Sunday, April 13, 2008

Windows cannot install required files. Make sure all files required for installation are available, and restart the installation. Error code: 0x800703

I just built a new computer and ran into some issues installing Microsoft Windows Vista. I was getting this message: “Windows cannot install required files. Make sure all files required for installation are available, and restart the installation. Error code: 0x800703E6”. I would get past all the install windows and even copy all the files. It was the expanding files part that would fail.

My first guess was to remove a stick of ram. I have heard that before and I was at 4G with the 2 sticks. That did not help this time. I ran the memory tests and everything was ok. I left that second stick out while doing the rest of my tests.

I looked for the error code and I found a KB article (KB930984) that described my exact problem. It indicated that my firmware on my DVD drive was causing the issue. Either update the firmware or copy the files to the disk. I copied all the files to my C: and rebooted. I let it boot from the hard drive and ran into the same issue. I saw another site suggest that the DVD drive needed to be the slave on the IDE cable. Changing the jumper didn’t fix that either. I disconnected the DVD drive and the installer required that I had one.

I thought that was odd. I had an old DVD drive that windows would see but could not see any disk inserted. I set it up and started the install over. It still complained about the DVD drive. After placing a copy of all the files and the main disk and booting from it, the install would still look for the install files on the DVD. I still had the install disk in the drive during some of my tests. That would explain me still getting the error when I thought I had ruled the DVD drive out.

After some more searching, I found the solution. Installing Vista from Hard Disk, USB Disk or Memory Stick. I selected the repair option instead of install after reading that. Ignored the drive selection and started the command prompt. I ran the fallowing commands:

cd /boot
del bcd
bcdedit /createstore
cd ../sources

The install went smooth after that. After the install finished, I reformated and installed Vista 64 bit. I was using my 32 bit disk because its a known good one. I was having issues so I wanted to eliminate variables as much as I could.

I copied all the CD files to the C: again but it failed to boot. I booted to the DVD but droped to a command line and ran the install off the hard disk. I did not have any other issues with the rest of the install. I even did that last install with both sticks of ram.

BIOSTAR TForce TP35D2-A7 with Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 requires bios update

TP35D2-A7 needs bios update before it can use an E8400. I just purchased this combo. I could not find any clear details if the CPU and motherboard would work together. Several user reviews on and posts on some over clocking boards indicated they work with each other. When I powered up my machine for the first time I discovered they don't work out of the box.

Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor

BIOSTAR TForce TP35D2-A7 LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX Intel Motherboard

The power supply would turn on, all my fans would spin up, and then they would all spin down. Power would recycle and it did the same thing over and over. I looked to the manual for the TP35D2-A7 and it indicated 2 LED status lights were on the board. Neither one lit up and that indicated unusual mother board or CPU issue. In the over clocking section of the manual it indicated the power would cycle like I was seeing when clock settings did not work with the CPU.

I was reading on the Biostar page and it does not list the E8400 as a supported processor. In the FAQ they had a question on support for the 45nm processors and it indicated a bios update was needed. I saw this before I made my purchase. When I ran into this issue, I expected that I needed to do a bios update. The catch is if you need a supported processor installed to update the bios. If this was my first build and all I had was the E8400, I would have been dead in the water. That was my situation.

I work in an IT department so I took my computer in with me the next day. I used a processor from a work machine to get it to boot up and flashed the bios. I placed the E8400 back into the mother board and it booted up without issue.

To sum it up, you will need a bios update for TP35D2-A7 if you are going to use an E8400 with it and you need a working processor to update the bios. I was using the E8400 but the same should hold true for the E8200.