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I recently suffered from a huge hard drive crash. I got a new hard drive for my laptop, an hp6910us (x2 turion, 3 gb ram...)

The HD is a 750GB 5400RPM SATA drive. After trying to install XP from CD, I learned that my CD drive was broken. Apparently, XP doesn't install well from USB drive, so that's out.

So, I just attempted to install Ubuntu 12.04. Maybe blindly jumping in headfirst with a USB install wasn't the best idea, but I read that it supports most hardware well, and installs easily.

After install, I get a black screen at bootup. I go into recovery mode, and try to repair all packages/dig around to see what system info will tell me.

Right now, I'm letting it repair packages, but it doesn't give feedback on progress at all. Is there a way to reinstall Ubuntu from recovery mode? Or should I just try and find a USB CD drive to install XP from? (If I choose that route, can I have XP and a linux install coexist on the same drive?)

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Find a USB CD drive sounds like a good option if your CD drive is broken. If you do that, you surely can have XP and linux on the same drive, when your laptop will boot you'll have the choice for the OS to boot :-) – epingle Jul 20 '12 at 9:29
@epingle yea, i guess i'll do that. It's hard to think things through when I haven't been able to use your own machine for a while, and it's making me rage :( – GrinReaper Jul 20 '12 at 9:43
yep it's pretty annoying :/ My laptop has its CD drive broken too (works 1 time out of 15-20), but Windows 7 and Ubuntu are already installed and for now running fine ^^ I fear the day I'll need to reinstall... – epingle Jul 20 '12 at 9:53
If XP does not work with a USB CD drive (and I doubt it will install from any USB connected device) then you can always install it on another computer, run sysprep and move the drive back to the original desktop. – Hennes Jul 20 '12 at 12:26
@hennes I thought about that. I'll have to boot off the XP cd, rather than attempt to install to my HD from a GUI, right? – GrinReaper Jul 20 '12 at 17:56

Yes. Windows and Linux can co-exist on the same drive.

Apart from that your best option would be to find a USB CD-Drive and install Windows through it.

This and This may help you out.

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One question on this matter; is there an ideal install order for XP/linux? (Thinking of just installing archlinux rather than ubuntu, so i'll just have to nuke whatever I currently have on my HD..) – GrinReaper Jul 20 '12 at 17:57
The old ideal sequence was to install windows to deal with windows quirks. Partition the HDD from windows using only part of it for windows and then install whatever other OS. I write OLD since windows has come a long way. I am no longer sure that this is actually needed. – Hennes Jul 20 '12 at 18:16
Nopes. No specific order is necessary. Although I would personally suggest that whichever one you install first, try to keep Windows Master Boot Record in charge at the boot time, given unknown anomalies that can happen to GRUB. – Shahzeb Jul 21 '12 at 10:18

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