How To Install Windows

Windows XP is probably the easiest operating system to install to date. This "HowTo" assumes that you already have a working copy of Windows XP Home Edition or Windows XP Professional. They Install basically the same way, so this generalized article will help your through the process.

System Requirements

  • 300 Mhz Processor
  • .128 Megabytes of RAM
  • 1.5 GB of Hard Disk Space.
  • Super VGA, 800x600 resolution capable Video Card and Monitor
  • CD-ROM
  • Keyboard and Microsoft Mouse compatible pointing device

Bios Settings

In order to install Windows XP you will need to make sure that your computer is set to boot from the CD-ROM drive. Most modern computers allow you to control this aspect from the BIOS.

  1. Start up the computer.

  • When you reach the screen showing a RAM test, look for a message that says "Hit F2 to enter setup" or a similar message. If you do not see this message, try tapping DEL, F2 or DEL+ F2. If you have the manual that came with the computer consult it for information on how to enter the BIOS Setup Menu.
  • In the Bios Setup Menu, choose Boot Options.
    • Under "Boot First" select "CD-ROM"
    • Choose "Save Changes and Exit"
  • The computer will automatically restart, be sure to have your CD-ROM in, if not insert you CD-ROM now and restart the computer.

    The Installation

    Now for the easy part, the disk should be in and running, you should see a blue screen in front of you with a set of options. Just press enter.

    1. Now accept the License Agreement, it should then do a test of your system to make sure you have the basic component necessary to complete the installation, if you don't it will report an error.

  • Now Windows wants to set up your Hard Disk (HD).
    • Use NTFS not FAT32
    • Use FULL format not quick format
  • Once Windows is formatting the HD, it will reboot.  To accomplish this you can press space or let windows do this automatically.

    1. When the system restarts, select the drive you JUST formatted to install windows to, using the folder c:\windows

    • A blue screen should appear and begin copying files, this will take about ten minutes on slower systems.

  • Once it has finished copying a GUI will appear to step you through the last part of Installation, you will need to have your Product Activation Key ready. Your PAK should have come on a small sticker that came with your copy of windows, stick this on the side of your computer in case you need to re-install windows in the future.
  • Once you enter the product activation key, windows will do the rest, stopping on occasion to ask you the date and time as well as the administrator username and the administrator password.  Make sure it is a good password with UPPERCASE and lowercase letters, include some numbers as well. A good password should be at least eight characters long (example PaSsW0rD2R3M3mB3R).
  • Installation should finish up and the system will now reboot, remove the Windows XP disk and your system should boot into Windows XP for the first time. From here on out just follow the wizard to setup your internet connection and user preferences!
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