01-27-2016 02:04 AM - edited 02-13-2016 05:01 AM
I used to own a Pavilion dv6-4024tx notebook which I gave to my dad to use after buying a new laptop for myself. It was in fairly good working condition when I gave it to him, with the only issue being that it would get very hot unless a cooling pad was used (which I provided him with). At the time, it was running Windows 7 Home Premium with no issues and everything was fine. However it might be worth noting that while I had it I had issues with random Blue Screens while I was using the latest graphics drivers, so I rolled back to the drivers provided on the support page for this laptop. After I "upgraded" it to Windows 10 (not performing a clean install) for my dad, the laptop would randomly crash and display something like in the photo that I've attached, before going blank and showing it again repeatedly. Believing it to be an issue with the GPU, I went and used Display Driver Uninstaller to completely remove all AMD drivers and software, downloaded the latest driver from the AMD website and installed it. It seemed to temporarily fix the issue but since this was still within 30 days of installing, I offered to revert back to Windows 7 but my dad wanted to leave it and see how it went. Strangely enough, for the next month he never reported the laptop crashing again and the time period to revert eventually expired. The problem obviously returned so I tried the same solution from before but the crashing persisted. I tried disabling the GPU completely from Device Manager, so that the laptop was running with Microsoft's Basic Display Adapter. It seemed to stop the crashing, but within a week my dad told me that it had crashed again. I tried restoring the laptop from a system image that I'd made years ago but I learned that you can't restore a system image from a different version of Windows. Finally as a last resort I backed up everything and did a true clean install of Windows 10, and the problem still didn't go away.
My goal now is to somehow return the laptop to Windows 7. I can mount a VHD from the system image and access all the recovery files provided by HP, specifically the Recovery Manager. From this I can make a recovery USB or DVD(s) to hopefully restore the laptop to complete factory conditions (thereby theoretically returning it to Windows 7). I would try this but I'd need a flash drive over 20 GB or multiple blank DVDs which I don't currently have. Additionally, Recovery Manager says that this media can only ever be created once, so it'd save me time and money (not to mention my last lifeline) if someone could please share their opinion on whether this method would be successful or not. I know in the case that it does work, there's still the issue of registering the OS with Microsoft but I can cross that bridge when I get to it.
Sorry for the essay that I just wrote but this has been an issue for way too long and I'm at a loss of what to do now (apart from buying another computer). If there's any questions I'll be happy to answer them, and hopefully we can get this problem solved. Cheers.
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01-27-2016 07:42 AM
Thanks for replying! Unfortunately I never created a system repair disc. But if I can get my hands on a Windows 7 installation disc, would that work? If not, would the recovery media that I can create with the HP Recovery Manager work? Either way it's great to hear that it's possible to revert to Windows 7.
01-27-2016 08:23 AM
The Win7 Repair Disk is designed to repair the boot loader files but it also might repair the PC enough for you to be able to boot back into Windows and run the Recovery from the saved image.
Sorry, but I can't help you with running the HP Recovery as I have learned the hard way not to trust any built-in backup/restore solutions. I've used Macrium Reflect for years and not only is it free, it is very reliable. So, once you get back on your feet, you should look into using that for backup/restore.
If the HP Recovery does not work, what will work is restoring your machine to its original factory condition using HP Recovery Media. This is a set of DVDs and a CD that will erase the hard drive (removing all data, settings, and applications, reinstall the original OS, drivers, and some HP Utilities. In some cases, you may be able to order a USB stick instead of disks. You have to order these from HP; they can not be downloaded.
You can look online for Recovery Media starting with the linked paged: http://support.hp.com/us-en/drivers
Once there, input your Product name or number. On your Software and Drivers Download page, select your Operating System and and Version. Click "Update". If HP Recovery Media is available for your machine, down near the bottom of the page, you will see an entry for Order Recovery Media-CD/DVD/USB. Click the "+" symbol to expand that entty and click on Order Media for details.
Or, if you prefer, you can do the same by contacting HP Customer Service:
If you live in the US or Canada, contact information is on this page: http://www8.hp.com/us/en/contact-hp/phone-assist.html#section1
If you live elsewhere, contact information is on this page: http://www8.hp.com/us/en/contact-hp/ww-contact-us.html
Note that if HP no longer provides Recovery Media for your model, a couple of other sites you can check are: http://www.computersurgeons.com/ and http://www.restoredisks.com/
I am a volunteer and I do not work for, nor do I represent, HP.
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01-27-2016 08:59 AM
If you follow this from Step 3.
You will need to select "format and repartition disks" as windows 10 will have changed the partitions.
01-27-2016 09:57 AM - edited 01-27-2016 10:01 AM
Thanks WAWood! The laptop can still boot properly and I can use it normally but the crash randomly happens. I can access all the files from the system image by mounting the primary partition as a Virtual Hard Disk. From there I've been able to launch HP's Recovery Manager and I'm assuming I'll be able to create USB recovery media through that if I choose to do so. After this I'm hoping I can then set the laptop to boot from that USB to reset the laptop to factory conditions, thereby reverting to Windows 7 and making it possible to restore my system image. If that doesn't work, I'll try to obtain Recovery Media by contacting HP since it isn't available through the product support page. For future reference I'll definitely look into Macrium Reflect once the laptop's up and running again.
KarenUK I'll try to get my hands on Windows 7 installation media to see if I can restore my system image through it but if not I'll try and just install Windows 7 and restore from the system image after. If all else fails I'll buy a 32 GB USB and try the Recovery Manager method.
I'll keep you guys posted. Cheers.
02-11-2016 10:21 AM
It took a while but I finally got my hands on a Windows 7 Installation Disc and successfully reverted back to Windows 7 with my system image. The only issue is that the recovery partition seems to be defunct since I can't boot into it, nor can I create recovery media with Recovery Manager (it reaches around 4% and tells me that the creation of the media was unsuccessful). However, this doesn't really bother me so long as the laptop is functional. One problem I am having, though, is restoring the files from the backup I made before I did the clean install of Windows 10. When I try to use Backup and Restore, it only seems to recognise backups I made in 2013 which is not what I want. Going into the "Manage space" option, I can clearly see that the latest backup is there (2016), which confuses me. I'd like to restore all those files since there are a lot of important documents sitting in that backup that my dad needs. I've tried using this method here http://www.howtogeek.com/212768/how-to-restore-windows-7-backups-on-windows-8.1-or-10/ but it's really tedious and there's Identifier files everywhere so it's going to be a last resort. Hoping someone can lead me in the right direction. Cheers!
02-12-2016 03:38 PM
Sorry. Windows 7 backup is not the same as Windows 8.1 file history
But maybe this will help