HP dv9600 won't boot Vista even w/ recovery/new hard drive

December 15, 2012 at 06:20:20
Specs: Vista

I am completely flummoxed and have read so much that I'm on info overload! My HP dv9600 laptop was doing fine and just froze one day.
-I ran BIOS diagnostic and it said to replace hard drive.
-I put my hard drive in a docking station, used another computer, and found that my HD could be read.
-I transferred all my data onto a 2T external drive. My data is safe.
-I used my recovery disks that I dutifully made immediately after buying my laptop in 2008.
-I reinserted my HD into my laptop and used my recovery disks to reset my computer to factory settings.
-Everything seemed to work with the process. At the end it said to click finish and the computer would restart. I clicked finish and my laptop goes into this loop of bringing up the BIOS splash screen, screen goes black, shows splash, goes black, and then eventually stops with a one line message "Operating System Not Found."
-I went into BIOS and discovered the HD is not recognized...No IDE found
-I did the recovery thing again with my disks...same results.
-Bought WD Blue 1T HD from Amazon
-Installed new HD and used my recovery disks.
-Same final screen, hit "finish", and the computer restarts with the same results...looping until eventually get "OS not found."
-Tried lots of different things with BIOS. Finally, changed boot order to boot from USB HD using my old HD.
-It appeared to load Vista! Said it detected problems and asked if I wanted to fix them and restart. I said yes...same results, except now it just loops until it shows a black screen with a lone cursor...no message.

I have not flashed the BIOS, which some feel is warranted from my saga, but before I do that I thought I would put my story here and see what you all say.

Any advice is GREATLY appreciated. I have done so much research with multiple and seemingly contradictory advice...flashing the bios is all I can come up with. Thanks in advance.

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December 15, 2012 at 06:54:41

Is the BIOS set to auto detect, for hard drives or does it list the actual drive, with the sectors, heads & cylinders? Whatever it is, change it to the other.

How do you know when a politician is lying? His mouth is moving.

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December 15, 2012 at 08:39:42

My BIOS is Phoenix F.30. I can't find anywhere that indicates how it detects or how to change it. I'll do a search, but in the meantime, do you have any thoughts?

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December 15, 2012 at 13:11:36

I don't know every BIOS that exists but I remember some BIOS that had a setting to change how hard drives are detected & it gave you a chance to enter the exact info. If your BIOS doesn't have that, then I would set it to defaults with the original HD & see what happens. If it still doesn't work, re-seat the memory sticks or try just one stick at a time.

How do you know when a politician is lying? His mouth is moving.

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December 15, 2012 at 14:10:21

Have you run full HD diagnostic test? Download the test program from the drive manufacturer and run it from a bootable floppy or CD or USB. Do the same with Memtest86 to test your ram.

Goin' Fishin' (Some day)

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