Disk read error when reinstalling from winnt32.exe

Hello! I'm having some trouble reinstalling XP on my netbook and I'm hoping someone could help me!

I have an old Acer netbook that I no longer use, and before I pass it on to someone else I wanted to reinstall the Windows XP operating system. Since it's a netbook there was no install disc (it doesn't have a disc drive), but I easily located the winnt32.exe file in the i386 folder, and I have the product key which was on a sticker on the bottom of the netbook.

When I run winnt32.exe, it first asks what kind of installation to perform, upgrade or new installation. I selected new installation. Then, after entering the product key, it asks whether I want to get updated setup files. I click yes, and I get a message that says "Setup was unable to reach the Microsoft Windows Update Web site because it is currently unavailable". I choose to skip & continue, and it spends a few minutes copying the installation files and then reboots.

It then asks me to choose "Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" or "Microsoft Windows XP Setup". If I choose Setup, I get an error message that says "A disk read error has occurred, Press Ctrl-Alt-Del to restart". I can restart and and choose the other option and the computer boots up as normal, but it does not complete the reinstall. I'm not sure what to do to fix this problem.

For reference, my computer is an Acer Aspire One D250-1165 currently running Windows XP Home Edition version 5.1 w/service pack 3

read above, as you need an i386 folder on the c drive and a few other things

, and you could create a usb install cd once you have created an ISO image with nlite and or imgburn. you would use an older version of rufus (1.4) to create a bootable usb. and at least a 4gb flash drive.

I have made two usb installs. one with sata drives slipsteamed in and both with sp3 slipstreamed onto the install media.

but, I fortunately had an install cd to copy files from and create my iso. I have not tried the above solution. please read thoroughly before attempting.


on a side note is there a hidden partition for OS recovery??


one more note, microsoft provides floppy disk download of xp for free, you would just have to buy a usb floppy and some floppy disk, !!?? good luck with that. :)

also if you have a paid subscription to tech net, you can download a legal copy of xp.

Press ALT Gr+F10 before windows loading..

from here


1. Click "Start," "Turn Off Computer" and then "Restart", if it is on. If your computer is off, turn it on by pressing the power button above the keyboard.
2. Press the "F2" function key on your computer's keyboard to enter the BIOS utility.
3. Use the laptop's right arrow key to scroll to "Main." Confirm that the "D2D Recovery" is "Enabled." If the D2D option is "Disabled," scroll down to the option using the down arrow key. Press "Enter" to change the option to "Enabled."
4. Use the laptop's right arrow key to scroll to "Exit." The "Exit Saving Changes" option will be highlighted. Press "Enter" to save the settings and exit the BIOS utility. Your Acer Aspire will restart.
Reformatting the Acer Aspire
1. Press the "ALT" and "F10" keys together while your computer is restarting and the Acer logo is showing to enter the Acer Aspire's reformatting utility.
2. Follow the on-screen prompts. Your laptop's hard drive will reformat and the original applications will be reinstalled. Your computer will restart after the reformatting process is complete.
3. Enter your name and other personal information when prompted during the Windows operating system setup process.

from same link above.
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Thank you so much for all this helpful information! I haven't had a chance to read through & try everything yet but I will certainly try what you suggested. Thanks again, I do appreciate it!