How to Add SATA Drivers to Windows XP

Written by ruri ranbe
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Unlike Windows Vista and Windows 7, Windows XP does not inherently support SATA. SATA, developed in 2003, came out two years after the release of the XP operating system. Windows XP will not recognise SATA unless the supporting drivers are loaded to the OS at install. To use SATA with Windows XP, save the drivers to a floppy disk and load the files from the floppy disk drive after booting to XP Setup.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Windows XP CD
  • Floppy disk

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    Prepare the Floppy Disk

  1. 1

    Sign on to a separate computer. Open a Web browser and navigate to your computer or motherboard manufacturer's official website. Enter your product information and go to the download page.

  2. 2

    Select "Windows XP" as your operating system and choose "Drivers" as the category. Locate the SATA driver or drivers and download the package to your computer.

  3. 3

    Double-click the software to extract the contents of the .exe to your hard drive. Do not install the drivers if prompted. Exit from the installation.

  4. 4

    Click "Start." Click "Search." Click "All files and folders." Type "*.inf" into the first field. Expand "Look in" to include all of "C:."

  5. 5

    Expand "More advanced options." Check "Search system folders," "Search hidden files and folders" and "Search subfolders." Click "Search."

  6. 6

    Locate the extracted files in the results. The file or files are likely stored in the "Temp" or "AppData" folders.

  7. 7

    Insert a floppy disk into the floppy disk drive. Drag-and-drop the SATA drivers to the floppy disk.

    Install Windows XP with SATA Drivers

  1. 1

    Power on the computer. Insert the Windows XP CD into the CD drive. Press any key to boot from the disc drive when prompted.

  2. 2

    Press "F6" and insert your floppy disk into the floppy disk drive. Press "S" to continue. Press "Enter."

  3. 3

    Use the directional pad to select the correct RAID controller from the options. Press "Enter" to load the drivers. Follow the remaining onscreen directions to install Windows XP to your computer.

Tips and warnings

  • Before checking online, review the packaging included with your computer or motherboard. A floppy disk or CD may contain the drivers to install SATA.
  • You can also use third-party applications such as 7zip or Universal Extractor to extract the .INF files from the executable.

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