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Blinking cursor after Win 7 installation - Dell Optiplex 790


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#1 egestatem

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 10:14 AM

I have a new Dell Optiplex 790 that I'm trying to install Windows 7 Enterprise onto. It installs no problem, but afterwards, after POST, it will just display a blinking cursor. If i hit F12 during POST to go to the One-Time Boot Menu, there is an option for "Windows Boot Manager" and if I choose this, it boots fine.

Some more information: I have tried multiple disks, multiple hard drives, updating the BIOS version, both ATA and AHCI configurations in the BIOS, and even multiple machines, all brand new 790s. This problem seems to be hit or miss, as Windows 7 will install fine on some and will cause this problem on others.

Also, I have tried installing EasyBCD and there are some issues with that. It will not display an option for Windows 7, so the boot menu is completely blank. It won't let me add any entries there either.

Any suggestions?

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#2 Allan

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 11:33 AM

Is W7 the only OS? If so, I suggest you start from scratch. Boot to the W7 dvd, delete the existing partition(s), create a new partition, format, install.

#3 egestatem

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 12:11 PM

Yes, Windows 7 is the only operating system. I have tried starting over, even with different hard drives and with different installation disks for Win 7 Enterprise.

I have many Optiplex 790s that I am working with and the problem seems to only happen with some of them. With the ones that exhibit the problem, starting from scratch doesn't help.

#4 Allan

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 12:23 PM

Hmmm. Odd. Perhaps someone else will have some thoughts for you - sorry I'm unable to help.

#5 LucheLibre

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 04:58 PM

Be sure you have the latest BIOS installed. Also, are you using a serial key, or are you trying to bypass activation?

Do the following procedure on a working PC and a nonworking PC.

Use UBCD and PartedMagic to dump your MBR to a file.
  • You will need a flash drive for this procedure.
  • Download the UBCD .iso file to your desktop.
  • Burn the ISO file to a CD. Follow these instructions if this is new to you.
  • Plug the USB flash drive into the affected computer and boot from the CD.
    • Repeatedly pressing F9 or F12 right after the computer is turned on is the most common way to bring up the 'boot device' menu. Choose the CD/DVD option and press Enter.
  • Select Parted Magic and press Enter.
  • Select Default Settings and press Enter. Parted Magic will eject the CD when it has finished booting. You may leave the CD in and Close the tray, if you wish.
  • Double-click File Manager. Select your flash drive from the left pane.
  • Right-click an empty spot in the right pane and select Open in Terminal.
  • Type dd if=/dev/sda of=mbr_dump bs=512 count=1
    • There are spaces between "dd" "if=/dev/sda" "of=mbr_dump" "bs=512" and "count=1"
  • After the command completes, click the bottom-left icon (where the 'Start' menu normally is) and select Logout. Click Shutdown.
  • After shutdown, plug the usb drive into the healthy PC and locate the mbr_dump file.
  • Right-click and select Send To > Compressed (zipped) folder. A new archive will be created in the same location.
  • Attach the archive to your next reply. Use the 'Full Editor' to attach files.

Edited by LucheLibre, 07 February 2012 - 05:03 PM.

If it looks like I know what I'm doing, there's a pretty good chance the only reason for that is because
I once asked someone to run chkdsk /r and a BC Advisor smacked me in the back of the head.

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