Question about Dell Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition

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Need to reformat dell computer xp home edition

When I go to reformat with the purple cd, it says that it won't continue with the installing because the system that is on the computer is a newer version than the cd. The option to continue isn't activated. Only the cancel and details options. This cd came with the computer. What do I need to do? Thanks so much

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  • msmethurst Feb 13, 2009

    I have tryed to reformat my DELL Comp
    Boot up F12 option 4 it runs then goes back to
    option F1 or F2 it will not run reformat.
    Were am i going wrong?
    I have the orginal Cd re-install dics.

  • Charris Suaybaguio
    Charris Suaybaguio May 11, 2010

    is that a windows xp OS you are using?


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Hello fyregoddess,
Welcome to Fixya! My name's Chris and I'm from Scotland.
This could be because you 'purple' disk is not a Windows XP operating system disk, but a Windows recovery disk. It is necessary to have an actual XP operating disk in order to reformat.
If you think you DO have an actual XP operating system disk (with Serial Number), then it is possible that you have actually been attempting to 'Repair' the computer, not reformat it.
If it is indeed an XP disk, then, when you load it up and attempt to install it, it will give you the option to format the disk with ntfs or FAT32. If you didn't see this option, then you have a recovery disk, and your system has likely been upgraded to XP Service Pack 2. In this case the recovery disk is for XP (the original, part 1, if you like), and will useless for repairing purposes.
If you can borrow an XP disk from a friend, that would be the easiest option. Then you could reformat.
Alternatively, you could download a program that has the recovery utility for XP Service Pack 2, and try repairing the system that way.

You can download it here:

Scroll down to the bottom of the page and download the RAR files. When you have the RAR files, you have to unpack them (using WinRar or Peazip. Peazip is free). This will give you an .ISO file that you burn onto a disk with a program like ImgBurn or Nero. I recommend ImgBurn because it is easy to use and is completely free.
Load it up on start-up and it'll give you a choice of operating systems. You should choose Windows XPE.

Now you will be doing the same as you were doing before (when you used the 'purple disk'), but you won't face the 'newer version' problem, and it should restore all the systems settings for you.

I know that sounds like a lot of scary work, but unless you can get your hands on an original Windows XP disk and reformat your computer with that, then using the Multiboot Recovery method will be the only way to 'Repair' your system.

I wish you good luck with this, and feel free to leave a Comment if you have any problems. Alternatively, you can try the Chat Live Now button and myself or one of my Fixya expert companions may be able to guide you one step at a time.

Happy Holidays!


Posted on Dec 17, 2008

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step 1 - First insert the windows xp cd in your cd drive.
step 2 - Then start your computer and keep pressing F12 key on your keyboard.
step 3 - After pressing F12 key,it will show you some options to select from where you want to boot from.
step 4 - Select 'Boot from CD drive/USB cd drive'
step 5 - Now it will try to boot from your bootable windows xp cd which you have inserted in th CD drive.
step 6 - After reading the CD it will prompt you to 'Press any key to boot from CD drive'
step 7 - At this moment press any key.Remeber you will have to press any key while this prompt appears.otherwise it will boot from your Hard disk drive.
step 8 - After pressing any key it will start windows xp setup.


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I only use AVG at its free and has never let me down.

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