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Windows 7 won't boot after adding aftermarket heat sink to motherboard

Last response: in Windows 7
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November 22, 2011 10:48:07 PM

Hello Forum goers,

I just upgraded some parts in my rig, and now Windows 7 won’t boot for me. The system will post and I can get into the BIOS, but my Boot disk with my Windows 7 install is not being recognized after that. Boot priority goes straight to my DVD drive and asks for both a boot disc from it, or to replace boot device 1 (the HDD with my Win 7 install) with a valid boot device. The boot drive shows up normally in the BIOS, along with everything else, so I’m not exactly sure what the issue would be.

Here’s my current set up after installing the new parts to my system:

Windows 7 Home Premium edition 64 bit, OEM license; I have the installation DVD in my possession as well.

ASUS Maximus III Gene motherboard P55 chipset
Intel i5 760 Quad core CPU running at stock speed (2.8ghz)
*Newly installed* Coolermaster Hyper 212 EVO aftermarket CPU heatsink
4 Gigs Kingston HyperX RAM (2 x 2GB) 1600 Mhz 9-9-9-27
XFX Radeon HD 6870 1Gig DDR 900Mhz
*Newly installed* XFX Radeon HD 6870 1Gig DDR 900Mhz, connected to old card in crossfire mode; old card is still in its original slot from when it was the only card in my rig
*Newly installed* 6 Coolermaster 120 MM red LED fans; 3 intake, 3 exhaust; all are powered up, running properly, lit properly
Boot disk is Western Digital Caviar 500GB 7200RPM 32MB Dual Proc SATA 3.5IN Hard Drive

When I installed the extra parts yesterday, I actually had to physically remove the motherboard from the case and remove all the connections in order to attach the Hyper 212 EVO heat sink to the CPU and the board.

I read a few threads on here talking about Windows 7 OEM licences being picky about motherboards changing, but each thread I read had some other additional issue that threw them off, like hard drive connection errors or the fact that they actually changed the motherboard; I don’t think that applies for me because the BIOS reads all my drives correctly (I’m not using any kind of raid setup, just individual HDD’s). As far as I can tell, everything is hooked up correctly and is running correctly hardware-wise. Every component I unplugged was re-plugged into the exact same socket it was in before I pulled my rig apart.

And to make it clear in case it wasn’t already, I did NOT replace my motherboard; I only removed my current one from the case to install the Hyper 212 heat sink and then refastened the same original board into my case.

Does anyone have any suggestions about how I might be able to get my boot drive to actually boot the OS installed on it without having to reformat and reinstall Windows? I only went as far as inserting the windows 7 disc and clicking on the menu for repair install, but at that screen I had no existing operating systems that I could select to repair. I didn’t go any further than that screen because it got late and I had to work early this morning.

Sorry for the wall(s) of text, I’m just baffled by this issue since everything else that’s plugged in works fine.

Any help that anyone can offer is GREATLY appreciated. Also, for reference, I have an older computer that I can use to download drivers or back things up if I absolutely have to, although I’d prefer to avoid having to do that if possible. Thanks again for any help!

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a b $ Windows 7
November 23, 2011 2:16:19 AM

I would give this issue a 4/5 for taste. It shal be fun.

The first thing I would do is reset the BIOS settings... if you have a hdd plugged into sata port 1 and a hdd into sata port2.. and then you remove the mobo and put it back in... and accentually switch the two it wont boot depending on your configuration... Try switching the sata ports around if the reset don't work.. It's SUPER easy to forget which lead out of hundreds was plugged into which hdd... unless your sata-data leads are colour coded (Mine are :) )

Give that a go and get back to us.
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November 23, 2011 2:44:44 AM

agree with wombat,either that or change the boot order again in the bios.but try wombats idea first
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a b $ Windows 7
November 23, 2011 2:46:41 AM

Cheers bru
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November 23, 2011 7:36:18 AM

Best answer selected by btromans.
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November 23, 2011 7:44:50 AM

Combat Wombat said:
I would give this issue a 4/5 for taste. It shal be fun.

The first thing I would do is reset the BIOS settings... if you have a hdd plugged into sata port 1 and a hdd into sata port2.. and then you remove the mobo and put it back in... and accentually switch the two it wont boot depending on your configuration... Try switching the sata ports around if the reset don't work.. It's SUPER easy to forget which lead out of hundreds was plugged into which hdd... unless your sata-data leads are colour coded (Mine are :) )

Give that a go and get back to us.


Hey, thanks for taking the time to respond.

I went back and reset the BIOS settings and rebooted, but that by itself didn't fix the problem.

But, I went back in after resetting the BIOS and then changed the boot priority for my boot disk (bumped it up to spot one from spot two, switching it with my dvd drive), and I also changed it's number in the hard drive listing From 1 to 2.

It could have been the boot priority thing alone that fixed the issue, but in either case windows booted for me with no issues immediately after changing those settings, so something worked ;) 

And I do have my SATA cables colour coded (sticker coded actually; my motherboard came with stickers that you can label yourself and wrap around the cables), so I knew from the beginning that the actual SATA port on the motherboard my drives were connected to were in fact the same.

In any case, thanks for the help; looks like a basic reset in the BIOS and then switching boot priority again after that was basically all it took.

Now I get to shuffle over to the hardware forum and try to get my Crossfire drivers to work for the extra XFX Radeon HD 6870 I plugged into the system when I pulled my rig apart, lol; Apparently Windows shows that both devices are connected and working properly in the control panel, and it seems to think their drivers are up to date, but I'm stuck on the lowest resolution and the AMD drivers shows me an error message when I get into windows saying it's definitely not working.

But like I said, that's another forum post.

Thanks again for the help!
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a b $ Windows 7
a c 328 V Motherboard
November 23, 2011 8:02:57 AM

This topic has been closed by Nikorr.
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