Originally Posted by Andy_Steb
You have a lot of PCIE cards. Your manual says you can't use Pci E4 and Pci E3 at the same time.
Thanks for pointing that out. I totally missed that. I guess it really pays to RTFM.
It's mentioned one time in the list of features in the front of the manual and nowhere else I could find. That solves a mystery I had during my initial install. I had placed the Intel NIC in slot 3 and one of the tuner cards in slot 4. I couldn't figure out why I had no network access and it was driving me nuts. I moved the card to another slot and left slot 3 vacant and it started working again. At least now I know why.
I moved the HTPCnext to my main computer and connected it to the PC monitor. Sure enough, I got the POST screen when connected to a PC monitor instead of my HDTV. I decided to go ahead and do a complete reinstall and ran into a multitude of issues. During the install, usually after the 2nd reboot, I'd lose video on the monitor. This happened after 2 or 3 attempts to reinstall the OS. Fortunately I was doing it from a USB flash drive instead of a DVD and it installed much faster so I didn't have to waste a lot of time before getting to the failed video output. I connected another monitor via the VGA output and things started to get interesting.
During numerous install attempts, I would get video on one monitor or the other at various stages of the install and sometimes both at the same time. It was never consistent with each attempt. I had to keep trying to reinstall the OS because Windows Update would fail right after installing the initial update to Windows Update. Apparently, there is a very specific sequence in which the various motherboard drivers need to be installed before everyone's happy. I decided to forgo installing the Intel NIC drivers on the last attempt since Windows already installed them. Things finally settled down and I was able to run Windows Update until the OS was current.
When I connected the HTPC back to my HDTV I was once again presented with the "Shutting Down" display. The TV must retain the last image it saw in a buffer and continues to display it until a new image is presented. It's clearly not seeing the POST screen from this motherboard. I'm in the process of setting up Media Center and various support apps like ShowAnalyzer, My Channel Logos, and XBMC.
I made one discovery that's also been driving me nuts. I've got a HomeGroup setup on my network and lately every time I try to configure a new PC to join the HomeGroup it craps out and tells me that the password is incorrect. It wasn't until I ran through numerous troubleshooting steps that I was finally informed that Windows has a security measure in place that prevents a PC from joining a HomeGroup if the time on each PC isn't synchronized properly. Sure enough, I checked the Dell Zino HD in the family room and it was off by about 45 minutes. I use an app called atomic.exe that synchs up my PC clocks so I copied it over and ran it to correct the time. After that I was finally able to join the HomeGroup. You'd think they'd mention that little fact on the setup screen for joining a HomeGroup. To think they pay these geniuses millions of dollars in Redmond and they can't provide one simple little detail like that.