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HP Pavilion a1129n xp install issue.

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December 10, 2009 6:16:04 AM

Hello everyone,

I ran into a problem I have never come across before. A friend of mine has an HP Pavilion a1129n. He was able catch a pretty bad virus. The easiest solution in his case was a fresh reinstall of xp because he had nothing important saved on his drive.

After taking his computer home for a night I noticed 2 issues the the computer is having. 1 issue is the the screen is constantly wavy, like the letters are dancing before the computer even boots up. I have used different monitors so it cant be a monitor issue. I'm guessing a driver or hardware issue here. But this is not the main issue, I can deal with this later.

The biggest problem I am having is I cannot get the computer to detect the SATA drive (Maxtor 6L200M0) to install xp pro. (of course my friend does not have the official HP restore discs.... might be a problem?)

The drive is good, it is detected fine on my machine through a USB external enclosure, but not through SATA connectors (including disc manager). However, bios does see the drive when connected to SATA connectors.

I have tried installing the 3rd party SATA/RAID drivers with f6 from MSI when installing xp with no luck, I have tried disabling SATA settings and re enabling them, reformatting the drive, installing xp on the drive from a different computer all with no luck.

I searched google for a couple days with not much luck. I have not found a solid solution to this issue.

Does HP have a lock on this drive or something? HP is no help of course, they wouldnt even tell me if there was a lock on the drive without paying them 60 or so bucks first....

thanks for any help here.
a b α HP
December 10, 2009 11:08:16 PM

You probably have XP SP1. That doesn't have the needed SATA drivers. So you need to put them on a bootable floppy drive. Then install them via the f6 at the beginning of the windows install.

Or you can slipstream the SATA drivers into a disc.
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December 10, 2009 11:13:59 PM

aford10 said:
You probably have XP SP1. That doesn't have the needed SATA drivers. So you need to put them on a bootable floppy drive. Then install them via the f6 at the beginning of the windows install.

Or you can slipstream the SATA drivers into a disc.



I have tried the putting the SATA drivers onto a floppy and hitting f6, it did not work. I'm not sure what to try next.
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a b α HP
December 10, 2009 11:51:53 PM

Did you make the floppy bootable? If not, it won't work.
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December 12, 2009 4:34:24 AM

aford10 said:
Did you make the floppy bootable? If not, it won't work.



I tried so many different things that night I'm not sure. I'll try this again and make sure its bootable.
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a b α HP
December 12, 2009 12:49:20 PM

Insert the floppy. Right click on the A drive, and choose the option to create a bootable floppy.
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December 16, 2009 12:29:15 AM

aford10 said:
Insert the floppy. Right click on the A drive, and choose the option to create a bootable floppy.



I did this, it did not work. I'm really out of ideas here. Its obviously a driver issue, it just seems like I am unable to locate the correct drivers.
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a b α HP
December 16, 2009 11:05:33 AM

Download SP2 and slipstream the drivers into your OS disc with nlite. SP2 comes with SATA drivers.
http://www.nliteos.com/
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December 17, 2009 1:56:58 PM

I really appreciate the effort aford, but again nothing has changed. Could it be the SATA controller just went out all together? Could it be possible that all this effort is for nothing?

I have now had my friends computer for nearly a week trying everything possible. I tried the bootable floppies w/ f6 SATA/raid drivers, slipstream sp2, reformatting the drive to fat32 and ntfs, used different SATA drives, different SATA connectors/slots, different install discs ect... I'm sure I could continue on with my list.

I'm not sure how it happened, but HP actually attempted to assist me even though the warranty was 1000+ days expired. They suggested a dead drive but, it works on MY computer, they then suggested the SATA controller has gone bad and I would have to replace the mobo.


I feel there is not much more I can try. There is only so much you can do when you are limited to BIOS and no OS.

The only thing I can think of at this point is the only disc I have not tried is the the recovery disc provided by HP. Could there be something special on their branded disc?
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a b α HP
December 17, 2009 2:10:37 PM

It's possible, but it wouldn't be on the top of my list of most likely causes.

I bet they were more than willing to sell you a new motherboard too :no: 

At this point, I would give those restore discs a shot. They shouldn't have any different SATA drivers on them, but it's worth a shot.

Does the motherboard have onboard RAID? You aren't connected to a RAID port are you?
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