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Freezes and Black Screens (re)installing Win7

Last response: in Windows 7
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May 7, 2011 10:08:01 AM

I've just about had it!! I've worked on this for days, so hope you can help. System was rock solid for 1 year till I downloaded Win7 SP1 a few weeks ago. Immediately, I started getting random freezes. Couldn't restore to previous state because the SP1 install erased the restore points!

Uninstalled SP1. Updated all drivers: BIOS, Chipset, Video, USB, Audio, LAN, Mouse, etc. No Dice! Performed CHKDSK, sfc /scannow & DiskCleanup. Tried "Clean Boot" using MSCONFIG to disable all services. No help! Disabled USB & LAN in BIOS. No Dice! Won't even run in Safe Mode... nor, complete an installation from the Win7 DVD w/o locking up or Black Screening.

i7-860
Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD4P
GeForce 7000 GT/GTO
CORSAIR CMPSU-450VX 450W
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB)

It's got dual-boot, but, hadn't used XP in a long time... and, after updating BIOS... I have problems there too! Random freezes. XP runs okay in Safe Mode... so, I used SafeMode to update the XP drivers (& still will NOT run in Normal Mode). Used XP SafeMode to nuke the Win7 drive, hoping it might help the Win7 DVD run cleaner... NO dice. It actually reported... "Could not complete format." (!!)

I read some people solved their problem by simply changing out the Power Supply. This one "seems" to be running fine... and, it *WAS* fine before the dreaded SP1 nuked my Win7 installation.

What is going on, and how can I get the OS reinstalled???? and, get the bugs out of the XP side??

Thanks for your ideas.

May 7, 2011 6:07:14 PM

It sounds like a hard drive failure. When the SP1 update went to update many system files that had not been touched in a long time, it brought the HD problems to the surface.
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May 7, 2011 7:02:49 PM

Really! Thought about that, but what about the freezing on the XP partition? Haven't done as much trouble shooting on that side, but, did update most drivers. *If* it's an HDD failure... would it just be THAT partition? Can I use a different partition to install Win7 on?? It's a 640gb drive, with 5 partitions! Call it luck or whatever... but, I've NEVER HAD an HDD failure... in 20 years of building my own systems. Don't even know what to look for to determine that.
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May 7, 2011 7:18:26 PM

It makes no sense that SP1 would affect XP. Is there a way you can check for HD errors on both partitions?
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a b \ Driver
a b $ Windows 7
May 8, 2011 12:50:55 PM

Run cmd sfc/scannow in safemode to check for missing files and bad sectors.
Win7 should be installed clean for best results.
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May 8, 2011 5:14:31 PM

I've performed CHKDSK, sfc /scannow & DiskCleanup on the Win7 partition... from the XP Safe Mode partition. No major errors reported. (I've already destroyed the Win7 partition with a partial format.) The BIOS reads the HDD. "Disk Mgnt" (Fdisk) in the XP partition reads all partitions. I'm running a more detailed diagnostic utility right now called "HDDScan" (freeware) to look for problems... plus, will try *totally erasing* the Win7 partition with a 3rd party app ("Derik's Boot & Nuke). If the HDD checks out fine, and, after erasing the drive... I still can't do a fresh Win7 install... I guess then... I'll be lost as to what to do next.

Will report back later.
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May 11, 2011 10:18:58 PM

Seems I've solved the issue... after driving myself crazy for three weeks! As I said, the system was rock solid for over a year... while apparently running some 1600 DRAM memory... @ 1333! In the BIOS, DRAM frequency was set to “Auto”, but I incidentally noticed the BIOS home page indicated 1333. I knew my memory was 1600, so, set the DRAM frequency to 1600 instead of "Auto", and I haven’t had a “freeze” since. Funny, it was never a hitch till I installed SP1... then suddenly it went south with constant freezes and black screens!


During this process, I searched various forums and saw lots of complaints about freezing after SP1. Some people solved it by simply replacing their PS!. I was about to replace my video card! It was my dumb mistake, but couldn't find any MS Tech support! Anyway, now, I've got an MBR and Partition Table nightmare to solve after "DOD Wiping" the previous win7 partition... so, if I can iron out my jumbled drive mapping and multi-OS boot issues ... I again be ..."smokin'"!


michael
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