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Windows 7 infinite reboot loop problem. SO FRUSTRATED.

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  • Security Essentials
  • Windows 7
  • Product
Last response: in Windows 7
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12 September 2012 03:54:22

So I decided I wanted to try Microsoft Security Essentials for some reason. I uninstalled Avast and all traces of it. I installed MSE and everything went smoothly. I noticed it was setup to automatically scan every Sun. night. I left it that way. Monday morning I wake up to the infinite reboot. Because of the aforementioned I am 95% sure it is software related, but maybe that is because I don't want to spend money on new hardware right now.

I've tried every safe mode. I've tried to load the last known good config. I tried to repair with my Win 7 disc, but it always restarts itself before I can get anything done. I also tried system restore and also reformatting with the disc, but I get no more than a minute once I've started the computer. I've also tried scheduling memory and system checks at startup but they never get a chance to run.

AHHHHHHH. HELLLLLLLP! I know I need some logs, but I'm not even sure how to get to them.

My system:
Win 7
i5 2.67 ghz
hitachi 500gb hd
4gb dd3
gtx 560ti

More about : windows infinite reboot loop problem frustrated

12 September 2012 04:13:49

Can you describe the reboot a little more? Does it reboot once you have logged in, at the login screen or before you even get to it? Does Windows respond with successfully shutting down or does the screen go black and the next thing you see is a POST screen?

Have you ran a memtest or tried to test the HDD or use a different HDD?
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12 September 2012 04:23:39

I usually get as far as booting into safe mode or regular mode before it restarts. The screen just goes black, the computer shuts off, then restarts after 2 seconds.

When I tried to do a system restore and a reformat/reinstall it restarts very quickly after beginning each process.

I don't know how to run a memtest without getting into windows. I did try to schedule a memtest, but I don't believe it ever gets a chance to run. I don't have any spare HD's lying around.
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Related resources
12 September 2012 04:26:51

do a google search for memtestx86, its an image download that when burned onto a dvd/cd becomes a bootable disc to run memory tests. All you have to do once you've burned it to the disc is to set the bios to boot from it, restart your computer, and let the magic begin.
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12 September 2012 04:29:22

Are you sure all the power cables are plugged in properly?

Another possibility is the compute possibly restarting due to overheating? Make sure that heat-sink is seated properly on the CPU. Usually it just shuts down and doesn't restart but possibly.

Can you also say what type of Mobo and PSU you have.
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12 September 2012 04:33:37

ASrock (p55 extreme or something like that)
sunbeam (680 watt i think)

Both will be three years old in Jan. Never had a problem with either. I will try the memtest when I get home. My computer is 64bit, will I need a memtestx64?
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12 September 2012 04:39:24

I just tried to change my boot order in the bios and it shut off on me before I could change it.
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12 September 2012 04:40:44

I would recommend getting the Ultimate Boot CD.

http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/download.html

Boot into it from the BIOS and it should bring up a menu. Under memory you should find a program called memtest86+. Works well and puts the CPU under a bit of stress as well. If it doesn't work well chances are we have a hardware problem, and eliminates it from being a software problem. Hopefully you know a computer you can use to download and create the C.D.

I have never used a Hitachi HDD so I could be mistaken but this download link:

www.hgst.com/hdd/support/downloads/ftool_215.iso

should give you a C.D. that you can boot into to test your HDD. If the memtest goes well.
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12 September 2012 04:41:46

Thank you. I will try both later this evening.
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12 September 2012 09:17:13

Well it got maybe halfway done with the memtest and the reboots started. Does that mean it's hardware? I just feel like it has to be software since I installed MSE and had a virus check done right before it started rebooting itself.
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a b $ Windows 7
12 September 2012 10:10:11

Set the bios to boot the CD DVD drive first
Put the win 7 disk in the drive start the computer
select upgrade
this will reload the operating system without erasing your personal files and programs.
More than likely, it will be fixed I think.

Stop loading free programs into your computer.
The solution is the original win 7 disk. Not junk from internet.
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12 September 2012 12:39:08

Not sure what you're getting at with the free program junk stuff. I've already tried to reinstall windows with the disc. The computer restarts before it can finish.
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a b $ Windows 7
12 September 2012 13:07:31

marmalademan said:
Not sure what you're getting at with the free program junk stuff. I've already tried to reinstall windows with the disc. The computer restarts before it can finish.

From what you are saying I would conclude that it is indeed hardware related and has nothing at all to do with MSE. First if you did a reformat and started a reinstall then all traces of MSE were already gone witch would rule that out anyway. If I read correctly it also rebooted during a memtest86 scan? If that is the case then you are looking at hardware problems. I would look at the memory or PSU as a possible problem.
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12 September 2012 13:50:55

I would have to agree with byronhowley. The timing of the install must be a coincidence, considering that booting things that are non-windows and still getting the restart error. This rules out a HDD error as well, considering it is ignored during the memtest. At this point it is either the CPU, RAM, MOBO or PSU. That is causing the problem. I would ask that you double check that all power connectors are in, including the big MOBO power and the 8 pins or two seperate 4 pin for the CPU. Also, do you have a reset switch on the Mobo? could something possibly be pressing it constantly? The wires for the reset button on the case, could something possibly be shorting those causing the reset command to fire?

Edit: Also try clearing the BIOS and possibly flash the BIOS, if the before mentioned turns up nothing.
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12 September 2012 13:50:59

Anyone know of a good tutorial/site for diagnosing hardware issues if you can hardly use the computer? I don't have any spare parts lying around. I could probably borrow my buddies psu for a minute.
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12 September 2012 14:26:24

So I checked all my connections. Everything seemed fine. I booted up for the heck of it and completed a full memtest. No errors were found. I'm doing a startup repair right now. It checked for errors, asked me if I wanted to do a sys restore. I clicked no and now it's attempting repairs. Anyway the thing has been on for well over ten minutes now. I am tempted to cancel repairs and try a normal boot.
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12 September 2012 14:48:19

Did a system restore after repairs didn't do anything/failed. Seems to be working fine. I'm going to plug stuff back in one at a time and move everything back. Hopefully it goes smoothly.
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12 September 2012 15:02:25

Well my computer was almost fully loaded, then it crashed. Again. Son of a. The restore was right before I got rid of Avast so I guess it has to be hardware. I passed the memtest, so it's not my memory correct?
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12 September 2012 15:29:00

Crashed or just restarted again? And from the looks of it yes, the CPU, the memory and motherboard and PSU are presumably working like normal. Does your case have a button that's used for resetting the computer? I would like to know if it perhaps shorts, disconnect it and see if the computer restarts again.
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12 September 2012 22:37:18

I disconnected the reset switch. The computer fully loaded and has been on for over five minutes. Unfortunately it's been searching for two usb receiver drivers the whole time which doesn't make any sense because my keyboard/mouse usb receivers are in the same ports they were in. It's also running slow. I'm going to go grab a bite to eat, hopefully it's still running when I get back.
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12 September 2012 22:38:48

Dammit. It's not fixed. Back to restarting itself.
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13 September 2012 00:31:36

I'm guessing psu.
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13 September 2012 03:03:06

It's quite possibly either the PSU or still possibly somewhere on the MOBO (that is beyond our ability to fix) there is a spot where it is shorting (on the board itself) to be my best guess. There wouldn't be a way for you to possibly borrow a PSU and/or a MOBO? And test to see if it works with the replacements? (Do one at a time, not both).
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13 September 2012 03:31:37

I'm not going to be able to borrow any hardware unfortunately, might be time to buy some.

I took my pc into the local computer repair shop. The guy plugged it in and turned it on. It started up and ran for 10 minutes. It never shut itself off, but it did run very slowly. 1080p youtube videos played fine. He tried to start speedfan and the program came up but it never loaded after two minutes.

Instead of leaving my computer and fifty bucks with them to figure it out I came home and plugged my computer in a different room. It got to the desktop and shutdown before everything loaded.
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13 September 2012 04:29:53

Is the timing of the restarts very inconsistent? I don't think your computer may have had enough time at the computer repair store to trigger restart perhaps... Also does the restart happen quicker after you have had the computer on recently? (relatively)
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13 September 2012 04:35:32

Ok, the upgrade has started. Copying Windows files is halfway done...
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13 September 2012 04:35:40

The timing of the restarts are very inconsistent. In the last 25 minutes I have booted into safe mode, stopped three programs from booting at startup(including avast). Next I booted into normal mode and am currently checking compatibility to see if I can do an upgrade as opposed to the reformat/reinstall. It hasn't crashed on me yet. It only happens quicker if I leave it in the boot loop cycle. If I shut it off myself and turn it back on it doesn't seem to shut off any quicker.

But I have a feeling it won't let me upgrade from ultimate to ultimate. It's running extremely slow. It took me at least six minutes to open up the boot disc from windows explorer.
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13 September 2012 11:24:43

Upgrade failed. But I managed to reformat the drive and install a new copy of Win 7. It installed fine. Took 15 minutes. When I got to the desktop I tried to change my display to 1080p. It would only go as high as 1024 or something close to that. I noticed that the computer wasn't picking up my gfx card. Then I started dxdiag to make sure it wasn't picking up the card and the system started the wonderful crash reboot loop again. So it has to be hardware. Any of the above lead anyone to a new guess?

I'm so frustrated I'm about to just thrown down on a new mobo/cpu and psu. And why not more memory since it's cheap and an ssd because why not. The gfx card is only a year old...

Thanks to everyone that has pitched in and tried to help me so far.
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13 September 2012 11:32:16

I read back over the entire forum and I have to say this looks like a mobo failure to me. How old is the MOBO? Is the warrantly still available for an RMA?
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13 September 2012 11:58:45

Will be either three or four years in Dec/Jan. I'm guessing no warranty.
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13 September 2012 13:11:21

Silverish lining - You can upgrade your system, maybe find a CPU/Mobo combo cheap somewhere.

Technology is a fickle mistress and it always sucks being forced to get new hardware, but just remember to call MS if your install key doesnt work, and tell them about the whole situation, theyll most likely let a new install slide.
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Best solution

14 September 2012 02:53:13

I'm going to have to agree with MotherFerJones. Something in the hardware needs to be replaced. All things point to the MOBO, but I can still be mistaken. Possibly grabbing a PSU from a friends computer or another that you have temporarily might be the solution to make sure that isn't the problem, because we still haven't ruled out the PSU. The thing is we cannot be sure what exactly needs to be replaced without actually replacing the item first, and seeing if then the system works.

I would say: Try to replace the MOBO and test. Try to replace PSU and test. If you cannot do that then, I would try to buy a MOBO and replace to see if it works. IF not a then a PSU and try that. Hopefully you can buy from somewhere that has a nice return policy.

Edit: You can also look up motherboard capacitors in Google images. See if you can visibly see any capacitors that are damaged. this would be an indicator that if you didn't need to replace the mobo now, it should be done soon.
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14 September 2012 12:04:31

Thanks y'all. I just plugged in a 600watt psu I borrowed from a friend. If it doesn't work I will grab a new mobo...and try real hard not to go ivy bridge/ssd.
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14 September 2012 12:04:55

Best answer selected by marmalademan.
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14 September 2012 12:27:01

So far so good. Installed gfx drivers, rebooted, no problems so far. If it makes it through the night while I'm updating it I'm going to consider it fixed. As much as I like getting new hardware, I'm a little relieved it's just the psu.

Thanks everyone

Edit: My capacitors look good, at least to my rookie eyeballs.
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20 September 2012 22:42:59

I just got my new Seasonic psu in from newegg and have everything hooked up. I'm 100% sure it's hooked up correctly. However when I turn on the computer it starts for only a second then turns off. I checked my connections multiple times. Finally I unplugged and replugged the 24 pin mobo connector. I also unplugged the dvd drive. At this point it finally booted up, but I ended up nowhere because it didn't recognize my HD. I shut it off, replugged the dvd drive in. When I started it up this time smoke came billowing out of the dvd drive. Not sure if it was through the power or sata connection. I shot it off immediately. NOW WHAT????

AHHHHHHHHHHHHH.

This is the psu I bought: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6817151088

Looks like it burnt up a couple pins at the same exact spot on HD and optical drive for the PSU power connection.
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21 September 2012 05:19:58

I would hardly say that the PSU blowing up your computer is a good thing. I would be pissed. All I can say is make sure that your PSU is set to the proper amount of volts. (120 in the U.S. and a few other countries, 240 Volts most of the world). Although usually this would cause the PSU to blow up only if you plug it into a 240 volt and have it set to 120 volt. I would call up seasonic and raise hell, a new PSU should not destroy your P.C. like that. Make sure your mobo, CPU, etc. are still o.k. I would not try to use that particular PSU again.
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21 September 2012 05:54:33

So nothing else could have caused that?
I am able to boot to a win7 install with boot stick. No sata plugged in.
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21 September 2012 11:04:43

I plugged in an 80gb and it worked. It's an old drive that has some sort of Windows on it, it won't boot, but that seems to be the hd's fault...

Think it's safe to plug in my new 1tb drive?
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22 September 2012 02:43:32

Well, i may have mis-read but apparently the new PSU made smoke come out of your DVD drive and burned pins on the connector for the HDD? Unless both decided to go down in flames at the same time ( highly unlikely ) it's probably the PSU, since you had no other blowing up problems until you plugged it in. I would make sure that the PSU is fine first, but if you want to risk a new 1TB HDD go for it. What I am worried about is the potential of the PSU to damage the mobo, CPU, etc. If it is truly the PSU that caused the damage to your DVD drive. But as you said just now it seems to working, so I would say go for it with the new HDD. That's really funny how your DVD drive just decided to commit suicide like that -____-.
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22 September 2012 05:38:00

New HD has been up and running for well over twelve hours. Got most of my programs reinstalled and played a game for a bit. Everything seems fine. Weird.
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25 September 2012 04:04:49

Very weird. At least everything is working again.
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27 September 2012 09:43:40

Thats crazy, power your a soldier for sticking with him all the way.
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29 September 2012 06:36:17

Haha well thank you. I try.
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30 August 2013 10:22:26

dude its hardware problem just replace psu or motherboard and hardware if u want
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5 October 2013 16:35:42

do you have the option AHCI, ACPI enabled in the bios ?

You must enable acpi (ahci), did you resently reset the bios?
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