External Disc drive

  yahwob 23 Feb 12

Following on from a previous question. I need to reinstall XP onto my home PC but my dvd drive has stopped working!

Tried a few fixes suggested on here but nothings worked so looking at buying an external plug and play drive, they are not very expensive.

Is there anything I should watch out for though? Presumambly I would have to install the drive and then reboot the PC so that it boots from the external drive? Will the external drive show up as an option on BIOS screen?


  Terry Brown 23 Feb 12

I assume the XP home is on a CD, how are you going to transfer it to the harddrive without a DVD /CD reader?.

The problem with copying a protected CD is that not files will be copied in normal use.

Use a program like CDCHECK


and use the recovery option to copy the whole of the disk to a memory stick.You should then be able to go into BIOS and set the boot order to USB drive first. On the first reboot during installation you may to change to boot from harddrive (from Bios setting) or it may do it automaticly

This trick will not work in windows 7 as it will not boot from an external drive.


  yahwob 23 Feb 12

Sorry,perhaps I didn't explain it correctly, I intend to buy an external cd/dvd reader like a Liteon ETDU108-02 8x External Slimline DVD ROM, pop the XP disc in there and try and boot the machine from that drive. Will that work?

  compumac 23 Feb 12

Yes I have done this on an old laptop when the replacement internal CD drive failed completely and was too expensive to replace. Just set the external CD drive as the first drive.

  compumac 23 Feb 12

Just re-read your post why bother with an external CD drive, why not replace the faulty CD drive in the PC? I first thought that you had a laptop and that is why I made my first comment.

  yahwob 23 Feb 12

Just as cheap to buy an external drive and at least I will have it for any future use :)

  compumac 23 Feb 12

True but more convenient to have internal. I have an external CD/DVD drive that I have had for perhaps four years and only used it on the very odd occasion that I need to dig out the old faulty laptop.

  robin_x 23 Feb 12

My Tower drive laser failed. I just bought an external. It then came in useful on another laptop with a failed drive and my other very old laptop with only a CD drive.

Drives should show up automatically in BIOS. It may need installing if anything non-standard, but Windows should just recognise it. Plug'n'Play.

Windows can also be installed from a 4GB or more Flash Stick.

Use WinToFlash for example, but there are lots of guides for 'how to install xp from flash'


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