Clean Install Procedure For XP Pro With Full Graphics!

Operating System: Windows XP Professional - Upgrade Version
System: Personal Computer

Text Phase

If the system does not have a bootable CD ROM, see Obtaining Windows XP Setup Boot Disks for instructions.

Figure 01

The preferred method for initiating a clean install of Windows XP is by booting from the XP CD. If the CD drive is not set as the primary boot device it will be necessary to access and modify the BIOS settings. Once the CD drive is set to be polled before the hard drive, insert the XP CD into the drive and power on the system. If the screen shown in Figure 01 appears, all is well and the clean install of Windows XP Professional is underway.

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Figure 02

Almost immediately after Windows setup begins the screen shown to the left will appear. Unless you have the very latest in hardware you probably won't need to press the F6 key to install and SCSI or RAID driver. However, when XP is first installed it tries to determine what type of BIOS is available on the computer. Newer systems have what is known as Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) capability. Unfortunately, XP doesn't always recognize a computer BIOS is ACPI capable and doesn't install the support for ACPI. Pressing F5 at this point allows you to select the proper HAL.

Figure 03

Once the initialization process completes, the screen in Figure 03 loads to guide the XP installation process. More than anything, this screen is a fork in the installation road. This guide deals with a clean install and to accomplish that goal select the first option by pressing Enter. If you wanted to use the Recovery Console with an already completed XP installation, pressing R would be the proper choice. F3 ends the current installation process. After pressing Enter, setup will search the drives for an existing XP installation.

Figure 04

Pretty much any way you go at an installation anymore you're going to run into the Windows XP Licensing Agreement, better known as the End-User License Agreement or EULA, shown in Figure 04. Press F8 if you agree to the terms or press Esc and start researching alternative operating systems if you don't agree. There's no middle of the road.

Figure 05

Since you agreed to the terms of the EULA in the previous step, and because this is a clean installation from an upgrade version of XP to an un-partitioned and unformatted hard disk, the screen in Figure 05 appears asking you to verify you qualify to use the upgrade product. Of all the XP installs I've done I could count on two hands the number of times they have been done from full version CD's rather than upgrade CD's, so it's pretty likely you'll see this screen. The qualifying products are listed on the screen. Replace the XP CD with the qualifying product CD and press Enter.

Figure 06

Once Microsoft is convinced you've agreed to the EULA and qualify to install the upgrade version, the screen in Figure 06 appears where you choose a drive and partition on which to install XP. For those familiar with prior Windows operating systems, this section of setup is equivalent to FDISK when a clean install is being performed. In this example, since there is only the one hard disk it will be used to create the install partition by pressing C.

Figure 07

Once the partition creation has been initiated, the screen in Figure 07 opens and prompts for the size of the partition that will be created. As long as you adhere to the minimum and maximum listed on the screen you have the freedom to set partition sizes as you wish. Keep in mind that there are minimum space requirements to install XP. Set the size of the desired partition and press Enter.

Figure 08

Once the partition has been created you are returned to the screen in Figure 08. If there is still unallocated space on the drive and you want to create another partition, highlight the unallocated space entry and press C again to repeat the partition creation process. If you want to change the partition that was just created, highlight it using the up and down arrow keys and press D. A confirmation message will be displayed. Once you're satisfied with the partition scheme, highlight the desired install partition and press Enter.

Figure 09

The final step after creating and selecting the install partition is specifying the file system to use for formatting the partition. The available choices will be shown on the screen that appears as in Figure 09. In most cases you'll want to use NTFS. It's far more secure than FAT32 and supports permissions, encryption, and compression. The only reason for considering FAT32 would be data sharing with W9x/Me installations and since this scenario deals with a clean install it's not even a consideration.

Figure 10

Remember a few steps ago when XP wanted you to insert a CD to prove you qualified to use the upgrade version of XP? What it didn't do was tell you to remove the qualifying version and reinsert the XP installation CD. That time has arrived. Why it doesn't do this immediately after the verification I have no idea.

Figure 11

The XP CD is back in the drive and the partition is being formatted. This part of the process is totally non-interactive and a tad less interesting than watching paint dry - unless of course the paint is the same hideous yellow color as the progress bar.

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Figure 12

You thought the part where the partition was formatted was boring? More of the same in this section of setup where the files needed for installation are being copied to the hard drive. You'd think at the least they could have changed the progress bar color.

Figure 13

Almost there; the configuration is being initialized. This screen has a blissfully short appearance.

Figure 14

Finally. A red progress bar that indicates the system will reboot in 15 seconds so the Graphical User Interface portion of setup can begin. If you're still awake, tap the Enter key to speed up that 15 seconds until restart. This is the end of the text portion of setup.

Figure 15

This is it - Prepare yourself for what is possibly the longest commercial for a piece of software that has ever been presented, also called the Graphical User Interface phase of XP setup. Click the Second Set Of Steps link below.

Second Set Of Steps>>>>

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