Reloading os without optical drive

I have a Dell Dimension E3100 that the optical drive and the hdd were gone bad. Trying to fix and give to parents who have no clue how to operate a computer. My problem is as follows. The hdd that I replaced is a blank slate and the optical drive is a fresh install, newer than the old odd. I am trying to install an os onto the system, however I am unable to just load a disk into the odd because the drivers are not installed, (being a fresh odd). Is there a way to load the odd when first starting the computer? Will the computer recognize it at all somehow, it does not currently register it as being present. Also, is there a way for me to load the os onto the hdd via a secondary computer and then have it work on this computer? I am unsure if that would work due to bios and driver differences. does the dimension e3100 have the capability to boot from flash drive (with os)?
Thanks
2 answers Last reply
More about reloading optical drive
  1. Install windows from usb drive.

    Use another computer and one of these tools to create bootable usb windows installer:
    http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/120444-how-to-install-windows-from-usb-winsetupfromusb-with-gui/
    http://wintoflash.com/home/en/

    I like first one better.
  2. It's not a driver problem, if the bios doesn't see the optical drive. There must be something else wrong with it. Fix that first and it will boot and install from the windows disc.
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