In August 2012 I upgraded my PC from Pentium 4 to Asus P8H61 M/B, Core-i3 CPU and 8GB DDR3 RAM. The M/B has the new Intel 1155 socket that doesn't natively support IDE devices. I had two old IDE/ATAPI DVD-RW drives that I wanted to keep alongside my new SATA BD-R drive, so I also bought an IDE/SATA PCI-E card. Before the upgrade I had Windows 7 Ultimate 32-bit, but since now the RAM was increased to 8GB, I made a backup of my data and installed Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit. All hardware including the IDE card worked as expected, not issue so far.
How the problem occured:
Recently I decided to upgrade to Windows 8.1 Pro. To avoid all the hassle of another backup and clean installation, I cheated by doing an upgrade first to Windows 8 Pro 64-bit and then to Windows 8.1 Pro to have the newest version. After the upgrade I realized that most hardware had now Microsoft drivers while some devices (including the IDE card) were not installed. No problem, I updated the drivers to latest OEM versions (e.g. Intel, Realtek, nVidia etc.) for Windows 8/8.1 to make sure all my devices work at their full potential and all features as in Windows 7. I didn't manage to make an old TV Tuner (BT878 chipset) work with custom 64-bit drivers (it was working fine in Windows 7 64-bit, see my other post) and the IDE card. For the IDE/SATA card I tried many JMicron JMX36X drivers, including the official latest ones from their site. The driver seems to install forever and after too many minutes it fails. However, the controller seems to have installed and my DVD-RW drives are recognized properly, but the computer hangs after restart at the Windows 8 boot screen with the spinning dots! If I manage to boot in safe mode (thank God I enabled the legacy boot menu, so I can do it by pressing F8 at startup), the computer starts normally, the controller appears working without any issues at Device Manager and my IDE DVD-RW drives both appear as they should in "This Computer". I even loaded a DVD and it was read properly and I could browse the files! Assuming now the controller is installed and works properly, I attempted to restart in normal mode. The same thing! The computer hangs forever at the Windows 8 logo with the spinning dots! I suspect some service or application is responsible for this. It probably doesn't load at Safe Mode, so Windows start in Safe Mode without any problem, but it tries to load at Normal Mode and it hangs the whole system! The only way to start my PC in Normal Mode is to disable the controller but then of course my IDE DVD-RW are also disabled and I cannot use them!
If you have any ideas, please do share! It's driving me crazy! Of course I want to continue using Windows 8.1, I don't want to go back to 7 just for a stupid IDE card! Don't even think about suggesting me to do a format! I expect something smarter than that! Thanks! Format will be the absolutely last solution when everything else fails, and I would rather ditch the card and my IDE drives than go through all this trouble. Besides it's not guaranteed that the card will work after the format. I may go through all the trouble for nothing, and I certainly don't want that! So please think twice before replying!
Thank you in advance
PS: Please post only USEFUL information, not stuff like "give up and do a format". The whole purpose of this forum is to SOLVE a problem, not to give up! Unless you have something useful to suggest, please don't waste my time! Thanks again!