Blank Gray screen after reboot during windows XP installation

By drf202
Feb 22, 2007
  1. I just attempted to install Windows XP on a computer that had been using windows 98. I booted from the disk, erased the current partition, made a new one, and formatted it. After formatting the computer copied files and folders it needed to continue the setup and then gave the message that it needed to restart and would continue the setup afterwards. However when it restarted, after the BIOS, only a blank gray screen appeared and nothing happened. The only way to get away from the gray screen was to press the on/off button for a few seconds until the computer turned off and then start all over again. I tried the whole process a few times and the gray screen always appeared after restart and the BIOS. I've never encountered this problem before...what can be causing it?
    PS Please answer in relatively simple terms...I'm not much of a computer person
  2. Ididmyc600

    Ididmyc600 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,415


    Did you bother checking to see if the PC can support XP, the easiest way is to run the tool on the XP disk first, but as you have just gone ahead and deleted the old OS your stuffed for that idea, as it has 98 on originally i'm betting its an old PC.

    You will now have to go to the MS website and check each component against the list of supported items,, odds are something isnt supported and as such the GUI interface ( the bit that comes up after the restart) is hanging and you get a grey screen.

  3. drf202

    drf202 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well as I said I'm not much of a computer person, but now I will know to check for next time. It was a computer which was donated to my friends, and arrived with Windows 98 (which could have been the OS installed to to money issues or due to compatibility). I DID talk to people who know more than me about compatibility before and the computer has 256 RAM, 20GB hard disk, and is Pentium III, which should have been compatible, right? No one told me to check the grapics card though...I'm think maybe that is the incompatible part, since the gray screen appeared at the part where the more complex GUI interface comes up. I have not idea what the grapics card is or how to check it at this point. I should be able to install Windows 98 again, right?
  4. Ididmyc600

    Ididmyc600 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,415


    make sure you know what the components are, you are going to need drivers for the video, sound etc most likely.

  5. tweaks_sav

    tweaks_sav TS Rookie Posts: 186

    XP is pretty compatible with most setups.

    Don't go XP with those low specs though. Try Windows 2000.
  6. drf202

    drf202 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I don't know how to check what the graphics card is anyway. Most likely I will reinstall Windows 98'. Buying a new graphics card would probably not be worth it. She would rather just save up to buy a new computer. Thanks for your help though.
  7. nickc

    nickc TechSpot Paladin Posts: 923   +11

  8. tweaks_sav

    tweaks_sav TS Rookie Posts: 186

    He doesn't have a working Everest won't help him. A fresh install should almost never fail, and if it does, it's normally hardware related.

    drf202, you should also try booting to a book disk such as MiniPE, to test a live OS on the machine.
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