I decided to create a system with some parts I had lying around. I realize that my question may actually be a Windows XP or Western Digital question, but I will start here. I had a spare WD 320GB Caviar SE16 drive which was still new in the box. I had a working Intel E6550 CPU taken from an old system. I added 4GB of new Adata memory (two sticks of 2GB DDR2 800 PC2 6400 Dual Channel), a CD/DVD drive, a 650W power supply, and a brand new DQ45EK motherboard and shoved it all into a Silverstone GD05 case.
The BIOS shows the hard drive to contain 320GB, but curiously Windows XP Home Edition setup only recognized it as 131xxx MB, which makes me wonder if I have a bad drive or the drivers on the CDROM are wrong somehow. Both the drive and version of XP were bought around the same time, probably three years ago. My other PC is a much newer DZ68DB running Windows 7 with the disk set to AHCI to run SATA III. I tried to set the DQ45EK to AHCI instead of IDE, but it did not like that one bit and would not let me continue, giving me some system errors on a black screen.
A number of people commenting on Newegg regarding the DQ45EK mentioned that the BIOS was ancient and that flashing it ASAP was essential. However, none of them had my problem.
I ignored the strange disk size and continued with installation. After it went through formatting, installation, and rebooting, XP came up with the pretty screen. 39 minutes of installation remained. While it was messing with device drivers, it changed to a black screen with a bunch of stuff including IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL. I rebooted and tried again, only to see the same screen.
Anyone want to give me a pointer? If I could get XP to install, I could flash BIOS and update drivers. I'm not sure where to start to debug this problem.
XP will only support larger drives if it has SP1 or newer built in. What I suggest you do is 'slipstream' the latest service pack (and even your chipset and AHCI drivers if you wish) into a new Win XP installation CDROM and try again using that. If you search for how to slipstream a Windows XP installation CDROM you should come up with the required information. The BSOD error you get has a multitude of possible causes so it'd be wrong to speculate at this stage as the new installation CDROM may fix that problem.