TechSpot

Multiple BsoD = Complete Frustration

By b0rs
Nov 9, 2008
  1. I'm the owner of a

    Sony Vaio
    Windows MCE 2005
    3.4gh p4 Intel 915 chipset
    2 gigs of ram
    Radeon X300 Video Card

    About two weeks ago I started getting a Bios message on startup stating "Master Disk SMART is giong bad, backup or replace." It's been a decent computer overall so I endedup buying another Maxtor 7y250m0 250gig HDD to replace it. In the mean time before it arrived, I started getting random blue screens, some about memory management, others about page_fault, and quite a few other ones. When the new HDD arrived, I formatted and began installing Windows XP MCE on it, with the old HDD still hooked up. It got to th end of the installation and as it was "Saving Settings", blue screen pops up about NTSF.sys I tried reformatting the drive and reinstalling. Gets to the same point every time and then throws a different blue screen at me.
    So now I thought the problem was with the DDR ram. I had just recently bought another gig of ram, that worked perfectly fine, so I yanked the old sticks of ram and tried reinstalling on the new HDD, only to get a blue screen at the same point. I even tried resetting the Bios by pulling the battery. So now I'm stuck... I've tried everything I possibly can from:
    Repairing files on both Hdds
    Pulling the Bios battery
    Pulliing Ram
    I even took the whole computer apart until i had an empty case, cleaned everything off, and reinstalled all the components, inspecting them as I went.

    I can't get to the desktop on the old HDD because everytime I run boot, both HDDs go right to "Resuming Windows Setup"

    I'm thinking the problem at this point is with the mobo. It really cant be anything else at this point. Does anyone have any suggestions, or had this problem? I tallied up the cost for a new completely custom computer. Given I keep my 2 DVD RW drives, power supply, ethernet card, and card reader... It's gonna cost me 600 bucks for a new mobo & chip, graphics card, pcu fan, HDD, computer tower, and some cables.

    Check out these links and tell me what you guys think

    Tower: http://store.nvidia.com/DRHM/servle...dia&Locale=en_US&Env=BASE&productID=105950900

    Mobo & Chip: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=4198835&CatId=2235

    Ram (x4): http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=2176264&CatId=1554

    Video Card: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=3859432&CatId=1560

    In the end it'll be a

    Nvidia Master 690 tower
    3.2 ghtz processor ( I might upgrade the chip to a dual core)
    4 gigs of ram
    2 dvd rw drives
    multi card reader drive
    5.1 suround sound system
    Sony 19" HD moniter
    1 Maxtor 250 gig HDD
    1 Seagate 250 gig HDD
    GeForce 8500 GT HD video card

    Keeping on the subject though, any suggestions as to what my problem is? Any help would be greaty appreciated!
     
  2. natedog102

    natedog102 TS Rookie

    I'm currently analyzing your problem, but I do have one question. Why did you need to keep your old HDD still attached? There are a number of possible issues. Be sure (if you have an EIDE HDD) to check proper jumper settings.

    And just to inform you: S.M.A.R.T. is a nifty feature that tells you if your hard drive is showing signs of going bad. This includes bad sectors, faulty MBR, anything.

    Sorry, I digress. I would recommend you attempt to install the OS without the old hard drive attached, making sure the new HDD is set to master (not cable select. God, I hate cable select, lol). If using SATA, use the SATA0 slot on your motherboard.

    Hope this helps,
    Nathan
     
  3. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Thank you Nathan. As you have mentioned, I have tried this already. I tried the install with the old HDD unplugged, both sata and power. I have not tried to install MCE using the master sata connection though. I will give this a try right now.
     
  4. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Just tried your option Nathan. It got a little bit farther on the install but still got a blue screen. It got to the point where it was "Removing any possible temp files from install" and then blue screened, but didnt mention any reason why. Something odd also happened that I've never seen before... During installation, It asked me for CD #2 so I popped it in. After 10 seconds, it asked me for cd # 1 again. I'm just going to build the custom comp. I'm tired of messing around with this stupid thing.
     
  5. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Actually I'd suggest to run Bios setup defaults (usually a key like DEL or F2 at system startup, then locate setup defaults)

    And before continuing Setup, load (boot) from the Windows CD again
    But this time remove the Partition, when given the option to

    Failing all this:
    Remove any extra Hardware installed (if possible)
    Try with one stick of Ram (if you have two fitted
    Or run Memtest on your Ram
     
  6. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    I've reset CMOS and Bios before that last install. How would I do a memtest on my ram? May be via DOS? I can't get to the desktop to run any programs. I'm currenly on a laptop right now and the other computer in the house isnt mine, so I dont want to crack the case open. It probbly doesnt even use DDR ram to begin with
     
  7. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    You will need to create the --> Memtest <-- bootable CD (which runs outside Windows) from a working computer with a CD Writer installed

    Once you create the Memtest disc, please boot from it
     
  8. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Well I know for a fact my old HDD is shot. It still doesnt explain the blue screen on the new ones though. I've downloaded those files and am going to run memtest. Thanks kims, i'll let you know the outcome

    lol it's only 14% complete and i alredy have 47 errors. When it finishes, I'll pull the old ram and test the new

    21% 150 errors... holy crip its a crapple
     
  9. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Thanks for the update :grinthumb

    Next member, with issues to be resolved, please... :)

    This one completed
     
  10. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    55% and 479 errors. I bet the ram was writing corrupt files to my registry ect ect the whole time. No wonder Windows woudnt install. Thanks for the info Kim!! I'll keep you updated on how those new ram sticks test out. If they fail I'm gonna bring them back and buy a new graphics card with the money.

    One more question though, is it possible for bad ram to corrupt new ram?
     
  11. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    No :)

    Also stop replying to yourself, use Edit instead, if you want to add to your last recent post, if that is still the last post in the thread
    I'm getting too many emails ;)
     
  12. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Lol sorry about the email thing. It turns out I had like 60,000 errors on the current 2 gigs. I pulled the old ram and am testng the new ram now and its got over 43000 errors. Can old ram corrupt new ram Kim? Sorry didnt read the No part. I used edit this time lol
     
  13. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    :grinthumb .
     
  14. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    One last question before I conclude my evening on this forum and refrain from bombarding your email Kim :approve: Will new ram always pass with no errors or is it common for new ram to even have a few errors but still pass? None of my ram has passed 1 test sucessfully lol. I'm gonna resort to doing 1 stick at a time. Thanks again Kim!
     
  15. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Put it this way, if new Ram fail, have it replaced under warranty!

    Mind you, with the Ram out blow out any dust in the channels (if any)

    Also, I did see once a faulty CPU cause Ram to look bad (now that's thrown a spanner into the works :suspiciou ) Mainly caused by over-clocking it

    Lets just go by faulty Ram; not faulty CPU
    But test without over-clocking, by running Bios setup defaults (that you have done already :cool: )
     
  16. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Update:

    A friend I work with is the IT guy for the company. He loaned me a gig of ram to retry the installation. Will a bad mobo kill the ram? What actually causes ram to corrupt? Just old age and use? Thanks again
     
  17. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    It is possible for a faulty Motherboard to hurt Ram

    I know this because once I had to repair a user's system, who had purchased Ram and then put it in backwards (forced obviously) and tried to turn it on.
    Anyway, the new Ram was eventually found to be faulty (It could have been the forcing issue!)

    Now, Ram does use Voltage, so I suppose if the incorrect voltage was being distributed to it, then yes the Ram could then fault, or "kill" it

    "Lets just go by faulty Ram" (originally) not faulty Motherboard or PowerSupply at this point. But this new Ram, it is compatible with your system, and it is known to be working before hand?
     
  18. b0rs

    b0rs TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    It's not new, its out of other computers from the office. Yes, it's compatible with my mobo, and yes it has worked previously. I'm going to run a memtest on it before I try to install the O/S again. If the ram somehow malfunctions, I'm going tostart assuming my mobo is to blame. I'm going to return the new sticks of ram I bought last week. The good thing is they never wrote me an invoice, which states" Removal of any hardware will void the warranty" I still have my debit card receipt so they pretty much can't tell me "No, were not taking it back" The guys there are pretty cool though so I dont think Ill have any problems to begin with. The guy who owns the place even put the ram in for me so they can't say I forced and damaged it, which is also another plus. It wasnt new RAM either, I think they had yanked it from a previous machine. It was probably bad to begin with and that's why they tried to sell it lol. It pays to be a member of this forum and know/learn your stuff before your wallet gets jacked by computer companies.
     
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