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Building first computer, working out the kinks

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Short version: problem with: BIOS?, hard drive, memory? (OS installed and apparently working, but buggy/choppy/freezing)

Hey guys, this is my first time posting in a computer help forum so I hope I give you all the information you might need, if not let me know and I can update later tonight.

I recently decided to build my first computer, and with some advice from my friends I researched all the parts and managed to get them together without breaking anything (as far as I can tell).

Slowly but surely, I've been able to get things to work but there are still some problems persisting that keep it from running smoothly. Currently the case is all assembled and there doesn't appear to be anything physically wrong with it, however when I go to start it up this is what happens:

1) The computer turns on, fans, lights, etc. seem to work but nothing comes on the screen for a little bit. Then either it restarts itself or I have to hit restart at which point it turns on and actually seems to boot.
2) First I get an error message about "previous overclock failed" (even though I'm not overclocking) I select reseting the BIOS and it starts booting again.
3) Next it gives me an error saying "hard drive not detected" and shoots back to the BIOS. I check all the BIOS settings- it can see the hard drive and list its specs.
4) I select "discard changes and exit" and it finally booted to the OS installation (vista)

At this point I was able to install the OS, except that every time it restarted the computer during installation it would go through the same process of "overclock failed" and "hard drive not detected", but by repeating what I did earlier in continued and completed the OS installation with no other problems.

I finally got to a desktop where things seemed to be working just fine, then I started installing drivers and during the installation of Catalyst for my video card the system froze and crashed.

When I started it up again it went through "overclock failed" and "hard drive not detected" as before, but I was still able to get through that and reach the OS on the hard drive- which took a considerable amount of time to load. I then began checking drivers to see what was installed and what wasn't, thinking that something got screwed up when I was installing the drivers for the video card I went to ATI's website (from the moment desktop appeared up until this point it was running smoothly) and the system started slowing down and getting very choppy (mouse jumping around etc.) and then froze again.

Last verdict from one of my friends said it might be something with the memory and that I should try booting with only one card, switching them etc. but I'm pretty sure the memory is fine.

These are the specs:

MSI X48C Platinum mobo
Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 3.16GHz 1333MHz CPU
Patriot 4GB DDR3-1333 RAM
Diamond HD Radeon 4870 1GB GDDR5 GC
Western Digital 1TB SATA 7200 RPM 16MB HD

Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!
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Update: Fixed! Something was screwy with my memory, tried running with just one stick and it goes fine. Going to tinker to try and get it running with both but I think I can take it from here. Thanks anyways! Heh.
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