A Job for nLite


I have a problem installing Windows XP Pro. I started with an Intel D975XBX motherboard and could not get XP to install. It would BSOD every time at 38 percent completed and then just stop. I tried every conceivable hardware configuration possible with no success. I purchased another Intel board, a DP43TF, with the same results loading XP Pro. In exasperation I purchased an MSI motherboard and XP loaded without a hitch and is working fine. I wanted to build another computer and purchased a new Intel quad-core CPU. I tried both motherboards with the same results. I contacted Intel tech support and was told that to load XP Pro with an Intel motherboard you need an install disc with at least SP2. This provides the drivers for the PCI Express ports, which SP1 does not have, and that is why it’s blue-screening. Is this true? If it is, how do I get a copy of XP Pro with SP2 on it? I have five versions of the OS, all with SP1 or earlier. I do not want to pay a $59 service fee to obtain a copy of SP2 when you can download it for free. Can you give me some help in getting the right disc? I am tired of giving money to either Intel or Microsoft.

—Gary Lichtenstein

Intel, apparently, speaks the truth. Although it’s confusing to the Doc why it doesn’t slip up your MSI board (assuming that it’s an Intel chipset, too), we did confirm issues trying to install XP Pro onto a modern Intel motherboard with just SP1 integrated on the disc. Moving to SP2 or SP3 worked fine. So how do you do it for free, Gary?

Provided you have your install CD and an Internet connection, there’s an easy solution. Nlite ( www.nliteos.com ) allows you to create a slipstreamed Windows XP installation disc that includes the latest Service Pack files and patches, as well as drivers for your hardware. You’ll need a PC with a CD burner and an Internet connection, access to your XP disc, and a copy of the SP3 install file from Microsoft’s website. We have detailed instructions here .

Using nLite to create a slipstreamed Windows install disc is easy and saves you the hassle of having to re-apply Service Packs every time you do a clean install.

SUBMIT YOUR QUESTION Are flames shooting out of the back of your rig? First, grab a fire extinguisher and douse the flames. Once the pyrotechnic display has fizzled, email the doctor at doctor@maximumpc.com for advice on how to solve your technological woes.

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