Question

Missing boot device/HP Error BIOHD4/BSOD and other oddities

I thought my computer troubles were fixed after the last thread I made, but they weren't. I'm on an HP Pavillion p6000, all original components.

When I try and boot up my machine normally, it BSODs or just shuts off.
Sometimes it complains about a missing boot device, sometimes it throws the HP Error Code BIOHD4 at me, which points at a corrupt boot sector.
Sure enough, running the BIOS hardware diagnostics (held F10 at boot) tells me that the boot sector is corrupted as well.

The odd thing is that the computer boots perfectly fine, no issue and at the usual speed and comfort when I boot into the drive from the BIOS manually.


To try and fix it, I've opened the case and undusted the entire thing, unmounted and reseated the drive, made sure all cables are soundly plugged in, plopped in my Recovery Disk (not Repair Disks, Recovery) and startup repair immediately recognized an issue and "repaired it".
Then, in the command prompt I ran:
bootrec /fixmbr
bootrec /fixboot
Both commands returned "successful" as well.

I rebooted it 5 times and everything was aces, didn't have to go through the BIOS.


The next day, the issue was back and I could only boot through the BIOS.
Another thing that seemed strange to me was that the Windows 7 login screen didn't show all my user accounts. I checked net user and it said all accounts are there, but none of them showed up.
So I went ahead and deleted them to remake them, given that they were fairly untouched and all accounts religiously backup their data. The odd thing to me was that one of the accounts, which had only been made a few days prior, had a few shady looking, ridiculously long filenames. Looong, long strings of letters and numbers. Could this be caused by a virus?


The last thing I tried to do was to reinstall Windows 7 entirely, but the installer returned with the complaint of the drive not being bootable. And right after I restarted the computer it booted into the old W7 installation perfectly.
It seems so random when it does and doesn't boot up fine, any ideas?

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Answer
I've run into this

And the causes are many, not one thing. Over the years I've had this caused by old motherboards, drives, drive cables, power supplies and in one very annoying case, an old CMOS battery. It should not have been that but I won't debate it.

There are also software causes like malware, trojans and cracked OSes. So yes, a virus but today folk don't distinguish malware from virus or such. They lump all the types of bad things into "virus." I've found it to be non-productive to be exact here.

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I see

Any recommendations on what to do then? I can't exactly go out and replace every single part till I find the one that's broken...

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That's where the shop has it all over everyday Joe.

So how about the following.

1. Remove any extra thing. No need for an Optical drive, second stick of RAM.
2. What about superfluous apps? Can you go without Flux today?
3. Scan thoroughly. Grif writes how at http://www.cnet.com/forums/discussions/how-to-remove-pup-option-603542/#post-f742c795-5881-433b-a29b-6d758efe5cd3

So at this age, you know parts are gone. I see this shipped in 2009. Changing the motherboard is costly as the OS is locked to that board.

To share the obvious here. Repair may run more than a new PC.
Read https://www.reddit.com/r/PCMasterRace/wiki/builds

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Answer
Reinstall w7

I'll assume your using the factory restore disc you made.

If that does not function grab a copy of gparted.
Boot it up and delete all the partitions on the hdd.
Try the reinstall again.

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