Lenovo Flex 3 1580 Clean Win7 Install

Jan 15, 2016
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We need to install Win7 SP1 x64 on a Lenovo Flex 3 1580 machine from a USB drive [has no optical media]. The machine has the latest BIOS available from Lenovo installed. It has Win10 pre installed, and is unmodified. The hard drive is a Western Digital SATA - WDC WD10SPCX 24HWST1 that came with the machine.

We downloaded the "Win7_Pro_SP1_English_COEM_x64.iso" from MS and installed on USB using "Windows 7-USB-DVD-Download-Tool-Installer-en-US.exe". The machine boots and enters the install procedure using the USB, however when install begins, it displays the following message: "A required CD/DVD drive device driver is missing". Install then asks for additional drivers. Obvious that the latest MS drivers do not work with this machine.

Lenovo shows no pre-OS drivers on their software download page, even though all other Win7 drivers available. All of those drivers/updates can only be installed after the Win 7 OS in installed. So we downloaded generic I/O SATA AHCI Controller drivers "f6flpy-x64.zip" from the Intel site [Version: (Latest) Date: 12/14/2015], and copied them to the existing C:\partition on the machine. The partition and the files are visible during Win7 install and we can browse and select them during the Win7 install. Install sees the offered Intel driver f6flpy-x64 as "compatible", however when Win7 attempts to install the f6flpy-x64 driver, it fails to complete and throws the following error message:

The [Intel(R) 6th Generation Core Processor Family Platform I/O SATA AHCI Controller (C:\SATA drivers Flex3\iaAHIC.inf)] device driver could not be installed. Contact your vendor for an updated driver.

Install never reaches the Format/Partition screen. Calls to Lenovo support and "Premium Support" were of no value.

Anyone have a source for the necessary pre-OS drivers that would work with this machine? I presume the pre-OS drivers are the same for Win 7, 8 and 10 - that is how Intel distributes them.


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