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Hi -
I'm trying to format and reinstall Windows XP on a Dell 4300 for a friend. When I booted the computer up - A trial version of Windows XP Pro SP2 disk was in the drive and in the middle of set up. Problem is - I don't have an upgrade product key - and would just like to stop this set up. I have a legit copy of XP Pro or Home to install - but I can't get this set up to stop. When I attempt to boot from the Home or XP Pro disks (not the upgrade) - it either asks for the Upgrade disk - or errors 'Primary hard disk drive 1 not found - Strike f1 to continue, F2 to run setup utility.'

I have changed the boot sequence, enabled/disabled the hard drive - all to no avail.

So either I need an upgrade product key to finish this install so I can then put the legit copy on - or stop this install and try a new install/format with the other disks. This upgrade disk says it's a 120 day free trial - but I'm not finding a trial product key online. Any ideas?

Thanks!!

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Last Post by raagehomeboi
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I think they stopped offering the free trial on XP, so you probably wont find that code. If it's still availiable you'll find it on XP under the "software trials" section.

I'm not sure why the upgrade copy would be recognizing the hard drive but the full copy wouldn't, but I'd suggest booting from the upgrade disk, hitting "R" for recovery console. Use the "format" command, reboot, and load the right disk. See if this allows you to access the drive.

PS: Make sure the key on the computer (if this is a reinstall as you said) is for the right version. If it's a major branded computer (HP, Dell, Toshiba, ect,...) It's certainly an OEM key that will NOT work with a retail or upgrade disk.

I don't need to ask if these keys are legitimate because I'm SURE you already know that you can only use these keys on one system at a time (and need to affix the COA to the case). If you gave any reason to believe you did not have a valid COA the moderators would be forced to delete the thread.

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dells usually ship with a recovery partition, try using a recovery disc to set it back to factory defaults

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Hi I think they stopped offering the free trial on XP, so you probably wont find that code. If it's still availiable you'll find it on XP under the "software trials" section.

I'm not sure why the upgrade copy would be recognizing the hard drive but the full copy wouldn't, but I'd suggest booting from the upgrade disk, hitting "R" for recovery console. Use the "format" command, reboot, and load the right disk. See if this allows you to access the drive.

PS: Make sure the key on the computer (if this is a reinstall as you said) is for the right version. If it's a major branded computer (HP, Dell, Toshiba, ect,...) It's certainly an OEM key that will NOT work with a retail or upgrade disk.

I don't need to ask if these keys are legitimate because I'm SURE you already know that you can only use these keys on one system at a time (and need to affix the COA to the case). If you gave any reason to believe you did not have a valid COA the moderators would be forced to delete the thread. thankz

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