Black screen flashing Cursor

Posted on 2011-10-18
Last Modified: 2012-05-12
This Sony Tower  with XP Pro  SP3   Will Boot from CD ROM/DVD   ..   But when booting from Hard drive it won't get past a black screen with a flashing curser.    I have looked at the hard drive which is a SATA drive   and it works fine in another computer.   I have tried repairing Windows but it won't boot.  I have tried a new hard drive.  I have tried replacing the Sata Cable.     Since the machine boots with CD  I see the RAM is good and the CPU  could it be possible the SATA controller on the mother board is dead?  
Question by:kchendrix
    LVL 69

    Expert Comment

    If you can see the SATA drives in the BIOS, it is unlikely that the SATA controller is bad.  You might need to enable the SATA controller in the BIOS if you can't see them.  You can try booting from a live linux CD such as Knoppix ( to see if the drive is accessible - if it is, your Windows setup is misconfigured or corrupt.

    Expert Comment

    Sounds to me like there is a hardware conflict during boot. Try booting with minimal hardware connected to the PC. Specifically, I would try to remove as much external hardware as possible. Disconnect any printers, scanners, USB devices, etc. I would even try to boot without a mouse. If the PC still doesn't boot, you could try disconnecting internal components (CD/DVD Drives, etc.) and try booting.

    If at any point the PC makes it past the dreaded stuck cursor and continues to boot, you can plug in devices one at a time to figure out which is causing the problem.

    Accepted Solution

    I ended up buying a brand new Sata hard drive hooking up new cables and installing  OS  from scratch.. Works great now....  

    Author Closing Comment

    This was the only thing that worked
    LVL 46

    Expert Comment

    FYI - Based on the model of PC and what you are installing, it is most likely that the controller you have only supports a SATA-1 disk drive.  Newer SATA disks are SATA-2 or perhaps even SATA-3, and most are no longer downward compatible.


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