I read thru the stickies at the top and am, basically, lost. It's an old HP Compaq nc8230 with XPsp3. I haven't been using it much lately, last time was over a month ago. I plugged it in to power to let it charge awhile. I then hit the start button and the on light comes on and stays on, and once in awhile I get a brief hp logo on the screen when I try starting, but then the screen goes dark again. I've got the Windows XP CD and tried starting with that in the machine, but nothing happened. Can I take something off my desktop (also XPsp3) onto either a CD or onto my portable USB HD to make it boot? I would need pretty explicit step by step instructions. Thanks! PS - I looked again at the thing about putting the HD into a portable HD case - I have a small portable HD that I took the cover off of and I see it's a standard lapop HD apparently. But then got the HD out of the laptop and I see it's a different kind of connector.