XP -> Vista Upgrade: Error 80070103

I've been trying to upgrade an Ultra 20/4 GB RAM with Windows XP + SP2 machine to Windows Vista Ultimate and it's just a plain ugly experience. I've installed Vista on two other machines and it was a much better but this one is the other extreme.

I insert the Vista media in the drive and it pops up a window with an option "Install now". I click on install and then it shows the following error message:

It's hard to understand this error message because the primary drive has 91 GB of free disk space and installed using NTFS. Is the error message trying to convey something else ?

Searched on microsoft.com pointed me to this. But this article is only talking about this error code when installing updates, not updating the whole operating system. Anyway, I installed all the latest updates recommended by Windows Update Center. I also disabled my antivirus software as recommended in "What to know before installing Windows" (even though it's a weird requirement) but this error will not go away.

Tried searching if temp directory is somehow assigned smaller space but didn't find anything on that topic. Not sure if that's even possible.

I posted a question to Vista installation newsgroup. The responses there point to a mismatch (1, 2, 3) between default display drivers provided by Microsoft and nVidia. So I uninstalled the default display driver and installed nVidia's display driver. But still the same error message/number. BTW, the machine has Quadro FX 1400 card.

Then called up nVidia Tech Support. It took them few minutes to figure out that I'm "overwriting" my Window XP with Vista even though I began the call with "I'm upgrading my XP to Vista". Anyway, after the person on tech support understood my issue, I was told to format my Windows XP and then tried installing Vista from scratch! Another quote is "This is definitely a Microsoft problem because Vista is not even getting installed" even though I mentioned that all the links are referring about nVidia driver mismatch. Additionally, nVidia.com main website links to Can your computer run Windows Vista ? which test and reports whether a system can run Windows Vista or not. Interestingly, my laptop (which already has Vista) failed this test at Minimum, Recommended and Optimal level. And the machine on which I'm trying to install Vista passes this test at Minimum level but still giving this weird error.

Finally I called up Microsoft Tech Support and they transferred me to MSDN tech support which close at 5:30pm PT on weekdays.

As a result, I'm stuck this weekend waiting for MSDN tech support to open up Monday morning and then will follow up.

Is Windows Vista really ready for prime time for any serious application ?

UPDATE: Submitted a bug here.

Technorati: windows Vista XP nVidia


I was going to upgrade my box to vista. I guess it's probably a good idea to wait and see.

Posted by Stainless Steel Sinks on April 20, 2007 at 12:59 PM PDT #

Yes, if you have a similar configuration. What are your reasons to upgrade to Vista though ?

Posted by Arun Gupta on April 20, 2007 at 03:01 PM PDT #

I am running a 64 bit CPU with XP. I was going to upgrade to Vista to take full advantage of the CPU.

Posted by Stainless Steel Sinks on May 04, 2007 at 04:15 AM PDT #

MAte.... I have experiencing this similiar Error 80070103 while performing a Windows Update on the new Vista. It's just pure ugly.. Can u believe it.. Copy/Cut and paste function is also fuxxed. Needed a hotfix for that.. Unbelievable.. Let me know if there is a "fix"

Posted by Jonsharky on May 27, 2007 at 11:23 PM PDT #

The solution is posted at: http://blogs.sun.com/arungupta/entry/resolved_vista_upgrade_error_80070103

Posted by Arun on May 29, 2007 at 02:40 AM PDT #

(that solution is not always working)

Posted by andries on August 15, 2007 at 02:23 AM PDT #

I want to know what to do when i get this error on DOT4USB. I cannot find way to MS to ask question.

Posted by RAYMOND PRIDDY on October 25, 2007 at 09:53 AM PDT #

I too have that DOT4USB update error. I simply avoided that update package and ignored.

To be honest... it's simply unacceptable. Everything just seems to be taking a longer time to process, loadup.. as per compared to XP.

Posted by Jonsharky on October 27, 2007 at 01:07 AM PDT #

I called HP last njght about not getting on installing officejet j5750. She said HP knew that had trouble with installing. So I ask for answers or date. She change the subject and started telling me how to fix trouble. I told her I was tied of getting instructions how to uninstall and reinstall HPSC. I told her I was promise higher level help 6 days ago, So she said she would promise I would get help call at 7:00 PM EST. I am still waiting. They have us over the barrel .

Posted by RAYMOND PRIDDY on October 27, 2007 at 10:06 AM PDT #

Não consigo instalara as actualizações com o erro 80070103

Posted by Agostinho Silva on November 13, 2007 at 10:33 PM PST #

I had just freed the space on the hard disk, but the problem did nor disappeared. Who can help?
Is there any help?
Email me please.

Posted by Magda Krol on January 07, 2008 at 07:35 AM PST #

My Inglish is not good, is possible translater your wansuaer?
Anywai, i sapose de error reportind to you is caused my computer?

Posted by Agostinho Silva on January 07, 2008 at 06:43 PM PST #

Yes, if you have a similar configuration. What are your reasons to upgrade to Vista though ?

Posted by LAPTOP BATTERY on November 26, 2008 at 12:58 PM PST #

I've got a Sun Ultra 20, just put Vista on it. All going OK, except I cannot get the NVIDIA Quadro FX 1400 card going. I have uninstalled, and re-installed the drivers on the NVIDIA site a couple of times now - and also used the VISTA driver updrade option as well. Still not going. Keep getting a Code 43 error. I've trued drivers,, and HELP! Is there something else I need to be doing? Thanks! Terry

Posted by Terry Love on January 01, 2009 at 11:33 AM PST #

I recently just bought Vista 86 bit and I really haven't experienced anything different from Vista 64 bit.

Posted by Kitchen Sinks on March 13, 2009 at 02:03 AM PDT #

Just think of whats going to happen when Windows 7 gets a demo release on all those older machines.

Posted by Chiropractic Marketing on March 13, 2009 at 02:18 AM PDT #

i ran the beta ver. of windows 7 on my old HP pavilion a305w so i would say windows 7 is a much better OS. i also have windows Vista 64 bit on 2nd computer and XP on yet another computer.
The specs for the HP are:
CPU: Intel Celeron 2.4GHz socket 478
RAM: 512 MB DDR400
GPU: Intel integrated graphics (DX7)
i would never dream of running Vista on the HP! but like i said it runs Windows 7 and fairly well at that it just doesnt have the Aero effects. Vista is a nice OS if you know how to deal with it however, of all the people who are running vista i would say only 20% know how to effectively deal with Vista.

Posted by guest on April 17, 2009 at 10:58 PM PDT #

I've been running on the Windows 7 RC. Much better than crappy vista!

Posted by stainless steel sinks on May 28, 2009 at 04:42 AM PDT #

I am using Vista Ultimate at my home computer since 2 years now, and its running fine, but will tell that xp was better.

Posted by Interior Design Ideas on January 14, 2010 at 05:37 PM PST #

Im sure on windows 7 this problem doesnt happen!

Posted by cartoon bed sheets on April 27, 2011 at 12:14 PM PDT #

I got this problem too.
How can I fix this?

Posted by Intelligentsia on March 07, 2012 at 01:42 PM PST #

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Arun Gupta is a technology enthusiast, a passionate runner, author, and a community guy who works for Oracle Corp.

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