Hello, I've been having a bit of an odd issue lately, that I believe has resulted in one defective HDD.
However, let me first state when I first had this hanging at BIOS issue: It first started happening after I just reapplied some new thermal paste to my CPU because I was getting bad temps. Once I got everything back in order, I noticed my computer would start up just fine, fans and lights start up -- everything perfectly fine; however, my computer was just hanging on the BIOS splash screen. So, after restarting and restarting to see if the issue would go away, I found that if I hit DEL on my keyboard and went into the BIOS, then exited out of the BIOS, (discarding changes and exiting) the computer would boot up perfectly into the OS (Windows 7 Ultimate x64) as if nothing was wrong. Also, the BIOS post beep is just the normal one beep sounding that everything is fine.
However, after this issue started rising up, I noticed that a lot of my programs or games, etc., would crash unexpectedly. Reading crash reports, that I can't provide, however, said something about kernels, or missing files. So I was thinking that maybe the HDD that I was using was defective. ( kind of a new drive, however has been sitting around for about a year without any use) I also thought that maybe my Windows 7 install might have been corrupted somehow from several BSoDs, which I can also explain.
The BSoDs were along the lines of MEMORY_MANGEMENT errors, which I've kind of read up on. Never got around to using memtest86 on my RAM, though, but I believe the issue to be related to the HDD instead. Anyway, my computer hangs at the BIOS splash screen still, but now it also blue screens after the Windows 7 logo, never staying up long enough for me to check for what the issue might be exactly, however at the bottom it states something about fltrmng.exe, I think. The computer also hangs AFTER a BSoD, as in, it doesn't fully restart afterwards, and so I have to shutdown by holding the power button.
All in all, I believe it to be a bad HDD, but I'm hoping for more insight on what the issue may be. I think that when I applied the new thermal paste, it somehow triggered a set of unfortunate events for me.
In summary: computer hangs on BIOS splash screen after applying thermal grease, which may have somehow caused a defective HDD?
My specs are:
Asus MAXIMUS V GENE
16GBs 1600 G.Skill RAM
GeForce GTX 560 Ti
i5 2500K Intel CPU
HDD in question is Western Digital 500GB 5400RPM
*Also, there was one thing about when I was applying the thermal grease, the stock heat-sink for the Intel CPUs, is really iffy, and the flat-head screwdriver I was using, slipped off the heat-sink and scraped against the mobo. However, there are no marks on the mobo, and I don't think it ran across any of the circuitry on the board. Just something I feel I might want to note.*
I'd pull the CPU, clean and reseat (since the problem seemed to start after that originally). Check for bent pins, bad contacts from CPU to socket.
Then I'd pull all the RAM, and test one stick at a time in one slot at a time with memtest+. If the BSODs are memory related, I'd guess that to be the problem. It's a tedious task, one stick in one slot at a time, til all you RAM is tested in every slot, but that the down and dirty part of memory testing...
I'd also pull all other components, including GPU and run on built in graphics while testing, then reinstall components one at a time and boot if all your RAM passes memtest...
I would just like to do a follow up on this issue, which seems to have been fixed.
The issue WAS the HDD. Turns out I had two defective HDDs. One that had died before my primary drive (was about 3 years old), and then my primary drive, which may have had a "control header issue", I think? Reading up on it from various posts from this site seemed to match what I was facing. I didn't hear any clicking sounds coming from it, but found out that after I would have the typical one beep from the BIOS, it would then freeze if I didn't hit DEL right away to go into the BIOS and somehow get around the freeze. Strange issue, but I ordered a new HDD, hooked it up and -- BAM -- right into the drive. Just need a new install of Win 7 now, but the issue was fixed.
Also, thank you scottiemedic, I did check the CPU; however, I didn't come across any bent pins. The sound that worried me seemed to be typical when latching down an Intel CPU, so no worries there.