Windows 7 Nightmare

I've been trying on and off all week to install Windows 7 on my desktop and it has been a nightmare
I have a downloaded copy of Windows 7 that I purchased through their $30 promotion for college students.

First, the exe I get through their download manager wont extract the install files on my desktop running XP, it just gives me an "Unknown Error"

So I downloaded it onto my laptop, ran it, it created the "ExpandedSetup" folder. I wanted to repartition my hard drive before installing a clean copy of Windows 7, so I created a boot disc from the folder, following all necessary procedures to make the boot disc. But, then it turns out my mother board isn't capable of booting from a DVD. Or at least that's the conclusion I came to after a bit of research and a lot of failed attempts at getting it to work.

So, then I was stuck with a useless repartitioned hard drive and no way to boot Windows 7 from the disc. I then tried running the setup file through BartPE off of my external HD, but BartPE isn't capable of running the install file.

So then I decided to just reload Windows XP onto my hard drive and just install it from my desktop. Well, when I attempt to do that, it gets to copying windows files, gets to 4% then jumps to 100% and gives me the error message, "Windows cannot copy files required for installation. The files may be corrupt or missing. Make sure all files required for installation are available, and restart the installation. Error code: 0x80070241"

So I've tried multiple times to put fresh newly downloaded files on it and still get the same error message. I tried downloading it directly onto my desktop then extracting it but I get the "Unknown Error" message every time I try.

I'm not really sure what the problem is, I don't really have any solutions left to try. Any ideas?

I'm using (in case it's relevant):
Gigabyte i-DNA series motherboard w/ Nvidia nForce 4 SLI Intel Edition Chipset
Pentium D 3GHZ dual core processor

Edit: I also tried booting from my external HD and it just never boots. I didn't reformat my external HD prior if that would have made it not work.

Last edited:
I don't want to sound alarming but the indications of a lot of what you wrote point to either a virus or a bad hard drive.

If the bios boot priority LISTS the option to use DVD then as far as I know it SHOULD boot to DVD. I don't think the bios lists what it doesn't see.

I suggest you get the full version from the Microsoft links in my latest blog and delete ei.cfg from the iso. .. so your update key will work. Then burn it to cd at 4 x ... faster causes read problems. It could be possible that the bootable disk you made from the download files has an error.

Next, get a new hard drive.. They are selling for under $50.

Next ... clear the cmos, and try to get it to boot to the dvd.. If it won't then try to borrow a different dvd.

Last option.. try to connect your hard drive to your laptop and install but do not put in a keycode. Move the hard drive and try to get the driver situation straightened out because the laptop will have different devices than the desktop. If you can get it going then put in your key and activate it.

I just burned a fresh DVD, put it in my disc tray and ran it from Windows XP and did the install that way and its working lol, it finished copying. oh computers :(

Well it had the error again during the installation process this time :( it just undid it's changes and is booting xp again, sigh

I just burned a fresh DVD, put it in my disc tray and ran it from Windows XP and did the install that way and its working lol, it finished copying. oh computers :(


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
You can't do an in-upgrade from XP to Windows 7. You can use an upgrade version, and do a Custom(clean) install.

You may want to start over and give your exact condition right now. From what I can tell, you have an XP install and are attempting Custom install to Windows 7----?

If you have a Windows\Panther directory, see if you have a setupact.log and post the last 10-15 lines of that.

It seems to matter at what speed you burn it.

Recommended speed is x4 - higher is fatal (had same problem)

This website is not affiliated, owned, or endorsed by Microsoft Corporation. It is a member of the Microsoft Partner Program.