First of all I don't know whether this belongs in Hardware or Operating Systems because the problems are so numerous. On to the question.
I bought a $3k computer thinking I would be able to have some fun this summer. Instead, I have embarked on a journey to Computer Hell. Windows installed, after a fashion. Then, I started installing drivers for various devices. All was well for a while, then a "PCI Modem" showed up with a big exclamation mark in my Device Manager. I found that a BIOS update would make this go away, but had a heck of a time flashing the BIOS because MSI's Live Update HATES Firefox 1.5 and my computer can't boot from floppy for some reason even though the BIOS is configured correctly.
The next issue arose when Windows XP Pro SP2 started hanging ENDLESSLY at the splash screen. After enabling /NOGUIBOOT and /SOS I found that the driver loading stopped after "MUP.SYS." Upon examining the Boot Log, I discovered that the system attempted to load "ACPI Multiprocessor PC" driver after MUP.SYS but did NOT load this driver. The OS then repeatedly attempted to load drivers for my 7900GTXs, X-Fi and other things but failed. The system tried two, three, four or five times to load each driver. Now, the system will only boot in Safe Mode. Trying to boot into regular XP gets the Hang of Death. I have tried the following:
1. Remove drivers with Driver Cleaner and reinstall. Could not complete because the system only boots into Safe Mode and some installers don't work in Safe Mode.
2. Remove X-Fi. Heard some PCI cards cause issues, but removing the X-Fi was just an annoyance that did not help.
3. Tried installing the AMD Dual Core Driver on my Opteron 170. Either did nothing or made it worse.
I thought I had the problem solved until I went to install drivers for my MX1000, then the problems resumed.
Opteron 170 @ stock
2GB DDR500 G.Skill
150GB Raptor and 2x250GB WD Caviar RAID0
MSI K8N Diamond Plus
2xeVGA 7900GTX SLI
NEC 3550a DVD
PCP&C TurboCool 850 SSI
Thermaltake Armor black version