once in a while I have to install a new PC for a relative (you certainly know that otherwise there would be no market for T-shirts like "No, I won't fix your computer").
This time a had a machine with no additional CDs with it. As usual I started by deleting all the unwanted trial versions and stuff. But this time I killed something which asked me in the process "do you want to free drive something and merge the space back to c:?". Great. I said yes.
Then the machine booted into a bluescreen. Ups. OK, simply press Ctrl-Something when the blue ribbon shows and all is back to normal. No sir, unable to reinstall. Ups.
I found a Windows XP install version from another PC, I had the license sticker on my new machine. So let's boot. Bluescreen, ups. Ah, the new ATA drivers. I need new drivers. So press F6, please insert a floppy disk in drive a: Sorry, today there is no more drive a: (Then I remembered that is only a few years since...)
OK, so I need a boot CD with SP2 and the new SATA drivers on it... Since I have got the license for the machine I just had to make sure it would boot.
I found a tool to the rescue. It is called NLite and you can find it here.
It took the boot CD, ripped off SP1a, streamlined SP2 into it, inserted SATA drivers and even burned the new CD. This is cool...
So I got my machine installed after thinking about the possibility of having it so send back... mmhh.. as a proud former-admin...mmhh...