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Sound Card Installation Problem
Stephanie asks the following hardware question
Question: I installed a sound card, but didn't have the driver, so I went to soundblaster.com, found the drivers and downloaded (tried). It appeared to be downloading fine. After being prompted to click "next" to continue install or "cancel" to cancel, I clicked "next" and the computer froze. No mouse movement, to keyboard functions. So, I went and bought soundblaster audigy 2 and it installed fine. I could hear cd's, games..etc...however, after about 10 minutes, the mouse and everything on the screen started "flickering", which got very annoying, so I shut it off. Now, when I turn it on, it gets to the "windows is starting up" screen...and freezes. Each time. no mouse, keyboard, etc. Any suggestions? Thank you. Stephanie
Answer: It looks as though you may have a driver or device conflict that is preventing your computer from starting. This is one of those hard to diagnose without seeing it problems but here are a few suggestions.
Start the computer in safe mode. To do so tap F8 repeatedly when the computer is starting until you get the Windows startup menu and choose Safe Mode from the list. If you can start in safe mode then see if you can remove the sound card by removing any software from Add/Remove Programs.
After that go to Device Manager (right click My Computer, Properties, Hardware, Device Manager) and go to the Sound, video and game controllers section and see if your sound card is listed or even if your old card is listed there too. If so remove it from the list.
You can also go to Device Manager before removing any software to see if there are any errors with your sound card. You will see a yellow exclamation point or question mark. You can reinstall your drivers from here.
If you cant get into Safe Mode or the other suggestions don't work try taking the card out of the computer and see if it starts that way.
Another thing you can try from Safe Mode is to check your startup items for anything that looks like it is sound card related and uncheck it. See our MSconfig page for more details. Reboot as normal and see what happens.
Also make sure your sound, video and other cards are properly seated.
Make sure you are using the right driver for your operating system.
If your motherboard has onboard sound, make sure to disable it in the BIOS.