Black Death: Installing XP over Ubuntu

I have an oldish ThinkPad (a T42p) lying around that I decided to use as an Ubuntu playground on for a while. I learned a lot playing with it, but now I do most of my Ubuntu-based work in a VM running on my fancy multi-core desktop, and Mandy could use a little portable Diablo II game machine, so today I went to reinstall XP.

After sticking the install disc in, I see the familiar "Setup is inspecting your hardware…" prompt and then… nothing. Just a black screen. Hard drive light is stuck on, the CD eventually spins down and nothing happens. /me scratches head.

After a bit of searching around, it turns out that the Windows XP setup program really doesn’t like it if you have odd partitions on the hard drive, where in this case, odd is defined as the default partition layout as set up by Ubuntu.

So, after a quick download of GParted and a wipe of the hard drive, the install is now cruising along, merry as can be.

Update: Thanks to Will for pointing out a Microsoft Knowledge Base article on exactly this subject.

3 thoughts on “Black Death: Installing XP over Ubuntu”

  1. You’re my savior…sorry if I bump a so old topic, but it’s literally the whole day that I’m trying to fix a friend’s PC with the same issue as yours, and this post is the light in a sea of burned copies of WinXP

    Thank you again :)

  2. Also sorry to bump an old topic but I was just experiencing this exact problem. Thank you very much for solving it. (Well maybe, I’m going to try it when I get home)

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