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Big-time Windows 7 installation problems


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#1 Shmutz

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 11:04 AM

Hi all,
I'm currently building my own pc (my second one :lol: ), and now I'm in the process of installing the operating system (Windows 7). However, I'm having A LOT of trouble. My story is kind of long, so please bear with me:

I should first say that in my new computer I'm using the same video card, dvd drive, and hard drive that I used in the first pc I built. Everything else--the motherboard, processor, RAM, and power supply--is new. Note that my previous computer (and thus, the hard drive I'm using in my new computer) had an OEM version of Windows Vista (32-bit) running on it.

When I began the process of installing Windows 7 (64-bit), I booted from the Windows 7 DVD disc (it's the full retail version [the $200 one]), and was taken to the initial "Install Now" screen. I then selected "Custom Install" and afterward clicked "format" to clear the hard drive of the previous Windows Vista OS and other files. I also clicked "delete" to delete the previously existing partition. Assuming I had a fresh, clean drive, I went ahead and started the installation. Windows 7 seemed to install itself normally (the computer automatically rebooted twice during the installation process), and eventually I got to my Windows 7 desktop. To test if I was truly in business, I restarted the computer--and that's when the problems started. When the computer booted from the hard drive, I got a black screen for about 2-5 minutes, followed by a blue screen with white lettering proclaiming a Windows Stop error, with main error message: IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL. I then restarted the computer, and this time I got only a black screen (remained like that for 15 minutes or more). I restarted again, and got another Windows Stop error (with message PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA). I restarted yet again, and after a 2-minute black screen, something weird happened: the Windows Vista loading logo (the one with the small green moving vertical bars) appeared for a few good seconds--as if the computer were loading Windows Vista and not 7! Then, after the Vista loading logo, the computer launched the Windows 7 Startup Repair (which continued for infinity and clearly wasn't helping).

At this point, I was assuming that the formatting job that Windows 7 had conducted did not eliminate entirely Windows Vista from the drive. So, I then downloaded and burned to a CD the program "Darik's Boot and Nuke" (or DBAN) to completely wipe the drive. Using DBAN, I selected the "quick erase" option to write zeroes to the drive. After 9 hours it was done--the drive was clean (or so I thought). I tried installing Windows 7 again, but to no avail: either (1) Windows 7 doesn't boot at all and I get a never-changing black screen, (2) I get a blue-screened Windows STOP error, or (3) I still see the Windows Vista logo flash onscreen for a few seconds, followed by the futile Windows 7 Startup Repair.

So now I'm stuck. Is Windows Vista still on the system despite the fact that I DBANed the drive, or is it something else? How can I get Windows 7 to work and my computer to be cleanly and fully and non-corruptibly operational? I would rather not buy a new hard drive--and plus, I don't even know if a new drive would solve the problem. For I am also worried that maybe it's a hardware problem, or that maybe all this corruption screwed up my new motherboard (perhaps the Windows Vista boot stuff somehow remained attached to the motherboard, so even with a new hard drive the same thing would happen? Is this even possible???).

Thank you very much--any help is greatly appreciated!

P.S. Here is a list of my computer components, if it helps:

Newly purchased components:

Motherboard: ASUS M4A87TD EVO AMD870
CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 3.4 Gigahertz Socket AM3
Memory: G-Skill F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL DDR3 1600 (2 x 2GB)
Power Supply: Antec 500W EA-500D Green

Scavenged Components (from my previous computer):

Hard drive: Maxtor hard disk drive (250 GB)
Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT OC PCI Express x16, from BFG Technologies
DVD drive: Norwood Micro Dual Format DVD Recorder Double Layer, Internal EIDE optical drive 16x DVD, 48x CD
"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe--it can achieve." -W. Clement Stone

的f you have butterflies in your stomach, go see a doctor."

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#2 keyboardNinja

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 11:04 PM

That "Vista loading logo" is what you get when booting off a Windows 7 System Repair disc (or in your case, Windows booting to the System Reserved partition, which is essentially the same thing). Why they didn't update the logo to match the regular Windows 7 one, we'll never know.

But rest assured, after that first format, Vista is completely gone. It is not "attached" to your motherboard.

That being said, the motherboard could still be the cause of this issue. It could also be the RAM, video card, or any number of other things. Don't forget, hardware can fail right out of the box.


----------------------

Let's run a Memtest:

***** A. If you have more than one RAM module installed, try starting computer with one RAM stick at a time.

NOTE Keep in mind, the manual check listed above is always superior to the software check, listed below. DO NOT proceed with memtest, if you can go with option A

B. If you have only one RAM stick installed...
...run memtest...

1. Download - Pre-Compiled Bootable ISO (.zip)
2. Unzip downloaded memtest86+-....iso.zip file.
3. Inside, you'll find memtest86+-....iso file.
4. Download, and install ImgBurn: http://www.imgburn.com/
5. Insert blank CD into your CD drive.
6. Open ImgBurn, and click on Write image file to disc
7. Click on Browse for a file... icon:

Posted Image

8. Locate memtest86+-....iso file, and click Open button.
9. Click on ImgBurn green arrow to start burning bootable memtest86 CD:

Posted Image

10. Once the CD is created, boot from it, and memtest will automatically start to run.

The running program will look something like this depending on the size and number of ram modules installed:


Posted Image

It's recommended to run 5-6 passes. Each pass contains very same 8 tests.

This will show the progress of the test. It can take a while. Be patient, or leave it running overnight.

Posted Image

The following image is the test results area:

Posted Image

The most important item here is the “errors” line. If you see ANY errors, even one, most likely, you have bad RAM.

Edited by keyboardNinja, 23 June 2011 - 01:02 PM.

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#3 Shmutz

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 10:37 AM

Thanks for responding! Since I have two RAM sticks (each 2 GB), I did only method "A" and booted the computer with one RAM stick at a time. But the same thing happens with each RAM stick: when the computer boots the operating system, it displays a black screen for about 1-3 minutes, then displays the Windows "Vista-esque" loading logo, and launches Windows 7 startup repair. So I'm assuming this means that the RAM sticks are NOT the problem?

Also, I tried removing an ethernet PCI card that I installed in the motherboard to see if maybe that card was the problem, but when I removed it, I again saw the Vista-esque loading logo, and suddenly the loading was interrupted by a Windows STOP bsod (copied below, verbatim):


__

A problem has been detected and windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer.

If this is the first time you've seen this stop error screen, restart your computer. If this screen appears again, follow these steps:

Check to be sure you have adequate disk space. If a driver is identified in the stop message, disable the driver or check with the manufacturer for driver updates. Try changing video adapters.

Check with your hardware vendor for any BIOS updates. Disable BIOS memory options such as caching or shadowing. If you need to use Safe Mode to remove or disable components, restart your computer, press F8 to selected Advanced Startup options, and then select Safe Mode.

Technical Information

*** STOP: 0x0000001E (0x0000000000000000, 0x0000000000000000, 0x0000000000000000, 0x0000000000000000)
__


Looks like the ethernet PCI card isn't the problem either. So, what now should I do?
"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe--it can achieve." -W. Clement Stone

的f you have butterflies in your stomach, go see a doctor."

#4 keyboardNinja

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 01:00 PM

Thanks for responding! Since I have two RAM sticks (each 2 GB), I did only method "A" and booted the computer with one RAM stick at a time. But the same thing happens with each RAM stick: when the computer boots the operating system, it displays a black screen for about 1-3 minutes, then displays the Windows "Vista-esque" loading logo, and launches Windows 7 startup repair. So I'm assuming this means that the RAM sticks are NOT the problem?

Well, either both RAM sticks are bad, or neither of them are. If one had worked and the other not, then we would have a case, but since there is no change, it's impossible to tell without a full memtest.

Go ahead and follow the directions for B and run the memtest (one RAM stick at a time). If that comes up empty, we'll explore other possibilities.

Edited by keyboardNinja, 23 June 2011 - 01:02 PM.

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#5 Shmutz

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 02:40 PM

Before you replied I decided to try some other things, such as replacing the video card to see if that was the problem. The video card I originally had in there was a PCI Express x16 NVIDIA Geforce 7600 GT OC from BFG Technologies, and I replaced it with an old PCI video card. Interestingly, with this other video card, things changed a bit--the main problem was the same, but more was revealed to me: When the computer began to boot the operating system, it this time showed me white lettering on a black background asking whether to "Start windows normally" or launch "Windows Startup repair." I first tried "Start windows normally," and the computer showed me the actual Windows 7 loading screen (not the Windows Vista-esque one) with "Starting Windows" written at the bottom of a materializing, four-colored window.

But, after a few seconds of the loading the computer just restarted itself and went back to showing me the options to "Start windows normally" or launch "Windows Startup repair." So, I decided to go with the Startup repair and I let it run this time...and 10 minutes later the program did finish, but to my disappointment indicated that it was unable to repair anything. I looked at the detailed report, and copied it in bold below (verbatim):

Here is one part of the report:

Problem Event Name: StartupRepairOffline
Problem Signature 01: 6.1.7600.16385
Problem Signature 02: 6.1.7600.16385
Problem Signature 03: unknown
Problem Signature 04: 21200476
Problem Signature 05: AutoFailover
Problem Signature 06: 2
Problem Signature 07: NoRootCause
OS Version: 6.1.7601.2.1.0.256.1
Locale ID: 1033



Here is another part of the report, the "repair log":


Startup Repair diagnosis and repair log
_______________________________

Last successful boot time: 6/22/2011 4:40:59 PM (GMT)
Number of repair attempts: 2

Session details
________________________________
System Disk = \Device\Harddisk0
Windows directory = C:\Windows
AutoChk Run = 0
Number of root causes = 1





Then it lists all these tests (below) that it performed, all of which were "completed successfully":

Check for updates, System disk test, Disk failure diagnosis, Disk metadata test, Target OS test, Volume content check, Boot manager diagnosis, System boot log diagnosis, Event log diagnosis, Internal State check, Boot status test, Setup state check, Registry hives test, Windows boot log diagnosis, Bugcheck analysis, Access control test, File system (chkdsk), Software Installation log diagnosis, Fallback diagnosis.

Afterward, the log read:

Root cause found:
_________________

Unspecified changes to system configuration might have caused the problem.

Repair action: System files integrity check and repair
Result: Failed. Error code = 0x490



Then, I restarted the computer again and the computer just froze on that "Starting Windows" loading screen with the colorful-squares thing.

Next, I tried booting the computer from the Windows 7 disc and initiating disk repair--but same problem; didn't work.

Then I tried disconnecting the DVD drive--still didn't work.

Then I tried to reinstall Windows 7 again, but even before Windows could load the installer, a new bsod suddenly appeared at the Windows 7 loading logo! The introductory text was all the same, but the "Technical Information" was different (copied below, verbatim):

Technical Information:

*** STOP: 0x0000007E (0xFFFFFFFFC0000005, 0xFFFFF8000D40F04B, 0xFFFFF880039B6058, 0xFFFFF880039B58B0)



To make matters worse, right after this bsod, when I tried to then power off the computer by holding down the power button, the motherboard let out a loud continuous beep that wouldn't stop. I had to unplug the power cord to shut the computer down.

Foo!! :wacko: I don't know if any of this information is of any significance (is the STOP code interpretible/meaningful to identifying the exact problem? How about the continuous motherboard beep?)--but should I run the memtest anyway? Or does the new video card displaying more information than the other video card mean anything?
"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe--it can achieve." -W. Clement Stone

的f you have butterflies in your stomach, go see a doctor."

#6 keyboardNinja

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 07:15 PM

Okay, you've got bigger problems than what I am able to handle right now.

I will ask for some assistance from my fellow staff members. :)
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#7 cryptodan

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 08:56 PM

You may need to update the BIOS to allow Windows 7 to install successfully.

Go here:
http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/AMD_AM3/M4A87TD_EVO/#download

And get the below BIOS Version.

Version 2001
Description M4A87TD EVO BIOS 2001
Improve the performance of SATA5/6 Ports under IDE Mode.
File Size
804,6 (KBytes)

#8 Shmutz

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Posted 23 June 2011 - 11:31 PM

Thank you keyboardninja for your efforts!


Okay, so I downloaded the file and updated the BIOS, but I don't think that helped. I inserted the Windows 7 disc and the computer managed to boot from it, so I was able to begin the Windows 7 installation; after it finished "expanding Windows files," it then needed to do the first reboot (as part of the normal Windows installation process). But, when it restarted, I got another bsod. <_< This time the STOP error had the main message, IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL. I copied the "Technical Information" of the error below (verbatim):


Technical Information:

*** STOP: 0x0000000A (0xFFFFF8002287C300, 0x0000000000000002, 0x0000000000000001, 0xFFFFF800026DC14C)



Well, could this cryptic string of numbers and letters reveal specifically what is wrong? What should I do? I'm starting to lose hope. :(
"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe--it can achieve." -W. Clement Stone

的f you have butterflies in your stomach, go see a doctor."

#9 cryptodan

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 03:17 PM

Do you have a Windows 7 32bit CD?

#10 Shmutz

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 06:01 PM

Yes, I have both CDs: the 32-bit and the 64-bit Windows 7 Home Premium CDs (the full $200 retail version). I am trying to install the 64-bit version, though, since I have 4GB of RAM.
"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe--it can achieve." -W. Clement Stone

的f you have butterflies in your stomach, go see a doctor."

#11 cryptodan

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 07:13 PM

Try using the 32bit One and see if the blue screens stop.

#12 Shmutz

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 09:58 PM

But even if the 32-bit cd does make the bsods stop, it's not what I want: I would have to install the 64-bit one anyway since I would like to utilize the full capacity of the 4GB of RAM. What is your reasoning as to why the 32-bit disc would work?
"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe--it can achieve." -W. Clement Stone

的f you have butterflies in your stomach, go see a doctor."

#13 cryptodan

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 10:08 PM

I am thinking that there are default drivers on the Win7 64bit that are not compliant with hardware on your machine.

#14 Shmutz

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 10:23 PM

Hm, but my motherboard, CPU, and RAM all state that they are compatible with 64-bit operating systems. I'm assuming that the hard drive should be compatible--and I already tried replacing video cards, so the video card should be compatible, too.

Also, I decided to run Memtest, and so far I've found perplexing results. I first put in RAM stick 1 into DIMM slot 1 in the motherboard, and after 8 passes the Memtest detected 1 error (info copied below):

Tst
0

Pass
1

Failing Address
000034626a8 - 52.3MB

Good
1e3331c2

Bad
1e333142

Err-Bits
00000080

Count
1

Chan
-




So, then I put RAM stick 1 into DIMM slot 2, and after 8 passes Memtest reported no errors. At this point I was thinking it might be the motherboard's DIMM slot 1 that was the problem. But right now I'm testing RAM stick 2 in DIMM slot 1, and so far it's at its 5th pass and no errors! So does that mean that DIMM slot 1 is NOT the problem? Or do you think RAM stick 1 is bad, even though it had no errors in a different slot? Or was that just a fluke? What do you make of this?
"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe--it can achieve." -W. Clement Stone

的f you have butterflies in your stomach, go see a doctor."

#15 cryptodan

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 10:32 PM

Its part of the troubleshooting process to determine if its hardware or software. If the Win7 32bit Blue Screens as well then we will assume its the motherboard, and should be RMA'ed. This is what I would do if it was my machine.




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