Strange Hardware Issue Preventing Windows booting.


  1. Posts : 17
    Windows 10
       #1

    Strange Hardware Issue Preventing Windows booting.


    Hope I could get some suggestions for a desktop I built 3 years ago that has been working flawlessly until a couple weeks ago running Windows 10 V 21H1. It has a Gigabyte X999 motherboard with four, 4 Gigabyte memory sticks for a total of 16Gig.

    During the morning boot, the windows icon appears, but all disk activity stops and it just sits there forever. If I try to reboot, it does the same thing over and over. Never will boot, not from the internal HD, or USB or DVD sources.

    So I started switching out a different video card - no help. Boot stops at the same point.

    Next I removed the two of the four 4 Gig memory sticks that were in the last two memory slots and bingo - the PC started normally. Problem seemed to disappear. So I figured bad memory and ordered two new 4 gig memory sticks and put them back in the original slots. System acts normal for a few days, and then problem repeats.

    I remove the two new memory sticks and problem goes away again. I wait a few days and when the problem repeats, I remove the same (new) memory sticks, reseat them, and it boots find for another few days. Switch around the memory sticks, same problem will eventually reoccur, and reseating the memory in the same to slots and it boots again for a few days. If I try rebooting without reseating the memory sticks in those slots it will never boot.

    So I am thinking the motherboard has a problem with the two memory slots? Is my next step to replace the motherboard?

    Advice please
      My Computer

  2. steve108's Avatar
    Posts : 16,291
    19041.1348 - 2004/20H1 Pro x64
       #2

    Hello Flame Red and welcome to TF

    Is your BIOS current and keeping correct time/date?

    Have you tried visually examining the memory slots and cleaning them with compressed air?

    I run MemTest86+ overnight or for at least 8 passes with all four modules to see what the results are.

    What happens if you try to run with just two memory modules for a few days as a test?
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 17
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #3

    Thank you Steve for your response.


    • Is your BIOS current? Yes, latest.
    • Keeping correct time/date? Yes
    • Have you tried visually examining the memory slots? Yes, they look clean and I don't see anything unusual.
    • Cleaning them with compressed air? Yes, I tried blowing out all the slots. No joy.
    • I run MemTest86+ overnight or for at least 8 passes with all four modules to see what the results are. I did not use that one, but I will try it. The memory test I ran just once did not show any issues.
    • What happens if you try to run with just two memory modules for a few days as a test? It seems to boot normal with just two sticks, but sometimes it can go days before the problem reoccurs so perhaps I did not give it enough time on two sticks.

    I will download MemTest86+ and let it run and see what it says.
      My Computer

  4. steve108's Avatar
    Posts : 16,291
    19041.1348 - 2004/20H1 Pro x64
       #4

    Thank you Flame Red for your detailed reply.

    Let us know what you get for MemTest86+ results.

    Are you following the recommended memory slots to use if you only use two modules, as you mentioned removing the last two. In some motherboards, if using two modules, you would use the 1st and 3rd slot, so the 2nd and 4th would be empty.
      My Computer


  5. Posts : 952
    win10 home
       #5

    Are you able to swap the PSU with another and what is the power rating of the existing unit and brand ?
      My Computer


  6. Posts : 17
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #6

    Yes, I confirmed multiple times that memory is located in the required slots for the Gigabyte MB, when I had the 4 sticks installed, down to 2 sticks and back to 4 sticks.

    Ran the Memory test, 4 cycles (max). No errors.

    Strange Hardware Issue Preventing Windows booting.-20211021_181822.jpg

    I don't have a spare PSU to swap.
      My Computer


  7. steve108's Avatar
    Posts : 16,291
    19041.1348 - 2004/20H1 Pro x64
       #7

    Do you have hibernation or Windows Fast Startup enabled?

    Code:
    powercfg /h off
    to disable them. This might be the cause of the problem and would be good to eliminate now.
      My Computer


  8. Posts : 17
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #8

    Thank you again Steve for your great help!

    steve108 said:
    Do you have hibernation or Windows Fast Startup enabled?

    Code:
    powercfg /h off
    to disable them. This might be the cause of the problem and would be good to eliminate now.
    I don't believe I had that setup, but I ran the command anyway.

    This morning, it seemed to hang when the BIOS was being loaded and never gave me the "hit Esc or Del to enter Setup" for the Bios message. First time it did that! Power cycled it and it came up normally.

    May take a few days for it to go wacky again.

    In case I never mentioned, once it up, it is stable and does not crash. All the issues are on (cold) boot.
      My Computer

  9. steve108's Avatar
    Posts : 16,291
    19041.1348 - 2004/20H1 Pro x64
       #9

    Flame Red said:
    Thank you again Steve for your great help!


    I don't believe I had that setup, but I ran the command anyway.

    This morning, it seemed to hang when the BIOS was being loaded and never gave me the "hit Esc or Del to enter Setup" for the Bios message. First time it did that! Power cycled it and it came up normally.

    May take a few days for it to go wacky again.
    Thanks for the update. Windows Fast Startup is enabled by default, so it's now off and now we wait and see if the problem is resolved
      My Computer

  10. Barman58's Avatar
    Posts : 4,129
    Windows 10 Pro x64 Latest RP
       #10

    It is usual for the four memory slots to be set in two pairs to facilitate Dual operation - these are often slot 2 & 4 and 1 & 3.

    An outside chance that you now have two old and two new modules - these may not be completely matched

    you could try the two older modules in slots 2 & 4 and the two new ones in 1 & 3

    I would check your Motherboard manual to confirm the slot pairings

    My specialist builder actually prefers to use the minimum number of modules to meet the required memory, Hence my ASUS board has a 32GB module in each of Slot 2 and Slot 4

    mismatched RAM modules can cause some strange issues
      My Computers


 

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