MSI motherboard no longer boots Windows after BIOS update

this is dumb. saw MSi had released a new BIOS for my motherboard (X570-A PRO, purchased in January of this year) and since i had never updated the BIOS on this mobo before, i decided to do it. downloaded BIOS file on USB, reset PC into M-Flash, then flashed BIOS - no problems were reported, and the PC shut down after flashing and started again. but Windows wouldn’t load anymore - all i get is the flashing DOS-style cursor in the upper left corner of the screen after the UEFI finishes loading. cleared the CMOS, no change. i’ve reached out to MSi support, but it’s the weekend and it’s going to be two days before they get back to me.

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600
Mobo: MSi X570-A PRO
RAM: oLOY 3200 16GB (x2)
GPU: EVGA GeForce GTX 970

Check in UEFI what order your boot devices are listed? You OS drive should be first, though it should be smart enough to check them in any order for a device with the OS on it. Also make sure it shows you have boot devices showing up.

i’m able to boot a Win10 repair image on USB. running chkdsk now and… i think it can’t find the SSD that Windows is installed on? (it started checking the games HDD instead when i ran chkdsk C: /f /r - which is normally drive D:) ugh…

Yep check in UEFI for the device, its gotta be seen there first before it can be useable. :)

have to let the chkdsk run its course on a 3TB drive… will resume the investigation tomorrow.

assuming i can get the drive recognized, what are the steps for Windows install recovery?

  1. Startup Repair
  2. uninstall previous Windows updates
  3. bcd reconstruction

I’d try the startup repair. :)

Is everything on 1 drive? Or do you have multiple drives?

multiple drives - Windows install on SSD (Samsung Evo 970 1TB?), games install on 3TB Western Digital HDD

Ahh, I myself usually unplug all the other drives until I get windows loaded and working well. :)

Does the UEFI/BIOS see the EVO 970?

You have a 1TB SSD and you are installing your games to a spinning disk? But…why? What do you have left for unused space on the 1TB after Windows and your documents and files, like 950GB of free space?

Can you roll your BIOS update back to the previous version? Sometimes you can.

The good news is if you can still get into UEFI is that your mobo is not borked.

You could also try rolling back to the earlier firmware.*

*This may not be possible, as I have an ASUS x570 board and there was a firmware update that was clearly marked as

Version 1404
2019/11/0815.02 MBytes
PRIME X570-P BIOS 1404
1. Update AM4 combo PI patch B
2. Support Ryzen™ 2000-series APU
*** You will not be able to downgrade your BIOS after updating to this BIOS version***

Still, there may be previous firmware updates this will work.

yes, I should have unplugged the other drive. was going to do that after the chkdsk finished, but i decided to try to boot the UEFI drive again - still had a black screen with cursor. rebooted again to try to boot off the Windows recovery USB and… the computer FINISHED INSTALLING WINDOWS UPDATES and booted normally. …!

i actually intended to install Serious Sam 4 on the SSD, but actually installed it on the spinning disk… i regret that decision. the game loads soooooo slow. using the HDD as a games drive works fine otherwise, but i may have to rethink my plan for this.

Nice, see how easy that was! :D

“avoid performing PC troubleshooting at 2AM”

I know that’s true, but I’ve found myself doing it again and again…

The encryption key that MSI uses to sign their firmware updates is in the wild

Can anyone find the list of motherboards affected? I heard that it was posted to reddit and then deleted, so now I can’t find anything.

So this is gonna kill MSI as a company right?

It might, once too many people do not heed MSI’s advice to only download drivers from MSI (or Microsoft), and then get their PCs destroyed or turned into a bot. I mean, if I were building a PC today I would avoid MSI motherboards for sure.

(I’d still buy their case because it’s one of a handful with a PSU cutout in the shroud so I can showoff the Asus ROG THOR’s fancy OLED power readout.)

I sincerely doubt it will kill them, but it certainly hurts. I do wonder what percentage of people get drivers from unofficial sources; I know some certainly do, but I wonder how many.