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Cannot install Windows Xp - hangs at 2nd reboot

Last response: in Windows XP
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November 25, 2009 2:54:40 PM

There goes my problem:

I am trying to reinstall Win Xp SP2 on an old system:

ASUS P4S8X-X mobo
Intel Pentium 4 @1700
512 MB DDR1
Excelstor Technology J340 40 GB HDD (IDE)
GeForce 4 MX440

I've just deleted two smaller partitions and created another 18 gigs one - i kept an old 11 GB partition i had.
Everything goes as normal as the other Windows Xp installs i've done until it starts to copy the files from CD to the hard drive. Now, every time i tried to install it had problems copying various files - they were completely random each new attempt i made. After a Return key (retry) they didn't pop anymore.
And now the major problem - the pc restarts after copying the files, i am prompted once again to press a key to boot from cd - of course i ignore it - but it hangs here, not booting from the hard drive. Funny thing is 2 characters in the device listing change into red smiley faces. The cursor keeps bleeping so the system doesn't freeze.
I've tried several times to remake the partition/format it to various formats, still the same problem.

Note:
- The CD is scratchless, actually i tried 2 different CDs, same problem
- The CD-ROM drive is old, but still it manages to copy all the files eventually
- The drives are correctly set as master/slave
- I've had Win xp isntalled since 2 hours ago and it worked, same config, same bios settings etc.
- Boot settings are correct in BIOS: 1st is the CD drive, 2nd the HDD
- I've tried swapping the RAM cards, or removing one of them

I'm stuck and helpless.
Thank you


LATER EDIT: i've just talked to my sister and she told me she tried to install ubuntu on this pc, ending in failure though.
I've been searching the web a little and it seems ubuntu does some changes to the hard disk that WinXp can't undo.
November 25, 2009 6:45:54 PM

Finally solved - noob me!
Windows can be installed only on a PRIMARY partition, it seems installing on the old partition i had worked. BSOD meanwhile but still, the main problem is gone.

Also this can be fixed by running a live ubuntu cd and format the partition as PRIMARY, not LOGICAL.
!