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Recovering the System after the Hard Drive Is Replaced (Windows 98, ME, and XP)

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This document applies to HP and Compaq desktop PCs with Microsoft(R) Windows 98, Me, and XP.
This document describes how to reinstall all system and program files on an HP PC that had the main hard drive replaced.

Before you begin

  • To recover the PC after the hard drive has been replaced, you need a recovery disc set that came with your PC, a set that was created, or a set that was ordered from HP.
    NOTE:Most HP PCs with Windows XP do not come with recovery discs in the box. To recover the PC, you must use recovery discs (like those created by the recovery disc creator utility software). If you do not have a set of recovery discs for your PC that came with Windows XP, you need to: Obtain recovery CDs for Windows XP and then Perform a full System Recovery in Windows XP .
  • If possible, install a formatted hard drive. The new hard drive must be as large or larger than the replaced hard drive.
  • For versions of Windows before Windows XP, obtain Microsoft's Certificate of Authenticity number (also know as the Product Key) for the Windows operating system. The recovery process may request the product key. The Certificate of Authenticity is on the cover of the Microsoft Windows book that was included with the PC, or, for HP PCs, on a small sticker on the side of the case.

Step 1: Verify the hard disk drive is detected

Perform the following steps to determine if the hard disk drive is being detected by the BIOS:
  1. Disconnect all devices from the PC except for the monitor, mouse, and keyboard.
  2. Remove all media (for example CDs, DVDs, and flash memory cards) from the drives.
  3. Turn the PC on and press the F1 key repeatedly at the first screen to enter the BIOS Setup Utility.
  4. From the first screen (typically labeled Main) press the Arrow and Enter keys to find and select Primary Master or First Channel Device 0 or a similarly labeled menu item.
  5. Verify a hard drive name is listed next to Primary Master or First Channel Device 0:
    • If the text Auto or None is listed next to Primary Master or First Channel Device 0, the hard disk drive is not set up properly or is defective. Make sure the hard drive is correctly installed per the manufacturer's instructions.
    • If a hard drive name is listed, continue to the next step.

Step 2: Preparing the new drive for recovery

Some new drives need to be prepared before recovering the original files. This step is not necessary (and you can skip to Step 3) if:
  • The new drive is already formatted.
  • The PC originally came with the Microsoft XP operating system.
CAUTION: The following steps delete all information on the hard disk drive! Do not perform these steps if there are files on the hard drive that you want to save.
  1. Disconnect all devices from the computer except for the monitor, mouse, and keyboard.
  2. With the new hard drive in place, turn the computer on and insert the first disc of the recovery disc set into the top CD or DVD drive.
  3. Restart the PC and click the first recovery introduction screen.
  4. On the main recovery screen, click Advanced Options, then select Exit to DOS from the drop-down menu.
  5. Type FDISK at the prompt and press Enter.
  6. Press the Y, key if Y is not already entered, and press Enter to enable large disk support. Press Y again if a screen comes up asking for large NTFS support.
  7. Press the 1 key, if it is not already entered, and press Enter to create the DOS partition or logical DOS drive.
  8. Press the 1 key, if it is not already entered, and press Enter to create a primary DOS partition. The PC begins to verify the hard drive integrity. If the hard drive does not appear in the list, turn the computer off, verify the jumper settings for the hard drive and the cable connections to the drive and to the motherboard, and restart again from step 3.
  9. Press the Y key, if not already entered, and press Enter to use the maximum available size for the primary DOS partition and make the partition active. The system continues verifying the drive integrity.
  10. Press Esc to restart your system so that the changes take effect. After restarting, you will need to format the hard drive.
  11. Turn off the PC and wait approximately five seconds before continuing to the next section.

Step 3: Installing the original files from the recovery disc

Perform the following steps to restore the original files to the new hard disk drive.
  1. Place the first recovery disc in the top CD or DVD drive and turn on the PC.
    The recovery process formats the hard drive. This takes approximately 20 to 30 minutes.
  2. The Recovery screen appears. Follow the directions on each screen to recover the hard drive. The recovery process may take a long time to complete, over an hour.
  3. Stay near the PC while the recovery process runs. If there are more than two recovery discs, you will need to remove and insert discs when prompted.
  4. When the recovery process is finished, remove the disc(s) and answer any questions on any screens that appear. Read all screens carefully. Restart the PC when prompted.
    Again Windows setup can take a long time. Be patient while setup completes.
  5. After the System Recovery is complete, refer to the following HP support document for more important things that need to be done: Things to Do After Performaing a System Recovery in Windows XP .

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