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How To Find Windows XP Version when you can't boot XP?

This is a discussion on How To Find Windows XP Version when you can't boot XP? within the Windows XP Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. I am attempting to fix someone else's computer that has Windows XP on it. The computer will not boot into


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Old 11-10-2008, 05:53 PM   #1
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I am attempting to fix someone else's computer that has Windows XP on it. The computer will not boot into any mode, not even safe mode, so booting is out of the question. I am going to attempt a repair install, however, I do not have their XP install disk so I am going to attempt to reinstall using some XP disks that I have laying around. The problem is, I don't know what version of XP is installed (Home or Pro?) or if any service packs are installed. How can I find out what version of XP is installed and what, if any, service packs are installed using either the recovery console or booting from a BartPE disc? Are there registry entries with this information? Maybe a file?

Thanks.

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Old 11-10-2008, 07:13 PM   #2
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When you said it will not boot, what do you mean and until how far it goes. You could try pressing F8 until the advance startup option comes up and then select boot into safe mode. After that, there will be a list asking what OS you want to boot from. From there, you can see whether it is a home or an XP

Best to try SP 2 as it is more common. If you try to do a repair install using SP 1 CD, it will tell you that setup has detected a newer version of XP on the computer and can't proceed

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Old 11-10-2008, 07:15 PM   #3
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Hi louie55 and welcome to TSF

The XP version is included on the Product Key sticker on the case. Probably located on the back of the computer. I saw one machine where it was in the slot where the CD rom was installed....had to slip the cdrom out to see it. The point is, that sticker will tell you if it is Home or Pro. Windows will probably complain if you try to repair install with the wrong version. I know that if you try to use a CD that is below the SP number, XP will complain that there is a newer version already on the machine and will refuse to install or repair.

I don't think it is dangerous to just try what you have. You can always slipstream a newer version of SP onto a XP install CD if needed. Dirrections to do that can be seen at this link:
http://www.lancelhoff.com/2008/03/12...to-windows-xp/

Hope this helps,
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Old 11-10-2008, 08:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jarod View Post
You could try pressing F8 until the advance startup option comes up and then select boot into safe mode. After that, there will be a list asking what OS you want to boot from. From there, you can see whether it is a home or an XP
I don't remember exactly what it said, but I tried this already and it only said something like "Windows Whistler Personal Edition" or something similar. After googling it, I see Whistler is the former code name for XP. So, I am still at a stand still.

mack1, I will try my disks and see if any will work.

However, my question still stands. I would think there would have to be a way to find the Windows XP version without actually booting into Windows as the information has to be stored somewhere. If anybody knows, please let us know.

I do have access to the registry via UBCD4WIN.
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Old 11-10-2008, 08:59 PM   #5
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Hi louie55,

I just tried every search that I could think of to find the version of XP in my register, and I could not come up with anything. I have Windows XP Home Edition with SP2. I could find the SP2, but there was no way to fine the version of XP that I have. Like you, I think the information is somewhere, but I can't find it. Sorry.

Best regards.
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Old 11-10-2008, 10:30 PM   #6
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I would slave the drive to another xp and save their data. Then I would call the manufacturer and give them the numbers that they need and see if they have recovery disc's
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Old 11-11-2008, 04:12 AM   #7
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Quote:
The point is, that sticker will tell you if it is Home or Pro.
The install CD can have the same SP or greater. If greater, it will upgrade XP while re-building.

Best regards,
Mack1

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