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laptop boots to black screen and mouse (after running defraggler)


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#1 Without_A_Monitor

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Posted 05 December 2017 - 12:30 PM

A many thanks to anyone and all in advance.  Additionally, I apologize in advance if this is the wrong subforum for my thread.

 

Before I went to bed the other night, I started running defraggler on my old laptop with the shutdown option selected.  Upon the next day, I turned on my laptop to find it booting to a black screen with a mouse.  I tried running startup repair, which was unsuccessful.  I also restarted and rebooted the laptop multiple times to no success.  I read some info on other forums on troubleshooting that seemed helpful; however, I am choosing to ask for help here via my thread instead of attempting any of the aforesaid alternatives.

 

The laptop does boot into safemode with networking.

 

Thank you very much to bleepingcomputer for hosting such a site and to anyone, who reads this and/or might try to assist me in this issue.



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#2 usasma

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Posted 06 December 2017 - 07:19 AM

Black screen issues are some of the toughest to work on and often aren't able to be fixed without a format and reinstall of Windows.

Here's my suggestions in order:

 

NOTE:  Try a clean boot to see if the problem clears up that way:  http://www.thewindowsclub.com/what-is-clean-boot-state-in-windows
If it does, then different troubleshooting steps are called for.

Here's some repair/recovery/restore options (in this order).   Be sure to backup your stuff if you don't want to take the chance of losing it.:

1 - Startup Repair.  Run it 3 times, rebooting in between tries.

2 - System Restore to a point before this started happening.

3 - DISM/SFC repair (DISM doesn't work with W7, although SFC does)  - doesn't work if you're not able to boot to Windows (let me know and I'll post a way to do it from Startup Repair)
    

Then please run the following DISM commands to see if there's any problems with the system (from an elevated (Run as administrator) Command Prompt).  Press Enter after typing it:
   
Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

    FYI - I have repaired systems using the last command even though problems weren't found with the first 2 - so I suggest running them all.

    From this article: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh824869.aspx

    You can also run sfc.exe /scannow from an elevated (Run as administrator) Command Prompt to check for further corruption. Include the CBS log (located at C:\Windows\Logs\CBS\CBS.log) if you'd like to have a Windows Update expert check it (I don't check them because I can't read them)


4 - RESET using the "Keep My Files" option (W8 calls this a REFRESH; W7 and earlier doesn't have this function)

5 - Repair install of the OS (Thanks to FreeBooter!):
   

"How To Perform a Repair Installation For Windows 8, 8.1 and 10"
    https://www.winhelp.us/non-destructive-reinstall-of-windows-8-and-8-1.html

    "How to Do a Repair Install to Fix Windows 7"
    http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/3413-repair-install.html

    "How To Perform a Repair Installation For Vista"
    http://www.vistax64.com/tutorials/88236-repair-install-vista.html

    "Non-destructive reinstall of Windows XP"
    https://www.winhelp.us/non-destructive-reinstall-of-windows-xp.html


6 - RESET using the "Remove Everything" option (W8 calls this a RESET; W7 and earlier doesn't have this function)

If using W7 or earlier, this can be accomplished by resetting the system by use of the recovery partition/recovery disks/recovery drive.
If you don't have them, you can usually order them from the OEM manufacturer of your system ( US points of contact here:  http://www.carrona.org/recdisc.html )

7 - Wipe and reinstall from the Recovery Partition (if so equipped)

8 - Wipe and reinstall from Recovery Media - to include deleting all partitions.
If you don't have them, you can usually order them from the OEM manufacturer of your system ( US points of contact here:  http://www.carrona.org/recdisc.html )
  You can also download W7/8.1/10 from Microsoft starting on this page:  https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/

9 - A clean install of Windows.  This is a troubleshooting tool - and as such is slightly different from the previous steps.  In short, if it fixes the problem, then the problem was in the software.  If it doesn't fix the problem, then the problem is most likely in the hardware.

A clean install is:
- Windows is installed to a freshly partitioned hard drive with legitimate installation media (W10:  https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10 ).
- The installation media is only a copy of Windows, not the OEM recovery disks that you can make on some systems.
- Windows is fully updated after it's installed.  That's ALL updates - none excepted.
- NO 3rd party software is installed.
- There are no errors in Device Manager (if you find any, post back for suggestions).

This will wipe everything off of the computer, so it's advisable to backup your stuff first.
Also, it will wipe out all the special software that the OEM added to the system, so if you rely on any of that - let us know what it is so we can figure out a way to save/download it (the easiest way is to create/obtain the OEM;s recovery media)

If unable to find recovery media that has the software (or if you suspect that this is a hardware problem), you can make an image of your system that'll preserve everything in the state that it was in when you made the image.
One drawback to this is that you're making an image of a malfunctioning system - so, if there are errors in the system software, you'll have a nice copy of them :(
Another drawback is that the image of the system will be very large - so you'll most likely need a large external drive to store it on.
But, this will allow you to save everything on the hard drive (although you'll need an image viewer to get things out of the image).
The point here is that, if it's a hardware problem, then you can restore the system to the point it was when you made the image - after you repair the hardware problem.
You can obtain more info on imaging in the Backup/Imaging/DiskMgmt forums located here:  http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/f/238/backup-imaging-and-disk-management-software/

The point of doing this (the clean install) is to:
- rule out Windows as a problem (if the problem continues, it's not a Windows problem as you completely replaced Windows
- rule out 3rd party software (if the problem continues, it's not a 3rd party software problem as you didn't install any 3rd party software)
- so, if the problem continues, it must be a hardware problem.

OTOH, if the problem stops, then it was either a Windows or 3rd party software problem.  If the problem doesn't come back, then you've fixed it.  Then all that remains is setting the computer back up the way that you'd like it and importing your data from the backup you made.

My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#3 Without_A_Monitor

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Posted 06 December 2017 - 11:03 PM

Thank you very much, usama, for replying and listing instructions in order to help me with my laptop issue.  I will attempt to troubleshoot in the order that you suggest and post updates here.

 

Have a terrific evening.



#4 Without_A_Monitor

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Posted 08 December 2017 - 11:47 PM

I wish for all to be well with you, usama, and that your weekend is starting most pleasantly.

 

The clean boot was successful.  As a result, are different troubleshooting steps now needed?



#5 usasma

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Posted 10 December 2017 - 05:05 PM

If the problem was resolved with the clean boot, then the steps are to enable a few things at a time (I suggest 5 or 10 - depending on how much you disabled) and testing to see if the problem returns.  Continue re-enabling 5/10 at a time until the error returns - that way the error will be in the last 5/10 that you re-enabled.
Then you just sort though the 5 or 10 to see which one it is.

Once you find out which one it is, you uninstall the program that it's related to.

Then you try a normal boot to ensure that things are working well.

Then, if you'd like, you can download and install a fresh copy of the latest, W10 compatible version and see if it works with that.
If it works fine - then there's no problem.  If it doesn't, then there's a problem with the program itself.

 

Good luck!


My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#6 Without_A_Monitor

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Posted 11 December 2017 - 11:20 PM

Usama, you are a laptop saver. I am immensely appreciative to you.

 

Evidently, HitmanPro.Alert was causing my laptop to be unbootable in normal mode.  I uninstalled it in safe mode, then rebooted my laptop to normal mode.  Next, I reinstalled HitmanPro.Alert; however, afterwards, my laptop failed to boot again.  Consequently, I uninstalled HitmanPro.Alert for a second time.

 

Should I start a new thread in the "Security" sub forum to address the HitmanPro. Alert issue?



#7 usasma

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 08:48 AM

Yes, please post over in Security as I'm unfamiliar with that program and any quirks it might have.


My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#8 Without_A_Monitor

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Posted 12 December 2017 - 02:28 PM

I shall.

 

Once again, I am tremendously thankful to you. I wish you happy holidays, a magnificent new year and for all to be well with you.






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