CF-74 Fresh XP Install Woes

Discussion in 'Panasonic' started by Cadillacwill, Jan 23, 2021.

  1. Cadillacwill

    Cadillacwill Newbie

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    Hello Panasonic gurus, I’m finally fulfilling a computer dream and bought a Toughbook (CF-74 mk2)! Unsurprisingly, I’m having some issues getting the old girl going, so I’m hoping someone can help point me in the correct direction.

    I bought this toughbook used, without a HDD, but with the original caddy, and installed a new Kingston SSD in said caddy. Everything clicked in as seems intended. I created a slipstreamed copy of Windows XP SP2 with the Panasonic SATA drivers from their website using nLite.

    Now comes the rub. My bios does not see the hard drive. I have set my boot list to eliminate the LAN drive, and have tried moving “IDE HDD” up and down with respect to the disc drive. All options are set to try and boot besides LAN.

    When I run the XP installation disc, it sees my SSD, allows me to partition and format it, and even copies the files. It then restarts to continue the install, but the comp won’t boot from the SSD to continue the install. As a result it just keeps trying the same partition, format and copy dance over and over.

    My question: is there more drivers or a location I need to go to get an updated bios? Panasonic official download center does not list any bios or firmware updates for the CF-74. I saw through search that someone had the same problem in 2014, but there was no solution listed to help me out.
     
  2. BaRRmaley

    BaRRmaley Notebook Deity

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    Try another OS (Linux).
     
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  3. UNCNDL1

    UNCNDL1 Notebook Deity

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    Try this for a download of Linux
    www.MxLinux.org


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  4. Cadillacwill

    Cadillacwill Newbie

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    I just installed Debian (just saw your recommendation now UNCNDL1) and got the same result as windows.
    Debian found the SSD, formatted the SSD and installed itself, however the bios still doesn’t show any Hard Disk. As a result on boot without an install CD it says in CMD “No operating system found.”
    Would MXLinux work any differently or better?
    Should I just buy a new SSD or HDD to try again in case mine is faulty in some way?
    Cut my loses and buy the CF-74 recovery media on Toughbook rescue?
     
  5. Shawn

    Shawn Crackpot Search Ninja and Options Whore

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    Boot a real unmodified XP cd. See what it does. Does XP have an option to repair drive like Win 7 does? I can't recall.

    Is the SSD an IDE or SATA? Using an IDE to SATA adapter? IDE SSD's can be finicky with Toughbooks.
    I would grab a cheap IDE HDD and try it to see what happens.
     
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  6. Cadillacwill

    Cadillacwill Newbie

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    The SSD in question is a SATA drive which is using the factory Panasonic SATA adapter.

    XP does have a repair drive option, which takes you to a CMD sequence. Unfortunately I’m not savy enough in CMD to actually make much use of it...

    I found an old windows 7 comp in my house with a 750gb SATA WD blue HDD. I installed it in the Toughbook and bam, both bios and windows install recognize it. I’m now formatting it and expect no further problems. It looks like my Kingston SSD was either faulty or they just won’t work with a Toughbook.

    I hope this helps someone else before they through their computer through a wall! (That was plan B for me)
     
    kode-niner, Shawn and UNCNDL1 like this.
  7. Cadillacwill

    Cadillacwill Newbie

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    Just a quick follow up for those interested. The WD HDD worked a treat, and windows was successfully installed, booted and everything.
    I then copied the successful partition on to a PNY SSD and that is now working in the computer without any issue.
    It appears that Kingston SSD was faulty in some way, and is now going to be returned. Both SSD were SATA III, 240gb and ordered from Amazon.
     
  8. Shawn

    Shawn Crackpot Search Ninja and Options Whore

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    Might not be faulty. Had to tell. Older Toughbook BIOS's have been known to be picky about HDD's and SDD's.
    If you can get a refund, go for it and move on.
     
    Toughbook and UNCNDL1 like this.
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