Installing Windows 2008 on an IBM xSeries 335 (or how to kill a few days trying to load Win2k8 on old hardware)

***** UPDATE 11.16.09 – I added links to my site from seems to be down

I spent some of last week and this week finally installing a copy of Windows 2008 on a decommissioned IBM xSeries 335 server from work in my home network. I thought I would share a couple of the issues I came across, but was able to get by with the help of a couple of people who ran into the same issues as me.

The first stumbling block I ran into was the fact that these servers (which are about 4-5 years old) do not come with a DVD drive. The reality is that until last year, our servers at work (Dells and HPs) only came with CDROM drives. So I was a little surprised that Microsoft decided to send out DVD only versions (actually what I downloaded from our Volume Licensing) of the OS. I can see this making things difficult for some people. Fortunately there are a couple of ways around this. One is to boot off of a USB device (DVD or a USB Thumb drive). If you want to try a USB thumb drive, check out this URL for instruction on how to make it bootable from Unfortunate for me, the IBM xSeries 335 server that I have does not allow booting off of USB. My second option was to load via a network share. Here are the instruction for that from geekEleet. This worked great, but I ran into my second issue after the install, not during which made my life a little easier if I had known then what I know now, which takes us to the second problem I had…

After the server would reboot after the initial install, it would just show the status bar screen for Windows 2008. And sit there. And sit there. Occasionally access the drive. Then do nothing. I let it do this for about a hour, then powered it off. I figured there had to be something messed up, but what?! I assumed all of my drivers where fine because it saw all of the drive partition, the network card, and the video. I had no red flags during the install saying anything was incompatible or out of the norm. So I did a Google on the problem I was getting and couldn’t really find anything that was too useful. So I thought I would reboot the server one more time and see if I could get it to boot in trusty Safe Mode. Well, that finally gave me something to go with. It would boot and just hang at the “Loading crcdisk.sys” message. That helped me out because I could now do a more specific Google search. I found a bunch of articles that pertained to Vista and crcdisk.sys errors, but then I eventually came up with this article, again from geekEleet. The question I saw crop up a couple times was what driver should people be loading. I found out that I needed the “LSI Logic PCI SCSI/FC MPI Miniport driver v1.25.10 for Microsoft Windows Server 2003 – Servers” from IBM’s website. After I followed the instruction from geekEleet and used the driver from IBM, I was in business. Also, I loaded the driver from my USB thumb drive. That was really nice, I don’t have any spare floppy drives (or disks) readily available and I didn’t want to waste another CD just to load one driver. The Windows 2008 install allows you to load from CD/DVD, mapped network drives, or from a USB device. Real nice!

I hope if anybody stumbles upon the same problems as I (and others), that this will help point you in the right direction. Now I can start working on the Windows 2008 server and give it a spin.

109 thoughts on “Installing Windows 2008 on an IBM xSeries 335 (or how to kill a few days trying to load Win2k8 on old hardware)”

  1. Holy Shit! Thanks. After two days of trying i got my 235 8671-8AX to Run with windows server 2008. but i will try next 2008 R2. Thx!!

  2. Hi People, for those who have had the error to load the NTFS driver, I comment my success story.

    My scenario:
    xSeries 335 Model: 8676, CD KO (do not read anything)

    My attempts:
    Installing with external USB DVD player without drivers … progress bar “Microsoft Corporation”looping -> FAIL
    With Hiren’s Boot 15.2 and WinNTSetup also located within Hiren’s, including the driver LSI on “Add Drivers” (expands installation files on your hard drive)… progress bar “Microsoft Corporation”looping -> FAIL
    UpdateExpress installing 4.05, then with external USB DVD with drivers … NTFS error -> FAIL

    Reading your posts, I tried with the server 2008 drivers, delete partition, create, format, load new driver LSI and 1.25 .. OK! Click “Next” and everything is perfect 😀

    So was my CHECKLIST:

    – External USB DVD (USB connected to the rear)
    – UpdateExpress 4.05a (2 CD, but just need the first)Download from: UpdateExpress 4.05a
    – LSI SCSI driver v1.25.10 Download from: LSI Logic PCI SCSI/FC MPI Miniport driver v1.25.10 for Microsoft Windows Server 2003 – Servers (Running setup and choose the option of extracting to hard drive)


    1) Put the CD1 UpdateExpress 4.05, press “a” x 2 times when asking, and let go upgrading, restart any time to upgrade hardware components. The components have been updated in my case were: System Diagnostics, Integrated Systems Management and onboard Broadcom NIC Firmware.
    2) Install Windows Server 2008 on external DVD USB. I had gotten the keyboard and mouse in both frontal USB ports.
    3) When we arrived at the point where it says “Where Do You Want to install Windows?” Don’t load any driver for the moment, delete partition, create partition, format.
    4) Remove a USB peripheral to be free and insert a pendrive with LSI driver (in my case, I removed the keyboard) If all goes well you will see the button “Next” available!
    5) Congratulations, you have the brand new Windows Server 2008 ;D

    Thanks for making possible new operating systems run on older hardware!!!

  3. Hi,
    First, sorry for my english, I’m french
    I have 2 IBM X235 (8671-2ax) with raid controler LSI 1030.
    I used a 40Go pata hard drive to install windows 2008, helped by the post of Josh Helm (see up, thanks a lot) but I used Easus Partition Master ( ) to clone the disk.
    After I made a ” chkdsk /f /r ” to control the scsi raid disk
    Now Windows works fine on the 2 servers

  4. I have ibm server x3100 m4 the problem i facing is that when i install windows server 2003 32bit it installed but when i installed win sever 2008 its showing instalaton screen contineously its showing 0% and not moving further for that i did update firmware, change another hdd disk, do the installation thrrough another cd/dvd drive change media also……..

  5. I just bought my 335, and im in love. Such old stuff work so great, i didnt get any of your troubles tho. Just posting to show my appreciation for people like you =) Btw i payed about 50$ 2 gig ram,2 cpu, 2 U320 @ 74gig. Runs like a charm. Best regards, Phil

  6. Thanks so much! Had a eServer x345 and thought it had to be driver but still couldnt get it to work. Much appreciated with the driver link!

  7. I got an IBM xSeries 345, which came with a CD-ROM only, as well. Do you guys know if I can swap the CD with a standard Laptop DVD Drive and voila? Will that work?

    1. I would be more worried about the server sending to much power to the drive and nuking it. If you have a drive you are not worried about losing, I would go ahead and give it a shot. I know on older servers I supported (think white box servers), and I am talking years ago, we were able in the past to make that work.

  8. I visited several times in the last three years.. every time to -again- read exactly how. And every time I was thinking about leaving a ‘thank you note’.
    and.. every time it didn’t come to that.. but now..
    Thank you very much for the info and help provided!
    It always goes wrong a few times (don’t ask me why or how; have no clue) (and that’s also the reason for re-checking if I have the right driver..) but normally in the end I win 😉 . WE win.. thx from Holland!

    1. And again fighting with NTFS error.. sigh!
      Delete, format with old, and load new drivers.. proceed.. ntfs error..
      anyway, will cost me a few times; still haven’t found out why it in the end WILL work.. If I find out, I will post..

      1. Ok; re-invented my wheel again;
        Problem was the correct NTFS formatting. After deleting volumes and formatting with Windows 2008 drivers in the setup menu (1), and THEN loading the LSI drivers (2) doesn’t work. How to format so that the installation accepts the created volume to be NTFS?
        Solution: at the end of “(1)” don’t load the LSI drivers but start the install using the Windows drivers; when all files are “copied”, dsirupt the install. You will return to in initial install menu. Start ‘installing’ again, dont format anything but no load the LSi driver (step ‘(2)’) and voila! No NTFS errors any more and a smooth install. 🙂

  9. …but i’ve complete this “quest” just after upgrade 2003 to 2008. Driver load just not worked. I install LSI driver on 2003, reboot, and start upgrading 2003 to 2008 with support internet updates.

  10. Finally after a week of f-ing with it I got 2008 to install on a x335 8676.

    My first problem was the qlogic FC card. Removed the card and got past that error. Next and most painful was like every other post on here, that damn LSI logic controller that gives everyone a ton of grief. Also like other I too tried to load the driver from USB and got disk errors and 0MB free space and all that BS.

    First I updated the firmware on all hardware in the server. After many failed attempts at trying different solutions, I finally got around it by installing server 2003 on the system, updating the LSI driver to the one on the CD image located here:

    I then put the contents of the server 2008 DVD in a share on a file server and ran the installer on the x335 from that share. I chose clean install (not upgrade) and when the drive partition portion came up, I loaded the driver mentioned above from my USB flash drive. I then clicked next and let 2008 install. After install was complete, I went in and deleted the windows.old folder to get rid of the 2003 install and leave just the 2008 install. Since then it has actually booted up into server 2008 enterprise edition, activated, and now its downloading updates as I type this!

    Only took me 3 days of F’ing with it till I finally found a method that worked…and believe me I tried almost every method listed here with exception to installing on a non scsi drive and cloning…I was saving that as an absolute last resort.

    Thank you all for your responces as it helped me put all of the pieces together to find a resolution that actually works!!!

    Hope this helps others save a LOT of time and get it to work the first time around rather than spending hours getting pissed off at the server and wanting to use it for target practice…lol (the thought did cross my mind)

  11. I got this to work finally after trying for over a week.

    I did it by installing 2008 to an IDE drive, and loading the symmpi.inf SCSI driver during installation, even though I’m not using SCSI as the OS drive.

    I’ll use the SCSI drive for 2003.

    Don’t give up!

  12. This is my third comment. This issue is certainly with the hard drive itself. Having installed successfully, messed the setup up, and attempting a *clean* reinstall I got the “drive is formatted for NTFS” error and 0 free space. I was virtually at give-up stage, and then tried a clean hard drive that hadn’t been used in the machine before, this one installed perfectly (using the instructions listed below -= partition and format using W2008 drivers, then load driver, and continue). Out of interest I then removed that drive and tried one of the original drives, and that continues to give the 0 free space error. I can’t figure out why this is!

  13. I followed the instructions and steps as described in the article and i wasn’t booting up, until i discovered you have to deactivate the LSI raid controller if you had it on in the bios. Then worked like a charm.

  14. You you should make changes to the webpage subject title Installing Windows 2008 on an IBM xSeries 335 | to something more catching for your content you write. I loved the post nevertheless.

  15. I just wanted to leave my own comment here. I came here looking for some solutions to install Server 2008 on an IBM x335 as well. I ran into the same issues everyone else did; can’t format the partitions once the driver is loaded, etc. I tried several of the things listed here; updated firmware, used IBM UpdateXpress, broke RAID, recreated RAID, all sorts of things. Nothing worked. As a last resort, I decided to try booting to the 2003 Server disc, loading the LSI driver, formatting the drives from the 2003 setup, then rebooting and booting to the Server 2008 setup. I loaded the LSI drivers but kept the drive formatting the way it was, and Viola! Everything finally worked! Just thought I would share what worked for me; I spent 3 days beating my head against this until I found the solution.

  16. I also acquired several of these servers and had a hell of a time getting WS2008 Enterprise running on them — but it /is/ running now on my systems, and from the internal Planar SCSI RAID controller (I wasn’t interested in any solution that didn’t use these controllers), so I figured I’d share my method in case it helps someone else…

    While the methods posted here already seemed to work for some, they did not work for me. I can only assume there are different versions of the 8676 server or some difference in configuration that would allow the other methods to work for some but not others. No matter what I tried, I could either install with the driver from the Windows CD and it would eventually hang during boot, or use a different driver (F6) and it would no longer be able to access the drives (0 space free, errors partitioning/formatting, etc). I tried many different versions of the SCSI driver with no luck. I also tried to use the command-line driver management tool “devcon” from the recovery console to change out the driver after the initial install but was unable to get the system functional. I almost gave up (I /was/ able to install WS2003 Enterprise without any issues at all), but I wasn’t ready to admit defeat just yet.

    My method involved connecting an IDE drive (temporarily) to the internal IDE bus (the primary IDE channel is unused in these servers with the SCSI RAID option). Here’s the exact steps:

    – Update the various firmwares of the server with the IBM ServerGuide software version 7.4 ( You cannot use a newer version as IBM dropped support for the x335 after that.

    – Connect an IDE hard drive to the internal IDE bus (located behind the SCSI drive trays on the server’s mainboard). (You’ll probably get BIOS warning about configuration changes)

    – Disable the Planar SCSI completely in the BIOS setup

    – Enable the IDE primary channel in the BIOS setup — if needed

    – Install WS2008 onto the IDE drive (should install without issues). If your IDE drive is larger than your SCSI drives, make the Windows partition on the IDE driver smaller than the SCSI drive. (Fe if you have 36GB SCSI drives and a 120GB IDE drive, make an ~30GB partition on the IDE drive an install Windows there).

    – Download and unpack the version of the LSI driver. This is the version that WS2003 uses by default (and after any updates), and this is the /only/ version I could get to work with WS2008 on my system. Every other version would hang at boot. Of course, this version was difficult to find, but I managed to find an update from HP for an old Compaq Proliant that used the same controller. The update package is “cp005207” and available here:

    – Once windows is installed, re-enable the Planar SCSI in the BIOS. You /may/ want to pop out the SCSI drives depending on what’s on them (you want to boot from the IDE drive again)

    – Boot and Windows should see the new SCSI controller and attempt to install it. It should either ask for a driver, or it’ll install the default driver and you have to change it by:
    – Go to the Device Manager, right-click on the LSI controller, choose “Update driver”
    – Click “Browse my computer…”
    – Click “Let me pick from a list…”
    – Choose “Have Disk” (this is important as this will allow you to install an older driver than what Windows has)
    – Point it at the directory you unpacked the 1.10 driver to
    – Click “Ok”
    – Click “Next”

    – Reboot once again with the SCSI drives installed (be sure you still boot off the IDE drive)

    – You should see your drives in the Disk Manager about be able to partition/format them.

    At this point you have a usable system that supports the internal SCSI drives, unfortunately the OS is on the IDE drive.

    – I now used the free Linux-based bootable CD PartEd Magic ( to image the IDE disk directly to the SCSI disk. I used the CloneZilla tool (included on the PartEd Magic CD) to perform the device-to-device image. You can use whatever imaging tool you prefer.

    – Shutdown system, disconnect IDE drive (You’ll probably get BIOS warning about configuration changes)

    – Set BIOS to boot from the internal SCSI if it’s not set that way already.

    – Windows should boot from the SCSI disk. The partition on the SCSI disk will be the same size as the one you created on the IDE disk so you’ll probably want to “extend” the partition on the SCSI disk in Window’s Disk Manager once you’re booted to use the entire disk (or partition it as you see fit).

    I know it’s a kind of round-about-way to get the thing installed/booted but this was the last resort method that actually worked for me. Don’t be tempted to “upgrade” the SCSI driver to a newer version after this — it will fail to boot!

    1. I have a 8670, of these steps the only one I didn’t follow was using the HP driver. Ws2008 on the ide went ahead and pulled something from Microsoft’s site (iSCSI Initiator or something). I went to update the driver and it claimed the one it downloaded was better. When I went to boot to the SCSI drive, I did get an error – disk failure or reset failed. The SCSI drive is new so it shouldn’t be failure? Any advice/insight would be really helpful!

  17. Ok, well I wished for luck and here is where I am at. I had three of the x335. I took one and pulled the memory so that I could have a total of 4 gig memory for the other two each. I then downloaded IBM’s server setup and installation cd as well as the IBM serveRAID cd. I disabled the onboard planar scsi since both servers have the serveRAID 6m scsi controllers in pci slot 1. I ran the setup and installation cd and choose to setup for other OS. After that I then installed Windows 2008 Enterprise on one system and 7 ultimate on the other both loading driver from the serveRAID setup disk. Both installed and restarted with no problems (if you do not disable the onboard planar scsi your os will not boot unless your using the onboard scsi controller, will hang at crcdisk since it sees the controller but no drives). Once started the only other issue is a missing driver, use the setup and installation disk and look for asf.inf to load the missing driver. Oh I also had to swap out the CD drives with DVD drives I took out of a couple spare laptops to be able to install the OS since both where on DVD.

  18. I’ve tried several ways to do this with no success. Trying to install Server 2008 standard 32-bit on a xSeries 345. It hangs right before the language selection screen. I see the silver background and that’s it. I’ve run UpdateXpress and it updated some things, BIOS is 1.21. I can’t think of anything else to try.

    Also, the links to geekeleet aren’t working again. I assume you moved them back from your site since it’s trying to hit the blog at geekeleet.


  19. Wish me luck.

    I have 3 of these 335. I have the KVM breakout cable and the daisy chain cables to connect them together. They have the upgraded serveraid 6M raid controller with 2 146g 10k ultra320 hard drives on each. One has the remote supervisor II adapter.

  20. Interestingly/annoyingly I had a working 335 with W2008, but installed some software that then broke it. So I thought I’d start over – I wasn’t that hard to get it installed first time round… But no, now I cannot install it. I am using all the drivers, exactly as I did before, but now when I load the SCSI drivers (after partitioning and formatting under W2008’s legacy drivers) I get 0 free space, and it says it cannot install as it is not a NTFS partition. It is infuriating! I only have a single HD installed and have switched off RAID on the card (LSI menu, F2, Raid Off). Now I don’t know what to do

  21. Hi Everybody,

    i had the same problem with a ibm x345, and i must say big very big thx @ all.
    My way is: unplug all Harddrive start the server deactivate the Raidcontroller in the LSI Controller menu, power off the Server plug the Harddrive´s in an boot with the Serverguide format all Harddrive´s and take the option create for other OS.
    Then start the 2k8, load the driver SYMMPI.SYS V1.25.10 and it works.
    Shawn very nice blog thank you and all people her.
    big thx

    1. Hey Swiss:

      Can you tell me where did you get the Serverguide CD and the SYMMPI.SYS V1.25.10
      Got the same problem trying to install win 2008 server stardard in a IBM x345 series.

      Thank you in advance.

  22. Marcus is correct. Download and make ISO of Updatexpress. Boot from it and alllow it to update the machine. Download the LSI drivers onto USB stick. Then make partition AND format it using the WINDOWS driver. Once that is done, then load the LSI driver from USB, and continue on. Mine installed fine

  23. The solution is in fact as written by themadmax earlier.
    Create and format a new partition with the Windows installation GUI, once you’ve done this, before continuing onward, select “Load Driver” and choose the LSI driver (compatible only) for 1020/1030. The driver is a WinDDK version, symmpi.sys, I suggest all who failed try this solution if they want to achieve success with the x335 and variants.

    Good luck and best wishes 🙂

    1. I forgot to stipulate in my previous post that the driver in question resides on the ServerGuide Disk in the link. You must download and burn the ISO. I’m happy to keep visiting back if people have issues, although use your head and follow the instructions I’ve provided and you shouldn’t have an issue.

      Kin regards.

  24. Hello all

    I have the same problem but i added the driver in the windows setup
    and my machine won’t coming up..

    Thanks for help

  25. Hi all

    I will install w2k8 standard but after some reboots windows will hang at the Windows bar.
    I add the driver in the installtion…
    have someone an idea?
    My Machine Type is 8676 x335

    Thanks for help…

  26. I needed the exact solution for which this article is entitled (Installing Windows 2008 on an IBM eSeries x335) — and this revised article (with the link to the IBM drivers) was exactly the answer I needed. It works. Thank you!

  27. Hi,

    I am trying to install XP I have an IBM eserver xseries x335, however, when I try to use the xp scsi drivers, via floppy, I get this error, (also happens wehn i slipstream the drivers)

    win2K_Xp\driver\Pro\i_v\nfrd960.sys caused an unexpected error (18) at line 2113 in d:\xpsprtm\base\boot\setup\oemdisk.c

    Not sure why I would be getting that.. the driver is from the IBM site, xp driver for the SCSI driver, Any suggestions, I saw Kelly got it working, so I’m unsure as to why I’m getting this problem. Did she perhaps not raid her drives, although i’m assuming thats not the reason for this error though.

    Any help would be great.

  28. Okay, Windows Web Server 2008 x64 is up and running. I installed from that Windows 2003 build, i.e. ran setup.exe from Windows, and it installed fresh, not an upgrade, because it was Web edition (and 2003 was Standard).

    I supplied the LSI Logic driver from the IBM site at the first opportunity (before first restart, while still in 2003), as mentioned on this site or the one that links to it.

    I’m knackered.

  29. I have just bought an old eServer 326m from eBay, twin dual 2.6Ghz, nice, except that it’s made by IBM – I had a lapse and forgot how this company has always produced garbage.

    So with the SCSI controller completely disabled it will install 2008 to a SATA drive but gives “Windows could not update the computer’s boot configuration. Installation cannot proceed.” after expanding files. After a repair, it boots into Windows but setup gives the same error after a while.

    Will put the server on eBay and host my site with Hetzner, I just can’t understand how a PC can be made so complicated. No wonder Google use desktops in server cases. Server industry needs bulldozing.

    By-the-way, LSI driver never worked. Says no new hardware was detected after the green bar does its thing.

    1. I seem to have knock off all the other comments. Which were more useful than mine. Sorry about that.

      By using a CD to install Windows 2003 Server, I have got somewhere. Had to run just the SSD drive, but its on and it boots in 18 seconds, after BIOS, admitted.

      I then had a problem where it hung after POST as it tries to read the boot sectors, if I connected the other drive. Odd.

      Finally figured out the right Update Xpress CD to run (4.05 CD1) in Windows and boot from DOS (chose to upgrade the ISMP whatever it is, which defaulted not to update for some reason), and now I can attach the other HDD. Hope this good behaviour ‘sticks’.

      Painful work. Will try upgrading to 2008 Server soon.

  30. Hi Guys M new to this Useful Forum… m Serching for Installation Of RHEL 5.0 Server For Same System X 3650 Of IBM . I have Server DVD and System have Combo Drive. But the problem is I cant boot up the system with RHEL Server OS DVD. How can I boot my system…as I setup the System Bios to boot First widh DVD . But It Cant….
    Please Guys If any one having Solution for this Problem.

    1. Himanshu, not sure what that could be. I would try a couple of things. First see if you can boot anything else with that particular DVD of RHEL you have, maybe you have a faulty DVD. Second, see if you can boot anything else on your IBM server (a different OS boot, try downloading a different Linux distribution maybe). You could also try booting it from a USB thumb drive (if your BIOS allows that). Good luck!

  31. Hey Shawn,

    We already did all of that to no avail. Since the sync (which finished successfully) we booted windows 2008 and put the driver on a floppy disk. It found the driver, it would start the installation and then throw out an error during installation, no file install.wim

    1. Hmmm, that is strange. Can you try installing the driver from a different medium like USB thumb drive? I know grasping at straws, but not sure what else that error could be. I did a google on the error you are receiving and most of the articles were stating how somewhere a file is corrupt.

  32. Shawn I and my colleagues are battling with the same problem, except we are trying to install windows 2008 on a x235. The thing is the raid controller was faulty so we took it out, and now its on the LSI Logic one. We downloaded a lot of updates and even used the expressupdate cd someone on this page mentioned still nothing. We downloaded and updated the latest LSI logic update on the IBM page. We are currently trying to create an array but the secondary disk says out of sync. I read here that it can take up to 72 hours to sync them so we are going to try to leave it for a couple of hours and see if it will sync. We installed windows 2003 server ok, but when we try to install the 2008 version it just never finishes. We actually left the installation running for 24 hours and it never moved from 75% completed. If you, or anyone, have any suggestions or any links to some new/old drivers that might work I would really appreciate it

  33. Hi Shawn,

    I have two of these servers with two processors and 4 GB of RAM. Before I run into trouble installing Windows on them, I would like to hear from you what is your feedback on performance. Have you been able to run anything that requires horsepower on these boxes? Would you please elaborate on some of your experiences performance-wise?


    1. Robson, I ran my server with 2 procs and 4GB RAM in basically a test lab. Performance wise it seemed to be able to handle a couple of roles fine (like a DC and some web services). The server that I originally did this install on isn’t around any more unfortunately, I had to retire it in order to get my newer Dell server for my VMware lab.

  34. Thanks Shawn for putting this information up. And Marus, Post #35. Really helped, in the end I had to follow all the steps to get 2 x335’s up and running with w2k8. There always seems to be someone in charge that wants to use very old equipment. And those of us that have to make it work… Thanks again.

  35. GeekEleet is down. Do you have any other links to the article you referenced?

    I was able to get XP installed from CD but I can’t find drivers for the Braodcom 5701 nik cards – they only seem to support 5702 and above anymore. So while I do have an OS I can’t get to the network to upgrade it to Server 2008 like I planned. I was going to try your solution but ran into the dead link.


  36. @Christophe PASQUET

    Sounds like that it uses the default Windows 2008 driver which causes the boot problem. When it complains about the signature, does it give you an option to use it anyways? It could also be possible that the driver is not compatible with that model of the IBM. You might need to do some more investigating on IBM’s site to is the the adapter is the same make/model. I know that has thrown me with the laptops before, so I imagine the same goes with the servers.

    Did you try to do the install off a network share. Sometimes a clean install will get you around those problems.

  37. Ok thanks for the reply.
    But no way to get it to boot correctly.
    I have replaced the faulty CD-ROM drive by a brand new DVD ROM Drive.
    Funny situation as it boots now directly from the windows 2008 x64 Bit version but refuses to boot from the X86 DVD !!! I installed from the existing OS installed on the machine (Win 2000) and I am now stuck with a CRCDRIVE.SYS problem, identified when running in safe mode as it refuses to boot at the end of the install.
    At install time it refused to load the drivers I got from your link on the IBM site. It complained about a 32/64 bit signature, though it is the 32 Bit driver…
    Don’t know what to do at present.? Any advice?

  38. @Christophe PASQUET

    Hi Christophe,

    I couldn’t find a way to have that model boot from USB unfortunately. During experimentation though, I was able to plug in an IDE DVD drive (although it looked very ugly). After loading the OS, I put it all back to normal. Not a great solution, but one that worked in a pinch.

    Cheers, Shawn

  39. Hi there I have also the same server eSeries 335 Model 8676 -41X.
    I have flashed the server with the latest BIOS from IBM website V1.15
    I have a simple problem : the CD-ROM in the server is faulty. I have tried to boot-up from an attached USB – DVD Drive but not to avail…

    Did not find an option in Startup option of the BIOS dedicated to USB boot.
    Any ideas on how to help resolve that basic step?
    In advance thank you for your help

  40. Hi,
    I installed Win 2008 on a x335 using your instruction and all was ok. But on the second machine (x335 with the same machine type ) it doesn’t work and I was trying for about 2 days all suggestions in this thread.
    As a final solution (if any of above doesn’t work – as in my case) you can install windows server 2003 using “S” to install additional LSI driver (which is suggested in this thread) and then you can update to windows server 2008. This worked for me without problems.

  41. Hi Marcus,

    Glad I was able to help out and thanks for your comments! It is pretty cool that this article is still being helpful for people, even a year after I wrote it. Enjoy working with Windows 2008 :).

    Cheers, Shawn

  42. Hi Shawn, you advise on setting up win2008 srv on a x335 machine, saved me years of headcrushing-will-not-come-to-an-end installation. although there where little probs I got it running now.Helping other folks I just want to state that:
    First update your machine ( x335 8676 ) with the Update CD 4.05a , prepare a USB Stick or someting with the mentioned driver for the LSI (LSI Adapter, ultra 320 SCSI 200 series w/1020/1030) but now don t even think of installing that one.
    Now take a look at your raid controllers setup prog. and erase and setup an new raid. ( if you got more than one drives ) thereafter urgently wait until your raid is synchronized. Up on the size of your drives that ca take from 2 -72 hours. Thereafter install win 2008 srv freshly on your machine. When win asks for the drive to be installed on, choose the one you whant to, format it with the ORIGINAL WINDOWS drivers. When ready, before klicking next, choose installing own driver, now use the prepared driver on USB thereafter klick next and go usualy further through the rest of the installation process.
    Thereafter all ist fine and your machine loves to run on win 2008 srv.

    ( could be possible, that machine tells you after loggin in that some ethernetadapters are without driver. Just try to find the drivers for win 2003 srv. they shoud work out )
    Cheers and a lot of greatfull thanks again to shwan and all of you!

  43. John, glad the article helped you. The only thing I can think of at the moment for your 64 bit error is that you are trying to install a 64 bit version of Windows 2008 on a 32 bit processor.

  44. Thank you very much for this article, I’ve been able to get up through the point of actually starting the installation on some of my x335s.

    Unfortunately, I’m getting hammered prior to installation “Attempting to load a 64-bit application, however this CPU is not compatible with 64-bit mode.”

    This happened on every x335 I tried to install on. How did you guys get past that error?

  45. Thanks for posting this information I have a couple of x335s to load next week so I am hoping I can get 2008 to run on them. Anyway in the meantime I have a x235 that I have the same problem with ….I tried all the suggestions and it failed everytime. The problem I had is that when I load the drivers it tells me that it can’t install the operating system on a non NTFS drive when I go to reformat the drive it pulls an error. I tried several work arounds for this but always ended up stumped!Then I remembered I had a IBM Server Raid 5i card in stock so I installed it, downloaded the boot disc v7.12 from IBM , confiqured the drives, booted up and successfully loaded 2008 Yay!!!! So if you can’t get it done on a x235 with the LSI onboard controllers find a IBM Server Raid 5i card for the fix 🙂

  46. Just curious, have you tried booting with something like BartPE. You will probably have to add the drivers to it so it will recognize the drive, but it has some tools on it that may wipe/partition the drives. Also you could give UBCD a shot as well, it is Linux based so that may give you some more flexibility.

  47. To answer my question from the last post…I used parted magic to repartition my drive that was previously running linux so I could install windows XP. I also had to re-position my drive to be the primary drive. Windows will not install on the secondary drive.

  48. Thank you shawn for you response and suggestion. While I was looking for for the windows 2003 drivers I came across the driver for windows 2000/XP for the X335 on the ibm website..such a relief. I was able to load the driver during the install and it recognized the drives. The only problem now is that it’s giving me an error that I don’t have a XP-compatiable partition. I tried to set an empty partition and tried NTFS and Fat 32 w/ the fdisk utility but it still gives me the same error. Also, it doesn’t give me an option to format the drive during the XP install like I thought it usually does.

    Maybe you or someone else have seen this problem?

    Thank you!

  49. You might want to try the Windows 2003 drivers. It is a long shot, but they may work. I haven’t ever really tried using 2003 drivers on a XP install, but have the other way around successfully. Since the x335 is a server class machine, it might be an uphill battle. Although I was able to run Win XP/Vista on a Dell PowerEdge SC420 for the longest time.

  50. Hello,
    Has anyone successfully installed Windows XP on an IBM X335 using Server Guide Setup and Installation CD 7.4? When I tried to boot off the CD it gave me an error “No FAT32 volume found” and “No NTFS volume found”. There was previously Linux installed on that drive.

    I didn’t see any drivers for the scsi/raid Lsi device for this machine on the IBM site.

    I really would appreciate any help you can provide.

    Thank you in advance.

  51. @Damon
    I’ve just tried this for the sixth time and it does the same thing every time – that is it fails. I even tried the ServerGuide disk as suggested above but that doesn’t support Windows 20008 – it just refuses to install it so I don’t know what was suposed to be done there. I’m now going to dump the useless IBM server and see if I can find some old HP ones. I’ve already installed it on an HP server which is a little older than the X335 and it was a straight install that just worked first time with no problems. Simple lesson don’t buy IBM, buy HP instead.

  52. I had the same trouble with a x235 ( 8671-21x, with 5i controller ). Downloaded the driver set above (LSI Logic PCI SCSI/FC MPI Miniport driver v1.25.10 for Microsoft Windows Server 2003 – Servers).

    As a pre-requisite, I’d updated the system with updatexpress 4.06CD1.

    When setup dispayed the disk layout, I inserted the floppy with the drivers on and let the system choose the driver ( LSI Adapter, ultra 320 SCSI 200 series w/1020/1030….).

    The first reboot after the install phase had finished took an age to complete ( 10 mins or so ). Server rebooted fine and I’ve had no problems since. Thaks for the article, this saved me a lot of time….hope this helps too.

    1. Did you boot into server 2008 installation with the DVD? If so how did you do it? I can’t find out how to boot from the DVD for the life of me! Thank you!

      1. Twan, I was only able to ever to get it to boot from a DVD by opening the case and plugging in an external DVD drive (disabled the CD drive). Not the best solution, but seemed to work. I didn’t do an OS load from it, my drive at the time kept getting errors. It was just easier to do a network install of Windows 2008.

  53. Ya, I think Im close to gettting it working here…Just need to narrow down the right driver for the x235,wish someone elsee was trying to get 2008 running on there x235 and could tell me what to try…lol

  54. @son

    Wow, sounds like you are really close. I think now it is just a matter of finding the correct driver for the SCSI/RAID device. I know some people had to try a couple different ones (from the IBM site).

  55. Well I just tryed it again and still a no-go! Did the safe mode and found out that yes I get the same as you had “Loading crcdisk.sys” hangs there….tryed the driver you did…and wont work…will get trying here

  56. @son

    Did you also make sure you have the latest BIOS/Firmware updates on the server. I noticed a few on IBMs site that have 2008 dates on them, so they might help with the install.

  57. I havent had time to work on it more….I will try looking around more and see what I can find..would be nice if I could get the x235 running with server 2008…

  58. Son,

    Sounds like you might have a hardware issue going on. Did you check out IBMs site and see if you are able to get at least a Windows Server 2003 driver for your RAID controller? From what I have noticed with the older IBMs (ones I have worked on), it will let you sometimes install Server 2008, but still fail during or after install. Telling it to use a different driver has worked for me and it looks like a couple other people that have tried it as well. Hope that helps.

  59. Ive been trying to install 2008 on a x235 and im having the same problems,..I can get it to install but it hangs at “completing Installation” 🙁

  60. Hi all!

    I have a bunch of 8676-41X on which I have had the problems mentioned above!

    I do not know it its just unstable to install 2008 with the LSI 1020/1030 built in raid, but I have realized there is no sure way to make it work right way unless having a lot of luck!

    What I do have tried that seems to work every time(for me, yet!) is to only set up one partition and then load the drivers on an (old) 7.4 “Setup and install” CD from IBM.
    Link as follows:

    I do hope this will help some of you 🙂

  61. Allright, here is what I did, and its really cose to the very first time… but you can give it a try- Make sure you have the updatexpress done allready, MPT bios should be 5.04.07 on controller init, Create a new raid with the new bios. Boot to 2008 cd, should be NO partition on it. Using default drivers I created a 30 gig partition, then created a 39 gig partition, then formatted the 30 gig part, then formatted the 39 gig part. Then hit load drivers, they loaded and after loading it still showed 30 gigs of available space on the first paritition… This worked after about the THIRD time creating the partitions and having it fail, each time I deleted the raid and re-created it… So I’m not sure why the partitions showed space available as 0.0 the first couple of times… but keep trying, as I mentioned above. Once it loads the new drivers and shows your space as being available, it will install to it.

  62. I just started working on my second x335 server, doing everything exactly like I did the first time, same “non-ntfs” issue I mentioned above… I tried just loading the new drivers as well without creating and formatting with the default drivers and it will not allow to create a parition on the un0used space. Begginign to wonder if it has something to do with the drive being locked for raid synching or something… but why would the default drivers allow partition creation and formatting… will keep trying and let you know what I find out.

  63. Hi Luis, sounds like your seeing the same thing that I did initially. Try goign into your raid controller and deleting the raid first, then recreate the raid, then boot to your 2008 install cd, creat and format your patitions using the default driver (dont load the new one yet) Once you created and formatted, then choose to load the new drivers and it should not give you the issue with the “not ntfs”. Also, make sure your using the exact driver linked to in the above posts…. the LSI ones will not work.

  64. Hello,

    I created the partitions and formated them with the ?default? windows 2008 drivers. Then before hitting next I loaded the new drivers. And say the partition was not formatted as ntfs?.

    How I format or pass the next step?

  65. Sounds like you got it working, glad the drivers worked for you! I made sure to download a backup copy before IBM (or whoever) decides to move/delete them.

  66. Shawn,

    I rebooted into setup again and rather then loading the drivers right away, I created the partitions and formated them with the “default” windows 2008 drivers. Then before hitting next I loaded the new drivers and it allowed that to happen, AND allowed me to proceed to the next step without saying the partition was not formatted as ntfs… so I think it may have worked, allthough the final reboot will tell all. I guess if nothing else this is a bog learning experience. Hopefully others can learn from it, CREATE the partitions with the default driver, then load the new driver…

  67. HI Shawn, we may be getting somewhere. The drivers you linked to seem to be slightly different than the LSI ones. SO I tried them and sure enough it loaded them and then saw the drive (that I had previously allready created and formated and installed 2008 to), once it saw the drive is then sauid that the drive was not formated at ntfs, so I tried deleting and recreating the partitions… failed, unable to delete partition, unable to format the partition. So I thought I would try deleting the raid and recreating… did that, reboot into setup, load the drivers you suggested, it sees the drive, no partitions on it (good so far) and I try to create a partition and it fails, 0x80070013. Suggestions online indicate write protection. Was your still in the middle of syncing the raid when you did it? I know the first time I installed the raid was syncing still and it allowed me to continue… but this time it wont create a partition.

    So my quesiton is, after you had the intial install issue, did you go back into setup and just do a “repair” and load the drivers, or did you go into a brand new setup and load the driver? I assume it maybe did the same thing as I mentioned above about not seeing ntfs and needing to format them?. Thanks!

  68. Hmmm, odd. I know the Windows 2008 initial setup will see the RAID card, load drivers, load the OS onto the hard drive, but that is about it. It won’t boot into the OS, just blink the hard drives occasionally.

    You keep saying you tried the 1.26 drivers from LSI, did you try the drivers from the link I provided above that are at IBM? I know when I googled for the drivers it found many different versions for the LSI card floating around the net. There was nothing special I had to do, I just made sure to tell it to use the drivers contained on my usb thumb drive.

  69. Hi Shawn,

    I did do the update xpress and it appeared to update many things and said it finished, I did put the above drivers (2003 version) onto the same disk as the 1.26 veersion (2008) and tried them on a floppy and also a cd… the odd part is, when I initially try to install, 2008 sees the drives allready, but once I choose to load my own drivers and those fail… the drives are no longer seen until a reboot into setup again. Also, normally when you choose the driver to load, the little green bar at the bottom scrolls as it “loads” the driver. IN this case, it usually just gives me an hour glass for about 5 minutes and no green scroller at the bottom. After 5 minutes it says it couldnt load the drivers and to get updated ones fromt he vendor. Of course LSI refuses to support anything without an LSI serial number on it. Any help is appreciated. Ill try the update xpress cd again today.


  70. Did you make sure you updated the firmware as well with the UpdateXpress from IBM? I used the drivers from the above link which points to the LSI drivers from IBM. I also noticed that there are 2 different model types for the IBM xSeries 335 server, so the LSI driver may not be the same for both (or the other model may not have the LSI in at all). You may need to do a little more digging on the IBM support site. My model is the 8676 I believe (machine is not with me at the moment). Let us know how it goes.

  71. I am havng the same issue, I have gotten the 1.26 version drivers from LSi website for the same exact server that you have, but the windows install will not load them, says I need udated drivers from the Hardware vendor. I have also tried the 1.25 version with the same issue. Is there a special way you got yours to load, or did you use some other driver from IBM? Any help would be greatly appreciated before I throw this thing off a cliff.

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