How to reinstall WindowsXP on a Dell ?

Nov 28, 2004
  1. I Own a Dell computer And I used the Dell Cd to reinstall Windows XP. Everything Went ok but now it says that i must activate windows to be able to log on. So now everytime i try to do so the web page that comes up for activation is an about/blank page. And nothing else shows up on the screen, start menu,icons etc... You can still go to some websites but eventually an error pops up that internet explorer has a problem and its then logs you off the computer. I tried to run the XP cd again but i dont know how to. I go to the boot menu but none of the options runs the cd. Any help on what i should do would be great. And sorry fo the long story.

    DJ ILLADEL TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Ive also read that you can format and reinstall windows by setting it up in MSDOS but then again no clue on doing that either
  3. jwazevedo

    jwazevedo TS Rookie Posts: 49

    Here's what I'd try:
    1. If you're still under warranty, I'd call Dell first.
    2. When you first start Windows, go directly to the Activate program without waiting for it to warn you. Does that work?
    3. It sounds fishy that IE has generated an error but the rest of Windows continues to work without "activation". Any chance you have a virus?
    4. If all else fails and you don't mind a royal pain, you can reinstall a fresh version of Windows XP. Use the Dell CD that is marked Windows XP, not the recovery CD. Turn off the computer and then boot from that CD. Follow the steps for a fresh install, including deleting the partition and then re-creating it and then installing XP on the re-created partition. You'll lose all your data, so make sure you have a backup of anything you want. Do all the whole install, and then Windows will advise you to activate. I would choose the phone option, so you don't hook up to the Internet before you've got Windows secure. After you activate, install SP2 and your virus software. Then you should be good to go onto the Internet.

    Hope one of these works for you.
  4. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    In order for your CD to boot, you need to go into the BIOS when you first restart your computer. Try hitting DEL, F1 or F10, then change the boot sequence to Floppy drive first, CD-Rom second, then Hard Drive third. This will look for a floppy disk first, then CD, then boot as normal form the Hard Drive if nothing is in either drive. Then save and exit with the CD in the drive (and nothing in the floppy) and you should boot to the CD.

    :wave:Welcome to TechSpot:wave:
  5. patio

    patio TS Maniac Posts: 482

    As Dell has a few ways to enter the BIOS i thought this list might be of help...

    here are some common examples: Computer Key Command(s)

    Acer® F1, F2, CTRL+ALT+ESC
    Compaq® 8700 F10
    CompUSA® DEL
    Cybermax® ESC
    Dell® 400 F3
    Dell 400 F1
    Dell Dimension® F2 or DEL
    Dell Inspiron® F2
    Dell Latitude Fn+F1 (while booted)
    Dell Latitude F2 (on boot)
    Dell Optiplex DEL
    Dell Optiplex F2
    Dell Precision™ F2
    eMachine™ DEL
    Gateway® 2000 1440 F1
    Gateway 2000 Solo™ F2
    HP® (Hewlett-Packard) F1, F2
    IBM® F1
    IBM E-pro Laptop F2
    IBM Thinkpad® (newer) Windows: Programs-Thinkpad CFG.
    Intel® Tangent DEL
    Micron™ F1, F2, or DEL
    Packard Bell® F1, F2, DEL
    Sony® VIAO F2
    Sony VIAO F3
    Tiger DEL
    Toshiba® 335 CDS ESC
    Toshiba Protege ESC
    Toshiba Satellite 205 CDS F1
    Toshiba Tecra F1 or ESC

    patio. :cool:
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