Hi everyone, excuse me if I am posting in the wrong place but I am new to this.I have got hold of a Compaq p4 with no hard drive.I would like to use it with windows XP or a later o/s on it.I put a new hard drive in it (formatted to NFTS) but when I boot it up My display stays black.Should I see anything on display? Or could it be a problem with the graphics card?

Heya, euro. That sys has integrated graphics... ie. they are a part of the mb chipset, and not a plug-in card.
Yes, you should see the BIOS run, or try to.... it could be the power supply not providing correct voltages, mb, RAM, cpu, the display. Or a corrupted BIOS. If anything else was failing I think BIOS would at least run and indicate the problem.

I know this sounds corny but have you actually got anything on the hard drive apart from NTFS format. if the machine cant see a boot sector its going nowhere fast. Have you tied using a bootable CD like linux to see if the drive is OK?
Another possibility I use a lot is a 'carrier box' into which one can put a hard dirve and then run it from usb. These ar enot expensive and can help sort out if the drive is working... or put it in another comuter.

Thanks for your replies. will see if it will boot from Linux the PC has a graphics card. My hardware experience up to now has upgrading ram & installing operating systems so thanks again for your helpful posts.

"if the machine cant see a boot sector" then the MBR [there is one on the disk because he formatted it] will pop the relevent message.
Pull the graphics card... google tells me it has integrated graphics, so there is a means to test that card.