Monday, March 16, 2009
No hard drives found during Windows installation
If you're trying to install Windows on a machine, but run into an error that says that no hard drives were found, it's one of two things. Either the hard drive you're working with is faulty and truly not available, or the driver needed to communicate with the hard drive is not one of the defaults loaded on the Windows installation CD. Hopefully it's the latter, and if you have the drivers on a floppy, and the computer actually has a floppy drive, then you're set. If not, it's actually not that hard to fix with some free software, a CD burner, and a Windows install disc.
I actually found a really good help guide here: http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows/resolving-setup-did-not-find-any-hard-disk-drives-during-windows-xp-installation/. Because that one is done so well, I'm not going to reiterate it, but rather direct you right to that site. The just of it is that you need to create a new XP install disc using a free program called nLite. During the creation process, you will be given the option to include drivers for your hard drive, which you can usually download from the computer manufacturer's website if you don't already have them. At the end, you can create an .ISO file, which can then be burned to a CD and used to install Windows on the machine.
If you're just looking to find a way to include new service packs or updates in your XP install so you don't have to run Windows Update 10 times after you're finished, nLite handles that as well. My previous post about slipstreaming updates includes directions on how to do this, but nLite looks to be much more simple to use.