My HTPC has a problem, please help me!

Discussion in 'Home Theater PCs' started by Muse, Aug 25, 2018.

  1. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Yeah, that very thought crossed my mind as I was unboxing early this morning (after midnight!). I found that out when I thought to install my Intel 120GB SSD in my XP desktop a few years ago. I didn't bother trying after I found out it wouldn't work out. That's why I'm still using a very very old 120GB IDE HD in there for my three OS_APPS partitions.
     
  2. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Did you get a chance to try out the video card? I assume that you haven't tried installing Windows 7 yet? I would suggest, if you are going to install it to the SSD I sent, DO NOT connect ANY other storage or OS drives when you install Windows 7, JUST the blank OS SSD, and let it install to it, then re-connect your other drives.
     
  3. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Yeah, when I installed XP to my 3rd OS partition on my OS_APPS 120GB IDE HD a few weeks ago I regretted not having disconnected the 2TB data drive. My drive letters got all screwed up and I had to fix that. IIRC, I disconnected the 2TB and reinstalled!

    I haven't installed the video card yet, reason being that I'm doing some HDTV stuff over the weekend (a recording is in progress right now!!! I'm timeshifting, will start watching it soon, skipping commercial breaks). I won't install the video card or get into the Win7 install scenario until Tuesday or Wednesday. Meantime, the system is acting "normally." I have no idea when or why it goes crazy, necessitating a boot into Safe Mode or why doing that usually stops things from being crazy. Swapping out the video card will be the next step.
     
  4. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    I just installed it. THERE'S A PROBLEM! Here's the notes I took while doing the installation, after I got Windows booted:

    Windows was interminably searching for a suitable driver so I canceled that and went looking for the video drivers I'd used when first setting up the system with the Gigabyte mobo:

    175.16_geforce_winxp_32bit_english_whql.exe (38MB) wouldn't install. It said it didn't contain drivers appropriate for my hardware.

    So, I started the installation of the other video driver I had tucked away for the Gigabyte EP 45 UD3R mobo, which is 340.52-desktop-winxp-32bit-english.exe (168MB). That appears to be going OK. I opted to do a custom and "clean install" which wasn't the default. I am letting it install all options.

    Right now it's downloading and installing the .NET framework, which is taking quite a bit of time.

    Had the typical complaint about not passing standards and I said "Continue Anyway."

    The driver appears to be installing...

    I'm in low res right now. Presumably I will need to reboot, then change my display settings.

    Because the HDMI and DVI connectors are reversed to the way I had the box set up before there will be some changes, but they may be for the better, actually (the main display is now my 23", not the 19" display, for one thing). Not sure. I could, with different cabling change it back to the way it was, I'm pretty sure, but I had a 15' DVI - HDMI cable that I'm using for this.

    So, the installation finished and I rebooted and the res was already set at the native res of my 23" display, 1920 x 1080. However there's an odd problem. The display goes very momentarily evidently blank every ~1.1 seconds. The effect is as if you blinked once a second! It's completely regular. I've never seen anything like this on a PC before. I rebooted and went in the BIOS (no flickering there), looked my settings and saw nothing weird... they are basically plain vanilla. There's a setting in there for video frequency and it's set at AUTO. I could change that and see if it changes anything, there are around 5 non-auto settings I could try. I sort of doubt that doing so would change anything. What do you make of this?
     
  5. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Update. Things changed mysteriously. Maybe because I monkeyed in display settings trying to get the 2nd monitor (19") to display something, hopefully the extended desktop. Couldn't get it to show anything, even an "Identify." I opened my HDTV program, where I have the DVI HD output going to either my projector or the 23" display depending on the through of an HDMI switch I have in the system. Sending the output to the 23" display had the HDTV picture. Shutting off the HDTV program, the desktop showed up the the 19" display like it used to with the other video card. So, now anyway, behavior appears to be like it was before switching the cards! Before installing the Gigabyte mobo I used to have the desktop on the 23" display which was cool and maybe I could get that happening but since this isn't my main system by any means (I'm trying to use it for as little as possible other than HDTV) I figure I can live with this behavior.
     
  6. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Yeah, I believe that those drivers are for the 8800GT / 9600GSO G80 and friends GPUs, and pre-dates Fermi.
    Yeah, that should hopefully work. I don't personally install all of the options, I disable the "3D Vision" stuff, as I'm not currently interested in using 3D Glasses.
     
  7. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Try:
    1) Un-installing the 3D Vision stuff.
    2) Setting your monitor to 60Hz exactly, and not 59.97 or 59Hz, like it sometimes defaults to.
    3) Seeing if your monitor has an "auto-adjust". Generally, I thought that feature was only for VGA displays, but maybe it's worth a shot.
     
  8. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Ok, I guess that sounds promising. Hopefully, you don't get GPU discolorations, or artifacts, or anything amiss now.
     
  9. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    I didn't notice "anything amiss." AFAIK the behavior is just like it was with the other GPU. So far so good, will see if the crazy stuff comes back. It seemed random/unpredictable before. I was concerned that the Fermi card would add noise to the system (the fan, of course) but I didn't notice that at all. In my experience video card fans can fail (I've replaced more than one), so fingers crossed.

    I'll try those adjustments to see if I can get the 23" as the main display. That would be a big plus. But like it is now is certainly usable, and like I say, the less I do with the system outside of HDTV the better, they tell me.
     
  10. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    How do I do that? I could uninstall and reinstall, of course. In the GeForce Experience app I don't see where it is or how I can uninstall features.
     
  11. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Well, here's a scenario:

    I install the SSD in the midtower and boot to the Win7 disc you sent me. Or the 16GB stick, does it matter? Then install Win7 on the SSD. Would I still be able to boot to XP if I want to? I have 3 XP OS partitions on my 120GB IDE HD in the machine. I have to look into the workarounds for running the MyHD card/app in Win7, I think it has to do with running MyHD in WinXP compatibility mode. Will need to research that at AVS Forums, or maybe it's something I set after the MyHD app installation.
     
  12. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Use either the DVD or USB stick to install Win7. Hopefully they both work, and are bootable. I did give you the 64-bit version, I hope that's OK. Otherwise, I'll send you the 32-bit version, if I can find my archives of ISOs. The 64-bit version was the only one I had on my SSD on that PC, and generally, the only one that I use. But if those MyHD cards, are only 4GB PCI address-space compatible, you may need the 32-bit version of Windows 7. You'll have to research or try that.

    The base mobo / CPU / RAM should be 64-bit compatible just fine though.

    Best, when installing, to unplug the data cable from the mobo for your 120GB HDD (preferably with power off, if it's an IDE drive), and then just plug the SSD in, and install to that directly, and then when you're done, plug in the 120GB IDE (?) HDD. Then you should be able to select in BIOS which drive you want to boot from.
     
  13. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Have to use the Control Panel | Add/Remove Programs. Whether there's a separate add/remove entry for the 3DVision stuff, I don't know. Sometimes, there's a "Modify" option, in Add/Remove, if that's available, pick it, and then it may give you the list of installed / installable options.

    Or just un-install the whole shebang, and then re-install with the proper options. I dunno, it's probably OK.
     
  14. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    OK, I'll try to get the video driver set up like you suggest. Add/Remove programs or uninstall a component or uninstall/reinstall choosing whatever options, not all options.

    Yeah, I need 32bit Windows 7 to run the MyHD cards. I have a Windows 7 32bit install disk that I used to install Windows 7 on one of my laptops. I later did the free upgrade to Windows 10 on that machine, which resulted in the elimination of a very nasty trait of the machine (Lenovo T60) -- freezes that would last from maybe 30 seconds to as much as 5 minutes. Those freezes would happen practically daily, sometimes several times/day. Drove me nuts, but a guy told me that he had the exact same hardware and OS as me and upgrading to Windows 10 stopped the freezes. So I did the upgrade to Windows 10 32bit and those freezes were gone.

    Can I use that Windows 7 32bit disk for the install to my HTPC? Of course, I wouldn't expect the key to work but maybe it would let me do the install and I could run in trial mode. At least I'll find out if S3 suspend would work, that's what I'm after. Don't know what service pack is on it, I'd have to look... Just looked, it's Windows 7 Home Premium, includes Service Pack 1.

    Edit: Actually, I may have the Windows 7 32bit ISO. I got it from another Anandtecher, he let me download it from his server a couple years ago.

    Looking, I have these:

    Win7.SP1_GSP1RMCPRXFREO_EN.iso 3.2GB I think this is 64bit

    Windows7.Home.Premium.32bit_EN_DVD.iso 2.5GB

    That second one might not have any service packs, but that could be downloaded from MS.
     
    #39 Muse, Sep 18, 2018 at 9:52 PM
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2018 at 10:12 PM
  15. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Yeah, just burn a disc with the Windows 7 32-bit ISO, with SP1 is even better. Sorry that I didn't send you the 32-bit version. Like I said, I only had the 64-bit ISO handy at the time.
     
  16. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Would that be better than installing from the Win7 32bit Home Premium with SP1 install disk I have? Wouldn't be equivalent?
     
  17. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Yes, that would be equivalent.
     
  18. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    I figure I should disconnect the 2GB SATA HD too before installing Win7.

    If I hide the WinXP installs during the Win7 install (by disconnecting the 120GB IDE HD before installation to the SSD), will I be able to set up an OS selection menu that comes up during the boot process like I have now (e.g. C, D, E or F)?
     
  19. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    Yes, you want to disconnect all of your other drives.
    No, you'll have to use your BIOS boot menu.
     
  20. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Might be OK. If I like using Win7 with the machine, yeah. If not I can remove the SSD, at least for the time being until I get another mobo.
     
  21. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    I'm not talking about having to go into the BIOS and change your boot order each time, I'm talking about the boot-menu hotkey. If you disable "Full Screen Logo Show" in BIOS, then it displays text, and briefly shows you which hotkey to hit, to access the boot menu.
     
  22. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Ah, OK, didn't know that. I'll look for that.

    Right now I'm trying to figure out a couple things:

    1. How to mount the SSD in the case. Should I get a bracket somewhere or make one? Or just put it in there and connect the cables and screw securing it to anything. I assume orientation doesn't matter.

    2. The other thing is I have a recorder that has internal HD and it connects to computers by USB cable. I use it with my Windows 10 and a Vista laptop computers but neither of my XP machines is seeing it. Nothing in Disk Management for it either. I went online and looked up the problem. A couple sites say to go into Device Manager and turn off the option for turning off the device to save power for each of the USB Root Hub items, and there's about 8 in my midtower system. I did that, rebooted and still the device isn't seen. I think I used to be able to use it with XP, not sure. Not a huge thing. Right now I'm copying data over wifi but it's way slower than from that HD.
     
  23. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    It hardly matters whether you use a bracket or not, although it works best if you use a SATA cable with the metal locking tabs on them. I just plug mine in and rest them on the bottom of the case. Orientation of the SSD doesn't matter at all, that I know of.
     
  24. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Yeah, I have a couple cables. One has a connector that looks damaged but still might work. The other looks OK but doesn't look like it has any kind of locking tab... nothing metal for sure, but should work.

    I don't expect to connect it today, probably tomorrow. Thanks!!!
     
  25. Muse

    Muse Lifer

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    Tell me if I'm wrong, but I'm thinking I may have to go into the Award BIOS, Integrated Peripherals and change the ICH SATA Control Mode from IDE to AHCI before doing the Win7 install? The choices are IDE, RAID and AHCI.