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Bricked my Win8 Asus Trying to Downgrade - Please help

Tags:
  • Downgrade
  • Asus
  • brick
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 7
Last response: in Windows 8
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March 20, 2013 8:50:54 AM

Okay, I have an Asus g46VW that I recently purchased. I absolutely hate Win8, and have been set on downgrading to Win7 pro. Since laptop manufactures decided that optical drives are obsolete, even on gaming pc's, I went out and purchased an external dvd rom. I had to disable UEFI, secure boot, and usb 3.0 in the BIOS to even get the computer to recognize the drive as a bootable device. I am omitting the hours of troubleshooting I had to go through with bizarre errors to even get the installation to run, because I don't think they are relevant, but microsoft really does not make it easy to downgrade.

I soon realized the Win7 would not install on a GPT formatted drive, and running elevated command prompt during install would not let me use diskpart to manually change the drive type to MBR. The drive was broken into a SYSTEM, RECOVERY, OS, and DATA partitions. I was unable to format any of these partitions or the drive itself, so I deleted all partitions on the drive leaving only unallocated space. The drive then showed in the MBR format and would let me proceed with the install, but it hung at 0% on expanding files for a long time. When researching why this was happening I found that a common cause for this was that the drive was not formatted correctly. This makes sense because there was previously 100+gb of data on this drive, and it has never been formatted.

This is where I am at now. The Windows 7 installation will not allow me to format the drive (the option is greyed out), so I am trying to do it from the command prompt. I can launch DISKPART, and it is showing only one volume (F:) , type: partition, size 698gb, status: healthy, info: pagefile. When I attempt to use the 'clean all' command to wipe all data to 0's I get "clean is not allowed on the disk containing the current boot, system, pagefile, crashdump, or hibernation volume."

When I attempt to use 'Format f:', I get "format cannot run because this volume is in use by another process. Format may run if this volume is dismounted first. ALL OPENED HANDLES TO THIS VOLUME WOULD THEN BE INVALID. Would you like to force a dismount on this volume? <Y/N> Y
Cannot lock the drive, the volume is still in use."

I am about ready to pull my hair out, now the machine is completely unusable and I feel completely stuck. I really cannot afford to go and buy a blank SSD or a new SATA drive to install in this POS, so I have to figure something out with this. Thanks.

More about : bricked win8 asus downgrade

March 20, 2013 9:46:29 AM

Isnt f: usually a usb etc? Mine is my external dvd drive haha
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March 20, 2013 9:59:09 AM

cryptic1337 said:
Isnt f: usually a usb etc? Mine is my external dvd drive haha


When I use diskpart to list volumes on the disk is shows volume - 1, ltr - F, label- ____, FS - NTFS, type - partition, size - 698 gb, status - healthy, info - pagefile
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Related resources
a b * Windows 8
a c 215 $ Windows 7
March 20, 2013 10:16:27 AM

Check the USB ports on your system and (assuming you have some) make sure you plug the dvd drive into one that is wired as USB 2.0. I have seen on several systems an issue where I cannot set up Windows on an internal drive because the install media (a flash drive in my case, although the same principle could apply to a dvd drive connected via USB) was connected via a USB 3.0 port.

This issue can occur on any system where the USB 3.0 port you connected the drive to is wired into the system via a third party (usually ASMedia) controller. All of the systems I had this issue on had third party controllers, or had native controllers from Intel, but also had third party controllers to provide additional USB 3.0 ports.

Bottom line, connect the dvd drive to either:

1. A USB 2.0 port
2. A USB 3.0 port via an Intel controller if an Intel controller is present in the system. You won't be able to tell just by looking at a USB 3.0 port what controller it routes through... it simply comes down to trial and error.

Edit: Even with USB 3.0 support disabled, the ports should still function in USB 2.0 mode. Unfortunately, if they route through a third party controller, you will still run into this issue.
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March 26, 2013 7:28:37 AM

The_Prophecy said:
Check the USB ports on your system and (assuming you have some) make sure you plug the dvd drive into one that is wired as USB 2.0. I have seen on several systems an issue where I cannot set up Windows on an internal drive because the install media (a flash drive in my case, although the same principle could apply to a dvd drive connected via USB) was connected via a USB 3.0 port.

This issue can occur on any system where the USB 3.0 port you connected the drive to is wired into the system via a third party (usually ASMedia) controller. All of the systems I had this issue on had third party controllers, or had native controllers from Intel, but also had third party controllers to provide additional USB 3.0 ports.

Bottom line, connect the dvd drive to either:

1. A USB 2.0 port
2. A USB 3.0 port via an Intel controller if an Intel controller is present in the system. You won't be able to tell just by looking at a USB 3.0 port what controller it routes through... it simply comes down to trial and error.

Edit: Even with USB 3.0 support disabled, the ports should still function in USB 2.0 mode. Unfortunately, if they route through a third party controller, you will still run into this issue.


@TheProphecy - I have tried to mark your answer as best answer but I am not seeing the option. I have edited the thread to change it to 'Ask the Community' but to no avail. Anyways, I changed the port that my external drive was plugged into and restarted into the Win7 installation. This time the option to format the unpartitioned space was there, and the install ran without a hitch. Thanks for the help, I am glad that I was finally able to ditch Windows 8.
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a b * Windows 8
a c 215 $ Windows 7
March 26, 2013 9:59:41 AM

I changed the thread type. You should now be able to mark a best answer. Glad to hear that worked for you :) 
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April 17, 2013 2:42:08 PM

I totally relate to your frustration with both Windows 8 and the removal of 'that unnecessary Optical Drive" by Asus. I'm downgading it to Win 7 so that I can actually make some use of it. This is Microsoft's MYOB, trying to be Apple, Xero and not only failing but boosting the others sales as millions flee the brand for something reliable.

Thanks for sharing the problems you're having. It has saved me getting into unswimable water. I'll get it done but a computer guy or by the ASUS repair shop (a very busy place)

Rapid Entry Business Services
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