Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I am fixing a computer for a friend, which has a Windows XP Home Edition installation that will not boot. I think there's corrupted system files; I was able to boot from a Windows XP Pro disc, tried fixing the MBR and everything else I could. I've determined that the best course of action is to re-install Windows. I have her genuine product key, but I only have a Windows XP Professional disc, not a Windows XP Home disc. I don't think Microsoft offers any OS downloads on their website and I can't see any way to fix this computer without actually having an XP Home disc.

The computer is a Dell Inspiron 6000, is there a way I could get it from Dell? I know some Dell computers come with recovery partitions (as this one did) but when those are gone... well, they aren't much good.

What can I do?

share|improve this question
Contact microsoft? – Chris Nov 12 '10 at 18:38
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Should be free. And should arrive in a few days.

Dell - Support - Request Backup Discs

share|improve this answer

If you know anyone else that has a dell with xp home the disk or recovery partition they have should work(it has for me before). I don't know where to get one as I simply kept copies around when I was doing IT repair. Confident dell would sell it to you, but it's probably a pain.

share|improve this answer

Two ideas:

1) Go on Dell's support website. They have live-chat available with their tech support people. They can tell if you they can send you a new CD. It may cost a few bucks, but it would be worth it.

2) Call the folks at your local high school or community college. Chances are, if they have Dell systems, they have CDs to spare. Or, they may make a copy for you. Any Dell OEM XP cd will work for you.

share|improve this answer
i note should work because i have seen it fail. there was an older xp pro dell server that hosed on os reinstall with an oem install cd. it had to do with the processor not having some acceleration options available and this not being detected by that particular install cd. the solution was to change the install arch to i386 during install(at the point where it asks for f6 for raid drivers). not being ugly, just complete: should is more correct that will. – RobotHumans Nov 12 '10 at 18:52
Very good point. Should. – Kyle__ Nov 15 '10 at 21:55

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.