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  1. The point seems to be well known. Frequently, MS asks for a non existent password when entering the recovery console. A workaround is presented in the following link that tweaks the registry to suppress any RC password. The problem is it has to be used before loosing access to Win XP. Hope that will help. http://www.theeldergeek.com/recovery_console.htm
  2. I think the status of an USB device depends on its state at boot time : I had another experiment booting XP on the same computer from an USB hdd. The drive is recognized by the Bios only if the drive is switched off and on before switching the computer on. In any other case, the bus seems to be reset, the light of the drive turns off one second and the drive does not appear among bootable devices in the bios boot menu. Perhaps its more or less analogous for USB stick and it happened to work once out of many times just because it was in the appropriate state to be recognized as bootable device. Regards
  3. Hi Ilko and thank you for checking the files. Concerning Bios version, my computer is quite recent (1 week) so I'am afraid I cannot find a newer Bios. I think I noticed an option in advanced bios menu relative to USB Legacy mode but I have not investigated, I dont know well what it is. do you think it's worth toggling it? For the test, I shall do it at night as soon as I am home. Regards Edit : I modified boot.ini as Ilko suggested. At first, I choose to boot from D: and Windows told it lacked some file. I then choose C: and Windows installation began. I dont know exactly what solved the point but it works. I have to come back to the previous situation in order to confirm the diagnostic.
  4. Thank you Jaclaz. Here are the files. I was out for sunday, my experiments were delayed, no news. PS : I cannot upload with Firefox, I have to run IE. SETUPLDR.zip
  5. Hi ilko, My BIOS is phoenix award bios 5.04. I have tries booting both ways, usb stick as first device without menu and through the bios menu (not f12 but Esc). In either case, I get the boot.ini menu and after having choosen textsetup, Win complains that it cannot find hal.dll. I have no other USB device. Win is Win XP Pro SP2 and I have prepared the stick with HPUSBFW.exe. Here is the boot.ini file you ask for. [boot Loader] Timeout=10 Default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS [Operating Systems] multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(1)partition(1)\WINDOWS="GUI Mode Setup Windows XP" /FASTDETECT C:\SETUPLDR.bs="TEXT Mode Setup Windows XP" It seems that I cannot attach any other file than text files that way, the system hangs. Edit : I tried uploading with another browser, I have a warning "upload failed, you are not permitted to upload this type of file (BOOT.INI BackupBS.ori SETUPLDR.bs). Sorry.
  6. Hi all, @jaclaz : I tried the script as you suggested. It is worse, the stick no longer boots. I dont know how to control stages of boot. I have the message "System disk invalid I/O Error" in french of course, my computer (HP s7705 is french). I shall try the way you suggest, try to get a normal boot with boot.ini menu on the stick. I am afraid I shall have to erase once again the wole staff on stick. Is not there a method to control the content of the boot block on the stick and to repair it? I know it exists for mbr. That's a pity to format a drive whose content is 99.99% good! @ilko : I have used the batch usb_prep2. Is it the more recent? I shall try to check what it has done with the stick. I come back soon. First edit : I tried mbrwiz on the stick and found that the partition was not active. I toggled it and it seems to boot. We shall see further. I reach the boot menu. I choose textsetup and have another error message : "Windows could not start the file system32\hal.dll is missing or corrupted".
  7. Thank you Jaclaz. In fact, I got the message (in french "NTLDR manque") when booting on the target drive not on the stick, just after textsetup phase. The stick boot was OK and the first phase of installation too. According to what you say, that message is probably coded in the boot sector of my drive. Why does that bootloader complain when I boot from drive, I wonder. Is there any diagnostic I can run on the drive to understand what is going wrong? Perheaps what you suggest for the stick would be applicable on the drive?
  8. To make things simple, I had only one partition on the destination drive. I think I have written boot.ini and menu.slt correctly. My sources were on the stick and I have not really seen if it was shown. I have to try again. I had noticed the script but thought tings were more under control if I did it by myself. I shall try it. I dont think the message came from grub because I tried both ways of booting, through grub on stick and directly on the destination drive and it was the same. NTDLR missing. Is it possible that the drive boot when placed on another computer while not on the target computer?
  9. Hello to the community, I tried the procedure given by ilko_t on april 21st. It is said 100% success for ATA. I have followed the tutorial line by line. The first stage (textsetup) from the stick went ok. But I didnt manage to reboot on HDD. I had a message "NTLDR missing". I tried with stick first through grub or hdd first, always the same message. I tried fiddling with boot.ini modifying hdr parameter but everything was useless. I think that the drive could have booted, it seems that, on another computer (I took it to format it) it could have booted. I installed Win XP Pro sp2 on a Pavilion (512Mo 250 Go sempron 3400). Would you have diagnostic or advices ? Thanks very much. PS : the DOS method went OK. The hdd booted on Win98 prompt and I ran Winnt. But how long it is : 3 or 4 hours!