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  ASUS U56E laptop stuck on splash screen. Please help! 
 
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Eileen D. Jul 03, 2014, 04:32pm EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Jul 03, 2014, 04:36pm EDT

Replies: 6 - Views: 6572
I have an ASUS laptop (model u56e, windows 7 64-bit) that is baffling me right now.

Hoping someone here can tell me what I'm missing.... :/

I was recently on a trip, laptop working fine. On way home, closed laptop, put it in bag & didn't open it for 2 days. When I did, it was dead - POST sound audible, but stuck in loop on ASUS mobo splash screen. Could not enter BIOS.

What I have tried so far:

1. Removed HDD (Hitachi Travelstar 5K750). Booted into BIOS fine.
2. Booted into Ubuntu using LiveCD. Connected HDD with SATA/USB cable. Drive recognized. Backed up important files. Could not mount OS partition, just data partition. Gave me "Windows is hibernated, refused to mount" error.
3. Successfully mounted OS partition (via USB) using remove_hiberfile command.
4. Reinstalled HDD. Still stuck on splash screen. Could not enter BIOS. Unable to see if HDD is recognized in BIOS & obviously unable to change boot order. BIOS did recognize USB if I plugged in flash drive.
5. Removed/reset CMOS battery. No change.
6. Disassembled laptop & examined motherboard. Board & all connectors appear visually fine.
7. Checked memory with memtest86. All good.
8. Confirmed I have latest BIOS version. Reset BIOS defaults. No change.
9. Repaired MBR using Ubuntu boot-repair. No change.
10. Installed into desktop. HDD recognized in BIOS. Ran chkdsk. Some errors repaired. No bad sectors. Booted into Windows. A few updates. Rebooted. A few more Windows updates. Rebooted. HDD boots flalwlessly into Win7 in desktop (yay progress!!!)
11. Reinstalled into laptop. Stuck on ASUS splash screen again. Could not enter BIOS.
12. Removed & attached HDD via USB. No change. If I connect HDD via USB while inside BIOS, laptop freezes. Still able to enter BIOS & boot from LiveCD with HDD removed.
13. Attached another SATA drive to laptop via USB. Booted into BIOS fine & recognized drive (had to connect via USB vs. mobo because it was a 3.5" instead of 2.5").
14. Inserted substitute HDD (Toshiba) internally. Booted flawlessly into Win7.
15. Ran Hitachi disk check WINDFT - no errors on short or extended test, SMART info check out fine.
16. Formatted & reinstalled Windows 7 64-bit. No change.
17. Rebuilt MBR again using MBR Regeberator. No change.
18. Re-flashed original (latest) BIOS. No change.
19. Ran system test via Ubuntu. Tested keyboard, audio, video, USB, wi-fi, card reader, suspend process, etc. All good.

Still hangs on ASUS splash screen after POST sound.

Observations:

HDD appears healthy. Spins up, no strange noises, able to access/transfer files, etc. Chkdsk & WinDFT revealed no bad sectors.
Drive connectors appear healthy. Connects fine in desktop & via USB from within Ubuntu for file transfer.
MBR & Windows installation appear healthy. Boots into Windows perfectly while in desktop.
RAM checks out as healthy.
Motherboard and connections appear visually ok.

I'm at a loss for what to do next. My questions are:

If the motherboard itself is bad, why does a replacement drive boot up?
If the HDD is bad, why does it work perfectly installed in a desktop?
If the motherboard connector is bad, why would same problem occur when the HDD is connected via USB?

Obviously there is some problem with this specific HDD interacting with this specific ASUS motherboard.

Is it possible that the drive is just not getting enough power to spin up when installed internally? If so, what would cause this & how to fix?

Anything else I'm missing???

Thanks so much for any advice. This is driving me crazy!!!


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john albrich Jul 03, 2014, 04:57pm EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: ASUS U56E laptop stuck on splash screen. Please help!
.
In step 16, are you saying you were able to go through all the steps to install Win7 on the "suspect" HDD while it was in the laptop, but it subsequently still wouldn't boot from the HDD when in the laptop?

Just trying to clear up after Item 14 in which you installed a different (Toshiba) HDD, you are referring to the "suspect" drive or the Toshiba drive.

Eileen D. Jul 03, 2014, 05:16pm EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Jul 03, 2014, 05:17pm EDT

 
>> Re: ASUS U56E laptop stuck on splash screen. Please help!
Sorry! I meant to say that after I tried the other drive (Toshiba) & worked fine in the laptop, I figured the system was ok & it could be a corrupt Windows installation on the original Hitachi HDD causing the boot problem. I reinstalled Windows on the suspect Hitachi drive with it set as master in the desktop.

Probably dumb, but didn't know what else to try. :/

Thanks for any advice!

Dr. Peaceful Jul 05, 2014, 11:32am EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Jul 06, 2014, 02:50pm EDT

 
>> Re: ASUS U56E laptop stuck on splash screen. Please help!
Eileen D. said:
I have an ASUS laptop (model u56e, windows 7 64-bit)...

I was recently on a trip, laptop working fine. On way home, closed laptop, put it in bag & didn't open it for 2 days. When I did, it was dead - POST sound audible, but stuck in loop on ASUS mobo splash screen. Could not enter BIOS....

2. Booted into Ubuntu using LiveCD. Connected HDD with SATA/USB cable. Drive recognized. Backed up important files. Could not mount OS partition, just data partition. Gave me "Windows is hibernated, refused to mount" error.
3. Successfully mounted OS partition (via USB) using remove_hiberfile command....

The u56e is a relatively new laptop. Keep in mind that, despite its aluminum construction, it's not meant to be a rugged machine for frequent travel. One thing I noticed from your description (excerpts above), is that the laptop may not be properly shutdown and somehow locked in a hibernated state.

Many years old, I once improperly shutdown my work laptop myself. I was in a hurry, so I closed the lid as soon as the screen turned black. An hour or two later, I felt my laptop bag's burning hot! Turned out I should have waited another 10 to 15 seconds for the shutdown process to fully complete. Because I closed the lid too early, the laptop somehow locked in a state that it's still running inside. It's back in the days that they used Pentium 4's in laptops, it could have burn through the laptop bag, if I let it continue for hours.

Anyway, something similar may have happened to your laptop. It may or may not be overheated, since modern CPUs (likely an i5 for yours) are much better thermally. But it definitely somehow ended up locked in a hibernated state. You know sometimes windows updates will kick in unexpectedly during a shutdown. If you interrupt one of those thing, it could corrupt your windows. Not sure if that occurred for yours though.

What you could have done was detach the battery from the laptop and push the power button for a few seconds to make sure it's drained from power and the memory's cleared. Then retry the boot up. If still not work, you can use windows repair to try to repair the windows installation.

But instead you did a whole bunch of different things, which could introduce more variables or issues to the original problem. Good thing you seem to be very knowledgeable, evident from your using of Ubuntu Live CD and dissembling the laptop to inspect the motherboard.

You can try the following:
1. Disconnect power and battery to clear the laptop's memory.

2. Reset the BIOS using the proper instruction from the manufacturer. Simply disconnecting the CMOS battery may or may not do the trick, since modern laptop UEFI BIOS is a little different from traditional BIOS. Better adhere to the manufacturer's instruction.

3. The original hard drive could have hidden partitions for restore and recovery purpose. You should reinstall that hard drive and try to restore to the original windows image, again by following the manufacturer's instructions.

4. If you somehow corrupted the partitions of the original hard drive, you may need to obtain a restore disc from the manufacturer. With that you may use a clean hard drive for restoring the system. Again, follow closely the instruction from the manufacturer.

Can not be stressing this enough, a laptop is a proprietary hardware / firmware system, it's not as flexible in troubleshooting / recovery as a traditional desktop system. You need to adhere to the manufacturer's instructions for all procedures.

Dr. Peaceful Jul 05, 2014, 07:03pm EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Jul 11, 2014, 01:36am EDT

 
>> Re: ASUS U56E laptop stuck on splash screen. Please help!
Forgot to mention, for newer Asus laptops, by default UEFI booting is enabled in the BIOS. All you will see during boot is the Asus splash screen before the Windows login or desktop. If you disable UEFI booting (i.e. using traditional booting method), you will see an Asus splash screen momentarily, then followed by the Windows splash screen, before going into Windows. The reason I know this is because a friend of mine has a recent Asus Windows 8 laptop which behaves like this. Very likely your laptop is the same, even though it's using Windows 7.

In another word, with UEFI boot, the Asus splash is the Windows booting screen. Being stuck during the Asus splash, may not be an indication of POST problem, but rather an indication of Windows problem. Like I said in my previous post, what you experienced could have been a Windows problem all along, and a Windows repair may have fixed it.

In your original post, you mentioned you reinstalled Windows into the laptop's original hard drive. I suspect if you disable UEFI Boot, you can probably boot into the drive, as is. When you reinstall windows with traditional partitioning, it will no longer be UEFI capable. Therefore, UEFI will not boot it, but traditional boot will do.

Using the manufacturer's restoration method however, you can recover to an UEFI capable Windows installation like how it was when you first got your laptop.

Best of luck with your laptop recovery! Hopefully all your experimentation above didn't change the partition table of the original drive, and the recovery is straight forward.

john albrich Jul 10, 2014, 05:33pm EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: ASUS U56E laptop stuck on splash screen. Please help!
.
It would be interesting if you find out that the issue is because the 'bad' drive is an Advanced Format (4KB physical sector) drive, and all advanced format drives suddenly exhibit the boot problem on that particular laptop, but non-advanced format (512 Byte physical sector) drives work ok.

I do know that people have experienced AF drive install/backup/restore problems at times, especially if 512emulation was being used with some drives and some firmware (but don't recall this particular symptom being previously described), and AF definitely has issues when you try to use backup/restore software that wasn't designed for AF...although I would think the programs simply wouldn't work at all (I've not tried using older backup/restores on an AF drive).

For more info, search internet for this or similar
[ install problems with advanced format drives ]

Dr. Peaceful Jul 11, 2014, 01:09am EDT Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Jul 11, 2014, 01:16am EDT

 
>> Re: ASUS U56E laptop stuck on splash screen. Please help!
That's certainly a possibility John. Hitachi, or currently HGST (now subsidiary of WD), sells AF laptop drives and most use 512e for backward compatibility. Not sure if the Original Poster has one of those in her laptop though. Also the OP mentioned in her posts she put the HDD into a Desktop, reinstalled windows there, and then put back to Laptop for testing. That may mess up things as well. Since the Desktop system may not have a BIOS that understand AF drives, or GPT partitioning. Not sure if she figured out the issue or not, since we haven't heard from her.

Quite a bit of new technology related to storage was introduced in recent years. Including UEFI, GPT, and as you mentioned AF. These really changed the way we do things for setting up systems. Sometimes it's a bit confusing with the legacy BIOS, traditional partitions and 512 sectors hardware still in existence. Also note that with GPT partition, the old MBR is no longer used, so a Fix MBR command would do nothing.

Here are few articles from tech net that may help the OP and other readers in general.
- UEFI / GPT partition configuration for Win7. http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd744301%28WS.10%29.aspx

- How to install Win7 in UEFI based PC. http://blogs.technet.com/b/askcore/archive/2011/05/31/installi...puter.aspx

- UEFI / GPT partition configuration for Win8. A lot here applies to Win7 as well, and they explained things a bit more in depth, including mentioning AF drives. http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh824839.aspx


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