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HP Pavilion dv7 will only boot up with a disc in the cd drive


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#1 SquarePeggy

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 06:01 PM

Yesterday I was prompted to download "important" updates from hp for my laptop.  After the download it was working fine until I shut the lid (should go to sleep mode) and returned later to use it.  Could not get the laptop out of sleep mode.  Tried everything including removing battery and unplugging to do a hard reboot.  Left if unplugged overnight and could hear it making a clicking noise.  When I plugged it in this morning I could hear a noise from the cd drive like a click but still blank black screen.  Fan running, light for cap lock steady blinking, internet light showing red instead of white.  Again would not "wake up".  I went looking for my hp recovery discs and put in #1.  Tried again to start up the pc and it booted right up.  Got the screen asking if I wanted to start in safe mode so did that.  Everything worked fine and used it for several hours after running a back up to my external drive.    

 

When I was done, I did a shut down from the start menu and was back to the black screen and blinking caps lock again.  Shut it off, put the disc back in and tried again and it started up.  The disc is not running, just in the drive.  

 

I know 0 about pcs so am really stuck as to what my options are.  I can't leave the laptop on all the time.  Can I just leave any old disc in the drive to get it to start?  Am I on borrowed time?  I really think whatever that "update" was from hp totally screwed up my laptop but this is over 2 years old and way past any warranty.  

 

Thoughts?  Ideas?  Really not wanting to buy a new laptop right now, just started shopping for a tablet and would have to put that on hold if I have to spring for a new laptop.   



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#2 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 06:40 PM

Hi,

 

I would be inclined to uninstall the recent HP updates and see if that cures the problem. You can do this through 'Control Panel' - 'Programs and Features' which will produce a list of installed software. Then select the updates - if they show up - and click uninstall. If they don't show up in the list, or don't uninstall, you could try using the Revo uninstaller, you can get it here :

 

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/download/revo-uninstaller/

 

An alternative course of action would be to use the restore point facility and try to restore your computer to a point in time before these updates. Again, 'Control Panel' then 'Recovery'. Click on the button 'Open system restore' and you should find a list of recent restore points. Pick the last one before your HP download and take it from there. What this does is undo any changes to the system that were made after the date of the restore point, so you will be asked to reinstall any Microsoft updates as well as this recent HP one.

 

Install the Microsoft ones, but ignore the HP ones and you should be back to normal.

 

Good luck,

 

Chris Cosgrove



#3 SquarePeggy

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 08:04 PM

Thanks Chris for your response.  I gave it a try.  There was nothing recent from HP showing under programs to uninstall so I did the system restore to a point early last week.  When it automatically did the restart at the end, it came right back up and said it had been restored successfully.  I removed the disc, shut it down and tried to start it again.  Back to the black screen with the fan running and lights blinking.  Put the cd in and tried again and it booted right up.  Once it's on, it runs normally.  I ran a few of the diagnostic tools from HP, Windows and Norton and no issues found.  



#4 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 11:45 AM

Hi,

 

A two year old laptop that hasn't been unduly badly treated - ie not dropped, thrown around, spilled on, etc. - should not be giving these problems. A possibility that has occurred to me on re-reading your posts is that your hard drive has got lost in your BIOS start-up. What I mean is that the BIOS is no longer pointing at your hard drive to boot from. This is quite easy to check.

 

When you start up your computer, however you start it, the first screen you see is the BIOS screen which has some text on it. This text normally includes the legend 'Press DEL for BIOS' ( on some models it is the F2 key ). When you see this screen, press the 'Delete' key ( or the F" key ) two or three times and you will be taken to the BIOS set-up screen. Along the top are legends like 'Info', 'Main', 'Security'. 'Boot' and 'Exit'. Highlight 'Boot' using the Left - Right arrow keys and when you get there the screen should open itself and show you the boot seqence of drives. You have to use the arrow keys because your mouse or track-pad will not work at this stage.

 

The sequence should be 1st Boot device :- CD/DVD; 2nd Boot device :- Hard disk drive. If this is the sequence they are in, I am barking up the wrong tree. If they are not in this sequence, adjust them so that they are following the instructions in the box on the right hand side of the screen. These are usually quite clear.

 

When you have got them into this order, press the 'Escape' button and this will take you to the 'Exit' screen. Here you will find various options to save or not to save your changes. Select 'Save changes and Exit' ( or equivalent wording ) and your computer will exit the BIOS screen and attempt to re-boot, and hopefully it will start again without a disc in the optical drive.

 

Regards,

 

Chris Cosgrove



#5 SquarePeggy

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 10:24 PM

Laptop bought in Sept 2010 so just a bit over 2 years.  No spills, drops, abuse - it's a desktop replacement that I use primarily for movies and social networking sites and some online courses - never take it out of the house and I am the only user, kids use the family pc and can't access my laptop (it has that fingerprint scan sign on).  I totally agree that it should not be giving me trouble!  

 

Anyway - I can't do what you have suggested because it has now stopped booting up even with a disc in the cd drive.  Fortunately I backed up all my photos and files onto my external drive during the few hours that it worked.  Now, it turns on, so to speak, and I can hear the cd spin and then nothing. I've tried everything I can think of to get it to boot up but nothing has worked - just blank screen (not DOS or blue) and fan running, lights steady blink on the cap lock.  Orange light for wifi instead of white and orange light for charging instead of white.  Would love some ideas for getting it to run so I can try what you've suggested.   

 

Would appreciate any suggestions.  Is it worth taking it to a repair shop?  I paid about $700 for the it.  I actually went out and bought a low end Dell Inspiron tonight as I could not keep borrowing my daughter's ipad and I have a final coming up! I have 15 days to return this laptop if I don't need it!   



#6 SquarePeggy

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 08:37 AM

bumping to see if I can get some advice on whether or not to take this in for repair or cut my losses...suggestions for repair options in Boston-North area?



#7 jhayz

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 09:05 AM

black screen and blinking caps lock again

The number of blinks are found here http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?cc=us&lc=en&docname=c01443366


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#8 SquarePeggy

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 09:09 AM

It's a steady blink every second or so.  Since it never stops blinking while "on" I'm assuming it is #1.  CPU not functional.  However - it was doing the steady blink prior to my putting in the cd and getting it to temporarily work again...  

 

Really ignorant about computers so I apologize if this is a dumb question...  Does CPU not functional mean what I think it means?  Not fixable?  

 

Thanks for your help.  



#9 SquarePeggy

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 04:18 PM

Update - got the laptop to boot up again - I had it plugged in and on (just the blinking cap light for hours) and I heard the cd drive start a clicking noise.  I ejected the cd, put it back in, powered down and back up and there it was.  Everything was working.  In my excitement, I hit the start windows normally instead of trying to get to the bios!  I tried to power off/on it again to do the bios hard drive check described above and once again, it won't start.  If something was fried, would it really work then stop then work again?  This is maddening.  



#10 jhayz

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 08:56 PM

Are you sure the clicking sound is not from the hard drive itself? You need to determine the number of blinks probably related to the boot and blackscreen issue. Try using a live linux bootable disc if the problem is not present. See here http://www.winhelp.us/index.php/other/recover-files-using-puppy-linux.html#.USghcVdm9_m


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#11 SquarePeggy

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 11:55 PM

Are you sure the clicking sound is not from the hard drive itself? You need to determine the number of blinks probably related to the boot and blackscreen issue. Try using a live linux bootable disc if the problem is not present. See here http://www.winhelp.us/index.php/other/recover-files-using-puppy-linux.html#.USghcVdm9_m

The sound stops the minute I eject the cd so I am fairly certain it is coming from the cd drive.  And it is a 1 blink. 



#12 Sneakycyber

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Posted 24 February 2013 - 02:21 AM

When the laptop fails to boot does it even get to the post screen ( Hp logo, or white writing on the screen) If the system will power on attempt to get to the bios set up (tap f1 and f10 untill the bios setup appears). Look for the bios version number and report back guide to getting your bios version from hp

Edited by Sneakycyber, 24 February 2013 - 02:28 AM.

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#13 SquarePeggy

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Posted 24 February 2013 - 12:18 PM

No, when it doesn't boot, it never gets anything on the screen.  I hear the power up, caps lock and internet lights turn on (internet orange for not connected, cap lock goes into one blink sequence), I hear a blip noise from the cd drive then it just sits there.  I have hp recovery discs that I made when I bought this so if I can get it running again I am going to try those.  I have tried all of the other steps suggested and nothing seems to fix the problem.  When I did get into the bios screen the boot sequence was hard drive then cd and I tried reversing as suggested above but it didn't help. I really think that whatever is wrong was caused by the updates that I ran for both hp and windows just before this all started but I went back and did a system restore to a date prior to that and it didn't fix the problem so maybe I am off base with that.  

 

If I get it running again and want to try the system restore discs, do I do that from the first screen or do I let windows load first?  Or should I update the bios?  So confused...  



#14 jhayz

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Posted 24 February 2013 - 09:29 PM

I would try removing the CD/DVD drive from the laptop just to check on the difference. There are only a number of hardware components in a laptop that you can try removing for testing purposes - A RAM stick, network card, optical drive and maybe the heatsink/cpu.


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#15 SquarePeggy

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Posted 24 February 2013 - 11:52 PM

That is way beyond my skill level. Going to have to find a trustworthy repair person.  Hate to hand it over as there is a lot of personal info stored in my files like tax returns and banking info etc...






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