TECH How can I make a Boot CD or Flash Drive that will get me to the command prompt?

cunninglinguist

While your gun's raising mine is blazing
Oct 5, 2001
32,397
NYC/NJ
Trying to install WinXP on an old ass laptop. Seems like the CD drive is fucked. I can do a fresh XP install from boot, but it gets corrupted (can't run any programs, most components missing). I've tried multiple versions of XP with multiple CDs, HD is fine, RAM is fine, so I'm thinking the problem is the CD drive itself.

I was able to copy over the XP CD install files onto my HD and wanted to install straight from there, but of course since this XP install is corrupted, I can't run any .exes. So I was thinking if I could just get to the command prompt, I can run setup and get Windows to install. Either that or boot from the flash drive (I'd have to pick up a 1GB+ flash drive which I currently don't have and would buy as a last resort).

So, what's the easiest way to boot to the command prompt. Has to recognize NTFS obviously. Any other solutions are welcome too.

Thanks.
 

5Gen_Prelude

There might not be an "I" in the word "Team", but
Mar 14, 2000
14,998
Vancouver, BC, CANADA
If the CD drive is fucked, how are you planning to get it to boot to the command prompt?

However, you make look at these resources: http://www.bootdisk.com/

But you may have to break down and buy a flash drive if that's the only thing you can boot off of. Or look into PXE booting WinPE - I've never done that at home though, only at work where I've set it up for imaging.

Or the sys command - possible to make the primary install partition bootable with a Win98 boot disk/files.
 

caddymac

Member
Oct 26, 2005
596
Two possible solutions I see:

1) Depending on how old the computer is, install Win 7 from USB. This would require the computer being capable of booting from USB.

2) Buy/rent/borrow an external drive.
 
TS
TS
cunninglinguist

cunninglinguist

While your gun's raising mine is blazing
Oct 5, 2001
32,397
NYC/NJ
If the CD drive is fucked, how are you planning to get it to boot to the command prompt?

However, you make look at these resources: http://www.bootdisk.com/

But you may have to break down and buy a flash drive if that's the only thing you can boot off of. Or look into PXE booting WinPE - I've never done that at home though, only at work where I've set it up for imaging.

Or the sys command - possible to make the primary install partition bootable with a Win98 boot disk/files.

This is what I'm thinking.

It's hard to describe the issue with the CD Drive. I can boot from the XP CD and the setup seems to go well, but depending on what install CD I use, there's at least one or more files that the setup cannot locate, which is what leads me to believe its a drive issue. Ran chkdsk, no bad sectors, Memory recognized in BIOS, tried each DIMM both separately and together, same issue. Memtest ran fine so I don't think its a RAM issue either.

Will try to boot into recovery console. I think I tried it a few days ago but could not get to it from the CD.

As far as booting from USB, I think my laptop can do that. The BIOS has an option for "Other Device" (in addition to CD and HDD).

Laptop is a Gateway ML6720 if that helps. Not sure how to look up USB Boot support.
 

Dillinger

Member
Mar 27, 2011
38
John Wayne Gacy's basement
This is what I'm thinking.

It's hard to describe the issue with the CD Drive. I can boot from the XP CD and the setup seems to go well, but depending on what install CD I use, there's at least one or more files that the setup cannot locate, which is what leads me to believe its a drive issue. Ran chkdsk, no bad sectors, Memory recognized in BIOS, tried each DIMM both separately and together, same issue. Memtest ran fine so I don't think its a RAM issue either.

Will try to boot into recovery console. I think I tried it a few days ago but could not get to it from the CD.

As far as booting from USB, I think my laptop can do that. The BIOS has an option for "Other Device" (in addition to CD and HDD).

Laptop is a Gateway ML6720 if that helps. Not sure how to look up USB Boot support.
I have installed Windows 7 onto a laptop and a nettop from a USB drive. You need a program called "WinToFlash" I dont know if you can do it with XP or not. I have not tried. this is very easy and the hard part is the time it takes to create the boot drive with the thumb drive. you need a thumb drive or flash drive, same thing. 4 gigs is this Minimum that you can use. if you have all that or can get it. tell me and I will post the tut rite here. Good luck
 

caddymac

Member
Oct 26, 2005
596
Microsoft at one time even had their own USB creator tool. The trick is that it matters what OS you use on the computer that you are creating the bootable USB. 32bit OS to create a 32bit boot disk, etc. There are work arounds.

http://www.intowindows.com/how-to-c...sb-flash-drive-using-windows-7-dvdusb-tool/is a link to check out if you go Win 7 route.

If you Google install Windows XP on netbook you'll probably come up with some other solutions as well.
 

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