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PC Bootup Stuck on Black Screen with Blinking Underscore - Please Help!


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#1 SilverArctic

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 03:58 PM

Hi All,

 

I currently have an issue that I was hoping some of you could help me out with.  After an update to my Windows 10 HP Pavilion desktop last evening, my computer will no longer enter Windows startup.  Instead, it gets stuck on a black screen with a blinking underscore in the top left-hand corner.  I am able to access my UEFI BIOS.  From there, I ran the S.M.A.R.T. test and all the tests passed.  It seems that my hard drive is still functioning and connected but the Windows patch is causing issues.  I am currently unable to boot into safe mode because the computer gets stuck before the Windows boot page.  I have not performed a system backup recently, so I likely won't be able to restore the PC to an earlier state.  

 

Many important files are stored on my computer and I don't want to lose them by re-performing a full Windows install.  I am thinking about running the system repair tool from the "System Recovery" portion of the BIOS.  Would this be a safe solution to try?  Is there a way I can repair this issue without deleting all the data stored on the computer?

 

Any other ideas?  I'd appreciate any help as soon as possible!

 

-SilverArctic



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#2 SilverArctic

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 04:10 PM

Ok, quick update.  I ran the system repair tool, and it claims that "no OS files were found on disk."  This is strange.  Does anyone have ideas as to what's going wrong?   Please help!  Thanks!

 

-SilverArctic



#3 JohnC_21

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 04:12 PM

 I am thinking about running the system repair tool from the "System Recovery" portion of the BIOS.  Would this be a safe solution to try?  

I would not touch that. 

 

There is a way to force Windows 10 into the Advance Boot or Repair Options where you can try doing a System Restore. 

 

If you information is that important I would boot a live linux disk and recover your data to a external USB drive. For doing this I would recommend Fatdog64.Burn a CD disk on a Windows 7 or later computer by right clicking the iso file and selecting Burn Disk Image. You may need to disable SecureBoot in UEFI and allow CSM or Legacy Boot but Fatdog should boot with UEFI enabled.

 

At the Fatdog desktop there will be your hard drive partitions in the lower left labeled sda1...sda2...etc. Your Windows partition may be labeled sda3 or perhaps sda4. Click once on the icon and the partition will mount. A file manager window will open. If you do not see your files exit out of the window and click another sdax partition until you have the correct partition.

 

http://distro.ibiblio.org/fatdog/web/

 

Fatdog64-702.iso

 

I can give instructions on copying your files to an external drive using Fatdog if you can boot to the desktop. 


Edited by JohnC_21, 11 November 2016 - 04:12 PM.


#4 SilverArctic

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 04:19 PM

Thanks for the info JohnC.  I will give it a try and let you know how it goes.



#5 JohnC_21

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 04:24 PM

Here are the instructions for copying files from the hard drive to the USB external drive.

 

Fatdog copy instructions;

Once you find your correct sdax partition attach your external USB flash drive. A USB icon will appear on the desktop. Click once on it and another File Manager Window will open. You can resize and move the two windows until they are side by side by left clicking and dragging the corner and title bar similar to Windows. Once you have both windows side by side highlight the data you want to copy by pressing Ctrl and left clicking or left clicking and dragging a window around your files/folders. You only need to click once to open a folder in Fatdog. Once you have your files/folders highlighted drag them from the sdaX window to the USB external or flash drive window. A small dialog window will open. Select Copy and check the quiet box. Don't forget your browser bookmarks or email if using a client. Once all your files are copied exit out of Fatdog. You may want to open a few to see if the copy was successful

 

You can also use Rufus to create a bootable USB flash drive if a CD is not available.

 

Rufus Instructions:

Run Rufus with the USB flash drive attached. Select MBR partition scheme for BIOS and UEFI. Leave all boxes as checked. Where FreeDos is shown in the dropdown box select iso image, click the icon, and browse to the Fatdog iso file. Press Start. Any data on the flash drive will need to be backed up as the drive will be formatted.

 

Note: your computer should have a boot menu access by tapping a key at boot where you can select the correct boot device.



#6 SilverArctic

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 04:57 PM

As a quick update, I was able to install FATDOG onto a USB and extract the files that I needed.  Thanks for the help!

 

I am bringing my computer to the local repair shop to see if they can figure out what the issue is.  I will keep you updated and post additional information if the IT folks at the store are stumped.



#7 JohnC_21

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 05:19 PM

Your Welcome, glad you were able to recover your data.

 

Since you have your data try the following to start a System Restore.

 

  1. Hold the Power Button for 5 seconds or until the computer completely shuts off.
  2. Press the Power Button to turn the computer on.
  3. As soon as you see the rotating loading circle, press and hold the Power Button until the computer shuts off.
  4. Repeat this process 2 or 3 times until you see the Preparing Automatic Repair screen.
  5. Let the computer boot to the Automatic Repair screen.
  6. Click Advanced Options, and then select Troubleshoot.

Edited by JohnC_21, 12 November 2016 - 05:19 PM.





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