This occurred BEFORE the Middleton BIOS was installed, but with the last Lenovo BIOS installed.
System: X61T 1.6 gHz, SXGA+, 4GB, Windows 7 Pro/SP1, Western Digital WD10JPVT 1TB drive.
I built up a Windows 7 system in a 160GB partition. The build was substantially complete, with all the Microsoft updates installed. I was into "personalizing" the machine, when I noticed that the AHCI driver was listed as the Microsoft generic. So I installed "Intel Matrix Storage Manager Driver", version 18.104.22.1682 , from the Lenovo download page.
A little while later, I noticed I was having a cumulatively strange experience, as the system then began to crumble, failing to find bits and pieces of itself. At this point, I did not know whether it was memory, cpu, or something else. I considered trying to repair, but I figured so many little things might be missing, the only option was to start from scratch.
So I wiped the disk and started again. I decided to remove the Intel Matrix Storage driver as an element of suspicion, so I installed it early. As soon as I did so, the weirdness began again. This time, I quickly backed out the driver install, and continued to build the system. Since that time, a month ago, the system has been completely stable, I've burned the Middleton BIOS, upgraded the wifi card, no problems.
The only nagging thing is that, even with the Middleton BIOS, but not the Intel Matrix Storage driver, which I dare not install, the "devices" AHCI entry indicates Microsoft generic AHCI 1.0. Is this a complication specific to the Western Digital 1TB drive? Does anyone else have stories? I note that, on the Lenovo site, there were firmware updates for the drives they were using in manufacture.
W500x3 with T9900, , T400 highnit 1280x800 with P9600, X61sx3, X61Tx3.