However, when I boot from the CD, setup says it can't find any hard drives and the only option I have is to abort the setup. I thought it would have been that easy also, but they (Dell?, MS?) have apparently done something to "hide" the hard drives.

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    Gold Lounger Rebel's Avatar
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    There are two things you can do.
    1) In the BIOS, turn off RAID (set it to auto-detect) OR
    2) Download the SATA drivers for your machine (from Dell's support site), unzip the file (do NOT run the .exe file - simply right click and unzip), and then copy the resultant files to a floppy. At an early point in the installation, you will be prompted to press F6 to load drivers.

    If you're not installing the OS in a RAID configuration, #1 is the simplest solution.
    John
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    Thanks for your reply.

    There is no RAID option in the BIOS.

    The only hard drive option is "SATA Operation."

    Under that, there are two options:

    SATA is configured for ATA

    SATA is configured for AHCI (this is the default and is the current setting)

    Any thoughts?

  6. #6
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    You need XP SATA drivers from Dell. Dell and all OEMs are producing fewer and fewer XP drivers. So, if the drivers aren't available for your model you are out of luck. Did you try running the application in compatibility mode?

    Joe
    Joe

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    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    Check the BIOS to see if indeed the drive is being "seen" by the BIOS.
    If OK, then download a boot utility ( there are many around ) like SUPER FDISK
    Boot to this new CD and look for the old drive. Use the utility to repartition and reformat.
    Re-install XP.
    BOB
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    If you change the configuration to ATA (rather than AHCI), you won't require the SATA drivers. If you leave it as is (AHCI), you will require the drivers. Some machines have 3 BIOS settings - IDE (ATA), AHCI and RAID. Either of the latter two require the F6 floppy driver disk or the hard disk will not be detected.
    John
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    I recommend you contact Dell and see if they even support running XP on those laptops. Laptops often require special drivers for various components that OEMs tailor to their own machines.

    Joe
    Joe

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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    Thanks to all for your replys.

    I contacted Dell and they had me change the SATA setting to ATA. I had to disable the "Flash Cache" setting, but as soon as I made those changes I was able to get XP to recognize the hard drive.

    Again, thanks for your help.

  11. #11
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    Re: Completely Remove Vista (Home Basic)

    Glad you were able to get an answer. Good luck with the rest. Thanks for posting back.

    Joe
    Joe

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