Re: xp install using pen drive instead of bootable cd
You will need to access the BIOS/CMOS and make sure the USB boot option is there and enabled. Then you will have to change the priority of the option to come before your hard drive. If you tell me what kind of machine you have I can tell you how to get to the BIOS.
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Windows XP (preferably a SP3, but not necessarily) ISO or CD.
Batch files to write the boot record and copy XP files Download Here.
From here on I will assume that you have downloaded the batch files and unzipped them and put the WinXP2USB folder directly in C drive so the path to that folder is C:\WinXP2USB and i will also assume that your USB drive letter is H. If these value differ in your system please change accordingly.
It is possible to to use a Pen Drive/ Flash drive to load windows XP, but the process is never 100% reliable. You need to have the actual equivalent of the XP system disk, or boot disk, on your pen drive. Even then your system may not recognise the pen drive as a system disk. It works for some but not not for others. If you have your original XP disks, try loading it on the pen drive via another PC. It works best if the pen drive is formatted to NTFS, but may still work on FAT32 format. 2Gb pen is a general good size. Trial and error.
There is reportedly an XP Lite version that is more suited to this, but I am not clear on the details or legalities..
Your only real sensible option is to replace the CDROM. You may wish to upgrade to DVDRAM Drive for a few cents more.
I have used a usbhelper software to make bootable USB drive. You can search internet for the bootable USB flash drive program for your computer. Once you have the program installed you can use the img file of the system CD to make the pen drive bootable. If you don't have the image file you could create one with ISO burning program like Nero.