Server 2008 wont display login screen at boot

Xenon3d
Xenon3d used Ask the Experts™
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I have been dumped with the following problem:

Server 2008 Member server or BDC (not sure which) with no backups boots up ok, the loading screen (green scrolling bars) takes on average 10-20 minutes to load, then a black screen appears with a cursor, but no login prompt.  Pressing crtl+alt+del does nothing, but the system is still responsive to the mouse.  The server is unresponsive from the network (but this may be due to a statically set IP that I have not been told about).

No idea whats caused it, the customer reported that it was unresponsive yesterday so they switched it off and on again, and it did whats described above.  I have no real information about this server other than it is running server 2008 and exchange 2010 beta.  So far I have tried :

Running a system repair from the install disk - It either reports that it needs to restart to fix problem, which does what I have previously described, or it reports that it cannot fix the problem.

Running a chkdsk - It reports no problems.

Running a SFC /scannow - it says that there is currently a system repair underway that requires a reboot to finish.  I have tried this several times, trying to get SFC to run, but no joy yet.

I can access the files on the server easily if required via the repair console.
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Commented:
sounds like a service-start-problem, try to change the delayed start of the wanted or unwanted service

Author

Commented:
Is there a way of tracking down the service that is causing the problem?  I know I can disable certain services from the command line, but obviously I'll need to figure out which one is causing the problem.  Otherwise I'd just be randomly picking services to switch off ;)
I'd probably try an reinstall with the same OS - ensure the source you use is at the same service pack level as the OS.

This would replace system files, but leave apps in place.

Of course, recover any critical data off there before you try this, as if it fails you're looking at either a bare-metal backup restore or a rebuild,
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Author

Commented:
Yeah, I kinda hoped I wouldn't have to do that, as I don't know anything about the server, and I cant login to find out.

Author

Commented:
I'm open to any other ideas before I do a reinstall :)
Top Expert 2012

Commented:
Have you tried booting into Safe Mode?
-- Can you check the status in Safe mode First . If it works fine then It could be a third Party Service or Could be the Display Adaptor .

-- Also make sure you update the BIOS and Firmware .

thanks.

Author

Commented:
Sorry, I should have posted that I cannot boot into safe mode either.  It loads the devices and dlls then appears to freeze, becoming unresponsive.  I'll try updating the motherboard bios, but I think thats unlikely to be the issue as the server does boot into windows, it is just unusable once it gets there :)
Top Expert 2012

Commented:
Do you have a backup? Restoring is going to be your best option.

Author

Commented:
As stated in my question, there are no backups.

Author

Commented:
Turned out that a reinstall was the only way to retrieve the files.  Ended up replacing the server with another in any case, and exporting the mailboxes.

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