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How to Install a New Windows Operating System: Windows XP and Windows 7

How to install a new windows operating system into your new hard disk. Windows XP and Windows 7 step-by-step procedure.

If you opted to build your own computer system using the tips on how to build your own cheap desktop computer, the next step is to install a new operating system. The common operating systems in many computers nowadays are Windows XP and Windows 7 because Windows XP is a significant improvement from previous windows operating systems like Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows Me or Windows NT. Windows 7 is a much favored operating system than Windows Vista because it can work better with many windows applications than the latter.

The following steps detail the procedure on how to install a new windows operating system into your new hard disk. Procedure A applies to Windows XP operating system and Procedure B applies to Windows 7 operating system.

Procedure A: Installing the Windows XP Operating System

1. Power on your computer.

2. While the computer boots, quickly press the button to open the CD or DVD drive and place the Windows XP installation CD into the tray.

3. Keep pressing F2 key in the first row of keys in your keyboard or DEL to enter the Basic Input-Output System (BIOS) setup. Booting to the BIOS differs between manufacturers so either F2 or Del will work.

4. The BIOS Setup screen appears. The color of the screen is blue with white text. Find the Boot Menu and select CD/DVD ROM as the first boot device, followed by the hard disk as the second boot device. You may skip the other settings.

5. Strike F10 found in the first row of your keyboard to save the BIOS settings and exit. Your computer will restart.

6. Let your computer restart. Once you see this message “Press any key to boot from CD/DVD”, strike any key in your keyboard. The computer will boot from your Windows XP installation CD.

7. Hit Enter to access the Windows XP Setup.

8. Press F8 to agree to the Terms and Conditions and then Press Esc to continue to Setup.

9. Select a partition to install Windows XP. You may create more than one partition in your hard disk especially if your hard disk has a high capacity. You may allocate about 40% of your hard disk to the "C" or root drive and leave the rest of the storage area as a virtual drive "D". After partitioning, you will be prompted to select the partition to install the Windows XP operating system. Choose "C" and hit Enter.

10. Choose NTFS to format the disk and press enter. NTFS offers greater security and flexibility in your system than either FAT and FAT 32 which are older operating systems.

11. You can leave the computer and do other chores while setup formats the hard disk. After Windows XP has formatted the hard disk, it will copy files to the hard disk. The whole process will take about 30 minutes or less depending on the speed of your microprocessor and hard disk.  The computer will restart automatically.

12. After the PC has restarted, click the Next button.

13. Enter your Name, and then strike the Next button.

14. Enter the Product Key that goes with your Windows XP Installation CD case. Press Enter.

15. Change the computer name if you want and note it down for reference later. Click Next.

16. Adjust the time, and then strike the Next button.

17. Select “Typical Settings” for the networking setting and then click Next.

18. You may want to change the name of the workgroup. Hit Next. The computer will restart.

19. When the windows screen appears again, click the Next button at the lower right corner of the screen. Choose “Help Protect my PC by turning on Automatic Updates”. Click Next.

20. Enter your name on the Username and then hit the Next button.

The Windows XP operating system should be working by this time. Install the drivers that go with your mainboard and/or the monitor to maximize the utilization of your new desktop computer.You may want to install MS Office next or the free Open Office application to be able to use office applications like the word processor, spreadsheets, database, among others.

Procedure B: Installing the Windows 7 Operating System

Installing Windows 7 operating system is simpler than with any previous version of Windows.

Follow Steps 1 to 6 above but insert the Windows 7 operating system installation CD instead of Windows XP.

7. Windows 7 will load files from the disk then the installer will launch. Select your language preferences. Hit Install Now.

8. Accept the Windows license agreement and choose to do a Custom install.

9. Since your hard disk is new, you will need to create a partition by pressing the New button.Once you created the partition, choose the drive to install. Normally, the "C" drive is chosen.The "D" drive is reserved for saving created files.

Now, you may have your 30 minute exercise while Windows 7 is installed.

10. Once installation is complete, you will be asked to enter a user name and a computer name. Make your computer's name unique so that it can easily be identified in the network if you intend to attach your computer to it. You will be asked to create a password, but you may just skip this step.

11. You will be asked for your activation key but you may activate your operating system later. Windows 7 will run for 30 days without a key or activation.

12. You will be prompted to choose Windows update settings. Choose "Use recommended settings.”

13. Set the clock and choose your time zone.

Your installed Windows 7 operating system is now ready to install the other software applications like MS Office, games, among others.

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Comments (2)

awesome Pat, handy tips

Most computers today are installed with Windows Operating System. It is good to know how to install it to save money from letting computer experts to the job. You have given us a great information. Keep it up! Thanks, voted and shared.

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