I have had one ongoing problem with my production machine since putting it together. Every few weeks, it would shut down.

There was no indication, and it wasn’t to a time, just purely random. Last week, I decided that I would look in Event Viewer, and I found that it was experiencing a kernel power error 41.

Surfing around, it was becoming apparent that I had a problem with either bad RAM, bad contact between the processor and heatsink  or power supply issues. So I decided today that I would create a MemTest86+ disk and run the RAM tests. That was the easy part.

Pressing F12, the computer gave up a list of boot devices, and naturally I chose CDROM. The boot continued straight into Windows 7. OK..

More surfing and yet more, finding lots who had the same issue, the $64000 question remained. How do you boot from CD when the computer is set for AHCI?

One solution was to set BIOS back to Native IDE, which is what I did, and the computer would readily boot from CD. Some considerable time later, MemTest86+ came back with no errors..

My power supply is a base mounted unit, taking air from underneath. I stand the case on one of the Styrofoam inserts just to keep it up off of the floor a little. Maybe there was not enough air getting underneath, So I cut ventilation slots into the sides of the Styrofoam and maybe that will fix the shutdown problem. I can only wait and see.

I know that it is not the CPU because Speedfan 4.45 keeps me informed, and it has yet to breach 42°C.

So, back to the AHCI and why the computer would not boot from CD. The solution was staring me in the face every time I went into the boot list. The AHCI SATA name for my optical drive is NOT CDROM as appears in the boot list. The name is…….


Click on that, and the computer boots straight into whatever is on the inserted CD/DVD. You may have to go a fair way down the listing to find yours. Mine was almost the last entry of twelve options..