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Hi,

I'm having trouble installing Windows Server 2003 32-bit Enterprise Edition.

I have a computer with an ASUS A8N-SLI Premium motherboard (AMD 64 chip) and on one drive I'm running Windows XP Professional 32-bit. My video card is an ATI Radeon X1600.

I put the Windows Server install CD in, reboot, and go through the initial text-mode setup process. Setup says it needs to restart, and when it does, I get a black screen. No splash logo. Thenceforth, attempting to boot that OS results in a black screen.

So far, I've ascertained the following:
In SAFE MODE ONLY, I can boot from the primary partition on which Setup wrote the initial Windows files - specifically, I boot the XP partition and it gives me options to start an OS in safe mode - and it loads some drivers, then goes to a GUI screen saying only that the install cannot complete in Safe Mode and the only option is to restart.

The partition containing Windows Server OS is in the front of the disk.

I have already tried doing a repair install of the OS from the CD.

I have already tried running chkdsk on the disk containing the partition, reporting no bad sectors.

I have already tried updating the motherboard chipset (NVidia nforce 2) to the latest drivers. However, there are no matching drivers on NVidia's site for 32-bit Windows Server 2003.

I have already tried updating the BIOS to the most recent version.

I should also mention that my monitor is apparently receiving video while I have the black screen - rather than it reporting "no signal."

Can anyone with insight or wisdom help me out?

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Last Post by Shiggity
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In the BIOS ensure that MBR/Bootsector Antivirus Protrection is OFF, if that option is present. It stops the bootloader being written post-install.

If it is indeed a video error, try integrating your a)chipset and b) ATI drivers using nlite.

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Thanks for the reply; I'm sorry to report no love on those suggestions.

Checked and double-checked the BIOS for any setting of anti-virus software - there is none.

Installed NLite and created two bootable ISOs of Win Server - one integrating the chipset and ATI drivers - one removing the video card drivers native to the CD in an attempt to force standard VGA - both CDs resulted in the same deal. Any other suggestions? :-\

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Thats wierd. It should "just work"

Do you have integrated VGA? try using that instead of the pci card

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Do you have another hard drive laying around? If so, swap the hard drives, blast the partitions, do a format, and clean install. If it works, it's a partition issue on the other drive.

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Do you have another hard drive laying around? If so, swap the hard drives, blast the partitions, do a format, and clean install. If it works, it's a partition issue on the other drive.

Actually yes I do have one laying around... I'll give it a try and post back.

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Swapped them as per the suggestion, same deal. I didn't think that was the problem anyway since I am able to boot into safe mode (but not all the way), but now I can definitely rule it out at least.

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bad install media?

Maybe. But I doubt it. I tried two separate install media from different sources (r1 and r2) and they both go black after restart. :(

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Inexplicably, the problem was RAM. Even though there were no apparent errors at the time, today I got a whole bunch of them and after I removed two RAM cards, the issues resolved, including this one.

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