Installing Windows XP on Dell Inspiron 1510/1525 over Windows Vista System

This article describes about Installing Windows XP on Dell Inspiron 1510/1525 over Windows Vista System. Read to know the correct details of the procedure and why it is advantageous to use a Dell system for using Windows XP.

Installing Windows XP on Dell Inspiron 1510/1525 over Windows Vista System

I have purchased Dell Inspiron 1525 Laptop last year which came with WIndows Vista Home as a pre-installed Operating System. No doubt the look and operations of Windows Vista is good but somehow I was not comfirtable with using the Vista. I thought of downgrading the operating system to Windows XP. I contacted Dell customer service for this but they said they do not provide any support for Operating Systems, and informed me that downgrading the operating systems to XP will be at owners risk. This is the first time where I heard not to go for OS change.

After contacting Dell service centre, I googled out on internet for the topic Installing XP over Vista, and gone through almost all the pages where I could not get satisfactory answer that tells me the steps to install xp over vista. I then stopped thinking of doing this change. But suddenly last week again I thought of asking question to one of our Editor Mr. Nitin Bajaj, I talked to him regarding my issue, he simply told that I can easily do the XP installation if I have Licensed CD for Windiws XP. After his guidance I contacted my company IT guy and note down the steps of the installing the Windows XP. I bought Windows XP. To my surprise yesterday i.e. on 22.01.2009 I started downgrading my operatin system from Vista to XP at around 7PM and got succefully completed the task by 11.30PM.

Here are the steps that I followed for Installing Windows XP over Windows Vista.

1. Note down your system configuration and the model like for me it was Dell Inspiron 1525.

2. Take out your Windows XP Licensed CD and Drivers CD/DVD provided by Dell.

3. First thing first I took the back up of my data from C and D Drive on a external HDD.

4. Insert Windows XP Cd in CD Drive and restart the system. We have to boot the system from CD, so remember to press [F12] key when the system gets restarted. So after pressing [F12] key system will ask to boot from sequence by selecting the up/down arrow, here you select the sequence as boot from cd drive.

5. Once you select the boot from CD, system boots from your Windows XP CD and it will scan through your system and gives you the screen to continue installing Windows XP or to quit. So here you press ENTER key to continue the XP installation.

6. The next screen will be to ask the drive in which you want to install XP, C Drive or any other drive. Generally operating systems are installed on C Drive. Here by selecting the C Drive your XP CD will remove Vista by formatting the C Drive and continue with installing XP as a fresh installation. After you select the drive the system will then ask to format the drive and then will again confirm to continue formatting, these are self explanatory message so please act accordingly and continue setup.

7. After formatting completes system will then starts copying the files and then finally after completing it will restart. On restarting system will ask CD Key which is the License Key. After entering the CD Key you have to give details like Computer Name, Date, Time and Region Settings. After this System will install Device Drivers one by one.

8. After everything done system again restarts and you are done with the installation of Windows XP. Next is you insert your Dell Driver CD/DVD and install all the drivers that are available in CD/DVD which is automatically get displayed that are compatible to your Laptop Model.

Thats all I have done and I am now running Windows XP on my Dell Inspiron 1525 system that was came with Windows Vista as a pre-installed operating system. 24 Hours are completed and there is no problem yet found as all are working fine.

Guys, I have done it successfully, but it may happen you may get stuck, so even if you stuck please remeber you must have completed step 3 so that you are safe. If you could not install XP for any reason go back to Vista by reinstalling Vista from the Recover Operating system CD supplied with your Laptop. And if you are satisified using Vista then this resource may not be useful for you. Any suggestion please post your replies below.


Author: Nitin23 Jan 2009 Member Level: Gold   Points : 2

Hi Nilesh,

Thank you.

At last you were sucessful in installing Windows XP. Great news to hear. I knew you were looking out for information how to install XP on Windows Vista.

Well, it is good to hear that you had no issue till now: However, would like to check with these settings:

1) Bluetooth functioning
2) Wireless
3) Display drivers.

If you think you did not check for those specification and may be working. Look out for it and if the drivers are not present. Then would request you to directly go, than installing drivers from CD. As the site will have updated drivers.

Let me know your views.

Author: Nilesh23 Jan 2009 Member Level: Gold   Points : 2

Hi Nitin,

Thanks for reply. Let me tell you that Bluetooth, wireless and display drivers are installed perfectly as I installed drivers for all this three from Dell Driver CD. Its working fine.

Dell is superb. Its worth buying Dell Products. You need not to go anywhere for drivers and support issues.

Thanks again.

Author: Rohith Shenoy G25 Jan 2009 Member Level: Bronze   Points : 2

Hi all,
Dell is an amazing company but one thing I find to be a real pain with their portable computers is that, they have a strict check for making sure that the adapters used with any Dell is a genuine Dell make. That is, usual adapters have 3 terminals, 2 for power,1 for earth. Although Dell adapters also have these 3 pins, they include another pin for id. This pin is the pin that conveys information about the adapter's make, from the id chip in the adapter to the laptop's BIOS. If a check fails, i.e. if the user uses a non dell compatible adapter, and if due to some reason the id chip doesn't identify properly, the computer will simply refuse to recharge.

And also, this makes it hard for universal adapter manufacturers to make adapters for Dell.

Worst of all, Dell adapters and batteries come with only a six month warranty regardless of any extended warranties on the system.

Rohith Shenoy

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