DV9030US USB Booting

Okay, here's the deal.  I have an HP dv9030us thats about 2.5 yrs old.  This thing has performed like a charm since I bought it.  At least until this morning when I walk in the office to see "A disk read error has occured. Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart".  As you can guess restarting does not fix the issue.  I performed a Hard Disk Self Test in the BIOS. FAIL :-o  No big deal I think, since I have a brand new 500GB drive still in the static bag.  I plop it in, return to bios and run the self test.  PASS. :-) Now time to install windows.  FAIL. :-( I knew my built in optical drive was bad.  Had been for a year.  I have been using an external on the RARE occasions when I needed to read a cd or dvd.   The problem I have now is that this laptop doesn't seem to have the ability to boot from a USB optical drive.  In the BIOS it has boot options for USB Floppy, USB Flash, and USB HDD.  But NO USB CD/DVD >:-(.  The only thing I can think of is that the BIOS version I'm using is F.27, not the newest which is F.29.  Since I can't load windows, I can't use hp's bios flash utility to update it.  But before I bash my head through a wall over it I want to see if anyone has one of these puppies on F.29 that will boot from a usb optical.  Or even better maybe one of you guys or gals has had this issue before and knows how to resolve it in some other manner.  Any help or advice would be appreciated.
tomboi1978Asked:
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IanThCommented:
is it under warranty ?
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tomboi1978Author Commented:
Unfortunately no.  Otherwise I would have sent it back to HP when the internal dvd drive went bad.  I did forget to mention that I removed the internal drive from the bay after I saw the first attempt at booting from the USB drive failed.  THat was just in case the BIOS was getting confused because of 2 drives.  Also, I paused the screen during POST so I could see the detected device list and the USB DVD drive shows in the list.  It just doesn't want to boot from it.
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tomboi1978Author Commented:
Well I managed to get the internal optical drive to work long enough to get windows to install.  However I get the BSOD as soon as windows tries to start the first time after the install is done.  Now the BIOS tells me the new drive is failing the Hard Drive Self Test.  Since I found it hard to believe that both the new and old drive were bad, especially after the new drive already passed once, I took another drive from a good laptop and installed it.  I ran the self test on it and got a fail.  I then put the same drive in the secondary drive bay and it passed.  Anyone else think I have a shot mobo?  It's sad.  I liked this machine. :-(
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