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Windows 2003 server boots but screen is black/blank

Posted on 2006-06-21
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Last Modified: 2011-10-03
Hi I have built a Windows 2003 PDC and it has been working fine.  We purchased a UPS and installed it today, an APC product.

We installed the software that came with the UPS and it failed "starting server service" and hung.  We terminated the application and looked in add/remove programs, the software was listed there.

We have tried to select the software in the add/remove panel and remove it, but the software reported unable to remove and mentioned a missing file.

We terminated the processes running in memory (PBS server) or something that the APC software used, still we were unable to uninstall the software.

We tried a reboot and the server rebooted, goes to the windows 2003 loading page then blank.... expecting the screen is just refreshing but nothing, a blank screen..... the HDD lights are still flashing.....

Try connecting to some of the share's that this server has and you can view then, move files etc etc, so it seems like the server is running, just a blank screen.

We issued a shutdown request from the exchange server to the PDC and it shutdown and rebooted.  We have tried restarting to known last good state and still a blank screen.

We have also tried booting into safe mode, this worked, very very slow in responding though and we still could not uninstall the apc software having the same error.  We have disabled the installed APC service from the services panel on the server and rebooted.... still a blank screen.

Currently we have rebooted the server, left it alone and see if eventually something will apear on screen...?

Can any one help, it has taken us 10 days to get this server up and running like clockwork but installing the APC software has really caused an issue which I have ran out of ideas to resolve.....?
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Question by:mjfsolutions
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by:Jay_Jay70
Jay_Jay70 earned 150 total points
ID: 16955794
not the first time i have seen this thanks to APC's wonderful hunk of shi*&^ software

heres the resolution

http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=905716
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by:CharliePete00
CharliePete00 earned 200 total points
ID: 16955810
Boot to Safe Mode and see if a restore point was created prior to the install and roll back to it.

Start > All Programs > Accessories > System Tools > System Restore > Restore

If fails try to connect to the event log on that server remotely.

On another machine:

Start > Run > "MMC" > OK
Files > "Add/remove Snap-in" > Add > "Event Viewer > Add
Select "Remote Computer" and enter the name of your server > OK > OK

Review the event log for errors and let us know what you come up with.

If it's not fixable you'll have to restore from backup
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by:Jay_Jay70
ID: 16955821
we are talking about 2003 Server here.....
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by:CharliePete00
ID: 16955962
Sorry brief case of the stupids...please ignore the whole restore point statement.  Server 2003 does not use restore points
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by:Jay_Jay70
ID: 16955969
:-)
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by:mjfsolutions
ID: 16957708
OK, I have tried the MS knowledge base http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=905716
without success, I see the APCPBEAgent server and I have disabled it, however the APCPBEServer service is not there (probably due to the application not fully loading and installing correctly.

Rebooted and still a blank screen....

I have also tried the (re-register Msiexec.exe. To do this, click Start, click Run, type msiexec /regserver, and then click OK. ) as the MSKB suggests but still nothing.  The problem is that I don't have a back up of this server yet, since it has only been running for 10 days, installing the UPS was the last thing before we did the backup...!  Daft i know...

I do remember now that we did install Java runtime upgrade to see if that would help before the screen went blank, tried to uninstall that in safe mode and that does not work either, could this be causing the problem or not? is there a way of uninstalling this remotly when we dont have terminal server running? to see if this helps in anyway?
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Author Comment

by:mjfsolutions
ID: 16958298
If I should use the 2003 install disc and run a system restore, what settings does it restore and what could I loose? is this a viable option since we do not have a back up yet?
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dooleydog earned 150 total points
ID: 16959067
i might try to uninstall the offending software, and possibly the video card driver, which sounds like it got corrupted or messed up somehow.

if it is accessible across the network, but not locally, i would not do a system restore yet, but just in case, can you do a full backup as a precaution, and then you can experiment, or just re-install and restore necessary data.

Good Luck,
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Author Comment

by:mjfsolutions
ID: 16959921
Well it all seems to be working fine, just no screen....

The scheduled back completed fine as I was able to view the event log on the server from another pc.  The APC software does not uninstall as it says there is a missing file, probably since the install of it originally did not complete either.  All i want is rid of the software back to the windows native UPS and get my screen back! lol (its doing my head in).

Do you know what the windows 2003 install disk installs if you run the recover function at the start..?  WOuld this help or make things worse?
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by:CharliePete00
ID: 16961370
To eneable remote desktop (TS) in Admin Mode remotely see: http://www.petri.co.il/remotely_enable_remote_desktop_on_windows_server_2003.htm
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by:CharliePete00
ID: 16961430
Sorry eneable should be enable...

I should have thought of the enabling remote desktop thing sooner.  While this won't solve your problem it should make working on it easier.
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Author Comment

by:mjfsolutions
ID: 16961504
Do you need Terminal Server running in order to endable remote desktop as you suggest (CharliePete00) ......?

As currently I dont think it does have it installed.
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by:CharliePete00
ID: 16961652
You can check by running the following from the command-line of another machine

SC \\<Server> query termservice

Where <Server> is the name of your server

If the service shows as installed terminal services is installed but most likely not accepting connections
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Assisted Solution

by:CharliePete00
CharliePete00 earned 200 total points
ID: 16961740
Also to edit the registry of the server remotely you may need to start the Remote Registry service.

To do this:

sc \\<server> config RemoteRegistry start= demand
sc \\<server> start RemoteRegistry

Just be sure to stop and disable it when you are finished

sc \\<server> config RemoteRegistry start= disabled
sc \\<server> stop RemoteRegistry
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by:Jay_Jay70
ID: 16964611
sorry for the delay in posting.....was asleep then watching the world cup!, do you get a picture at all? is there any chance you are working on a dodgy monitor?
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by:CharliePete00
ID: 16964820
How does the UPS communicate with the server: USB or serial?  If USB have you tried disconnecting the USB cable then rebooting?
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Author Comment

by:mjfsolutions
ID: 16974971
OK, it seems like I have sorted it.

It appears that booting into safe mode and deleting/uninstalling the video driver and also reregistering the MSIEXEC Windows Installer by copying the reg part for MSIExec from the Exchange server (which has identical hardware) it booted up ok.

I still have the issue in that the APC software will not uninstall, since it did not complete the install correctoly originally, but all seems to be be working fine.  What a pain, but we got there.

The issue I have now if that who do I award the points for the assistance since none of the advise was 100%...? lol any ideas..?

I am going to create a Ghost image of both of the servers (PDC and Exchange) and save to an external HDD i think, is that a good idea?
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by:Jay_Jay70
ID: 16975005
i was going to suggest a refund........

don't bother ghosting a DC, it will give you lots of greif when you reload it, ideal time for imaging is right before promotion
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