|"I looked at the manual and there is nothing which says the DVI port is primary or secondary."|
Does the 7500 card have two monitor ports?
If yes, one is primary, the other is secondary.
If it isn't clear which is which, just try connecting to the other one, if they're both DVI.
Note that if one is VGA, there is no such thing as a gender adapter that adapts a VGA port on a video adapter to a DVI connection - there are not enough connections in the VGA port.
That has nothing to do with which display Windows designates primary or secondary in Display Properties (XP and below) or Display Settings (Vista and Windows 7) - Windows always designates a single monitor connection as the primary display.
"Anyway, the bottom line is, if I want DVI video and want to see POST messages I should get a monitor that has a DVI input on it, right?"
Yours doesn't have that ? It isn't all that clear in the monitor manual. It shows all three types of connection cables.Maybe they come in configurations that either have a HDMI port or a DVI port ??.
If you did get one with a DVI port, it should work fine with a simple DVI to HDMI gender adapter for connecting to other things that have a DVI output.
On the other hand, I think a DVI monitor connection is just another thing that is HYPE - superior in theory but it doesn't much difference in the real world. I personally can't see that a DVI connection is noticeably superior to a VGA connection, for the same monitor.
"...they said the reason I don't see the POST with the DVI to HDMI cable is because the POST messages are much lower resolution than WIndows. Thinking this over as I was going home I said to myself that's ridiculous!"
I certainly agree with your conclusion.
"Here are some links I came across while researching this:"
Both those links are regarding NVidia video chipset cards. Yours is ATI / AMD.
The second one mentions he has Radeon HD 4200 inboard video.
He thought he was getting no POST. He was probably just getting no video.
Mboards with HD 4200 onboard video usually, if not always, have Hybrid Crossfire video support.
When you plug a card with one of a few specfic ATI video chipsets into the PXCI-E X16 slot, with default bios settings regarding the video, both the onboard video and the video chipset on the card in the slot output video at the same time.
When you plug a card that DOES NOT have one of a few specfic ATI video chipsets, or ANY NVidia video chipset, into the PXCI-E X16 slot, with default bios settings, the onboard video is NOT disabled,and card in the slot prouces no video at any time. You have to change one or two settings in the bios Setup, depending on the bios version, with the monitor connected to the onboard video. You have to disable the onboard video and enable the PCI-E X 16 slots video.
(You can't disable the onboard video by changing any setting in the bios if the mboard does not have Hybrid video support - it's installing a card in the PCI-E X16 or AGP slot that makes the bios disable the onboard video, not any setting.)
Hybrid Crossfire video was originally designed work only in Windows Vista or Windows 7, but later on ATI came up with drivers that work in XP (and probably 2000).
Some NVidia main chipsets with onboard video have Hybrid SLI support - it only works with certain specific NVidia video chipset cards.
Some Intel main chipsets with onboard video have Hybrid Multi-Monitor support - same thing - I'm not sure which video specific video chipset cards it works with - however, most of their drivers have not enabled Hybrid video support yet.
"I looked at ATI's website hoping to find an updated driver but the info is not presented too well.I was wondering if there was a driver update for the DVI to HDMI adapter cable issue."
"This monitor cycles through all three inputs when you put it on. Once it senses a connection it stays on that input. I don't think I need to switch inputs manually, should I?"
I don't think it mentions that in the manual.
You certainly could try pressing that button that toggles the input source when you are using the HDMI to DVI cable.
The monitor DOES NOT need any drivers from the hard drive until Windows starts to load. All monitors, modern mboard bioses, and video chipsets support basic VGA mode. So does Windows before specific video drivers have been loaded for the video chipset.
It has to be hardware problem, not a software problem.