Installing W2K Pro without a CDROM

By Timthetoolman
Feb 15, 2006
  1. I have a POS (point of sale) computer that does not have a CDROM. It does have an external floppy drive that the BIOS can be set to boot from.

    I wanted to install Windows 2000 Pro on the built-in hard drive.
    I started by removing the POS hard drive and installing it in a laptop computer. I then set the BIOS to boot from the laptop's CDROM, inserted my W2K CD, and performed a full install (not upgrade) on this hard drive.
    After it was finished I removed the hard drive and installed it in my POS computer. The computer goes through the power-on-self-test (POST), says it is starting windows on a line at the bottom of the screen, and then the computer restarts. This cycle keeps on repeating itself without ever loading windows.

    Any suggestions on why this happening? Is it because the W2K install loaded drivers specific the laptop computer that are not compatible with the POS computer?

    If this method of loading W2K on a HD is not workable, any suggestions on how to do full install without a CDROM on the POS computer?
    The computer has USB, serial, parallel, and floppy drive ports.

  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    No, as a rule, you cannot run a Windows installation from one computer in another.

    On the laptop format the POS hard drive as FAT32 and copy the i386 folder from the W2k CD onto it. Put the HD back into the POS machine. Boot the POS thing from a DOS floppy and run the 2k setup off the hard drive.
  3. Timthetoolman

    Timthetoolman TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks Nodsu.

    I had tried formatting the hard drive to Fat32 but I then did the full install in the laptop rather than just copying the i386 folder.

    I will use your instructions today.

    Is there anyway that I can install W2K using NTFS?
    When formatting the hard drive in the laptop could I create two partitions and once the hard drive is in the POS computer, tell the W2K setup program to install windows in the emty partition and use NTFS?

    After the install, could I convert the original partition to NTFS?


    P.S. I like your tag line.
  4. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Yes and yes! :)

    I was just giving the simplest option so you wouldn't be overwhelmed :p
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