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Thread: Windows XP - Installing to SATA _WITHOUT_ a Floppy Disk

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    Lightbulb Windows XP - Installing to SATA _WITHOUT_ a Floppy Disk

    Hello everyone.

    OK, a little background on this one. My floppy disk controller on my motherboard is very broken, and thus making it impossible to use a standard SATA install with Windows XP. For those who haven't done this before, this involves getting the SATA drivers on to a floppy disk, and then hitting F6 whilst Windows is starting the setup. It then loads them off the floppy so you can use your SATA drive.

    I'm sure theres not that many people out there with my problem, but more likely, a lot of people out there who hate floppys and haven't used one for a few years. This puts you off buying a SATA drive.

    So I've managed to make a WinXP CD with the SATA drivers built into it. After many hours of internet research and tens of CDs later, I finally got one that worked. To save everyone else the same problems, I'm gonna post up to let you know how to do it properly!

    UPDATE: POST #12 : Easier way to do it!

    Please note: This is based on an nForce2 motherboard which uses the Si3112r SATA controller. As far as I am aware that is all of the nForce2 boards, but plz correct me if I am wrong.

    Please note: I do not own a copy of Nero, so I have had to make the burning process for Easy CD Creator 5. I will post up the instructions for Nero, but I do not know if these will work.


    STAGE 1 - WINDOWS CD PREP
    Take your Windows XP CD and copy all the files on it to your hard drive into a directory (C:\WinXPCD for example). Also take note of what the CD is called.

    STAGE 2A - SATA DRIVER PREP
    Go to C:\WinXPCD\i386\ and open "TXTSETUP.SIF" using notepad

    Using the Find tool, find the [SourceDisksFiles] section, and paste the following line underneath it (directly under the heading is easiest):
    si3112r.sys = 1,,,,,,_x,4,1

    Find the [HardwareIdsDatabase] section, and paste this line underneath it:
    PCI\VEN_1095&DEV_3112&SUBSYS_61121095 = "Si3112r"

    Find the [SCSI.Load] section and paste:
    si3112r = si3112r.sys,4

    Find the [SCSI] section, and paste:
    si3112r = "Silicon Image SiI 3112 SATARaid Controller"

    Save and exit this file. This file is for the text-based portion of the install (before we get XP's GUI). It keeps us from having to insert a floppy and pressing F6 during setup.

    STAGE 2B - SATA DRIVER PREP
    Go to C:\WinXPCD\i386\ and create / open "WINNT.SIF" using notepad. I am lead to believe that if you are using an SP1 WinXP CD, or if you have slipstreamed the files, then this file may already exist. If it does not exist (as it did not with me) then just create it.

    This is a file that WinXP setup looks for for an automated GUI portion of the setup. This is called an "unattended installation", and is used to answer some of the questions XP asks during the installation (and even some questions it doesn't ask). This file is called an "answer file". For more on setting up a custom unattended install, look here: http://www.tacktech.com/display.cfm?ttid=202

    Paste all of the following into the file:
    [Data]
    AutoPartition=0
    MsDosInitiated="0"
    UnattendedInstall="Yes"

    [Unattended]
    UnattendMode=ProvideDefault
    OemPreinstall=Yes
    OemSkipEula=Yes
    NoWaitAfterTextMode=1
    NoWaitAfterGUIMode=1
    TargetPath=\WINDOWS
    DriverSigningPolicy=Ignore
    OemPnPDriversPath="Drivers\SATA\SI3112r"

    [GuiUnattended]
    OEMSkipWelcome = 1

    [UserData]
    ProductKey=xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx
    FullName=""
    OrgName=""


    You need to replace the ProductKey xxxxxs with your actual product key. If you do not want to do this, then simply remove the line completely.

    The OemPnPDriversPath line will tell XP setup where to look for the .INF files for each of your devices. It will look in these paths first before checking it's own database of device drivers. The paths given are relative to a $OEM$\$1 folder we shall soon create. That is, "Drivers\SATA\SI3112r" tells it to look for a .INF file under C:\WinXPCD\$OEM$\$1\Drivers\SATA\SI3112r. If you wish to add additional drivers other than the SATA ones described here, you add more paths on the SAME LINE, each path seperated by ";".

    Save and exit this file.

    STAGE 3 - SATA DRIVER FILE INTEGRATION
    From the Asus / Abit / SI website (I am on a Abit NF7-S, and used the drivers from the Asus website, so it is not important to get the ones for your particular motherboard), download the latest Si3112r drivers.

    Extract and copy the 'Si3112r.sys' file into the i386 folder.

    At the root of the CD files (eg. C:\WinXPCD\), make the following folder structure: \$OEM$\$1\Drivers\SATA\si3112r (so you now have C:\WinXPCD\$OEM$\$1\Drivers\SATA\si3112r).

    Copy the following files to the si3112r directory (don't worry if you can't find them all, just copy what you have. The ones marked in italics you DO need to worry about though!):

    si3112r.cat (shows driver is digitally signed for Windows)
    si3112r.inf (Tells Windows what to install later in setup)
    si3112r.mpd (used for Win9x)
    si3112r.sys (driver for the controller)
    siisupp.vxd (used for Win9x)
    siwinacc.sys (SATALink driver accelerator)
    txtsetup.oem (used to install XP)

    STAGE 4 - BURNING THE CD
    As said eariler, I have only tried this with Easy CD Creator 5, but will post up the instructions for Nero as well.

    Easy CD Creator 5
    Download the following file: bootfiles.zip

    Extract boot.ima to your C:\ from the file you just downloaded.

    Start Easy CD Creator.

    Select File > New CD Project > Bootable CD from the menu.
    1.) Set Bootable CD Type: to No Emulation.
    2.) Set Load Segment: to 0x7c0. (Could be wrong here, try 0x0000 if that doesnt work)
    3.) Set Sector Count: to 4.
    4.) Press the Browse ... button.
    5.) Locate the BootSector file (boot.ima) in the folder C:\OS\BOOT.
    6.) Click the Open button.
    7.) Click the OK button.

    Select File > CD Project Properties from the menu.

    1.) Enter in the Volume Label. You should have noted down eariler what your Windows XP disk was called. However, if you didn't (or you can't for whatever reason) heres a quick guide on how to figure it out:

    ---------------------------

    Please note: If you are using a copy supplied by HP / Dell / Compaq / Gateway or a MSDN or media version, you MUST look the volume name up off your CD.

    Windows XP SP0:
    WXPVOL_EN

    [WX] - Standard Windows XP Starting Label
    [P] / [H] - Professional / Home edition
    [FPP] / [CCP] / [OEM] / [VOL] / [EVL] - Retail / Upgrade / OEM / Corporate or Volume / Professional Evaluation
    [_EN] - Lanuage, _EN for English


    Windows XP SP1:
    XRMPOEM_EN

    [XRM] - Standard Windows XP SP1 Starting Label
    [P] / [H] - Professional / Home edition
    [FPP] / [CCP] / [OEM] / [VOL] - Retail / Upgrade / OEM / Corporate or Volume
    [_EN] - Lanuage, _EN for English


    Windows XP SP1a / SP2:
    X1APOEM_EN

    [X1A] - Standard Windows XP SP1a / SP2 Starting Label
    [P] / [H] - Professional / Home edition
    [FPP] / [CCP] / [OEM] / [VOL] - Retail / Upgrade / OEM / Corporate or Volume
    [_EN] - Lanuage, _EN for English

    ---------------------------

    2.) Set the File System to Joliet.
    3.) Set the Physical format of disc to Mode 1: CDROM.
    4.) Click the File System tab.
    5.) Enter MICROSOFT_CORPORATION in the Publisher Name:, and Prepared By:
    6.) Select Use original file date.
    7.) Click the File Types tab.
    8.) Select Add all Files.
    9.) Uncheck Do not add Hidden files.
    10.) Uncheck Do not add System files.
    11.) Click the OK button.

    Select all files and folders in the C:\WinXPCD folder.
    1.) Click the Add button.
    2.) Click the Record button.
    3.) Select Record CD under Recording Options.
    4.) Select Disc-At-Once under Recording Method.
    5.) Select your write speed (I prefer writing as slow as possible to make sure the CD is of good quality. Imo you should never write faster than 16x on important CDs)
    5.) Click Start Recording button.

    FINISHED!


    Nero 5.5
    Download the following file: bootfiles.zip

    Extract boot.ima to your C:\ from the file you just downloaded.

    Start Nero - Burning Rom.

    Select File > New... from the menu.
    (If the Nero Wizard starts, click the Close Wizard button.)
    1.) Select CD-ROM (Boot).
    2.) Select Image file from Source of boot image data.
    3.) Set Kind of emulation: to No Emulation.
    4.) Set Load segment of sectors (hex!): to 07c0. (could be wrong here, try 0000 if that doesn't work)
    5.) Set Number of loaded sectors: to 4.
    6.) Press the Browse... button.
    7.) Locate the BootSector file (boot.ima) in the folder C:\
    8.) Click the Open button.
    9.) Click the ISO tab.
    - Set File-/Directorynames length to ISO Level 2 (Max. of 31 chars).
    - Set Format to Mode 1.
    - Set Character Set to ISO 9660.
    - Check the Joliet check box.
    - Check all Relax ISO Restrictions.
    10.) Click the Label tab.
    - Select ISO9660 from the drop down box.
    - Enter the Volume Label, System Identifier, Volume Set, Application.

    You should have noted down eariler the Volume label of your Windows XP disk (what is was called). However, if you didn't (or you can't for whatever reason) scroll up to the Easy CD Creator section for a quick guide on how to figure it out.

    11.) Click the Dates tab.
    - Select Use the date and time from the original file from File Dates.
    12.)Click the Burn tab.
    - Check Write.
    - Check Finalize CD (No further writing possible!).
    - Set Write Method to Disc-At-Once. (We have had Track-At-Once work as well.)
    - Click the New button.
    - Locate the folder C:\OS\ROOT.
    - Select everything in the folder and drag it to the ISO compilation panel.
    13.) Click the Write CD Dialog button.
    14.) Click the Boot tab.
    - Verify the settings. Correct if needed.
    - Click the Write button.

    FINISHED!




    Well I hope that is of use. As it is such a long document (as you can see) PLEASE tell me any corrections or problems you have encountered, I must have made a mistake somewhere .
    Last edited by [R4A]Bigman; 08-06-2005 at 11:49 AM.
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    mutantbass head Lee @ SCAN's Avatar
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    cheers !!!! your a star

    I was gonna research this as I only put a floppy in my system when I format or reinstall.

    Guess who's making a XP SP1 disc tonight with integrated SATA drivers

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    Flippin' 'eck - that's one hell of a post - must have taken you ages to get all that sorted out!

    Nice work.

    Now just need to work out how to do it for an i875p board!

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    Yeah, it took many hours of research and many CDs worth of failures to get to that stage. Not to mention a good many minutes this morning typing it all in!

    Basically the process is the same for all drivers, but you just need to change little bits here and there.

    I'd just like to point out that it is VERY IMPORTANT that you get the correct volume label for your CD, otherwise Windows will claim an internal structure failure (i think). I must have used a good 4 or 5 CDs figuring that one out!

    Essencially, you can add any drivers you want to it, by just adding them in at STAGE 2B and STAGE 3. However, for fundemental drivers (such as the SATA ones) it is more complex, and they need adding in sooner.

    Also, be prepared to have several attempts at this...I'll be very suprised if someone manages to get it right first time.

    Once I've bought more CDs (I've run out now :/ ) I'll have a bash at making it SP1 & SP2 streamlined, with better-than-basic nVidia and ATi drivers built in and with all the standard nForce2 drivers. I'll post it up here again when I get round to it
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    Senior Member Stubzz's Avatar
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    Gives me something extra to add to my cd too. Slipstreaming sp1 into it is dead easy, you'll gte that right first time. The CD I've got installs all the drivers for my PC, and a shed load of programs. All without me touching it

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    Windows XP Disk with SP1 & Useful drivers

    Hello again.

    OK, heres the next part of my guide, as promised. I went out and bought myself 100 CD-Rs just to be on the safe side

    This disk will have SATA drivers for the nForce2 board built into it (no annoying floppys required) as well as all the motherboard drivers for the nForce2 and ATi graphics drivers. Also it will have SP1a built into it, saving all that annoying time updating your system.

    Please note: I'd imagine the process to put nVidia drivers on the disk is very similar, but I've not owned an nVidia card in a while. If anyone wants to donate a GF 6800, then email me or post and I'll give u my address

    You will need the following files:
    Windows XP SP1a Network Installer (125MB)
    XP SP1a Corporate Deployment Tools (1.66MB)

    STAGE 1 - See Above

    STAGE 1.5 - WINDOWS XP SP1a
    Create a new folder on your hard drive. C:\WinXPSP1a\ will do nicely.

    Move the SP1a Network Installer to C:\WinXPSP1a\ (the file should be called xpsp1a_en_x86.exe). Type the following into the Run dialog (Start > Run):
    C:\WinXPSP1a\xpsp1a_en_x86.exe -x

    Tell it to extract to the same folder (ie C:\WinXPSP1a\).

    Now type the following into the Run dialog to update your WinXP CD files copied on your hard drive:
    C:\WinXPSP1a\Update\Update.exe -S:C:\WinXPCD\

    STAGE 2A - See Above

    STAGE 2B - DRIVER PREP
    Follow the instructions as above, but in the WINNT.SIF file, copy and paste the following instead:
    [Data]
    AutoPartition=0
    MsDosInitiated="0"
    UnattendedInstall="Yes"

    [Unattended]
    UnattendMode=ProvideDefault
    OemPreinstall=Yes
    OemSkipEula=Yes
    NoWaitAfterTextMode=1
    NoWaitAfterGUIMode=1
    TargetPath=\WINDOWS
    DriverSigningPolicy=Ignore
    OemPnPDriversPath="Drivers\SATA\SI3112r";"Drivers\ATi";"Drivers\ATi\2KXP_INF";"Drivers\ATi\2KXP_INF\ B_15581";"Drivers\nForce2\AudioDrv";"Drivers\nForce2\AudioUtl";"Drivers\nForce2\Ethernet";"Drivers\n Force2\GART";"Drivers\nForce2\IDE\WinXP";"Drivers\nForce2\MemCtl";"Drivers\nForce2\SMBus"

    [GuiUnattended]
    OEMSkipWelcome = 1

    [UserData]
    ProductKey=xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx
    FullName=""
    OrgName=""


    You can adjust the OemPnPDriversPath to your needs.

    Save and exit this file.

    STAGE 3 - See Above

    STAGE 3B - DRIVER FILE INTEGRATION
    Download the driver sets you want. For this tutorial I've used the following:
    nForce2 Motherboard Drivers (v4.24) - www.nvidia.com
    ATi Catalyst Drivers (v4.6) - www.ati.com

    First I'll deal with the Catalyst Drivers. Make a new directory in C:\WinXPCD\$OEM$\$1\Drivers\ called ATi.

    Start up the ATi drivers executable. After it has extracted all the files, you can exit the installation (ie before it actually installs anything). We are only interested in the drivers themselves, and not all the other software that comes bundled. Navigate to the driver dir (C:\ATI\SUPPORT\wxp-w2k-catalyst-8-02-040515a-015958c\Driver\ for v4.6).

    Copy all the files to the ATi directory you created a short time ago. Your ATi drivers are now done.

    Now for the nVidia nForce2 board drivers. Make a new directory in C:\WinXPCD\$OEM$\$1\Drivers\ called nForce2.

    Start up the nForce2 drivers executable. After it has extracted all the files, just before the installation process you can exit the installation (ie before it actually installs anything). Navigate to the driver dir (C:\NVIDIA\nForceWin2KXP\4.24\ for v4.24).

    Copy all the files to the nForce2 directory you created a short time ago. Your nForce2 drivers are now done.

    STAGE 4 - See Above

    That should do it. Any problems or queries plz post up, and I'll do my best. Also success stories would be nice (so I know it actually works with other people as well!)

    I'd like to credit the following sites for their insight:
    www.tacktech.com
    www.theeldergeek.com
    www.nforcershq.com
    Last edited by [R4A]Bigman; 20-06-2004 at 05:58 PM.
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    ERU
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    It would be great if someone manages to put the famous Abit NF7-s V2.0 SATA drivers, WinXP SP1/2 onto a disk and then give all the untechnical peeps a bit torrent link.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ERU
    It would be great if someone manages to put the famous Abit NF7-s V2.0 SATA drivers, WinXP SP1/2 onto a disk and then give all the untechnical peeps a bit torrent link.
    Yes Yes

    Pleasae DO!

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    Fantastic work Bigman, and something that i most certainly can appreciate given that my floppy broke the day before my sata arrived. I ended up getting a floppy drive from a mates computer 15 miles away. No more problems thanks to your hard work. As soon as SP2 comes out i'll take a week off and get slipsteaming

    much appreciated


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    Oh god almighty...

    I got 2 Systems that have SATA, and both have been giving me greif, and funnily enough, one is the NF7S and the other is my MSI Delta, and the SATA card for that, is annoyingly...An SIL3112 too!!!

    Right, I have managed to do a SATA installation with SP1, but the SP2 CD Failed... I am sure that they were the same everythings, but just upped to SP1 and SP2.

    I am still workign on a SP2 one cos the drivers for the SATA card, and the original Floppy for the NF7S DO NOT WORK - even if from a floppy, they find the drivers using the F6 option, but then fail to load them from the floppy during the installation stage???? EH?

    I have been trying with your method, and SP1 works, but not SP2.

    Now, I can use the SP1 method, to install XP onto the HD, thenchuck SP2 into it and thats fine, but such a massive waste of HD space isnt it?

    Right now, the NF7S is running no SATA drives purely so I can install with SP2 SlipStreamed, and the MSI is on pure SATA, but no SP2, so in the next couple of days, I will be doing some more messing and will see if I can update you anything?

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    seems like a lot of hard work to me. none of this faffing about with an easy os like linux

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    Well since I made this guide quite some time ago, it has become a LOT easier to do. Basically there are now some really neat tools for doing this kind of thing.

    First tool I would recommend is nLite. http://www.nliteos.com/
    If you start from your original XP disk (or SP1 or wotever) then this will pick up what version it is etc and then you can apply the service packs to it really easily. If you want you can also add drivers via this program, however for the SATA drivers etc I've found the next program easier.

    Second 'tool' is Bashrat The Sneakys unattended packs. http://www.btsunattended.net/
    You need to download the BASE pack, and then any of the other packs you want. Make sure you read the tutorial on the site / in the packs on how to actually do it. It looks like the guides were written before the latest release, as there are a few inconsistences, but it tells you what to do and everything in general.


    So basically set up your disk fully with nLite except for the drivers. Then get BTSunattended going on it. Again I'd recommend burning to CD-RW for testing purposes before writing a final CD. Also beware that the more drivers you include with BTSu, the longer the windows CD will take to load them at the start of setup. Also keep a watch on the size of the CD, if you include everything from the CD you will easily exceed 700MB. If you need it all, then you will have to burn to a DVD.

    I'm not sure why my guide above didn't work for you with SP2, because I managed it a few times using SP2 (did several different styles of CD), but I'd definately recommend the above tools now over my guide due to the complexity of doing it manually.
    -Winning isn't everything, but losing is nothing

  14. #13
    HEXUS.social member Allen's Avatar
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    • Allen's system
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    Quote Originally Posted by ERU
    It would be great if someone manages to put the famous Abit NF7-s V2.0 SATA drivers, WinXP SP1/2 onto a disk and then give all the untechnical peeps a bit torrent link.
    Heh, you expect someone here to create a self installing Windows XP disc with SP2, drivers and other things, then let everyone else d/l their copy of Windows??


  15. #14
    www.evilmunky.com EvilMunky's Avatar
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    Dunno whether u guys have it available but i use a winxp disk with sp2 - no modifications needed. Dont have to do anything such as press f6 etc to make it see and install to the sata drive.

  16. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvilMunky
    Dunno whether u guys have it available but i use a winxp disk with sp2 - no modifications needed. Dont have to do anything such as press f6 etc to make it see and install to the sata drive.
    Edit: Misread - shouldn't type when hungover

    I didn't know the SP2 disks could handle SATA controllers, but it certainly makes sense if Microsoft have decided to sort that one out.

    This guide was created over a year ago with people with the original Windows disks in mind though. Also, the only way that the Windows SP2 disk will detect the SATA drives is by having the appropriate controller drivers integrated. I'm sure there will be controllers that are not supported already, never mind a few months down the line. The described technique allows for that kind of 'update' to your disk to be made as well. Handy
    Last edited by [R4A]Bigman; 08-06-2005 at 12:07 PM.
    -Winning isn't everything, but losing is nothing

  17. #16
    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    xp sp2 and xpx64 sp1 both install onto my k8t890 board fine with no driver disks

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