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Windows XP booting to black screen, won't enter safe mode


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10 replies to this topic

#1 MamaRamona

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 02:55 PM

Hello everyone.

I've had great success with computer problems here in the past and am hoping someone can help me out again. I've read through some of the 'booting to black screen' posts on here, and it seems like I need a Windows XP recovery disk, which I do not have.

A little bit of info on my problem:

I was given a Gateway desktop by a friend when it stopped working for her and she bought a new one rather than dealing with it. She is not a computer person at all, and could only tell me that it stopped working, no other specifics. When I try to boot the computer, the Gateway screen comes on for a second or two, then it goes straight to black screen. I've tried hitting F2 or F8 or F10, but nothing happens. My friend says that she doesn't think that the computer came with a recovery disk, or if it did, she doesn't have it any longer.

Is there anything else I can try, or do I have to get my hands on a Windows XP disk? I don't think I know anyone who has one, so is there anywhere that I could get one online?

Thanks in advance,
~MR

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 04:15 PM

Black screen...black screen with cursor in upper left corner?

Black Screen (fixmbr) - http://support.microsoft.com/?scid=kb;en-us;314503

The XP Recovery Console can be downloaded as an .iso file and then burned to CD...which, in turn, allows it to be used to access the Recovery Console commands.

What's the model number of this desktop? Should be on the case.

Louis

#3 MamaRamona

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 06:52 PM

Louis,

thank you so much for your help. The computer is a Gateway Profile 4. There is no cursor on the black screen, just a completely black screen.

Where can I safely download the recovery console iso file from?

~MR

#4 hamluis

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 07:44 PM

Download Recovery Console, Bootable ISO - http://www.webtree.ca/windowsxp/repair_xp.htm

How to successfully burn or write an ISO-image to cd or dvd - http://iso.snoekonline.com/iso.htm. Choose one method...I use Active@ Iso Burner.

I would try running chkdsk /r first.

How to use CHKDSK in the XP Recovery Console - http://pirules3.14.googlepages.com/recovery_console_chkdsk

Louis

Edited by hamluis, 29 November 2009 - 08:48 AM.


#5 MamaRamona

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 08:13 PM

thanks again, Louis.

I followed the steps and burned the iso file successfully to disk. When I put it in the Gateway and pressed R, nothing happened except for the light on the disk drive flashed orange a few times (while smonitor shows same black screen).

Anything I might be doing incorrectly, or anything else I might try?

#6 caperdog

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 09:34 PM

most gateways press F2 to enter BIOS . some older ones press F1. in setup program (BIOS) disable gateway splash screen so you can see the POST (power on self test). this is a black screen with white letters. check to see if hard drive is detected and for any error messages.

also in BIOS you may have to set your CD drive as first boot device to boot from the recovery disk you made.

also in BIOS make sure the clock is set to the correct time and date.

#7 MamaRamona

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 11:59 AM

Thanks for your suggestion caperdog. On the Gateway screen that appears for a second, it says to press F2 to enter BIOS, however pressing F2 or any of the function keys gets me nowhere.

I forgot to mention that sometimes it goes from the Gateway screen to what I'm guessing is the POST screen, but it flashes on the screen so fast that I cannot read anything. This has happened only a few of the many times I've tried now to boot it up.

Does it mean anything that the light on the disk drive is orange? Should it be green?

#8 caperdog

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 03:44 PM

maybe the keyboard is screwy. can you try another one ? try holding down the F2 key when you power on the computer as you may not be getting it fast enough.

#9 MamaRamona

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 03:57 PM

yeah, tried 2 different keyboards :thumbsup:

#10 caperdog

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 04:14 PM

you could try resetting the Cmos , most motherboards have a jumper you move and then move back to original position after a short time. download the manual for this machine to see how it is done. once it is reset the computer should restart and come to an error message that will allow you to enter BIOS. make sure you reset the time and date as that is the error.

set your CD drive as first boot device to boot from the recovery disk you made.

#11 hamluis

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 05:36 PM

If you have never seen this system operational...you have a long list of things to try/check.

I would start with a clean install of XP.

If that cannot happen, then it's back to your check list.

Louis




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