Before attempting to install Windows, I noticed BIOS said .4 GHz and thought maybe I was misreading or that it might be a meaningless glitch.
Windows 7 install moved extremely slow (left on overnight, still "preparing your computer for first use." I think it really is running at .4 GHz. It stays on that screen for about 15 minutes, and then goes black. I left it on black for an hour earlier--not sure whether it's doing anything or not. The LED on the monitor turns orange and there's no HDD activity.
[EDIT: It had just gone into hibernation. Pressing the power button on the case brought the picture back, still on "preparing" after an hour.]
BIOS shows CPU temperature 31C, same as motherboard. I haven't seen any signs of overheating.
There are no relevant BIOS options to change. Loading "optimal defaults" did nothing.
I was thinking I'd let the install finish and figure something out once I got into Windows, but I don't think it's going to happen.
The only other thing I can think of to try is to remove the CPU and put it back in again, but I'd think it would just not work at all if it wasn't installed properly.
EDIT: Thought of something else--the fan connections. I'm opening the case again to make sure each fan is connected to the correct header on the motherboard. Hopefully I'll be back later to put SOLVED in the title.
EDIT: No. CPU fan was plugged into the CPU fan header on the board. The board has headers for rear and front case fans, which I didn't use. Is there any way that not having fans plugged into those could cause this?
I couldn't find any options that looked helpful. Tried disabling multicore just because it was an option. Tried setting it to recognize fans on next boot. That's pretty much it under BIOS.
I think I have two case fans lying around that I can plug into the fan headers on the motherboard. It doesn't make sense to me that they would require them to be plugged in, but it's the only thing I can find to do differently.
So I followed the advice and bought a new CPU, one listed as compatible. It made sense. Unfortunately it didn't work. Even with the new CPU, BIOS shows .4 GHz and I'm still unable to install Windows 7.
I don't remember if I ever plugged fans into the motherboard, was out of town all week. I haven't contacted any manufacturers yet. Does anyone have other ideas?
EDIT: Wasn't the fans.
EDIT: Still no response on the Intel support forum. Does anyone know how one can find and install an alternate BIOS version?
The only other thing I can think of is a bad mobo. Bad mobo's can cause a million different problems and since it links everything it can mess with the GPU (bad 16X socket), cpu, lan port and alot of other things. I would RMA the board and see if that solves the problem.