How to Reboot XP Without a Startup Disk


Windows XP is a well-designed and stable operating system. However, sometimes it fails to start altogether. This may be because of a virus on your system, or corrupted or missing system files. In case you do not have a Windows XP setup CD or floppy disk, you can reboot the computer by using the Windows XP setup files stored on either your hard disk or some other secondary storage like a flash drive.

  • Start your computer.

  • Press the "F8" key until you see the advanced startup options.

  • Use the arrow key to select the "Safe Mode with a Command Prompt" option and then press "Enter."

  • At the command prompt, type the location where your Windows XP setup files are stored. For example, if setup files are stored in the winxpsetup folder in the C: drive, type "C:" and press "Enter." Then type "CD winxpsetup" and press "Enter."

  • Once inside the winxpsetup folder, type "setup.exe" and press "Enter." This will start the Windows XP setup.

  • On the "Welcome to Microsoft Windows XP" page that appears, click "Install Windows XP."

  • In the "Windows Setup" dialog box that opens, click "Upgrade (Recommended)" in the "Installation Type" box, and then click "Next."

  • Select "I accept this agreement" in the "License Agreement" page, and then click "Next."

  • On the "Your Product Key" page, type the 25-character product key in the "Product key" boxes (you'll find the product key on the back of the cover for your Windows XP CD), and then click "Next."

  • On the "Get Updated Setup Files" page, click "Yes" if you want the latest Windows XP updates to be downloaded from the Microsoft website and installed on your computer; otherwise click "No," and then click "Next." This reinstalls Windows XP on your computer.

  • After the process completes, reboot Windows XP normally.

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  • "Microsoft Windows XP Inside Out, Second Edition"; Ed Bott, Carl Siechert, and Craig Stinson; 2004
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