I had a problem on a HP computer with the "error loading operating system message" that everybody is so familiar with. Whenever I tried to use the recovery disk to clean install VISTA, it would always freeze on me. I decided to hook up the HP hard drive to a dell inspiron desktop, along with the hard drive that it was already running. I wanted to reformatte the HP hard drive thinking this may help with the clean install.
The hard drive from my HP was not recognized on my dell (both SATA drives), so I figured I was just doing something wrong. I took out the HP hard drive from the dell and decided to restart the dell.
I guess this was stupid, because now I have the same exact problem with my dell. I am using the dell recovery cd to try and clean install on the dell, and it freezes after about 10 minutes into the install (just like the HP). I feel hopeless. I want to say this is a virus of some sort, but I am not familiar with getting rid of viruses at all. Both BIOS's are up to date on both computers and both computers are attempting to run windows vista home premium. I set the boot order to CD, HD.