HP Mini 311

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...here's one of the stupidest, most obscure tips ever needed;

If you ever find yourself attempting to install Windows 10 (or Windows 7 or Windows 11 for that matter) on an HP Mini 311-1000NR model laptop, you may experience this error when installing a newer OS: "We couldn't create a new partition or locate an existing one. For more information, see the Setup log files."

The bad news is that there aren't any log files to help you. Think about it. If you're installing from a DVD or a Rufus (look it up) create ISO image on a USB Flash Drive, there is no place to store any log files. Remember, it can't save a log file onto a disk where it can't create and there isn't a valid partition. And it cannot save a file to either a physical DVD ROM or an ISO image on a USB Flash Drive. So right off the bat we're dealing with a lie, or at the least an inaccuracy (but actually just an idiot programmer at Microsoft).


First follow the advice of many other sites, summed up below;

  • Shift + F10 (opens a command prompt)
  • Type: diskpart
  • Type: select disk 0 (assuming there's one disk / or SSD in the computer, which in the case of the HP Mini 311, that's the only choice)
  • Type: clean (this will eradicate all information and partitions on the disk or SSD)
  • ...done, close the command prompt.
  • Click the Refresh Button, there should be a completely available empty / blank space to install Windows on.

If That Doesn't Work

If that doesn't work, update the BIOS firmware. Don't bother going to HP's website. Thankfully, unlike Dell, they don't bother to keep anything useful around for 'retired' (their term) products. The only alternative is to search for it. F.16 seems to be the latest BIOS version. As of the writing of this in early 2022, Softpedia.com had it on their site. Another bit of bad news here is that the BIOS update only seems to work from within Windows. No command line installer is available. Although the executable in the download package might be a dual Win32 / DOS executable (that wasn't tested).

And if it Still Doesn't Work

And now we get to the stupid part of the solution if it still doesn't work: Start the installation (IE, boot from the USB Flash Drive, select all the choices to get to the 'select the disk drive' section of the installation). Pull out the USB Flash Drive (assuming you're using that instead of a physical DVD ROM, did not test whether ejecting a DVD ROM was also necessary) and re-insert it (needed for installation files copied to the disk or SSD). Try clicking the Install Button again. It should work.

Yup, that's about the stupidest thing I've seen in 20 years. Woof!