First, creeping freeze. Then, "Insert Bootable Media". Now, cannot install Windows 10 at all.

deathc90

Prominent
Sep 19, 2017
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Hello all. I want to say, thank you for being a part of this community, as it helped me figure out some aspects of my first PC build - which was ONLY a month ago. I have been enjoying working on this machine, and had no issues with it before today. Now, I need your help, as I can't find hard answers, and I have NO clue what caused my problem. Here are my specs, first:

Ryzen 3 1300x - CPU
Gigabyte-AB350-Gaming 3 - Mobo
Sapphire RX 560 - GPU
Corsair Force MP500(120GB) M.2 NVMe - SSD and primary boot device(Windows 10)
WD Caviar Blue 1TB 7200 RPM - HDD large storage

SeaSonic 520w Fully Modular - Power Supply

I stream games on Twitch, something I've wanted to do for a very long time and now have the opportunity to do more professionally. The programs/applications I had been using are:

Steam - To launch games, check online friends.
Google Chrome - To popout Twitch chat.
Open Broadcaster Software(OBS) - To broadcast my experience.
Windowed Borderless Gaming - Non-steam version; needed for easy alt-tabbing to chat window.
Dark Souls II.exe - The game I had been running at the time of the freeze. Was on plain title screen.

What exactly happened? I had woken up, started the PC, gotten coffee, sat down, launched the above programs in that order, and as I reached for the "Start Broadcast" button, I noticed some Windows "animated" elements not working or taking a moment to play. I immediately became worried, and attempted to minimize windows and close the game. This resulted in the problem progressing to a complete freeze. Absolute unresponsiveness. No keyboard commands had any effect. Mouse was also unresponsive.

What did you do next? It is at this point that I reached over to the PC and hit the Reset button. I waited on the first screen displayed(Gigabyte motherboard logo) tapping the Del key to jump in and tune my overclock(3.80 ghz, +.102v to +.126v) thinking that I was just unstable, despite having a 6 hour session last night with no indicators of stability issues.

When I let the system "boot" upon restarting, it brought up the screen which asks for the user to Insert Boot Media or Drive. Panic ensued. I reset the computer once more, entered the BIOS, and found that the HDD is #1 boot priority instead of #2... This to me is suspicious. I change the order so that the SSD is #1. I reset again, and then I get the "BSOD" with 0xc0000034, claiming that the boot files are missing or corrupted.

"That's alright," I say to myself, "I have a USB with the installation media ready to go!" Well, I threw it in, and actually didn't think to use the Repair Windows option whilst in the installation setup, and instead attempted to reinstall windows on the SSD. I select the version I want, "I don't have a product key", and then the SSD as where I want it to go. It tells me it will put any existing windows stuff into a Windows.old folder, and gets to work. About 5 minutes later, it tells me something along the lines of "Windows could not be installed to this disk. Installation manager will now stop" which reset the installer to the beginning. Mind you, this has nothing to do with GPT format as far as I'm concerned, so let's rule out any steps to convert stuff. That won't help.

Alright, so I try some more troubleshooting. I attempt to install windows instead on my HDD, which I'm pretty sure wiped all of my data... and it gave me the exact same error. It couldn't complete the installation and just reset itself, with no more information than that. Now I'm frustrated.

I checked in the BIOS to see if the USB itself is the issue, but resources online give me confusing, conflicting information, and I cannot understand which options to be looking at. For instance, every motherboard is different, and so are the BIOS options. Places were telling me to go to a "BOOT" tab which is completely non-existent in my BIOS. Instead, there is a BIOS tab, and some options related to booting. The only thing I knew to look for was "UEFI". Here's what I found:

Windows 10 features ...... Other OS
LAN PXE Boot option ROM ..... Disabled
Storage Boot option control ..... Legacy only
Other PCI Device ROM Priority ..... UEFI only


I haven't touched these yet. I know nothing about what this stuff does. Side note; the "Other OS" setting merely disables an option in the BIOS that is exclusive to Windows, called "CSM Support" which is enabled by default when Windows 10 is chosen instead of Other OS in this instance.

Now, I've just created a new installation media on the USB, thinking it could be messed up or something. I'm willing to give it another shot, but after that, I'm afraid I'll be out of options.

Please, if you can offer any assistance, any insight as to WTH happened to cause this, or what I can do to fix it, I need your help. Thank you for your time.

-Chris

Update: After some help from a tech savvy friend, I was able to workaround this issue by deleting the Drive Partitions when going to Custom Install Windows through the media on my USB. Basically, I wiped my drive, formatted it, and did a clean install. It's most likely that I corrupted boot files when I hit the Reset button. It seems fine now, but I am still confused and worried about my machine.
 

Sedivy

Reputable
Dec 17, 2016
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Yeah I was going to say your boot record is likely toast because it switched boot priority on you and then crapped out.
Boot partition is separate, automatically created, so when you want to deal with this, you have to delete all partitions on said drive, combine them, reformat, and then reinstall windows and let it create the new boot partition. This is best done if you disconnect your other data drive to make sure windows has only one drive to create boot partition on. But since you got it fixed, this is all moot. Thanks for leaving feedback.
Your system is probably fine. Next time don't change anything in bios if it starts crapping out, unless it won't start up and you have no other option. Otherwise you can end up compounding your problems.After fixing windows and if instability persists, then troubleshoot your OC.
 

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