XP install problems, formatting issues, power cut outs,

My PC started to run really slow and occasionally the power would cut out unexpectedly.
It was getting old so i decided to wipe the hard drive and reinstall windows xp pro(I intend ultimately to have xp on one drive and linux on another partition).
When it came to installing i put the XP install disk into the CD player and chose format options to format the drives.
First problem: "unable to verify drive - CD or disk may be damaged"
I new the CDs ok, so i bought a new hard drive. Still no good.
After a lot of research i understand that my MOBO (K7N2) may have an issue when it comes to partitions greater than 9765 MB and NTFS file structures so i chose quick format which seemed to work right up until "saving your settings" when it hangs.
Now: computer won't start at all unless i remove and reinsert the power cable first, then at best i get the screen listing drives and bus addresses and the message unable to load operating system.
After about a minutes of this the power cuts again.
Any thoughts as to what's going on?
Is my MOBO blown?
Should i get me a new PSU?
Thanks for your help.

My Set up:
PSU: Macron MPT-300
AMD Athlon 64
RAM: 512 + two 256 MB 266 MHz 184 pin DDR DIMM
Hard Drives: original: Maxtor Diamond plus 9, ATA, 60 GB
now also: Seagate Barracuda 7200.10
DVD ROM, CD RW, Floppy
Generic Steel tower.
3 answers Last reply
More about install problems formatting issues power outs
  1. Your PSU would be a problem even if it's not THE problem. You should get a decent quality PSU to start.

    The parts list link in my sig has some good ones.
  2. Thanks - especially for the Jonny Guru site - Amazing!
    Agree about the PSU, it's an obvious first step.
    Am thinking I need a PSU that will work with my current setup (K7N2) and will have potential to power a higher spec system when funds permit.
    Am trying to stretch to an Antec signature 650W.
    Any recommendations for cheap online stores UK side of the pond?
  3. ebuyer, Dabs, and scan.co.uk, all linked at the top of my parts list, seem to have the best prices. Overclocker and the others are known to have good deals at times though. There is not one clear winner like newegg is here.

    Yes the 650W Signature and the Corsair 850TX are both hard to argue with these days.
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