After that Windows was stuck on "Starting Windows" I went through all kinds of mess for hours, including installing windows on multiple HDs (all installs getting stuck at "Starting Windows", until I pulled a single hard drive used for storage. A WD Caviar Green drive.
I've yet to do much testing past this right now. I'm just trying to get my computer set up to a usable state again.
What I'd like to know, if anyone can give some insight, how in the world a storage hard drive can keep windows from booting? Even on multiple fresh installs on different hard drives. I even had trouble getting my Vista/Windows 7 DVDs to even run (was installing both in an attempt to find a solution). They would often get to "Starting Windows" and then go to a black screen, whereas normally they'd launch with the options for installing/repairing windows.
And I wasn't sure where to post this. It seems to be both a hardware and OS issue?
Sure I was looking for a reason to make room and upgrade to an SSD but spending an almost literal half day to do it is a bit much....