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Hi.  Just looking for some advice before I get the hammer out !

A couple of years back I bought what I thought would be a pretty good MB.  It is an INTEL DH55HC.   I have 8GB of DDR3 memory and an Intel i3 CPU.     It's been OK with XP but I have to change for well known reasons.

I have bought a Win 7 Ultimate Download ISO, with a Licence Number to put in when I get to that point.   Ha Ha !!

Anyway, I have converted the ISO to a bootable DVD, which won't install on the Intel MB, no matter what I try,   And the disk is OK, as it's installed successfully, [ purely as a test...not activated !!] on 2 'lesser' machines.     So the disk is OK.

But when I try to install on the Intel, I keep getting an error message saying that 'Windows has detected an error, and is stopping to avoid damaging my machine' !!   It also says to remove any new hardware or software.   But there isn't any.   There was also a line which may, [or may not] be significant, which said that IRQL IS LESS OR NOT EQUAL.  But I don't know what that means.

However, I have disconnected everything that's not essential, re-loaded the Bios back to defaults, and have nothing on it except monitor, keyboard and mouse.   But STILL get the same error.

To make matters worse, INTEL have now withdrawn all support for all Motherboards, [ as far as I can tell], so I can't even ask them for help.

Unfortunately, I am one of those people who cannot leave things alone until I've solved a problem.  So this sort of thing is not good for my health !.    

I do intend to keep an XP machine going, just for my own off-line stuff......so maybe this will have to be it !

Although the Hammer treatment is very tempting.

But it seems strange that the 'lesser machine machines [ an MSI and a GIGABYTE MB, but with slightly older processors,] upgrade with no problems.

Any advice or thoughts would be most welcome.

Pre-Hammer of course.

Cheers for now.
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1 Solution

A couple things for the motherboard, one, check to see if your BIOS is the latest version.  Below is a link to the latest on Intel's site:


Also, run a memory test for your RAM, one of the chips may be faulty.  Memtest86 is a good one.


Lastly, how is your Hard drive configured in the BIOS?  Assuming it is a SATA drive, is the SATA mode set to AHCI, RAID, or Parallel emulation?
" IRQL IS LESS OR NOT EQUAL" is usually a device driver error...the BIOS update above is the best place to start.
fried-chipsAuthor Commented:
Hi.   Thanks for help and suggestions.   I will certainly run the MEMTEST86 to check the memory, although I think it probably is OK, as I tried all 5 combinations of my 2 x 2GB and 1 x 4BG chips, and get the same result each time.

So I think the Bios Upgrade is the best bet.   I will have to download the file to another machine, and try the CD/DVD method, as I read somewhere that it was best to start with a clean re-formatted HDD.   So I cannot use the Windows Integrated version without re-installing XP first !

I don't think the Thumb Drive option is available to me, as I checked the boot options, and the F7 Enabling USB Upgrade isn't there, so probably my version is before that came along.

So I'll carry out both the Memtest and the BIOS Upgrade, and report back !

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can you post a picture of the error screen?  it may have more info
do a full format, delete all partitions then try installing your os again.

Yes I tend to lean to the HDD format first, could be a bad boot loader
Use a brand new HDD anyway it's best to go clean with a brand new HDD and windows 7, you partition it in XP if needed, also one partition I recomend. Use USB drives to backup. If you main partition fails you lose the 2nd access.
I keep getting an error message saying that 'Windows has detected an error, and is stopping to avoid damaging my machine' <<  could be a low PSU please check your PSU is at least 600 watts.

The HDD should be set to second and the DVD rom to the top so that you can initate the setup disc
Also put a new CMOS battery in just in case then ensure the date and time are correct
Here's your mainboard manual if it helps
Changing boot order in BIOS setup steps are on page 64 here
3.6 Boot Options
In the BIOS Setup program, the user can choose to boot from a hard drive, optical
drive, removable drive, or the network. The default setting is for the optical drive to
be the first boot device, the hard drive second, removable drive third, and the network
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
I've installed Windows 7 on that board several times -- it's a very stable board; and installs '7 with no problem.

So ... you clearly have something wrong.   Either defective memory;  a defective hard drive; or a defective install DVD.    You've reasonably tested the DVD by using it to install on other PC's, so you need to check the RAM and hard drive.

I'd run Memtest for several hours (overnight is good);  then change your hard drive and see if it installs on a different hard drive okay.    If that still doesn't work, try a different DVD drive -- it's possible it's not able to read your burned DVD okay, whereas other PC's do.
I was adding you might find this good read from one my news letters
Why You Probably Shouldn’t Update Your BIOS and When You Should Update Your BIOS
BIOS updates aren’t big software upgrades that add new features, security patches, or performance improvements.
BIOS updates typically have very short change logs – they may fix a bug with an obscure piece of hardware or add support for a new model of CPU.
Read on and decide.
fried-chipsAuthor Commented:
Thanks for all the comments.  All helpful, as the more things there are to try, the better.
I have now upgraded the BIOS, [ which did work through the F7 USB drive option], and that all went OK.  But no change in the end result !  

I have tested the memory, but only for a few minutes.  Will run it overnight if things don't improve before hand !

Bios settings I'm quite familiar with, and are all OK.

New formatted HDD hasn't helped, but I will now change the DVD drive and the PSU. Just in case.

Becoming a bit of a challenge now, so putting the hammer away for a bit !
With the memtest I find it will throw up any problems within a few minutes or less if there is a problem with the ram.
Yes the PSU could be the main factor, how big is the current?
Your error indicates that regeon possibly.
I've seen this error when I added a new video card without realizing the PSU was insufficient so windows stated it was shutting down to save my computer
Did you add a new Video Card?
the current CPU is how many GHz?
 Intel i3 CPU.  ?? dual core and GHz?
It maybe cheaper for you to buy the parts and rebuild in to this case.
Which you are doing lol.
A longshot could be the image doesnt match in other words the setup ISO has been used possibly bad?
Windows 7 system requirements
Good Luck
I would start leaning towards a new motherboard, and move the CPU.  MBs are inexpensive, and your time and frustration are just increasing?
you can always install another OS on it for testing ; eg ubuntu (free) and easy to install
fried-chipsAuthor Commented:
Hi.  Progress Report !!   All good now.....but not sure why.   Would like to go back a step or two to find out, but not sure I will do that now.  Just pleased to be up and running.  And if I don't do it now, I probably won't.....unless there's a problem !!

I'm sure you all know the feeling !!

To save time I ended up changing 3 things at once, so not really sure which one of them fixed it.   2 new 4GB DDR3 memory chips, and new [unused !] Samsung Sata drive 1TB.  Also changed PSU, but nothing like 600 watts. Biggest I've got around is 450.   But there isn't much in the machine so far. Just DVD drive and HDD. May upgrade PSU before populating much more.

I know I ought to take out the new bits and replace them one by one, but am very loathe to do that, as I worry the faults will re-appear [ which I want], but that it will never start up properly again...[ which I don't want !]

Not a very scientific feeling, I know.......but there you go !  

Thanks to all for the help and advice.
Your persistence paid off!
Great work!  Probably no need for further investigation on this specific machine, just note that next time something like this happens, focus on the HDD, RAM, and PSU.
Well done.
With regards to your error message I'd say it was the PSU I mentioned  http:#a39808485
And also the HDD. Windows 7 prefers the new HDD
I keep getting an error message saying that 'Windows has detected an error, and is stopping to avoid damaging my machine'
When the PSU doesnt have enough juice to power things windows can throw up all sorts of errors as it doesnt know how to determin it.
So it's first call is the HDD
The PSU is the core of the system.
What the previous PSU?
450 watts is adequate but remember that the PSU should never exceed 65% of max load
I have 800 watts Antec in my windows 7 since I add a few USB HDD as well.
What is your video card and it's demands?
Windows 7 uses more since it has the Aero.
Power Supply Recommendations
If it helps
How to Identify Which Hardware Component is Failing in Your Computer
Enjoy your new system
Regards Merete
fried-chipsAuthor Commented:
Previous PSU was only 350, so the one in there now is not so much more.....but maybe enough to make the difference.

Thanks for the links.  I'll take a look later.

>>  To save time I ended up changing 3 things at once  <<  that is a bad way of troubleshooting, as you see from the result : you don(t know which part is ok, and what not

i would at least put in the old ram - a quick change -  and check if that is ok
even swapping the disk is quickly done

if you want to know the power you need , calculate it here : http://www.almico.com/speedfan.php
fried-chipsAuthor Commented:
Hi Nobus.   Thanks for the contribution, and I do understand what you are saying.   But if you have read the whole thread, you will see that I have already changed each of the components individually, and got nowhere !

So, after 2 days of this, finding out the 'faulty' component comes a poor second to getting the    ***** thing up and going !!

And as I have already tested each of those components in other systems, I'm beginning to think that it may be a COMBINATION of OK units that are incompatible, rather than one faulty one.

I know the INTEL DH55HC is a good motherboard, but it may also be a bit 'fussy' !!

But .....hey......who am I to tell INTEL what I think ?   Especially when they've withdrawn support for motherboards !!    Now ....why would they do that ?    Maybe they were getting too many questions ?    Like this one ???

But.....I'm happy.   It's working.   I got the 'new' components out of other 'newer' machines, and swapped the old 'faulty ones' that I took out the non-worker into them, and they are all working fine.    

So what was that all about ?     I have no idea.    You tell me !!

So.....bad way of trouble-shooting it may be.    But if there's any truth in the old saying
" the end justifies the means",  then  it can't be all bad !!   Not when you get to a point of desperation.

But thanks for your input.   You seem a nice man/woman/boy/girl/robot......[Joke !!]

Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
As I noted earlier, it is indeed an excellent motherboard.    But I agree Intel chipsets (not just Intel boards) can be "picky" with timing.

I've seen several examples of memory that won't work in one board yet works perfectly in another;   have had several power supplies (almost always low-end units) that wouldn't work with Core architecture boards but worked okay with less expensive systems;  etc.

I'd do exactly what you've done -- just leave well enough alone.    What counts is the results ... and everything's working perfectly -- so be happy & enjoy :-)
when you changed the ram -  was it the same model, and brand?
 also - i must have missed the fact you changed those parts - i don't see it, sorry
fried-chipsAuthor Commented:
You don't have to say 'sorry' Nobus.  

 What you have said is totally correct, and I really appreciate everybody's help and advice on this for me.  

 Even to read posts, and then respond takes time and effort, and i do appreciate it.

To answer your question, no.....the RAM i replaced was with a different make, although still DDR3.   Maybe that made a difference.   Or maybe it was the HDD.   Although I did try 3 of those.   But only 1 brand spanking new.    

I would like to know.......but I think I will leave it now !!    

Other Fish to fry......[ in keeping with my login !!]

Thanks again.  And to all.

Cheers for now.
ok - if you find this is all needed, don't forget to close this
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