Before Christmas, I wiped all partitions off my Acer Aspire One D150 netbook and installed Jolicloud Linux to try out. It's great, but I'm missing too much of my Windows-only software so I'd like to switch back.

The problem I'm having is that the Windows XP Home setup CD is starting up the installer fine, but when it comes to selecting the harddrive to install on it's not finding anything.

I've tried using GParted to wipe all partitions again and create a new FAT32 partition, but that's not being picked up by Windows XP setup either. (I've tried setting the 'boot' flag on this partition in GParted as well, but no change.)

Is FAT32 not the correct paritition type for Windows XP Home? I'm thinking this isn't relevant at this point, because Windows XP setup doesn't seem to be mounting the HDD, nevermind analysing what partitions it has on it already.

Do I need to remove Grub (auto-installed by Jolicloud) in order for Windows XP setup to find the HDD?

Help! :(

  • Windows XP defaults to the NTFS file format, while FAT32 is actually an old option that could be used when upgrading from Windows ME or 98. – Chris Mar 4 '10 at 14:52

I think the issue is your XP install disk can not access SATA the drive. Check out http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows/resolving-setup-did-not-find-any-hard-disk-drives-during-windows-xp-installation/

  • nLite looks like it's the right solution to me--thank you very much. – markedup Mar 4 '10 at 12:17

I think it is probably a driver problem. Try to find out what hdd your netbook has and try to find a driver for it, or your hdd controller.

  • I've tried loading the Inter controller drivers onto USB, but Windows XP setup doesn't see the USB stick either at this point and expects a floppy disk instead. I'll try rolling my own custom install - inc. drivers - via Jeff's suggestion of nLite. Many thanks for the advice, though. – markedup Mar 4 '10 at 12:19

You can also check, in bios, to see if the SATA setting for the HDD are set to AHCI or Compatibility. Ive seen issues where if this is set to AHCI, windows XP setup does not detect the disk. You can try changing the settings there to see if it has any effect.

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