my friend has a really crappy computer that he has messed up even more so yesterday i said i would help him reinstall everything. The problem was he didn't have the discs all he had was this crappy hp tools program that does a system recovery. I did that and it did everuthing but now when you restart it says that setup is not complete and it will start again only thing is it doesn't the computer just restarts and the error message appears again. The only xp cd i have is for a dell could i just use that to do a clean install on his system.

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Get a full copy CD of XP. It doesn't need to be for this particular computer. Install it. Don't activate it. If you only have an OEM (non bootable) copy...we can work around this...I won't explain it unless you need me to. For now, I'm assuming that you have a full bootable copy of XP Pro.

Go to Microsoft KB 328874 and follow the directions. Change your key while following the directions to the key that should be on a sticker on the back of his HP computer. You should be all set now.

You will also need to download all the necessary device drivers from HPs website. Post the complete model number of that HP PC here if you have troubles locating them, and we can help you work out what is needed. They should ideally be downloaded on a different PC and burnt to CD ready to install.

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