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My Vista laptop is stuck at black screen with white arrow - not frozen

Posted on 2008-11-20
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Last Modified: 2013-11-17
My Vista laptop is stuck at a black screen with white arrow. It has not frozen and the arrow still moves
I have left it on all night and it still just sits there with the arrow like it about to start then does nothing
I have tried:
last known good config
statup repair
system restore
safe mode
memory test
ctrl +alt + delete at blackscreen
reset bios
no cd in drive
disable all integrated hardware in bios
took battery out and unplugged power (thought it might be a hibernation problem)

Another weird thing is, as the laptop sits at the black screen when it is still loading, the blue spinning vista circle get bigger and smaller and flashes around  a bit, and the screen background flashes white a bit before just going back to a black background with white arrow again
This behaviour is more pronounced when i try and start in safe mode

Also wanted to try chkdsk but couldnt figure out how to do it - i scheduled it to happen next restart in the command prompt, but it didnt happen

I am hoping to not have to reinstall if anyone can offer any suggestions that would be great


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Question by:AffordableComputers
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DanoliSolutions earned 600 total points
ID: 23002212
Try booting from the Anytime DVD and followthe repair options there.
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Author Comment

by:AffordableComputers
ID: 23002401
Hi , I dont have the anytime DVD - can you tell me where i can get it?
My toshiba laptop is 3  months old - it has a vista business OEM licence sticker and it came preinstalled with windows
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Expert Comment

by:DanoliSolutions
ID: 23002435
Get in touch with your laptop supplier, they should be able to provide one otherwise they can be purchased from Microsoft. They can be downloaded via torrent sites (the media, NOT the license keys) but the distribution method or distribution rights are being questioned.
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LVL 93

Assisted Solution

by:nobus
nobus earned 600 total points
ID: 23002878
when exactly does this happen? during post, or when ?
you can always start by testing ram and disk, download ubcd, an drun memtest86+ and the disk test you need :
http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/
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Author Comment

by:AffordableComputers
ID: 23002937

It happens just before the fingerprint login screen would normally appear, after windows loads for about a minute
Windows appears to load normally up until that point
 
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Assisted Solution

by:Mark
Mark earned 400 total points
ID: 23003264
3 months old, have you attempted to get warranty service?
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Expert Comment

by:andrew_aj1
ID: 23004767
Due to everything you have tried it sounds like the best solution would be to reinstall Windows. I would boot the computer using a live linux distro to backup your files to an external drive or to cd/dvd media first. Then you can format and reinstall windows.
Good luck.
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Assisted Solution

by:willcomp
willcomp earned 400 total points
ID: 23005661
See if this is any help. you have already tried most of the recommendations. Start with post from Ronnie Vernon on May 6.
http://forums.microsoft.com/TechNet/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=2805226&SiteID=17
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Author Comment

by:AffordableComputers
ID: 23011862
Thanks for all your commments -
I tried Ronnie Vernons regedit but it didnt work
My laptop was supplied by my insurance company - and they do not have access to the disks
Warranty service is too time consuming - I need it tomorrow
running memtest at the moment will run HDD diagnostic next
My only hope now is Windows Anytime Upgrade repair-  - i downloaded a WAU iso, but it booted to a freedos prompt and I was sure what to do from there - if anyone knows about this please let me know

Time is running out for me - any other suggestions would be apreciated
Is there anything i can do like take out the HDD and try and fix it from another machine perhaps?
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 23012067
you posted :
------------------------
I have tried:
last known good config
statup repair
system restore
safe mode
memory test
----------------------------
but what happened when you tried these?  what errors did you get; more info is needed
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Author Comment

by:AffordableComputers
ID: 23012184
last known good config - no change to boot problem
statup repair - says it needs to restart to complete repairs then still has the same black screen white arrow problem
system restore - succesfully restores to any restore point i ask it to (tried most recent 3 ) points but still has the same black screen white arrow problem
safe mode - same white arrow and black screen, only lower resolution
memory test - no memory errors
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Expert Comment

by:andrew_aj1
ID: 23013451
You may want to consider reinstalling windows. You can easily backup your data using a live linux cd with an external hard drive/flash drive or burn the data to CD/DVD. You can then reinstall windows and hopefully be up and going again.
Good luck.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 23013730
to me it seems a problem with the video card.
what happens if you boot from a bootable cd?
you can try knoppix :  ftp://ftp.uni-kl.de/pub/linux/knoppix/KNOPPIX_V5.1.0CD-2006-12-30-EN.iso

if you  have a display, then the hard is ok; if not....it is bad
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Author Comment

by:AffordableComputers
ID: 23019761
You wouldnt believe it - I took the HDD out to retrieve the data , put the drive back in my laptop, and loaded xp setup - it said it didnt detect HDD because i needed the sata drivers
I took out the xp disk and restarted
The laptop then when to the startup repair screen
Instead of going for  couple of seconds like it normally did, it went for quite a long time.
After this vista started to load up and booted to the fingerprint login and now all is back to normal
Im not sure what might have made it work this time after at least 20 repair and restore attempts
The important thing is that its working now and within seconds of me formatting the drive and going back to XP!


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