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i was receiving an "operating system not found" error message on my Dell Inspiron 1012

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November 7, 2013 2:11:41 PM

i was receiving an "operating system not found" error message on my Dell Inspiron 1012 notebook. After some research on the internet, I thought I needed to replace my hard drive. I ordered one and thought I was doing the right thing by going from my old one of SATA 250 GB 5400 RPM to a new one of 750GB 5400 RPM. I have successfully installed the new hard drive (I think). I still get the same message. There is no place to put a cd on this notebook. How do I install an operating system on this new hard drive ? I realize I will probably have to pay for it, and thats ok, just want it done . And I'm no techie by any stretch of the imagination' so please be patient with my ignorance. I probably should have just paid someone, but I like to learn/do things myself, so here I am. Thanks

November 7, 2013 2:43:55 PM

1. You learned that hard drives don't come with an operating system already installed. Bonus!
2. Your Notebook will already have a Windows Serial Number on it, so you don't need to buy a new one.
3. If you have a friend with such a CD/DVD you can legitimately use theirs to install yours, though it has to be the same version, a Win7 Home S/N won't work with Ultimate.
4. As well as the OS CD/DVD you will need a way of getting it onto your new hard drive. You could possibly copy all the installation files off the DVD (if your friend has a DVD drive too) onto a USB stick and install from that, first ensuring your notebook can boot from a USB from settings in the BIOS. If the USB stick doesn't work, you will need an external USB DVD drive, a useful thing anyway.
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November 8, 2013 10:51:34 AM


the notebook came with windows 7 starter. I want to upgrade from that. Maybe windows 7? I don't have a friend to do this for me, so I'm back to....what is the best way to get it on my new hard drive, wi th only my notebook to work with? What all will i have to buy?


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November 8, 2013 11:07:55 AM

Maybe an external usb drive and the installation CD, or would it be wiser to take it somewhere and see how much they'd charge me to install windows? Is windows 7 the best to go with, in your opinion? I use the computer for surfing, resumes, and school.
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November 8, 2013 5:08:36 PM

Your idea about buying an external CD/DVD drive is a good one and it will probably cost less than taking it to a shop to be repaired.
The shop will have to charge you for Windows 7 (Home Basic 32 bit as I doubt anything else other than XP would run on it) anyway and you will have a CD/DVD drive to use on any future computers you will own, plus you will get the satisfaction (and education) of installing the OS yourself.
Apache OpenOffice is a very good (and totally free) alternative to MS Office and I recommend you download that for your school work & resumes.
When you come to download Updates for your new installation, Windows will install an Ap which gives you a wide variety of Browser Choices other than Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or SrWare Iron are, in my experience, the most functional, though Firefox is the most customisable and comprehensive browser.
(Edit) If your funds can run to it and your Dell Inspiron 1012 notebook can do it, upgrade the RAM to 2Gb rather than the 1Gb installed, it will be much faster if you do.
Good luck and have fun!
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November 20, 2013 8:44:45 AM

So' I've replaced the original 250GB internal hard drive with a 750 GB, replaced the original 1GB memory stick with a 2 GB, bought an external portable hard drive, and purchased the Windows 8 software cd. Still "operating system not found",and I can't get the external hard drive to download onto the computer. I'm so aggravated cause at this point for a couple hundred more I could've bought a new laptop that would accommodate more than 2GB memory. Any suggestions are appreciated. Thanks

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November 22, 2013 8:22:59 AM

I'm sad to hear that krisp, did you set the BIOS to first boot from USB device?
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