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Problem not seen before

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OK, see if you can wrap your brains around this one, because I'm stumped. I've installed/re-installed dozens of computers literally hundreds of times and never come across this. I worked in the IT career field for a while, and am now on my own as a web developer. I just put a new computer together and am dumbfounded with this. Here are the specs of the computer:

P4 2.8GHz Prescott CPU
Asus P4C800-E Deluxe M/B
1024MB Corsair ValueSelect DDR400 RAM
nVidia FX5700 Ultra w/128MB GDDR3 RAM
Soundblaster Audigy Gamer
120GB Seagate Barricuda (IDE version) HD with 2 NTFS partitions
AOpen 16x DVD-ROM Drive
Sony 8x DVD-R/+R/+RW

Not a bad machine at all, right? Should be pretty nice. However, let me explain this problem, and maybe someone can help me out, or suggest something I haven't tried. I can install Windows 98, Me, or 2000 with no problems and every piece of hardware works, and all memory is found. This machine flies on any of these OS's. However, when I try to install XP it completely locks up... before any files even copy down. There is nothing wrong with my XP CD, I've verified that. Let me elaborate on this problem and describe in detail what I've tried.

I tried a clean install on this machine with all hardware connected. I completely wiped the main partition where I wanted to install XP and began my installation process. Prior to this I made sure my BIOS and video BIOS were updated to latest versions. On startup, it recognized the CD, and immediately tried to open the windows installation program, where it also immediately froze... I mean locked up completely. All that showed up was the initial blue screen where it says "Windows XP Professional Setup" at the top, and then at the bottom it shows files being copied down... except there was nothing at the bottom of the screen. Hmmmm... new one on me. OK, so I installed WinMe just to see if there was something wrong with any hardware... everything checked out. Re-wipe the drive, and start over... another lockup. Let's try Win2k... no problem whatsoever. In fact it's what I'm running right now, since at least everything is working. OK, so let's try an upgrade install from 2000. Sure the files all copied down fine, since that happens while you're still booted into Win2k (or whatever OS you're upgrading from), but upon reboot, the same thing happened... lockup and no progress.

So let's reapproach this. Maybe XP doesn't like some of my hardware. Remove the TV card I had in... reboot... lockup. Remove one stick of RAM (2x512MB pair for DDR functionality)... reboot... lockup. Remove sound card... reboot... lockup. Remove 16x DVD-ROM... reboot... lockup. Reconnect 16x DVD-ROM and disconnect 8x DVD burner... reboot... lockup. Check the M/B BIOS, ensure all non-essential onboard equipment is enabled... I'd already disabled onboard sound and SATA functions, so that's not the problem. Let's reset the BIOS to default. Reboot... lockup. Change the BIOS back to the way I'd set it earlier... boot back into 2000 and call it a night.

Does anyone have any ideas that I haven't tried? Please? I really want my XP back!
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Welcome Molotok <_<

XP is much more demanding of system memory, and it sounds like you could have bad RAM. If you have more than one stick of RAM, try them one at a time. Or, http://www.memtest86.com is a very good memory testing program that loads from a bootable floppy drive.
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