(Topic ID: 202045)

Need help with desktop Windows 7 PC


By Lovef2k

2 years ago



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  • 35 posts
  • 10 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Lovef2k
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    #1 2 years ago

    I know there's a lot of computer savvy people here and I need some help. I have an HP (yeah I know, first mistake) approx 5 years old. Amd FX-8100 processor. Recently the monitor was going black and a loud fan would run. If I shut it down for a while, it would work normal. I opened the case and removed the GP card and blew the dust out of it and the rest of the machine. All fans are running as they should. It was good for a few weeks and now it's happening again. The graphics card is a Radeon HD 7670. I thought the hard drive may be going bad because it will boot but not show the desktop. Bought a new drive and tried to install it with a new OEM windows 7 DVD in a external usb dvd drive running it from the 2.0 usb on the back of the pc. When I get to the install screen, no drives are showing in the list. The error says there's no signed drivers. I downloaded some drivers from the HP support site and loaded them on a thumb drive. The pc only sees the thumb drive but nothing that I moved to it from my laptop. A watched several youtube vids on this problem but nothing is working. Part of me thinks the graphics card is bad. I did download and update the driver shortly before I had this issue the 2nd time.

    I was wondering if the graphics card is used immediately when the pc starts or takes over after the pc boots? So right now I have the black screen of death so they say.

    #2 2 years ago

    What model HP? Do you need the add on gfx card for a specific purpose? Have you tried running the pc without it for awhile?

    As far as the OS install:
    Is it possible you bumped your Hard Drive cable loose when removing the card or reinstalling it?

    You shouldnt need any special storage drivers for your install to see your Hard Drive unless it has some kind of special raid card or something else unique. Model number would help figure this out. If you end up needing drivers they have to be unzipped/extracted to use during the OS install. If they are .exe form the install wizard wont recognize them.

    Try the OS install without the gfx card installed. You can add it later once you are up and running. (Provided you get the new drive to showup)

    #3 2 years ago

    Does your computer have a on board video port along with the gfx card?

    You may have to disable on board as on board usually kicks off then it goes to gfx. Especially on branded machines like that.

    You could try you old hdd again. That issue of it booting and going black doesn’t seem hdd related just yet. Almost sounds like a gfx board over heating or pc over heating. Maybe even a psu. If you don’t get a windows failure, I would check those first

    #4 2 years ago

    i would concentrate on the video. Verify your monitor is good by going into the settings and see if you get something. Next verify your cord vga/hdmi is good. If those are known good then turn off the computer. Unplug the video card. Place the monitor cord into the native vga port. Reboot. If you see something your graphics card is bad. If still the same then reboot computer in safe mode. Still nothing then maybe a bad motherboard

    Mike V

    #5 2 years ago

    This has been very helpful so far. I didn't know that a pc could have it's own graphics port but mine does not. All 3 ports are on the Radeon card, HDMI, DVI and some other one that I don't recognize. I don't see anything else that would accept a vid cable. Maybe there's software that runs the video just for setup and boot purposes? So I know the monitor is working because I can see the splash screen and windows starting, then at the point at which the desktop usually appears, the screen goes dark, but I can still see a faint light if I turn off the lights in the room. The same happens when starting normally or safe mode. I bought a cheap graphics card from Amazon. It's a slight upgrade from what I have now. The PC model is a Pavilion HPE H8 1200Z.

    As far as installing a clean copy of windows. I replaced the SATA cable. I always assume bad connections as I would on a pin. When selecting custom install, no hard drives are listed. and I get the error wanting drivers, so yes maybe it's the RAID thing. I see a raid option thing pop up on the screen at start up. I have no clue what it is. I downloaded drivers from my windows 10 laptop. They are listed as applications in the folder. I don't see and option for extracting them if they are compressed. If I double click any of them, the machine wants to install them and I quit at that point.

    Before all this happened, I backed up the C drive to a passport portable drive, I thought the drivers would be on it, but I don't know what I'm looking for or where to look.

    BTW, all test passed in F2 diagnostics.

    #6 2 years ago

    Is this an lcd monitor?

    When it goes dark, and you said you see a faint light. Does that mean you can see the desktop but it is super dark?

    Have you tried a different monitor or a tv to test?

    #7 2 years ago

    Just a thought, maybe try restoring computer to a previous restore point? If this seemed to happen after installing drivers, etc, this might help.

    #8 2 years ago

    Hey something I might be able to help with! lovef2k

    Go to https://support.hp.com/rs-en/document/c01778879

    This guide will help you get the machine ready for your updated version of windows. The section you want is "Preparing the computer for Windows 7" it will help you update your BIOS and then the missing driver issue should be resolved when you try to install the new OS.

    #9 2 years ago
    Quoted from northvibe:

    Is this an lcd monitor?
    When it goes dark, and you said you see a faint light. Does that mean you can see the desktop but it is super dark?
    Have you tried a different monitor or a tv to test?

    Lcd. No I cannot see anything after it goes dark. Didnt try another monitor yet. I will later tonight when I get done work.

    #10 2 years ago
    Quoted from RonSS:

    Just a thought, maybe try restoring computer to a previous restore point? If this seemed to happen after installing drivers, etc, this might help.

    Tried it. Didnt work.

    #11 2 years ago
    Quoted from SpectreKombat:

    Hey something I might be able to help with! lovef2k
    Go to https://support.hp.com/rs-en/document/c01778879
    This guide will help you get the machine ready for your updated version of windows. The section you want is "Preparing the computer for Windows 7" it will help you update your BIOS and then the missing driver issue should be resolved when you try to install the new OS.

    Thanks. I will look at it

    #12 2 years ago

    this may help as well... first I looked up the specs of the storage options in that model machine. there is no raid option. it is strictly SATA offerings. so that is a good thing.

    in googling your issue, I found this article... it talks about going into the BIOS and making a change away from RAID setting when installing a fresh copy of windows on a new drive.

    https://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Desktop-Operating-Systems-and-Recovery/Windows-7-Install-Does-Not-Detect-Hard-Drive-Is-there-a-BIOS/td-p/6174870

    be very careful inside the BIOS, only look for this one change. make sure and select SAVE changes when leaving the BIOS screen.

    this is the text that you need to follow... (in case you don't want to click the link above.)

    "First, I set the storage mode to AHCI and then finally to IDE for better compatibility. It was set to RAID originally. RAID setting is probably what prompted the Windows 7 disc to error out asking for a driver every time during installation. That was frustrating! I probably could set it back to AHCI for performance but I'll keep it at IDE just because it works now."

    AHCI should work fine for your drive.

    best of luck. according to the article referenced above he also downloaded a storage driver (because of an error he was getting stating missing drivers, but you didn't say you were getting that error.) before changing from raid to AHCI. if you do that, make sure you put the driverxxxxx.INF file directly on the USB stick and point to that if needed...

    #13 2 years ago
    Quoted from fxdwg:

    this may help as well... first I looked up the specs of the storage options in that model machine. there is no raid option. it is strictly SATA offerings. so that is a good thing.
    in googling your issue, I found this article... it talks about going into the BIOS and making a change away from RAID setting when installing a fresh copy of windows on a new drive.
    https://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Desktop-Operating-Systems-and-Recovery/Windows-7-Install-Does-Not-Detect-Hard-Drive-Is-there-a-BIOS/td-p/6174870
    be very careful inside the BIOS, only look for this one change. make sure and select SAVE changes when leaving the BIOS screen.
    this is the text that you need to follow... (in case you don't want to click the link above.)
    "First, I set the storage mode to AHCI and then finally to IDE for better compatibility. It was set to RAID originally. RAID setting is probably what prompted the Windows 7 disc to error out asking for a driver every time during installation. That was frustrating! I probably could set it back to AHCI for performance but I'll keep it at IDE just because it works now."
    AHCI should work fine for your drive.
    best of luck. according to the article referenced above he also downloaded a storage driver (because of an error he was getting stating missing drivers, but you didn't say you were getting that error.) before changing from raid to AHCI. if you do that, make sure you put the driverxxxxx.INF file directly on the USB stick and point to that if needed...

    Thanks for that info!! For now, I'm hoping the original drive is still working but has some corrupt files and/or drivers. I got the new GPU today, thanks Amazon for leaving it the rain all day! It's a 2Gb MSI Nvidia GEforce GT 710. I went cheap since I don't do any gaming. Upon installation, I powered it up and the first screen with the HP logo (splash screen?) comes on and stays on. If I tap any key the screen goes blank. According to the specs, this card should work in my PC. So either I got a bad one or my PC doesn't like it. I put the old one back in for now.

    #14 2 years ago

    Thanks for keeping us updated!

    So when I was building pc's a while ago, some motherboards would have driver conflicts with specific brand video cards (ati vs nvidia), ONCE the windows driver was installed. However since your pc was working fine for years then conked out. I think it is something else, unless there were updates (os or driver) and a reboot. Otherwise it sounds like failing hardware. Many older computers had bad capacitors on motherboards etc that work for x minutes then fail once they get charged. So many things it could be! That is the fun part right....finding the issue?

    #15 2 years ago

    I spent a few hours on this thing last night. I'm ready to kick it to the curb! It seems that Microsoft doesn't want anybody using 7 any longer. No support or downloads that I can find. The Anytime Upgrade option is NLA. Thinking that the vid card was bad, I bought a cheap one from Amazon. When installed, it instantly freezes on the splash screen. Hitting any key causes the display to go black.

    Currently I have the original hard drive in sata0 and the new one in sata1. Original vid card back in and I can get it to boot in safe mode. According to HP, I have the latest revision BIOS. Mine is 7.17 and the HP site shows 7.16, don't know how that happened. So in safe mode, I tried to install a fresh copy of Win7 to the new disk. It's 1 Tb but only shows it as having 100mb. I'm guessing it needs to be formatted. Or it's bad. I'm trying to keep the original drive files intact. I also tried to install the driver for the new vid card and the install says my system is not compatible. I'm starting to wonder if it's worth buying a new mother board for this. It's a Gigabyte M3970AM-HP. If I decide to go Win 10, should I invest in a better processor? Will I be able to open the files on the original disk with Win 10 installed or on a new PC with Win 10?

    I have tried all the available self repair options and system restore, no success. It still wants drivers for the Win 7 OEM dvd. In safe mode I found two problems in the device mgr, Security Processor Loader not present and Consumer IR Devices not working, which I uninstalled thinking that would help.

    Lastly, I tried a different monitor that uses DVI and no change, but going back to the original monitor with the HDMI cable, I now get nothing at all. Frustrating!

    #16 2 years ago
    Quoted from Lovef2k:

    I spent a few hours on this thing last night. I'm ready to kick it to the curb! It seems that Microsoft doesn't want anybody using 7 any longer. No support or downloads that I can find. The Anytime Upgrade option is NLA. Thinking that the vid card was bad, I bought a cheap one from Amazon. When installed, it instantly freezes on the splash screen. Hitting any key causes the display to go black.
    Currently I have the original hard drive in sata0 and the new one in sata1. Original vid card back in and I can get it to boot in safe mode. According to HP, I have the latest revision BIOS. Mine is 7.17 and the HP site shows 7.16, don't know how that happened. So in safe mode, I tried to install a fresh copy of Win7 to the new disk. It's 1 Tb but only shows it as having 100mb. I'm guessing it needs to be formatted. Or it's bad. I'm trying to keep the original drive files intact. I also tried to install the driver for the new vid card and the install says my system is not compatible. I'm starting to wonder if it's worth buying a new mother board for this. It's a Gigabyte M3970AM-HP. If I decide to go Win 10, should I invest in a better processor? Will I be able to open the files on the original disk with Win 10 installed or on a new PC with Win 10?
    I have tried all the available self repair options and system restore, no success. It still wants drivers for the Win 7 OEM dvd. In safe mode I found two problems in the device mgr, Security Processor Loader not present and Consumer IR Devices not working, which I uninstalled thinking that would help.
    Lastly, I tried a different monitor that uses DVI and no change, but going back to the original monitor with the HDMI cable, I now get nothing at all. Frustrating!

    Win 7 is EOL now or soon.

    Can you look up and get old drivers for your video card? Or uninstall and leave the stock windows ones to see if the video is stable?

    #17 2 years ago

    Pull your old drive out and put the new drive in by itself then try installing windows. You should not need any drivers. The video is showing a virtual setup but the install section is the same. Hope it helps.

    #18 2 years ago
    Quoted from northvibe:

    Win 7 is EOL now or soon.
    Can you look up and get old drivers for your video card? Or uninstall and leave the stock windows ones to see if the video is stable?

    I updated all the drivers in safe mode. I will try to uninstall the vid driver and see what happens,
    tnx

    #19 2 years ago
    Quoted from Crashnburn:

    Pull your old drive out and put the new drive in by itself then try installing windows. You should not need any drivers. The video is showing a virtual setup but the install section is the same. Hope it helps. » YouTube video

    I did do that. I still get errors and and it asks for drivers.

    #20 2 years ago

    There has to be something in the bios that is causing it or the motherboard is bad. You do not need drivers for basic windows install. Did you reset the bios to defaults?

    #21 2 years ago

    I'm a little confused with what exactly happens when the original GPU is installed and you try and boot into normal mode? Do you get the HP BIOS splash screen? Or is it just a black screen from the instant the power button is pressed?

    Does the monitor standby light change from amber to green?

    #22 2 years ago
    Quoted from Crashnburn:

    There has to be something in the bios that is causing it or the motherboard is bad. You do not need drivers for basic windows install. Did you reset the bios to defaults?

    I believe I did. The first thing I tried was to run a repair disc. The instructions were vague. It either needed to boot from UEFI or Legacy. I tried both. I can't find the path or key to get into the BIOS settings.

    #23 2 years ago
    Quoted from Spyderturbo007:

    I'm a little confused with what exactly happens when the original GPU is installed and you try and boot into normal mode? Do you get the HP BIOS splash screen? Or is it just a black screen from the instant the power button is pressed?
    Does the monitor standby light change from amber to green?

    Yes the monitor power light changes from yellow to green, or blue, I can't remember which. The original problem started with the monitor going blank while PC was running. A fan would run loudly when this happened. I figured the PC was over heating. I dusted the GPU with compressed air. It worked fine for about a month and then I heard the fan coming on again. After this, the PC would act like it was starting. The splash screen comes on and then it starts to boot. Starting windows appears and then the swirly thing. Usually at this point the desk top would appear but it just goes blank. I blew out the entire case with compressed air just to make sure it was clean. I checked all the fans, they are running. Somewhere in the middle of this

    I searched for an updated GPU driver, automatically from the device manager screen. The problem started soon after.

    So maybe either GPU is bad, the mother board, or the PCI slot is bad. Or corrupt files on the disk drive?

    I took a break from this for a few days. I might start on it again soon and post what happens.

    #24 2 years ago

    Looking at mobos now. I found that the original board doesn't support on board graphics.

    2 weeks later
    #25 1 year ago

    So I believe my original hard drive is still good. I can get to boot in safe mode. New GPU didn't help. Monitor verified as good. At this point, I'm hoping either the RAM, cpu, or the mobo is bad. I have new RAM on the way( upgrading from 6 to 8 MB. . I will try swapping into original board first. If that fails, I have a tested used mobo that I got for $32. Also a new AMD FX8320E CPU. The issue with that is the heat sink that came with the cpu has a different mounting type. So I will need to use the original fan which is actually bolted to the board.

    This will be the last HP I ever own.

    #26 1 year ago
    Quoted from Lovef2k:

    So I believe my original hard drive is still good. I can get to boot in safe mode. New GPU didn't help. Monitor verified as good. At this point, I'm hoping either the RAM, cpu, or the mobo is bad. I have new RAM on the way( upgrading from 6 to 8 MB. . I will try swapping into original board first. If that fails, I have a tested used mobo that I got for $32. Also a new AMD FX8320E CPU. The issue with that is the heat sink that came with the cpu has a different mounting type. So I will need to use the original fan which is actually bolted to the board.
    This will be the last HP I ever own.

    At the rate you are working on your rig, I think you should build your own PC next then you can pick cheaper quality parts and a case that allows more air flow.

    Anywho, you are troubleshooting the issue and should find the issue soon!

    #27 1 year ago
    Quoted from northvibe:

    At the rate you are working on your rig, I think you should build your own PC next then you can pick cheaper quality parts and a case that allows more air flow.
    Anywho, you are troubleshooting the issue and should find the issue soon!

    I was thinking the same thing. I have learned alot during this and building one doesn't seem all that difficult.

    #28 1 year ago
    Quoted from Lovef2k:

    At this point, I'm hoping either the RAM, cpu, or the mobo is bad.

    Your computer will test the RAM for you if you tell it to. When booting press and hold whatever key kicks you into BIOS setup before attempting to load the OS. Sometimes F1, sometimes Delete, sometimes Insert, sometimes F12. If you can see your screen during a Safe Mode boot, then you can see the screen in BIOS setup. Look around for the option to either test memory or to run a full memory test at boot (usually set instead to Fast Boot or something like that since nobody wants to wait for a full memory check at boot).

    #29 1 year ago

    Also the ultimate boot cd (live Linux cd with tons of tools on it) is a great tool for ram, cpu, hdd etc tests that go really in depth ie block/bit by block/bit.

    http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/

    #30 1 year ago

    Ok, I'm finally getting somewhere. I figured the ram was still good because it passed the smart test in the diagnostics and was also able to boot in safe mode. I tried to update the display adapter driver and windows kept saying it already had the most current driver, even though it was dated 2012. I checked AMD website and they released a new driver not too long ago. I got fed up and uninstalled the display adapter all together. I then placed the new GPU (Geforce GT-710) and it still wont boot. I went back to the original AMD and whatta ya know! It booted. The resolution is way off though. None of my files were affected so I know the HDD is good. After booting I got a window titled Hydravision. It reads, AMD's desktop manager is being unloaded because an AMD display driver is not currently running. If you have administrator privileges, click reset to revert to default settings. Or select cancel to close this window with no changes. To permanently remove an installed AMD display driver, use the add/remove programs control panel.

    So point of decision now. Do I uninstall the driver and try to download the latest from AMD or install the cd from the new GPU. Or both? I'm afraid to try the new one because it won't let the PC boot. I read the my mother board doesn't have on board graphics. So I'm guessing Hydravision is a HP program that was installed when the pc was built?

    #31 1 year ago

    Since the pc was running, I decided to re-sync my ipod to save all of my songs. My Itunes was out of date so I installed the latest version. I asked me to re-start the computer and I did. It didn't reboot so now I'm running start up repair, ugh!

    3 weeks later
    #32 1 year ago

    PC is partially working now. If I uninstall the original radeon GPU and reboot the pc, it will run. It runs on standard VGA and the display looks funny. I guess it's because I have a wide screen monitor. If I restart the pc, it will reinstall the radeon driver and the screen will go black as before. I bought 2 different brand new GPU's. Neither one will work. I tried a new Gigabyte Radeon R7 240, When installed, the splash screen will not come on. Now this is after, changing mother board, hard driver, ram and power supply and processor.
    I also tried to install a new copy of windows 7 to a new hard driver, and I can't even do that! Stumped...

    #33 1 year ago

    Not to be crazy but have you tried a nvidia based gpu? Or have they only been ati?

    #34 1 year ago

    No. The original GPU is the radeon. I tried the Geforce GT-710 and the and the one mentioned on my last post.

    #35 1 year ago

    Actually, the first one that I tried, the Geforce was nvidia and that didn't work. I did get splash screen but is went blank as soon as I hit any key so I couldn't get to the bios screen.

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