Re-Installing XP SP2/SP3??


I originally owned a copy of the ISO with the drivers on a USB, however after cancelling the install when I wasn't sure on something, about 45% of the contents disappeared (setup executable and other things).

The XP netbook is of course legitimate and was bought from a store.

However I do not have BIOS access (I was going to reset the system via the hidden partition), but I can't access it - and of course the USB data was mostly gone.

I have already tried a downloadable copy of the ISO which seems to work correctly, however I could not fully test it as it requested my Product Key, which I entered and checked about four times and gave Incorrect. The ISO which was on USB did not give this error however, and did not class the code as a 'Product Key' either - I think my key dates to around 2009-2011, so that could explain it

Could I request an XP Home Edition SP3 (or SP2, I don't care) ISO with the i386 and setup files and Acer Aspire One AOA150 Drivers? Or is this illegal, despite me originally owning a copy in the first place?

Also would the setup auto-detect the mouse and keyboard drivers from a USB boot, I don't know. I need to get that working or it won't be useful to use...

And how do you get it to install onto the computer and not on the drive or USB? I don't need to be moving bunch of files to another computer, it is pain.

I am also not sure how to format the entire PC to NTFS or if it does any damage. I have xubuntu, I want to format those partitions to NTFS before doing anything but don't know if it does damage.


search page for formatting , read through several first and then if you have any questions let me know, as for install partition, you will be asked on install if you want to format to ntfs with xp.


Here the drivers can be downloaded

read above carefully if you need to update the bios, it can be tricky.


you can input snid and get drivers above at the acer support website, may or may not have xp drivers depending on what it was shipped with.

you can also get your owners manual so that you can see how to perform a clean install


do not know how you are not able to access the bios, is it password protected and you forgot the password??

the bios is the only place to allow a boot change to install the os on the harddrive.


an xp product key should be either on the case of the retail cd or on the sticker on the case of the pc.


you can bug acer for a copy of xp, but do not know if you will get one, you will have to attempt to download one from online.
Elizabeth23 said:
do not know how you are not able to access the bios, is it password protected and you forgot the password??

the bios is the only place to allow a boot change to install the os on the harddrive.
Correct, I don't know the password, and I don't feel like having this disassembled.

Elizabeth23 said:
an xp product key should be either on the case of the retail cd or on the sticker on the case of the pc.
It's on the bottom, as I said in the first post, a 2010/2011 setup build allows the key to work, and a 2013 version doesn't seem to, which is pretty odd.

Thanks for the useful reply though and the URLs.
could be that the block of numbers microsoft gave to acer do not cover the year 2013,

I do not ever enter the product key while installing, I always do it later.

do you have a cmos battery in the netbook??

if so remove for 5 minutes and replace with a new one, this should delete the bios password.

Normally, you can reset a BIOS password by removing the CMOS battery,

from here you might read through this whole article see if it helps.
You're better off finding a Pro VLK ISO (Volume License Key). There are tonnes of Enterprise keys listed for XP when you Google them. They will work for the install, but will not for software that do the WGA check prior to install (ie. WMP, MSE).
There are tonnes of XP Home keys on the web. Have you tried those?

The reason I suggested Pro VL are two fold: 1. No need for online activation. 2. It's the edition that you find on MSDN, hence a simple SHA1 checksum will tell you if the ISO you have was untouched.
I always thought those things would work on US-only stuff or something, that is why I never tried them :)

but it doesn't matter, a bit of 'piracy' doesn't matter because it isn't. I'll check it out!
However does anyone know where I can get the iso of the SP3?
Your #1 source for untouched MSDN ISOs (including Windows Vista/7.1/8.1/10): Visit -> forums -> Older Windows OS (or Google "mydigitallife XP VL SP3 ISO").

(Note: This isn't exactly illegal, as those ISOs are useless if you don't have a genuine key. XP exempted b/c of no need for online activation for VL editions).
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I'm right now, downloading a torrent for the ISO.

How much needed is the file space on the ISO? I have a 1GB USB, a 250MB USB and a 1TB hard drive (which I really don't feel like formatting), however I DO have a 32GB USB somewhere as well.

The torrent is reputed 'Good' by torrentz users.

(I wonder why torrent sites are never properly taken down though... probably not worth the effort)
Actually now I come to it: this one says 'Product Key' and doesn't want to accept any key on the Internet. The copy I had on USB which deleted itself said 'Volume Licence Key', and accepted the key on the netbook's sticker.
Post #3: I installed XP onto another partition since it wouldn't let me on the bigger one.

I have my drivers and things, but can't activate it (my own code among about 25 I have tried) don't work; I'll have to look for some sort of cracker to do this or to just continue using the normal XP system I use.

I just want Partitions 1 and 2 to be merged with Partitions 3 and 4 so that my hard drive goes back to having 111GB, but a reinstall didn't work.

What do I do now?
Your last line of defense would be to try and install XP 2009 Edition (also called Windows Embedded POSReady 2009), it's practically the same as XP Pro SP3: (CD version)

CD Key can be found here:

The DVD version including goodies that allow you to install it from a USB drive:

Thread with more info on XP Embedded:
Thanks, I have formatted the Partition 3/4 (which had the second Installation) for this (full one).

However I still have a selection menu for the second XP as if it was still there... help?

My main reasons for a re-install of Windows was because I wanted to clear everything out and such and have all my hard drive space left and not just from a couple of partitions.

I don't think I'm making much sense either. All I need is to get Partitions 3 and 4 on my drive to stop being recognised as a separate drive and as part of one drive.

I NEED to be able to reset the OS whilst not having
a) 61GB free space, actually having 111GB space
b) two copies of XP on the drive

That's all. I am being a pain, but this is also a pain, if I'd never installed linux then I probably wouldn't have this problem. But what's done is done and I probably won't be able to do anything about it.
Is a product key the same as a volume licence key? My key says it's a product key and yet it's a VLK, or something.

??? - Termingamer
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Right click "My Computer". Select "Manage" then "disk management". From there you can do all sorts of re-partitioning.

And in case you didn't know XP Embedded isn't like XP Pro. When you install it, it will force you to repartition the hard drive into a bigger no matter if you liked it (or not), which was what you wanted, was it not? This is the reason why I'm on regular XP (even though Embedded is far more updated), b/c I multi-boot...
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Does it work with a Windows XP home SP2 key or not? SP2 uses 'Certificate of Authenticity' and SP3 uses 'Product Key' for some weird reason.

How do I do the repartitioning, though? Here's my thing: [check attachment]


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Well, you would right click the partition you want to change, then a list appears that allows you to delete it. When you delete a partition, the free space gets merged with the nearest unpartitioned space. Not sure if you can do it in XP, but in Vista and above, if there is an adjacent unpartitioned space, you can expand the existing partition to take up that space...
I did that, and it states free space available, however my disc space is not returned.

Gonna get POSReady2009 also, can I use the same drivers as with XP?
^ I keep telling you, all they did was take XP source code, update it so it can have USB boot, and sold it 8 years after the original XP was launched.

That's what MSFT has been doing all along. Anyone who thinks Win10/8.1 are a different beast than Vista under the hood is clearly mistaken!

(Btw, did you try to expand the volume you're on to make use of the newly avail free space? The unpartitioned space is going to just sit there and do nothing unless you do something with it...)
Yeah, I remember you telling me about how 10 still uses NT 6.1 or whatever, it's the same - I'm downloading the posready 2009 updates for XP right now and it's all fine.

And yeah I just deleted the 'logical drive', but didn't get rid of the actual partition. I'll try put some files onto the other hard drive (as it thinks) and see.
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