I remember about six years ago
When I to the LORD came alone
In full surrender and self-crucifixion
Accepting God's redemption and salvation
The spiritual awakening and passion thereafter
The loss of my friends and the pain I caused my mother
How daily I deeply immersed myself in God's word
Desiring a growth that is out of this world

I remember my first lessons on faith
How greatly I desired to be a man of faith
To live a medication free life
To turn things in my favour without strife
Really, I gave all I had in me
But some level of faith seems beyond me
Regardless of the times I miss my goal
I will keep my faith as a burning coal

But now my Christian life is no longer the same
Not that my passion and faith no longer remain
It is just that they are now borne out of soberness
No longer out of energy packed impulse and eagerness
My joy and peace comes from the things I give up
And not from self comparison or the things I take up
Though sobriety gives me great resiliency
But at the risk of a latent complacency
My Sony Vaio laptop came with Windows Vista, but in less than 1 year I was sick of using only Windows Vista, Kubuntu and Mandriva (the other two are Linux OS). I needed Windows XP badly, especially because of Windows Vista compatibility issues and XP had fewer problems connecting with most wireless hotspots. So in a nutshell, I got Windows XP SP3 from Microsoft and tried installing it. But something strange occurred during the installation process, I got a "No hard disk detected" complaint, this is because the SATA hard disk is a recent technology and they are not naturally detected by Windows XP. So, I have taken time to explain below in easy to follow steps, the procedure to install Windows XP on a SATA hard disk overcoming the no hard detected complaint. But, I must let you know that you need a Windows XP CD, an empty CD, nlite software and the SATA hard disk drive. We will later use the nlite to integrate the SATA hard disk drivers into the Windows XP installation files and reburn them on the empty CD using the same nlite software.

Step 1

Copy the content of the Windows XP bootable CD into a folder on your computer, download the SATA hard disk drivers (usually named Intel_ICH7R_ICH8R_Floppy zip file), extract them and nlite software (both are freewares).

Step 2

Install the nlite and run the software, click next, then browse to the Windows XP folder (do not bother about the name you saved it with, the software is quite intelligent and will detect it). Click next, do not import anything here (it is for loading formally used or saved settings), just click next again. Under the Integrate section, choose drivers and click next. Click insert, choose multiple drivers, browse to the SATA drivers folder you extracted, add the folder, select all the drivers in the textmode and add . Click next, next and then finish.

Step 3
In the step 2, you have already created a new version of Windows XP that has the drivers for the SATA hard disk. Here you will now make the Windows XP folder back into a bootable CD. Rerun the nlite, choose the Windows Xp folder as before, click next (the last session changes are already added for you), click next again. Now under the create section, choose Bootable ISO, then next, insert the empty CD, set the burn speed to 10x and give it a label. Don't click next yet, just click on the Make ISO button. After this, click next and finish.

Step 4
Boot from the CD on the computer you want to install the Windows XP on and do the normal installation procedure. It will now no longer complaint of no hard disk found.

For any extra help, feel free to ask through the comment.

If for any reason (the Windows OS would not boot, it complains too much of lost or corrupt system files, it takes too much time to boot or like me, you need a fresh start) you want to re-install Windows and not lose your vital documents, just read on.

If you are able to boot into your computer, back up your vital documents and insert the Windows bootable into your DVD drive, and when the setup screen comes on, choose upgrade. This option is always there as long as the version you want to install is the same as the one you are currently using or higher.

If you are unable to boot into your windows to manually make a backup of those documents, do not worry. Insert the bootable windows XP, Vista or 7 into the DVD drive and boot from the disc, the computer will load the required system files first before prompting you on the type of installation. For Vista and 7, choose Upgrade, but if this option is unavailable then choose Custom and specify that it should leave your documents and folders untouched (you will see fresh installation and this option). For Windows XP, press Enter to install, choose the partition you want to install the Windows in and press Enter. In the next screen, you will see Leave the partition's folders and files (not exact words but very similar) and Format this partition. Choose the former and continue.

After installation your documents and files will be intact, but you might need to claim ownership of the former user's folder to be able to access the documents in the Deskop, Music, Documents, Downloads and Video folders (this will happen if you have passworded your former user account, if you need special assistance in doing this ask in the comment).

Now, if you were not allowed to install a fresh Windows without formatting and you need to get out your valuable documents, do not worry. Just boot from a linux CD ( http://linuxforpro.blogspot.com/2009/08/live-booting-linux-from-cd-rom-dvd-rom.html ) and copy out all your valuable documents or even your entire hard disk. Then you can do the fresh Windows installation.

For any extra help, feel free to comment.
Personally, I have experienced so many things that happen during and after installing Windows update that I prefer to switch automatic updates off. There was a time a friend installed Windows Vista Ultimate SP1 and the audio went mute, many a time on Windows XP the computer will for any random reason show bluescreen and reboot. But on Windows Vista the most annoying is probably when you try shutting down and the computer installs automatic updates only to hang at "Configuring Update stage 3 of 3 0% complete..." and it can remain at that stage forever! And when you power the computer down and power it up again (cold boot), it will try to install the update again and go on forever at the stage 3.

To repair this problem you will need to delete a pending.xml file in C:\Windows\winsxs folder. The major work is how to get there and delete it since you are unable to boot completely. There are at least 3 ways to do this.

1. You can slave your hard disk on another system, access your hard disk and perform the deletion.

2. You can use the command prompt (System Console) in the repair tools, after booting from the Vista DVD to repair. Some laptops have this repair option available without having to boot from the DVD, just press F8 as soon as you power on the laptop. When you are in the command prompt, change directory to the C:\Windows\winsxs folder and rename pending.xml to pending.xml.bad or simply delete it. The problem I have with this option is that the prompt refuses to change from the default X:\ (boot partition) to the C:\ partition. I got several tips online as to how to make the partition accessible but none worked.

3. The surest and easiest means of carrying out this operation is to live boot from Linux CD, browse to C:\Windows\winsxs folder using the lovely ever reliable Linux GUI folder browser and delete the culprit, pending.xml. Then restart the computer, remove the CD and boot straight into your Windows Vista.

It is just as easy as that, I have done it before and if you would like to know more about the pending.xml file you can Google it.

If you are confused about anything, feel free to comment.