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PostPosted: 19 May 2017, 18:41 
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Joined: 10 Aug 2015, 16:03
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My HP 6400's battery died, so XP wouldn't boot. So first I had to use Linux to clone the drive (tho fortunately I'd made backups in Windows the day before). Can still run the machine using only Linux, have to set the date at boot each time.

But the challenge, came with restoring the drive to other hardware. For a clone, clones the drivers and hardware of the machine it came FROM, not the new one. Backup, restores the drivers and hardware info of the old machine. Big problem.

Macrium Reflect has a utility to restore to diff hardware, but it too is no good here because its backup only backs up the OLD drivers. You have to know the NEW drivers to restore properly.

So I spent two weeks trying to find out what drivers I needed. Fortunately I used a Dell for the new machine, but even there a problem exists: Dell's System Detect WILL NOT WORK even on its own machine with a service tag known, if the DRIVE you've restored doesn't have that information. In short, Dell cannot detect what's on a machine which doesn't already have the Detector manifest on it. Which no new drive will have, and no restored drive from a non-Dell or wrong Dell machine will have. Not good.

So here were the steps I had to take, after restoring the HP hard drive, to the Dell:

1. Determine what the hardware WAS on the Dell machine. That's in Bios, so not hard, just hit F2 (Setup key for a Dell) immediately at boot. Of particular importance are the video and sound drivers, as the rest is usually auto-detected by Windows at boot.

2. For the machine I used (and most Dells), the proper link to get that info is here, for XP:
https://downloadcenter.intel.com/produc ... on-Utility

NB: for later Windows, there's an easier program to use, the Intel Update Software Utility, which is the 2017-dated link at the top of that page. But it won't work on XP.

Soooo I first used the 3/3/11 exe file on that page, as it was the most generic. Then I tried the later ones, and they either didn't work or said I had the wrong configuration for them to run (fine, I have no idea which file contains my chipset, as the page's descriptions are too vague). That restored my video, but the audio still didn't work.

3. 10 days maybe of searching, and again since I have no way of matching the vague descriptions, trial and error finally yielded among the many Dell updates, this one, which covers IDT High Definition Audio: https://downloads.dell.com/audio/DRVR_WIN_R273994.EXE . All the others with the same vague descriptor name but diff exe name, bombed.

4. Windows XP then claimed I needed to install an Audio Compression Manager, but it was discontinued, so I couldn't play compressed files through Windows. Could play them in media players, but not Windows. That cost me several days of scratching my head. Turns out the solution to it, was to install Dell Webcam Central software (which has something in it which fixed the compression problem, I've no idea what). But there were two files not just one The first makes the webcam recognizable to your machine, but the second is what controls the video and audio. The first has the word 'monitor' in it, so can be keyed to your monitor not the machine; the second depends on what machine you have. For Dell 6510 and maybe 6410, Optiplex 760/780, the exe file name is R168730. You find it by Google entry for your Dell model, as Dell's own internal search engine is awful.

Now, if I'd known WHAT FILES I needed to use, then I could have updated the machine in an hour. Hence this thread. Further, tho I had already used the same Dell machine to install fresh XP on a different (blank) drive, via retail XP OS I bought from Digiconcepts (and had purchased the SP3 CDs directly from MSFT), an installation which went smoothly, so I KNEW WHAT THE DRIVERS WERE I NEEDED -- that didn't avail, either. Even if you copy the right drivers where they belong after installation, Windows can't find them. Cuz, they have to be installed THROUGH Windows installing them directly. This is a Catch-22.

You'd think the manufacturers and Windows, never expect the hard drive to change. The HDD becomes the entire machine, and if its innards aren't installed directly by Windows, then the entire machine won't work. Sorry, that's bad computer design.

Finally, the machine in question was a Dell Latitude e6510 (must use the 'e' in Google searches), a fairly common machine from 2010 vintage. But the steps here might work on other Dell models like the 6410 or even the D630, which I also have. The e6530 is a 2012 version, and I'm not sure if the same files ref'd above will be useful to it. Supposedly, Dell aims at making the Latitudes compatible with the Optiplexes, which I also have. Over time I can test those, and will put the results here.

Best option is to freshly install the OS on a blank drive; but that's of no value if you have to restore a drive from a different machine now, is it. SHEESH. So either way, you're stuck with many many hours of configuring, since Windows and Linux defaults are awful, and legion. This is why computer sales have dropped, I'm sure. I sure don't want to ever buy another computer, again.


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