Windows Vista to XP Downgrading/Reformat?

bob666 - Jan 9, 2008 at 12:35 PM
 tabu - May 26, 2011 at 01:25 AM
I bought a new laptop with Windows Vista preinstalled but I don't want Vista at all. There is no data on the laptop as it is brand new. I would like Windows XP but couldn't find a new laptop with XP on it... so I got a Windows XP Home Edition disc and bring it to PC world so they can downgrade it for me. But I have been told it can't be done. Are they lying? What can I do?

107 responses


I have installed XP on my VIsta system recently.

1) First of all .. take backup of your data and drivers(XP driver download from internet and keep them ready in USB)

2) Put XP bootable CD in your CD drive,and start the system.Press DEL for BIOS Setup.

Make priority to boot from CD drive first.
DISABLE the HARD DRIVE(important for downgrading...)

3)Make partitions , now OS will get booted from your XP bootable CD.

4)Install all the drivers.

Your system is ready to use with XP ONLY
(Remember Network driver is also disabled,so keep all drivers ready before reformatting).I did it with my HP Laptop

i have HP Pailion dv6000 I can not set windows xp to format hard disk and tell me he did not found hard driver
very thanks
Hossam Samir
The problem is you have not installed the SATA hard drive drivers. The below link is to a forum where someone explains how to format your hard drive and install xp without the need of the hard drive SATA drivers.

hope this helps.
wassim > j076025
Aug 9, 2008 at 05:18 PM
Dear I just wanna thank u a lot,
finally I found a way that worked :DDDDDDDDDDDD
well I tried a lot of ways to dwngrade the sata controller it didnt work,but this dban software I donno how it formatted my pc and in wich way,all I know s that when its done I set my sata from bios to disable native settings and ran win xp and it worked,it found the hard drive and worked and still workin like a charm :DDDDD

Hey Jessie don't worry, your problem is mostly easy, just go to the hp website, and search your model and then download all of the drivers in the Driver-modem and Driver Network and then your wireless card should be recognized,. then you can right click on the icon of the monitor with the red circle next to it in your sis tray and then select view available wireless networks and up at the top click refresh network list. now everything should work great.
and while your at it you should download and install all of the drivers that hp has for your laptop.
good luck!!
Okay, so I used my friend's computer and went to this site, I downloaded three things that were under the network driver section. I put them on a disk, transferred them to my laptop, opened them up and downloaded them. Unfortunately, I cannot see any changes to my laptop whatsoever and there's still nothing with which to connect to Wireless Networks. Did I miss something?
RAC_Gump Posts 6 Registration date Friday July 25, 2008 Status Member Last seen July 29, 2008 2
Jul 29, 2008 at 01:47 AM
If you have downgraded to XP from Vista on a HP dv series notebook you WILL have these problems........

SATA : XP doesnt have SATA drivers in it! Turn off SATA in BIOS before you install XP then get the SATA drivers after, its the easist way and your PC will work fine without SATA drivers (it goes back to the old IEEE protocol)
You CAN load the drivers when you install XP if you want, but you must have them on a floppy/flash drive BEFORE you install and you must know how to get XP to install them as it boots up!!

HD Conexant Audio : You have to update the UAA Bus Driver FIRST before installing the HD Conexant Audio Drivers, READ the driver instructions PROPERLY !! Its says which driver to install BEFORE the Audio drivers! STOP pressing ok so much and READ those INSTALL INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE YOU PRESS OK!!!
Everybody has same problem with HP Conexant Auido READ READ READ!!!!

Microsoft Universal Audio Architecture (UAA) Bus Driver for High Definition Audio (sp33566) <-----FIRST

Then the audio driver SECOND:

»Conexant High Definition Audio Driver
»Conexant High Definition Audio Driver (for AMD )

CHeers Gump!

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hello to all the HP Dv users. here are some steps for the DV6700 and 6880ev models.
personally I am using the thinkpad of IBM (T61), but my friend got the DV6700 on a deal, and finally lended on my head regarding the downgrading to XP. tearing up the google for answr, I had seen all stuck at the same problem.
so guys for at least this model , there is NO WAY to do it without floppy (external/internal and usb floppy will do just fine).
to get started better prepare the following: hirens boot cd, 1 usb floppy and 1 disk and the XP installation CD.
before you send vista to the history pages, go to HP support and drivers and download "Intel(R) Matrix Storage Manager" for your model (FOR OS XP!!!). save it on your desktop. create a folder, put the downloaded file (sp38088)
and extract it in the folder(you can use winrar is the fastest way) now you will have many files inside the folder. you need file 32, if you use 32 bit or 64 if you use 64 bit OS config. copy the contect of this file to the usb floppy drive.
now you may download all other drivers and utiliies speciall the lan card, and the wireless drivers.
once you kill vista, till you finish the XP you wont be able to use you laptop for nothing! now that we have all drivers on USB stick , and the other files on the usb floppy, you may start.
put the hirens boot cd into the DVD drive. boot and with F1 ( read on the bottom of the bios) set boot priority to CD drive and F10 (save and exit.) when boot, choose boot from cd and watch it , you must press the F6 the moment you see it. press several times, and let installation proceed. at a certain point you will be promotet to install drivers for the sata, then you will be asked to press the letter S, and here is important: you will see 4 files all of them are sata but not all of them for you. choose the no.3 from the top (one before the last) and press enter. youll be promoted to the message you are about to install .... bla bla, just enter. then if you choose the correct driver, when youll be promoted to the installation message , youll be promoted to install, and then... vuala the hard drive is there.
press the F8 to confirm installation. from there its easy down hill slide....

i had just finished downgrading the last of the 5 HP DV laptops to XP, so I wrote for the new HP users to come.

twisted is that the files for supporting the Sata HDD are not in the bios , their natural place, its on the drive ....
who design this model?

i hope I solved some problems, and if you still going to use the HP laptops, invest in the USB floppy drive the 20$ you are going to need it , with any OS youll install.....

wish you all luck.

"not all laptops are created equals...."
My wife's laptop is an HP Pavilion dv9000 and came with windows vista. I tried rebooting with the windows xp disc and the windows setup said that it couldn't find any of the drives. As if they don't exist to windows setup. Can anyone explain as to twhy this is? Steps in how to resolve this issue would be much appreciated.

I got a HP dv6500 laptop with preinstalled vista. But I want to use window xp in my laptop. I tried with bootable XP cd but it can't recognise XP cd. Do u please advice me how I can reformat my vista system & install windows xp, srvice pack2.

W/thanks & regards
Only thing you need is boot able xp disc but before you do that download and put on another cd all drivers you`ll need for xp and don`t forget to change BIOS
I don't think that they're lying on that one...

Downgrading would mean taking away newer files or changing them to older ones and Windows will not let you do that.

From the way I see it, I think that you could either, if you have another computer with XP on it, you could, with a computer cable, connect the two together and erase the laptop's hard drive completely, wipe it, and just transfer all of the files from that computer to your laptop, or you could insert the XP XP in your laptop and manually copy all of the files on the CD and then paste them in the main system folder, which would take some hours for the transfer to be complete, and then after that delete the Vista files from the laptop, then restart it, and it should then be the XP operating system.

I'm not 100% sure on both of these things, but I have tried them both and they both worked for me, but the case was a little different, I was upgrading.

If you need more help or info, please e-mail me at email removed and I'll try to help you the most that I can!
That was the stupidest post in the world!!! How are you going to delete an OS while using its network functionality?!!!! You will need to use an XP install disk to install the new OS. The only problem you will run into with this is the BIOS. Vista uses a BIOS unique to XP. I have heard that certain BIOSs cannot be downgraded from the Vista version. If that is the case you may be able to buy a new BIOS chip, not sure with a laptop. This has probably been said already, I was just responding to nerd's abhorrently ignorant post.
Hi I was wndering if u could help me with a little prblem... my HP laptop has a WLAN switch in the front and it is supposed to have a blue light even if I am not connected to the internet but now even if its switched on its red. my HP wireless assistant folder wont open and I think the whole built in network adaptor is disconnected. everytime I try to connect it it says that the network cable in unlupgged even though I use wireless internet. everytime I turn off or on the switch something should pop up on my screen saying "wireless assistant is on/off"
hi I m kalim from Lucknow (INDIA)

how install windows XP SP2 via pen drive
Farhan > asif
Jul 6, 2008 at 09:15 AM
Dear kalim,
u cannot install XP without sata drivers. These Drivers are provided at the time of installation(XP) thru Floopy Drive only by pressing F6. Pen drive will not work.
For me it works flawlessly.
APOSTLE > cindy
Jul 23, 2008 at 11:43 AM

dv2000 drivers for Xp
Problems Doestn't
Aug 15, 2008 at 10:59 AM
Lot of thanks man

havsome work?.......


my hp pavilion dv2000 its works nice with winxp
rahul > Problems Doestn't
Feb 2, 2009 at 07:13 AM
vista to xp
i have hp dv6000..want to downgrade from vista to xp..pls advice.thanks..
vista downgrading to professional xp.
my music program will only work on xp
Okay, well I just got like a 06 ~ 07 model of Toshiba, and its a 17" laptop, i'm not interly sure about the stats
but its a intel centrino duo.
and I just got a Black Screen Of Death, and its been like that for almost 3 days.
and i'm wondering if I can remove vista , and replace with Office XP pro Plus .
Any help or answers will be greatly appreciated .
Sorry for my grammar. Please
Message me at Email Id removed for security
please and thank you (:
I just got a HP Pavilion media center m8425f desktop pc. It has intel core 2 quad processor q6700. It comes pre loaded with Windows Vista. But I have heard many non-original software do not work in Vista due to its increased security features. I really like XP and would like to continue using XP. From a desktop perspective, is it easy to switch it to XP operating system. I know I would need some drivers and if anyone can help me find that I would greatly appreciate it. My email addy is f Email ID removed for security. Thanks.
yogui7 Posts 132 Registration date Wednesday February 20, 2008 Status Member Last seen February 6, 2009 28
Apr 12, 2008 at 12:47 PM
I dont understand ! If you want to switch from vista to xp ! this is more than possible! so whats the issue !
eric_deep Posts 12 Registration date Wednesday February 20, 2008 Status Member Last seen May 1, 2008 44
Apr 12, 2008 at 01:36 PM
Hi bob666 of course its possible to downgrade from vista to xp but you just got to reformat and make sure you got all the drivers needed for your laptop or else don't touch it!
Please I need your help, I bought HP Pavilion DV2700 with Windows Vista OS since it was so slow and I totally don;t like Vista, I tried to format to DOS, I'd done the Fixdisk then tried to format to Win_XP but, it doesnt stopped and asking for ACPI update. what shall I do to continue? now my lap top is in DOS system.

I am unable to reformat my laptop by means of an XP CD that I can and have already used in the computer's drive. Why is this so difficult?

Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Check and confirm what drive u r running on if SATA ,u Require Extra drivers to mount the drive
plz help me in formating vista in my hp laptop pavalion dv2000 model 2701tx.i like to put window xp but biose is not going to flash.plz pzl help me to do so I like to xp in my laptop.for this I am very much thankful to u coz I am now fedup with vista.
same problem I have. if u have any driver of xp for hp-dv 2701 tx pls send me at. Email Id removed for security
prasad > KRISS
May 8, 2008 at 03:59 AM
have you got solution for 2701TX downgrade to XP I am stuck up with same. pl mail me.
Rank: Wiz
Rating: 79%, 53 votes
you will need to download the SATA controller driver from
without that your laptop won't recognize your hard drive there
are 2 ways to solve this:
first one you'll need an external floppy drive save the sata driver on a floppy put your xp disk in and start the install at the very begining xp prompts you press F6 to install sata driver press that and it'll get the driver from the external floppy drive.
second way is to create an xp disk with the sata driver to achieve that you'll need a deployment software I use nlite

no u can't
where to get drivers for hp pavilion dv 2519tu notebook pc for window xp????
I am not very tecky but could you not swap out the hard drive on a new laptop w vista OS w a new clean HD and then move XP OS & all files from your PC to the new clean HD on the laptop and wait till MS gets the message and then reinstall later, Vista HD when patches take care of some of these problems?

Also last edition of either PC magagzine or laptop magazine had an article specifically written on how to remove vista and install XP FYI.
May 12, 2008 at 01:41 AM
hi friends,

I am having a HP Pavilion dv6500 series laptop (dv6516tx) which cam pre-installed with windows vista home premium I somehow managed to install windows XP on it by following the procedure of making an XP bootable disc with NLITE software. I have installed xp in a seperate partition by shrinking the C drive. now XP had loaded fine but vista is not working anymore but this is not what I wanted. unfortunately I lost the recovery discs that I have made for the laptop but the recovery partition which was installed on the laptop by HP is still there. someone please help me about how to load vista again on my latop. I have tried using the F11 option to do system recovery but it is not working and the laptop loads with windows xp after the boot screens.
I went through the same issues the newer systems having Vista doesnt work some xp programs. After walking before crawling, I had to go backwards but I got it all except my audio. You have to understand you are still originally platforms for vista so just looking for xp drivers wont solve ur problem u have to re install vista drivers in order to see xp drivers. it works but the fastest easiest way is just write down your list of drivers and just reformate with xp, reinstall your driver then youre off and running
Hi Nicole,

Thanks for addressing my query....But I am still not sure on what to do.

I am able to play the sound files and all well and good.

Problem is with only VGA driver.(NVIDIA)

Could pls explain it eloborately.....