I recently aquired a homebuilt, (used to be Gateway), P3 550, with 256 Meg of ram. Original HD was 10 gig, with DVD player, and Win XP. I saw this machine running. It seemed fine. I brought it home and had trouble ever since. First, after removong the orig HD, I added my 2 HD's which already had XP loaded, and ran just fine but power supply went out. Then I added my CD writer, leaving the DVD player. I checked all of the jumpers. HD's are on primary, master & slave, and CD writer is secondary master, and DVD is sec. slave. The BIOS sees all componants.
On boot up, I have to boot from the XP CD. System will not see the OS. OK, so I tried reloading the OS. Went as far as deleting partition, and formatting to ntfs. After formatting is done, I get a message that windows can not be loaded on this drive, and that it could be damaged, to try another partition. I always get the same message, even after trying different drives. I also tried a different, known good cable.