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SSD light stops blinking after windows splash (no login screen) after 8.1 install

Last response: in Windows 8
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April 17, 2014 6:02:39 AM

Hey all, long time lurker first time poster.

My problem is this: I was working completely fine on windows 8. I installed windows 8.1 from the store, and it rebooted and installed completely and I was enjoying netflix, etc. I found it the next morning completely off (which is weird as I have it stand by but it is an htpc with a ceton card for recording TV so always S3 or on). I tried turning it on and it posts, finds all the components, goes back to the post screen, brings up the windows blue symbol with the dots spinning below, then goes black and the HDD light on the front of the computer goes dark. Not one blink for hours, fans running, USB components lit up (have power at least), but absolutely nothing.

Solutions I have tried:
I have installed all new graphics drivers (thinking it was this issue: http://news.softpedia.com/news/Microsoft-Launches-Guide...) no dice.

I booted into safe mode thinking it was this: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2756559/EN-US
But that was not an option on my PC (at least in safe mode).

I also did a tweak to the bdc (I think that was it) in the command line where I copied and rewrote some sort of boot file (bdc or bcd, something similar).

Then I moved on to thinking it was the HDD's in raid (for some reason I had to unplug during upgrade on another computer I upgraded recently) so I unplugged them, no dice, same symptoms.

i have the latest firmware all around, boots into safe mode just fine, and I have a recovery disk at the ready for any more ideas.

Hardware:
AsRock H77m-itx motherboard (latest bios installed and per the website 8.1 compliant),
Core i5-3570
HDMI connection from onboard graphics
Corsair M4 SSD (main OS, no upgrades here)
WD Caviar Black's in Raid 0 (no upgrades here, unplugged completely and symptoms continue)
BD Drive (OEM somebody)
4gb microcenter ram (tested good in another PC)
Ceton card (eliminated and symptoms continue)
all other USB devices unplugged and plugged in with no change.

I think it has to be a software issue as the motherboard is posting just as it did before, I am getting the spinning windows dots, then the SSD light just completely stops in its tracks. The TV it is plugged into is turning off on no signal so that is a second key to eliminating the black screen.
April 17, 2014 6:15:11 AM

You could boot into safe mode and do a system restore.
I had another problem with windows 8.1 and SSD, that was when I was using windows at random time my system would freeze for about 1min. After that it worked for X time and would do the same. I was using OCS SSD at the time. Found a forum that said that this problem would go away if I changed my SSD to hot plugable in the BIOS. So I went into the bios and changed the SATA port to "eSata" standards and it worked fine.
Allso I had some strange trouble installing my Samsung 840 EVO, where windows did not find the hardisk, so I had to disable S.M.A.R.T to be able to install it.... Allthough these problem are not the same as yours, you could try to set your SATA port to hot plugable, and disable S.M.A.R.T and see what that does.
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April 17, 2014 6:20:07 AM

IcemanIceer said:
You could boot into safe mode and do a system restore.
I had another problem with windows 8.1 and SSD, that was when I was using windows at random time my system would freeze for about 1min. After that it worked for X time and would do the same. I was using OCS SSD at the time. Found a forum that said that this problem would go away if I changed my SSD to hot plugable in the BIOS. So I went into the bios and changed the SATA port to "eSata" standards and it worked fine.
Allso I had some strange trouble installing my Samsung 840 EVO, where windows did not find the hardisk, so I had to disable S.M.A.R.T to be able to install it.... Allthough these problem are not the same as yours, you could try to set your SATA port to hot plugable, and disable S.M.A.R.T and see what that does.


I did check in the BIOS and the SSD is in there as a SOLID STATE DRIVE (vs hard disk drive) and does not have the "hot pluggable" feature as far as I am aware (will confirm). The caviar black's oddly DO have this feature, but I have not enabled it. Will try messing around with the BIOS settings related to hot pluggable and will report back.
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April 17, 2014 6:23:39 AM

Kreene1987 said:
I should add the SSD has and was installed in ACHI mode since 4 years ago, so its not an IDE/ACHI mode issue. I will confirm the registry value is correct this evening:

http://www.eightforums.com/drivers-hardware/22126-chang...


Win8 is only 2 years... was it fresh install or upgrade?
Since you are going the way of software why not making backup of the OS drive using something like Acronis True Image and wipe the whole SSD then install again new OS.\

Sometimes digging the problem takes longer then solving it.

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April 17, 2014 6:27:27 AM

Ra_V_en said:
Kreene1987 said:
I should add the SSD has and was installed in ACHI mode since 4 years ago, so its not an IDE/ACHI mode issue. I will confirm the registry value is correct this evening:

http://www.eightforums.com/drivers-hardware/22126-chang...


Win8 is only 2 years... was it fresh install or upgrade?
Since you are going the way of software why not making backup of the OS drive using something like Acronis True Image and wipe the whole SSD then install again new OS.\

Sometimes digging the problem takes longer then solving it.



Latest fresh install of W8 was about 4 months ago, SSD has been in service in ACHI mode for around 4 years (used to be W7 computer). W8.1 was an upgrade. I am not aware of a way to install fresh 8.1 without 8.1 key or disk? I only have a W8 disk and W8.1 recovery drive. I do have a complete system backup from W8 prior to installing W8.1, but of course I would rather solve it than go back to W8.
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April 17, 2014 6:47:35 AM

Let me resume the facts.
You start the PC and it boots into windows splash screen then hangs and no further response. So lets start with basics. The suspects are hardware or software, since you tested some different configurations plug/unplug then left SSD and the OS left.
1) If you are able to boot in safe mode with command run chkdsk c: /x /f /r then reboot normal
2) If you are unable to boot from HDD boot from install drive in repair mode -> console and run above.
3) If both don't work try to restore the system backup if you have any.
4) If above don't work install new OS and reformat the drive during installation.
5) If during installation got blue screen or after install cannot boot again SSD failed. Further steps are up to you. Solved

Thats the simplest steps i could come with... obviously there are more invasive methods of testing like using Hiren's Boot CD/DVD but I'm just guessing if you are putting this issue here on TH you wont be able to solve it any faster than in 5 points above.
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April 17, 2014 7:04:35 AM

Ra_V_en said:
Let me resume the facts.
You start the PC and it boots into windows splash screen then hangs and no further response. So lets start with basics. The suspects are hardware or software, since you tested some different configurations plug/unplug then left SSD and the OS left.
1) If you are able to boot in safe mode with command run chkdsk c: /x /f /r then reboot normal
2) If you are unable to boot from HDD boot from install drive in repair mode -> console and run above.
3) If both don't work try to restore the system backup if you have any.
4) If above don't work install new OS and reformat the drive during installation.
5) If during installation got blue screen or after install cannot boot again SSD failed. Further steps are up to you. Solved

Thats the simplest steps i could come with... obviously there are more invasive methods of testing like using Hiren's Boot CD/DVD but I'm just guessing if you are putting this issue here on TH you wont be able to solve it any faster than in 5 points above.


Will try. Option 1 is available to me, i have run a few edits through the cmd line. Also based on previous experience I think if you use CHKDSK /R that means that you are automatically using CHKDSK /R /F. The /R mean that everything that /F does is done as well as anything extra that /R does. Since everything that it does has already been accounted for, there is no reason to use the /F at all.

My only thought is that safe mode works perfectly and the disk has worked perfectly up until yesterday. I suspect it can't hurt to try but it seems to be more software or BIOS based.

Thanks for the idea.
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April 17, 2014 8:04:15 AM

Kreene1987 said:


Will try. Option 1 is available to me, i have run a few edits through the cmd line. Also based on previous experience I think if you use CHKDSK /R that means that you are automatically using CHKDSK /R /F. The /R mean that everything that /F does is done as well as anything extra that /R does. Since everything that it does has already been accounted for, there is no reason to use the /F at all..


You are correct... MS loves to use implicitly everywhere...they always know better. I'm from old school codding tho, when i want something to be done this way i write such and don't waste time thinking will this new and "intelligent" command do or won't do it this time.
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April 18, 2014 8:07:46 AM

Chkdsk came back clean (minor issues fixed), problem remains.

I think:
1) Sata controller driver is not working
2) Windows 8,1 has some sort of funky SSD weirdness going on.
3) I have a setting wrong in the BIOS.
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April 19, 2014 7:28:36 AM

Figured it out thank the lord!

Turns out it was the RAID array after all. Basically the 8.1 install was installed with the BIOS in RAID setting, but the RAID drivers were not properly installed (typical with 8.1 upgrade).

Solution:
Change BIOS to ACHI and restart computer. The drives should act normally but the raid array will not show. Install newest 8.1 certified Rapid Storage Tech program from Intel. Open msconfig.exe and under the boot tab select safe mode. Boot into BIOS (before safe mode) and select RAID under storage configuration (hot pluggable did NOT matter, left it enabled for all but main OS drive). Boot into safe mode. Driver will install automatically for the raid configuration. Go into msconfig.exe (still in safe mode) and de-select safe mode on boot tab (this will make you boot back into normal 8.1). When you reboot it should boot in RAID mode completely normally. Basically safe mode installs the drivers that normal mode is missing!

Feel free to post up if you have any more questions. RST is seeing all drives and all raid arrays are working properly!
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April 19, 2014 7:30:21 AM

If an admin can pick ^^^ as solution that would be great!
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!