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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    I have an older computor 4 or 5 years old it has vista home basic. Have had nothing but problems with it from day one. It will lock up, won't restart or shutdown. I want to give it to my grandaughter & would like to uninstall vista & install windows xp how would I go about this? Am not very savy when it comes to messing around with the hard drive. Any info would be much appreciated. Thanks,

  2. #2
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    The "clean install" would be the prefered way to go. Basically you boot from a genuine Windows XP disk and format the drive prior to installing the operating system.

    One cannot uninstall Vista, you will need to remove it by formatting the hard drive and "cleanly" installing Windows XP. This means booting the computer with the Windows XP installation disk in the CD/DVD drive and following the appropriate instructions to this end.

    What you will need:
    You will need to have a genuine Windows XP disk that is not already in use on some other computer, preferably with SP-3 and not an upgrade disk.
    You will need to have all the XP specific drivers for your make and model of computer.

    Before you start go to the website of the manufacturer and look for Windows XP drivers under the model number of your specific computer.
    (look for a sticker on or near the side of your computer, it will have a printerd model number there)
    Download them and store them in a secure place, like an external drive or CD/DVD disk.
    If your Windows XP disk does not come with XP SP-3, download it here. Avoid MS update for this one thing.

    Make backups of data you wish to keep because a clean install will remove everything.

    Booting from the CD/DVD drive:
    Before starting the clean install go into your bios and ensure that you are able to boot from the CD/DVD drive. This can be achieved by following the instruction in
    the boot screen to "press this key to enter setup". The specific key will vary among computers, learn yours.
    In the BIOS set the CD/DVD drive as the main boot device. Take the time to look over you bios carefully, specifically your hard drive controllers.
    When it comes time to do the clean install of Windows XP, you will boot from the XP disk and follow the appropriate menus to clean install.

    The Right Way To Install Windows XP, last updated June, 2009 By Tweakhound
    There are many websites that walk one through the process of clean installing Windows XP, or any other operating system for that matter.
    This one just happens to be one of my favorites. The basics here are to format or delete the contents of the drive prior to begining so that the operating system can start
    fresh and unencumbered by any other operating system's installation files, irregardless of the os version.



    Read through the above article carefully and if you have any questions or run into any trouble don't hesitate to post your questions/concerns.
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  3. #3
    New Lounger
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    bronze lounger is correct in all that he/she says...however, it isn't easy to find an xp disc with SP3, and you may have to search for SP2 if you don't already have it downloaded somewhere. You can use an xp disc that has been used only once before, since a backup is usually allowed. Keep in mind that if you start with just an xp disc and no service packs, your usb drives might not work until you install at least SP1. However, once you have your internet connection, you can download any drivers you need, if you don't have them before you start.
    I've done this many times, from Vista to XP and the process is smooth, but you must be able to obtain the Service Packs and the drivers at some point.

    Good Luck

  4. #4
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I should add one more thing to this. If you cannot get XP to load upon boot, you may need to go into your bios setup and set the hard drive controler to IDE.
    Look through and read this article carefully: Clean Install Windows XP, by the Elder Geek.
    The article is a very good quality source.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
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  5. #5
    3 Star Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clint Rossmere View Post
    I should add one more thing to this. If you cannot get XP to load upon boot, you may need to go into your bios setup and set the hard drive controler to IDE.
    Look through and read this article carefully: Clean Install Windows XP, by the Elder Geek.
    The article is a very good quality source.
    Being a 4-5 year old computer that shouldn't be a problem.

    If someone is wanting to downgrade a newer computer my first advice is don't. If you have a newer computer upgrade to 7.

    If you still want to downgrade a newer computer then you may have to use a slipstream disc. I don't remember the exact procedure but, since newer hardware may not be compatible with the XP disc's drivers you can use a slipstream made disc (a custom made XP install disc) to install XP with the necessary drivers (or at least the necessary drivers to install it). Again, considering the age of the computer mentioned in the OP (Opening Post) a simple backup, reformat, install method should suffice. Also note, if you did everything else right and XP won't install (saying something about not being able to install because a newer version of Windows is installed) then use a Linux disc like gparted to reformat then install XP the normal way.

    Lastly, the slipstream method also has a way of making ACPI (I believe that's the term) hard drives to work though if that's the only reason for using slipstream then it's not worth using slipstream (it's not as fool-proof as just using an original disc).
    Current Machine:HP Compaq 6910p with 4GB RAM, Core2Duo @ 2.20 GHz, Mobile Intel 965 Express Chipset Family, Avast free, Malwarebyte's free, TP-Link wireless card (as the built in card has nothing but problems with empty solutions): The card identifies as "Atheros AR922X Wireless Network Adapter". [Not the best machine but it does internet, docs, and vids, and some games (PvZ, Spore)]

  6. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I agree, slipstreaming would be the best way to downgrade in this situation.
    And yes, I would definitely upgrade to Windows 7 before ever considering going back to XP.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

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