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  1. #1
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    I may be being dumb here, so please feel free to point out the obvious.

    I have a thinkpad 240 with no CD, no floppy, and that cannot boot from USB.

    I do, however, have a USB adaptor for hard drives, so I can take the HD out and manipulate it externally. I want most of my partitions to be NTFS, and experience has taught me that a DOS floppy can't "see" beyond an NTFS partition to see a FAT32 partition, so I left a 1GB partition at the beginning of the hard drive, onto which I copied my WinXP installation files (from which I've successfully installed WinXP from a hard drive with the help of a win 98 floppy when my external floppy was working), and bootfiles, and set it to be a bootable partition using TestDisk, but I'm struggling as to how to make the hard drive bootable so it can boot to the first partition as a floppy, so that I can now start installing windows XP. I've tried to use USB pen drive bootable utilities, such as the HP utility and pentousb, but they all balk. I don't have access to any floppy to get the bootsector, and I'm not sure how appropriate it should be. I have one other computer running windows XP, but it has a flaky bootsector that randomly wipes partitions when the active partition is changed, so I don't want to use that, and my other laptop runs Vista, so I don't think the bootsector is appropriate.

    Any suggestions would be most welcome.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    [quote name='Mark P' post='772625' date='27-Apr-2009 22:44']I may be being dumb here, so please feel free to point out the obvious.

    I have a thinkpad 240 with no CD, no floppy, and that cannot boot from USB.

    I do, however, have a USB adaptor for hard drives, so I can take the HD out and manipulate it externally. I want most of my partitions to be NTFS, and experience has taught me that a DOS floppy can't "see" beyond an NTFS partition to see a FAT32 partition, so I left a 1GB partition at the beginning of the hard drive, onto which I copied my WinXP installation files (from which I've successfully installed WinXP from a hard drive with the help of a win 98 floppy when my external floppy was working), and bootfiles, and set it to be a bootable partition using TestDisk, but I'm struggling as to how to make the hard drive bootable so it can boot to the first partition as a floppy, so that I can now start installing windows XP. I've tried to use USB pen drive bootable utilities, such as the HP utility and pentousb, but they all balk. I don't have access to any floppy to get the bootsector, and I'm not sure how appropriate it should be. I have one other computer running windows XP, but it has a flaky bootsector that randomly wipes partitions when the active partition is changed, so I don't want to use that, and my other laptop runs Vista, so I don't think the bootsector is appropriate.

    Any suggestions would be most welcome.

    Thanks[/quote]

    I'm confused. Didn't you write that the partition is marked as bootable? What bootable OS is in the partition?

    Joe
    Joe

  3. #3
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    [quote name='joeperez' post='772670' date='28-Apr-2009 14:42']I'm confused. Didn't you write that the partition is marked as bootable? What bootable OS is in the partition?

    Joe[/quote]

    Sorry this is where the stupidity kicks in. TestDisk has the option to set a partition as bootable, but I think this is probably just the same as setting the active partition. I had copied the win98 boot floppy files to that partition (as well as a folder with the WinXP installation files - to run once booted into Win98 command prompt), but not a bootsector, which I think is probably essential.

    So the question becomes where can I get an appropriate bootsector to write to this partition (which in itself is 2 questions - what would an appropriate bootsector source be, and how to get it when I have no computer with a floppy drive).

    Thanks

  4. #4
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    [quote name='Mark P' post='772989' date='29-Apr-2009 17:32']Sorry this is where the stupidity kicks in. TestDisk has the option to set a partition as bootable, but I think this is probably just the same as setting the active partition. I had copied the win98 boot floppy files to that partition (as well as a folder with the WinXP installation files - to run once booted into Win98 command prompt), but not a bootsector, which I think is probably essential.

    So the question becomes where can I get an appropriate bootsector to write to this partition (which in itself is 2 questions - what would an appropriate bootsector source be, and how to get it when I have no computer with a floppy drive).

    Thanks[/quote]

    Does the PC support booting from a USB drive?

    If it does, see DOS USB boot drive - Vista Forums & Boot From A USB Flash Drive.

    Joe
    Joe

  5. #5
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    [quote name='joeperez' post='773053' date='30-Apr-2009 14:03']Does the PC support booting from a USB drive?

    If it does, see DOS USB boot drive - Vista Forums & Boot From A USB Flash Drive.

    Joe[/quote]

    Unfortunately it won't - and I have checked that there's no BIOS update that will enable it to.

  6. #6
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    [quote name='Mark P' post='773211' date='30-Apr-2009 20:28']Unfortunately it won't - and I have checked that there's no BIOS update that will enable it to.[/quote]

    Making the partition bootable is not the same as setting it active. You need to make the partition the active partition to have it boot from that partition.

    Joe
    Joe

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