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Bootup/install issue

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So a while ago my computer wasn't allowing me to install sound drivers, which wasn't too much of an issue to me. So I waited until i got a 2TB external drive to back up all my data. I got that two days ago along with a copy of Windows 7, and last night i tried to upgrade (I know, fresh install, just semantics there) from XP.
So i went into the installer, formatted my partitions so it'd be a truly fresh 7 install and let it do its thing. About 5% into the installation it gave me a message saying key windows system32 boot.ini file was missing and that the installation would be terminated. Now I know that's generally a serious problem but didn't think it'd be an issue with a new install. But to play on the safe side, I put in my Fedora 10 CD to install that just as a safety measure.
Well, that didn't matter because I didn't even get to the POST. My BIOS was screwed from this installation error somehow. I'm fairly tech saavy myself so i had a few ideas at this point, but I wasn't about to touch the BIOS or CMOS without second and third opinions. In the end I called over a friend that actually has a networking and an computer engineering degree, several steps later we flashed it and that stage of the problem was fixed.
The problem I have now is when i try to install any OS onto the drive, the installer freezes as soon as it starts to load the actually install files. XP freezes at "Setting up Windows Components", Win7 freezes at the "Starting windows" splash screen as soon as the logo is fully formed, and Linux freezes when the cursor gets to the end of the first line trying to load the installer.
At this point my friend and I had run out of ideas, so I completely disassembled my system and started from scratch, which didn't help.
I only have one 320gb hdd installed, one CD/DVD drive, 2gb ram, ASUS PM2/socket M+ I believe is the motherboard branding, and Nvidia GeForce 8500 Graphics.

At this point I'm thinking I'll either need a new MOBO or a new BIOS chip, but i'm hoping it doesn't come down to that.

Edited by Shepcon, 13 June 2010 - 08:57 AM.

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Did you test your other hardware like your ram with MEMTEST86 or your HD with an utility program from the manufacturer of your drive.

Freezing at the beginning of installing Windows or linux would suggest a maybe faulty HD.
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If you have a system speaker connected, do you get any beeps at startup. one beep, everything OK, any more, consult your mobo manual for beep ;information.
If everything OK, restart the system and enter BIOS.
Load basic configuration or optimal configuration, save and exit.
Restart the computer and enter BIOS again.
Change the boot order to boot from CD first.
Insert you OS CD in the player, save and exit BIOS.
At startup your instaltion should begin.
Any results?
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Test your memory.
Broni's Instructions:

If you have more than one RAM module installed, try starting computer with one RAM stick at a time.

NOTE Keep in mind, the manual check listed above is always superior to the software check, listed below. DO NOT proceed with memtest, if you can go with option A

B. If you have only one RAM stick installed...
...run memtest...

1. Download - Pre-Compiled Bootable ISO (.zip)
2. Unzip downloaded memtest86+-2.11.iso.zip file.
3. Inside, you'll find memtest86+-2.11.iso file.
4. Download, and install ImgBurn: http://www.imgburn.com/
5. Insert blank CD into your CD drive.
6. Open ImgBurn, and click on Write image file to disc
7. Click on Browse for a file... icon:

Posted Image

8. Locate memtest86+-2.11.iso file, and click Open button.
9. Click on ImgBurn green arrow to start burning bootable memtest86 CD:

Posted Image

10. Once the CD is created, boot from it, and memtest will automatically start to run.

The running program will look something like this depending on the size and number of ram modules installed:

Posted Image

It's recommended to run 5-6 passes. Each pass contains very same 8 tests.

This will show the progress of the test. It can take a while. Be patient, or leave it running overnight.

Posted Image

The following image is the test results area:

Posted Image

The most important item here is the “errors” line. If you see ANY errors, even one, most likely, you have bad RAM.
Test your hard drive.
Run hard drive diagnostics: http://www.tacktech....ay.cfm?ttid=287
Make sure, you select tool, which is appropriate for the brand of your hard drive.
Depending on the program, it'll create bootable floppy, or bootable CD.
If downloaded file is of .iso type, use Burncdcc Link is in my signature below

NOTE...do not put a blank cd in until burncdcc opens the tray for you
1. Start BurnCDCC
2. Browse to the ISO file you want to burn on cd/dvd ....
3. Select the ISO file
4. click on Start
NOTE. If your hard drive is made by Toshiba, unfortunately, you're out of luck, because Toshiba doesn't provide any diagnostic tool. If you are unsure of the drive manufacturer then you can try seagate diagnostics It sometimes works on other manufacturers.

Try using Dban (derick boot and nuke) to security wipe the drive clean. (Link in signature).
And then try to install.

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