View Full Version : XP recovery without optical drive

11th September 2007, 05:57 PM
There's an unlucky tradition in my family that when we get back from travel, no matter how small the trip, some significant appliance or piece of machinery breaks. Our penultimate trip, it was the coolant system in the car and a seatbelt stalk. If I said how much it would cost to replace the seatbelt stalk, no-one here would believe me.

Well, it's happened again. Back from Melbourne yesterday and this morning my wife's Toshiba Dynabook hard drive up&died suddenly. All data is backed up - so no worries there. The same laptop's drive died less than a year ago and so the replacement drive is still under warranty.

I took it in to the shop and they agreed to replace it for me free under warranty. They didn't have any 80gb drives and so they whacked in a 100gb for me for just a half-hour service charge of $44. All good.

Until they go to check the new HD and discover that the CD/DVD drive (always a bit flaky, but generally operational) has also died. So I've got a brand spanking new 100gb disc in the thing and I can't get (Japanese) XP back on it.

There's no chance whatsoever of getting a replacement optical drive - Japan-only model only serviceable in Japan, told to me by Toshiba Corp Japan directly. At the repair shop they tried booting the machine from an external USB optical drive without success - something about the proprietary BIOS software on this older Dynabook. They suggested I try a PC card optical drive but I don't have one at my disposal.

If I can just get XP back on the thing, it doesn't matter so much that the optical drive is cactus - the machine is used for the internet and watching downloaded video and should last another couple of years if we can just get over this issue.

I've got a PowerBook G4, and old iBook G3 and an external Lacie drive with both Firewires and USB 2 interface as my tools to try and solve this.

I'm sure the collective genius of MacTalk users has a way to solve this.

[Small voice] Help.


11th September 2007, 06:07 PM
hay Brendon,

I might be able to jump start it. I have a number of Toshiba's in my office there might be a chance that if the hardware is similar enough we could remove your hard drive place it in one of my Toshiba's and install xp then replace the hard drive back into yours. Cross our fingers, hope on 1 leg and hopefully xp may boot, even in safe mode.

I also have a couple of Toshiba's with optical drives that eject again with the right song and dance maybe one of these with work in your notebook to get it started.

finally I also have a usb cddrive but you said that would not work

let me know if I can help


11th September 2007, 06:09 PM
Jeremy! Again!

Sounds good, PMing you now.