Preface: This is my first time forum, and I did my due diligence in looking around for the past two days, and in the pinned and tutorial pages. I apologize if I could've fixed this without needing to make a post.
Specs: Windows 8.1 Industry Pro, i5 6600k, Nvidia EVGA GTX 970sc, Asus Z170-A, Corsair 750i, 16GB(2x8GB) Corsair RAM, Samsung 250gb SSD boot drive, 3TB HGST Red HDD
The problem is as the title states, but has a bit of prelude. Yesterday I wanted to update my drivers for my GPU straight from the Nvidia control panel (I've done it this way in the past without a hitch). I couldn't open the Nvidia control panel, said something about OpenGL if I remember right. So I downloaded the latest driver for my CPU straight from the Intel download center website, I opened it and was loading, then the Nvidia program started working all of a sudden. When it finished it said it wasn't compatible. So I look up the right one, again on the Intel website, and instead of opening up a window, it's a RAR file, so I unzip it, and forget about it to update the drivers. I feel as if this somehow could have been the key factor.
I restarted my computer. My fans spin up, The mobo power light comes on, but I get nothing on my monitor. I've had this problem in the past, and I know it's probably because I just updated the drivers, so I'm not scared so much as annoyed. I turn off and unplug my PSU, take out both drives, turn it on, and nothing. Turn off and unplug the PSU, put the drives back in, turn it on, and nothing. I put the HDMI cord into my mobo, try again, and nothing. I take out the cmos battery, for 20min, turn it on, still get nothing. I reseat my 970 out of desperation, and for whatever reason that works. But that's where the good news ends.
Now Windows 8.1 has me stuck in an automatic repair loop. I got the license free from dream spark about two years ago, but I think I grabbed the wrong boot file, because mine is an Industry Pro edition, which means I'm stuck at 8.1 and couldn't get the free windows 10 upgrade. I mention this because I tried downloading a Windows 10 boot drive from my laptop on flash drive, and refresh my PC, but it just kept saying it's invalid media. That's to be expected. I believe I can't create an 8.1 recovery drive to refresh because I cant use my 8.1 desktop to make it. I only have my windows 10 laptop; but perhaps there is another way.
I thought of making a windows 10 boot drive off of my 1TB portable HDD, loading into the bios, see if that boots and fixes the problem, pull all my media from my SSD (which isn't backed up God forgive me), format it, then somehow transfer it back. But I haven't pulled the trigger on that just yet, because I don't know if that'll lock out or somehow make my SSD C: drive inaccessible, and I need to look and see that even if it dose work if transferring over an external C: HDD's data to an internal blank SSD is even possible.
All I wanted to do was take 10min to update my drivers! I'm my wit's end, and any help would be appreciated. Sorry for the wall of text.