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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
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    Installing different modem in XP - you can't!! (XP Home)

    This sounds too ludicrous to be true - except I have first-hand XPerience!! I purchased a new machine with Win XP and was unhappy with the performance of the modem (unreliable connnects, frequent disconnects, etc). Returned to supplier with request for new (different) modem. The technician removes old modem inserts new modem, restarts and then cannot successfully install the new modem. Many retries and much cursing later, more senior technician turns up and says "Oh yes, you can't do that. To change the modem in XP requires a re-format". Stunned silence all around. I leave the machine with them whilst they contact Microsloth about a possible fix or workaround - no dice.
    Has anyone else heard of this "feature"????
    I even took the machine home, hunted down all the registry entries and expunged them, deleted the old drivers so no trace of the old modem existed. But, any attempt to install the new modem still ended with the install wizard saying "invalid data".
    One reformat and re-install of XP later, the new modem installs.
    Of course, to add MS insult to egregious MS injury I then have to go through the "activation" process with XP, Office XP, FrontPage (or is that Rage!) and Publisher - no doubt using up one of my "lives" and therefore bringing forward the time when (after yet another re-format and re-install) MS will accuse me of being a software pirate and refuse activation until I provide proof of innocence, or at least a letter from my mother.
    This was one XPerience I could happily live without!!!!

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Installing different modem in XP - you can't!! (XP Home)

    Quite frankly, Ian, it sounds beyond ludicrous. Although re-installing Windows allowed you to install the new modem, such drastic action for a simple hardware change should never have been required. It's quite likely that the re-install solved a problem that was unrelated but prevented success previously.

    Windows, since 95 and up, has been designed to allow easier hardware changes with each new version. I would not waste time in avoiding any tech that states that "to change a modem in XP requires a reformat." I can state this with confidence because I have done it more than once - successfully - and also with many types of hardware, including a motherboard swap.

    There is a way to back up your product activation status but I don't have the URL handy. If you're interested, let me know and I will dig up the information.
    -Mark

  3. #3
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: Installing different modem in XP - you can't!! (XP Home)

    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    Windows, since 95 and up, has been designed to allow easier hardware changes with each new version.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    And now the proper procedure is:
    1. Delete dial-up connections from Network Connections dialog; delete the modem from Device Manager
    2. Shut down computer, remove the old modem
    3. Restart computer in Safe Mode, remove the modem from Device Manager once again
    4. Restart in Normal Mode and make sure there is no errors in Events list
    5. In some cases, start modem installation wizard before modem is installed
    6. Shut down computer, install the new modem, power on the computer and proceed with installation...

    Quick and easy "Plug aNd Pray" procedure...

  4. #4
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Installing different modem in XP - you can't!! (XP Home)

    When you say 'proper procedure,' are you referring to a Microsoft documented process for changing hardware? The worst case scenario that I have had changing a modem is that the entry still exists on all pre=-existing RAS/DUN connections. If you update the driver and the name changes (as specified in the driver's INF file), you must manually change it for dial-up connections. I don't recall an instance where safe mode was required (and for externally connected modems powering down or rebooting).
    -Mark

  5. #5
    New Lounger
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    Re: Installing different modem in XP - you can't!! (XP Home)

    Ive had this problem as well. by the way, it din't matter what hardware we tryied to install. also it had nothing to do with removing the modem. I would suggest that if you tried to install the other modem with the old on in it would have done the same thing.

    our fix was to boot off the xp cd and do a repair. worked fine.

    cya and good luck

  6. #6
    2 Star Lounger
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    Re: Installing different modem in XP - you can't!! (XP Home)

    Yes, you are absolutely right. One of the desperate measures I tried was to install the second modem with the first in place (installed and functioning) in the hope that XP would allow a new and different install, but no such luck.

    Fascinated by the option of booting off the CD and doing a repair - the techs said they went to Microsloth to enquire about the problem but all they could find out was that is was a known issue that was as yet unresolved (by the way, this is MS in New Zealand, perhaps they are a little brighter and more helpful Stateside).

  7. #7
    2 Star Lounger
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    Re: Installing different modem in XP - you can't!! (XP Home)

    You may well be right about it solving some other problem but frankly I find it bizarre that MS in New Zealand is all too ready to believe that there is a fundamental F (flaw or feature) in XP that requires such action to rectify.
    I still consider it is unacceptable that something as simple as exchanging a modem card can lead to such a lot of hassle - whilst I fully believe that you've had lots of succesful experiences changing hardware I am still stunned that this simple process just simply didn't work.
    <SoapBox>
    We wouldn't accept this sort of level of performance from any other consumer good and yet it is too often the norm for the computer industry
    </Soapbox>

  8. #8
    New Lounger
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    Re: Installing different modem in XP - you can't!! (XP Home)

    Ya, the option of doing a repair has been in NT 5 and on at least that I know but not many seem to use it.

    Ive used it a few times. esp. when the regestry has been damaged or a system file needed to get windows NT to work has died. PS there seems to be several types of repair as well. one after you say you want to install a new windowns and one before.

    cya

  9. #9
    2 Star Lounger
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    Re: Backup product activation status (Windows XP)

    I would like to be able to back up my product activation status, could you send me the URL?

    Thanks

  10. #10
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Backup product activation status (Windows XP)

    I'd be glad to do so. Extremetech has the whole story and a whole lot more!
    -Mark

  11. #11
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Backup product activation status (Windows XP)

    office xp activation is saved in data.dat - a hidden file buried in documents and settingsall users.... put a copy in a safe place. After reinstalling after a format, restore data.dat.

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