PC Won't Boot after Switching GPU

I'm switching from a NVIDIA GTS 250 to an AMD Radeon 7850. My system specs have been checked out and should be fine to run the 7850. Here's what happens:

I pop in the 7850. My motherboard screen pops up. Windows 7 begins to boot. About a second into the animated loading icon, it stops, and my computer restarts right away. After my motherboard screen it brings me to a screen similar to the safe-mode screen when you hard reset, except it says something about windows not being able to start because of a recent hardware change. It gives me the option to run a diagnostic (which only reports that it can roll back my computer to a time when it worked, which I don't want to do because it won't solve the problem), or I can start windows normally, which will, of course, make me start all over again with the restarting when it hits the windows loading screen.

I've tried checking my connections, and everything seems okay. The card has power. I'm fairly certain it's well connected in the slot (although the end toward the back of the computer didn't quite *click* into place like the front half did). I haven't knocked any cables loose. In fact, I tried putting in my old card, and it worked, albeit everything was noticeably slower, which I couldn't explain. After getting back in with my old card, I went into Device Manager and uninstalled my GTS 250 and the checked the box when it asked to uninstall the drivers for it as well. I go into low-res mode after the motherboard switches to onboard video, then I shut off the computer, switch back to the Radeon 7850, and no dice. Same problem.

Does anyone have anything else I can try? I've always heard that a lot of cards that get RMA'd are done so because the customer doesn't quite know what they're doing, and I'm REALLY hoping that this is precisely that situation.

Any help would be fantastic. Thanks!
17 answers Last reply
More about boot switching
  1. What's your Power Supply Unit?
  2. You really should have removed Nvidia drivers before plugging in the ATI card, Nvidia drivers are shits like that.

    Your only certain way would be to reinstall windows.

    Do any of your mates have a card you could borrow?
  3. teh_gerbil said:
    You really should have removed Nvidia drivers before plugging in the ATI card, Nvidia drivers are shits like that.

    Your only certain way would be to reinstall windows.

    Do any of your mates have a card you could borrow?

    he already went back and uninstalled them. just plugging in the card before is not going to magically ruin windows and there is NO reason to reinstall windows yet.
  4. It would be okay if you would have changed anything but the VGA. This was not supposed to happen. My suggestion is, after you have looked over your PSU again, to make sure it is compatible
    (be it at least 500w FSP,Chieftec,CoolerMaster,Corsair,RaptoXx, no cheap brands like Codegen/HKC/LC power) plug in your old Nvidia card and back everything up to a storage drive. Then format, install new windows with the 7850 plugged in. If it still doesn't solve the problem, contact your seller. Chances are the card is broken.
  5. Hi there. Thanks for the responses so far.

    I have a Corsair 650W PSU. I even checked everything out on a PSU calculator and everything seemed to check out fine. Granted, I don't know if I calculated for having the overclocked edition of the card from Sapphire, but it wasn't a close call when I ran the tool: I had a good 1-150W more than the recommended, and that was based on full load.

    The only thing about reinstalling windows is that I don't want to go through all of that if it isn't necessary. I want to make very certain that I exhaust all my options.

    Also, yes, I have uninstalled the NVIDIA drivers through Device Manager (or so it says it did), and the old card works fine it seems. Could it really be that the whole thing got botched up just because I didn't uninstall the old drivers before I booted up the AMD card? Is there a way to check what file it was trying to boot before it crashed? Like a windows error log somewhere?

    Also, as a side note: I can't even boot up in Safe Mode with the new card installed in my rig. Frankly, I don't even know what that means.
  6. About to try and go through the system and make sure all of the NVIDIA stuff is gone, then going to go ahead and pre-install the AMD drivers that came on a disc with the card.

    Still looking for any help at all with this topic.
  7. Hello,

    Try booting in safe-mode with your old card, then running Driver Sweeper (I'm not sure if I can post links here) to completely remove the Nvidia drivers.

    After that, restart your computer again in safe mode, then install ATI Drivers (catalyst) (The latest version is recommended of course).

    Then shutdown your pc, replace the card with the new one, and boot your pc normally.
  8. Thanks for the reply, DarkBlack. I just tried running Driver Sweeper last night and it didn't work. But I am going to try running it in safe mode with the old card, and then I will try installing the drivers that came on the disc with the new card.
  9. Also, I have an update that might give a little more information to someone who understands what it all means.

    I said that when the computer automatically restarts, it gives me two options: start Windows normally, or run Startup Repair. Well I ran Startup Repair again, and I looked at the detailed report and copied down the Problem Signature. I don't know if it will help at all, but I will paste it here.

    Problem signature

    Problem Event Name: StartupRepairOffline
    Problem Signature 01: 6.1.7600.16385
    Problem Signature 02: 6.1.7600.16385
    Problem Signature 03: unknown
    Problem Signature 04: 136
    Problem Signature 05: AutoFailover
    Problem Signature 06: 1
    Problem Signature 07: BadDriver
    OS Version: 6.1.7600.
    Locale ID: 1033

    Root cause found:
    A recent driver installation or upgrade may be preventing the system from starting.

    Specifically I was wondering if Problem Signature 7 and the root cause found are definitely going to indicate a bad driver as the culprit, or is that Startup Repair's way of saying it has no idea what's wrong?
  10. Yes, really means a Bad Driver...though *that* includes disk corruption as well as the (in this case) more likely missing driver files/mismatched driver files. Did you run DriverSweep?
  11. Thanks for the response, Temile.

    I did run Driver Sweeper (latest version). It pulled up 3 NVIDIA labels (PhysX, Chipset, and some other). I've run it both in normal Windows, as well as in Safe Mode. I also went into Control Panel and removed all programs made by NVIDIA, just to be safe. Sometimes when I would run Driver Sweeper, it would have one remaining .dll that wouldn't seem to go away, but after I ran it in Safe Mode, it seemed to go away.

    So here's what I've tried in the past hour or so:

    Booted into Safe Mode. Ran Device Manager to uninstall my GTS 250. Ran Device Sweeper. Ticked the 3 NVIDIA labels and hit Analyze, then Cleaned just to be safe. Driver Sweeper reports no more NVIDIA .dll's. Restarted computer and booted back into Safe Mode.

    Then I popped in the driver disc that came with my new Radeon 7850, and I tried to install the drivers in Safe Mode. It throws me an error, "Failed to load detection driver." I try going on AMD's website and downloading the drivers manually, which I do, then run that installer, because hey, I figure it could just be the old drivers on the disc aren't cutting it. Not so. The new installer throws me the same error.

    Any more ideas based on the new information?
  12. Still not able to install the Catalyst drivers. Getting ready to make a Windows 7 boot disc and manually backing up all my essential files to a USB, then I'll do a clean install with the new video card.

    I just want to know at this point if anyone thinks that a clean install of Windows won't fix this problem. I'll admit I'll be a little more than irritated if I spend another day off doing a clean install just to have the card still be borked and require an RMA.

    Any more advice? I'm really just trying to make sure this will absolutely fix it, since nothing else seems to work.
  13. You shouldn't have ANY issues. Just take the card back. If the next one is still s**tty, then it's not the card.
  14. Well at this point, it really seems like it's the card. I haven't seen or heard of any compatible issues with my mobo, and I have a 650W PSU, which should be more than enough.

    I just don't understand why, 1) after uninstalling and Driver Sweeping the NVIDIA drivers that there should be any conflicts, and 2) why after uninstalling the NVIDIA drivers, I couldn't turn around and install the AMD drivers. The first makes me think it's the card, the second makes me think it's a driver conflict.

    I'll keep the thread updated on what I'm doing and finding out about the problem.
  15. Have you at all tried using a fresh, up-to-date version of the drivers downloaded straight from the AMD website ?
  16. I had tried that, yes, Darkblack. I manually got them from AMD and it threw me the same error.

    However, I went ahead with the system restore and reinstalled Windows 7 with the new card installed. This fixed everything, so it was apparently just a conflict of driver issue. I am slightly annoyed that I wasn't able to get it sorted with a combination of driver sweeper and manually rooting around, but ah well. It worked out splendiferously. There was probably a way to do it without doing a reinstall, but I think in my case, a driver may have been corrupted when I tried to have them both on at the same time, and it just mucked everything up.

    Thanks everyone who posted! I really appreciate all of the ideas and guidance while I was having this problem. Cheers!
  17. Ah that's excellent, will have to keep that in mind, the humble sys restore is worthy.
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