Don't Upgrade to XP - Install Like Full Version Works on Pro or Home

Don't! Don't! Don't! upgrade 98 or ME if you want the full features of XP   I tried it and it was sluggish and error prone. Sorta just like having 98 and upgrading to Mellenium. I never had the problems with ME like everyone else cause I did'nt upgrade, just install like full version with an upgrade CD on a formatted Hard drive. You don't have the background noise.

Minimum System Requirements

Make sure your PC is compatible and the software you have is also. Read the HOME.TXT file on the XP upgrade CD in CD Drive:DOCSHOME.TXT. You can view the Hardware Compatibility List (HCL) at the Microsoft Web site: Important: Windows XP Home Edition supports only those devices listed in the HCL. If your hardware isn't listed, contact the hardware manufacturer and request a Windows XP driver for the component.If your PC is about a year old then it should be compatible. I know of someone that has a Dell about 2 1/2 years old that it worked fine on.

Using older XP disks there are possibilities it may not have driver's for some of your hardware. There are way's to capture Drivers and include them on an install CD or on a floppy like with Driver Magician. Join the forum over here and ask me to explain.
I am the author of UnattendXP for XP and Se7en_UA for Windows 7 programs for building Unattended installer CD/Dvd
I have done countless installations using my programs so msg me.

If you feel comfortable doing this then proceed.
Backup all your files and stuff to CD's or something first because this will erase the hard drive completely.
If you want full version XP even with upgrade CD, do the above then shutdown PC and insert XP upgrade CD, your PC needs to be able to boot CD as set in Bios. Start up and press (AnyKey on mine) to boot with CD. If it hangs up with error message about "The BIOS in this computer is not fully ACPI compliant" you can reboot and when you see message at bottom about pressing F6 to install Third Party SCSI or Raid drivers press [F7] instead and it will bypass the ACPI error. Once installed I use one of the other tweaks to enable NT Apm/Legacy Support and it shuts down properly.

You then come to screen to Setup XP now press [Enter].
Next is EULA agreement just press [F8]
Then Screen to install or repair. Press [ESC] to Install new version.
It then comes to Partition screen and should have the C: drive highlighted.
You press [D] to delete the partition
Next screen press [L] to confirm delete.
Then when back to the partition screen C: drive with unpartitioned space should be highlighted, if not choose it to format and install.
To setup on that partition press [Enter].

Now the choose file system screen comes up. Choose the Format the partition using the NTFS file system. Make sure you choose Full NTFS format. Thats it it'll FDISK, FORMAT and INSTALL. Takes awhile to do it this way and you have to tell it answers to some things along the way.

If you do it Without the 2 Files on a floppy this is what you'll get to do. With the floppy install it is nearly cut in half and you can go take a shower.
   Click the links

1. Setup or Repair? 2. F8 Accept License
3. If upgrade need that ME or 9x CD 4. Delete the Existing Partition?
5. Confirm Delete Press Enter 6. What Again Press L
7. Its Gone Choose Partition kinda fuzzy 8. Choose Full NTFS also fuzzy
9. And Away we go sit back and wait 10. Yes even delete Linux Partitions here

Note:If your Bios does'nt support boot with CD get the XP boot floppies setup from Microsoft. That will create 6 floppies so you can boot and install that way.
KB article
Download page     Hopefully one of those will get you there.


I've created an install floppy I use that does unattended installation by following another of these tweaks and fixes further down (Unattended installation-How to do it yourself) but the setupmgr program only works in XP. So how do you use it unless you have XP installed first. I've included a (Winnt.sif and Winnt.bat for unattended installation) next item. You then can install the program and modify your Winnt.sif file after you get XP loaded in case you have to do it again someday.

Note: Using the install disks only takes about 30 minutes compared to the nearly 60 minutes doing it like above.

NOTE:  These same two files have been used by a friend and local computer shop for all his new PC installs for well over a year.

Winnt.sif and Winnt.bat for unattended installation - *Updated 5-23-03*XP Home version only although I'm sure this will work with Pro
Warning: I don't know your system so this may not work with it. I am not responsible. It works with mine. Using these files will partition and format your Hard drive. You will lose everything on it. I have second drive that all my extra stuff is on and it does'nt affect it. It targets the C: drive or master. But be very careful at least once it tried to do in my D: drive. Just watch it and if it wants to format it switch it.
By using these files install time is nearly cut in half
Create 2 new text files named Winnt.sif and Winnt.bat including the information below or download them here.  

WinNT Download   New zip: July 02, 04

Notice in [UserData] ProductID renamed ProductKey with SP1 CD otherwise use ProductID

---------All below this Line to file called Winnt.sif--------


------Above here to file called Winnt.sif------------------------------------
------All below this line to file called Winnt.bat--------

rem SetupMgrTag
@echo off
rem This is a SAMPLE batch script generated by the Setup Manager Wizard.
rem If this script is moved from the location where it was generated, it may have to be modified.
set AnswerFile=.\Winnt.sif
set SetupFiles=E:\i386   		   
E:\i386\winnt32 /s:%SetupFiles% /unattend:%AnswerFile%

------Above here to Winnt.bat--------

Edit Winnt.sif section

After modifying move both these files to a blank formatted floppy. Insert XP CD and reboot following above procedures (Installing Windows XP Home Edition with Upgrade CD). I set my Bios to boot CD then Hard drive then change back to Hard drive first afterwards. Reason is XP will reboot once or twice during install and with the floppy in there it hangs up. Best not to boot removeable anyways because of boot sector viruses. You can allways set it to boot floppy if need be but its pratically unnecessary anymore if your BIOS is a later version.

Unattended installation-How to do it yourself

The Windows XP Setup routine is much nicer than that in Windows 2000 or Windows Me, but it's still an hour-long process that forces you to sit in front of your computer for an hour, answering dialog boxes and typing in product keys. But Windows XP picks up one of the more useful features from Windows 2000, the ability to do an unattended installation, so you can simply prepare a script that will answer all those dialogs for you and let you spend some quality time with your family. I've written about Windows 2000 unattended installations and the process is pretty much identical on Windows XP, so please read that article carefully before proceeding. And you need to be aware that this feature is designed for a standalone Windows XP system: If you want to dual-boot Windows XP with another OS, you're going to have to go through the interactive Setup just like everyone else: An unattended install will wipe out your hard drive and install only Windows XP, usually. To perform an unattended installation, you just need to work with the Setup Manager, which is located on the Windows XP CD-ROM in D:SupportToolsDEPLOY.CAB by default:Extract the contents of this file and you'll find a number of useful tools and help files; the one we're interested in is named setupmgr.exe.   Note: setupmgr.exe only works in XP, so you have to have it installed first to use it. This is a very simple wizard application that will walk you through the process of creating an answer file called winnt.sif that can be used to guide Windows XP Setup through the unattended installation. Then, just copy winnt.sif to a floppy, put your Windows XP CD-ROM in the CD drive, and reboot: When the CD auto-boots, it will look for the unattend.txt file in A: automatically, and use it to answer the Setup questions if it's there. Finally, please remember that this will wipe out your system! Back up first, and spend some time with the help files in DEPLOY.CAB before proceeding.

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