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Windows Thread, Here's a puzzler in Technical; Bursars PC... Windows XP. Now..when the bursar turns on her pc..it goes through the windows loading, then right before the ...
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    Jake's Avatar
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    Here's a puzzler

    Bursars PC...

    Windows XP.

    Now..when the bursar turns on her pc..it goes through the windows loading, then right before the logon window is due to popup, the screen just stays completely black.

    It does however work fine in the safe modes.

    HOWEVER...if I boot into safe mode with command prompt..then tell it to perform a chkdsk at next restart, then restart, and when the blue chkdsk screen comes up I press a key to skip the chkdsk, and it then boots perfectly fine into windows and she is able to logon. But of course next time the machine is restarted it blackscreens again and I have to repeat the procedure.

    Most bizarre.

    Have tried a variety of windows repairs, have run scandisk/chkdsk, have booted into safemode and removed video and nic drivers and reinstalled those.

    Just puzzles me why it works if you run chkdsk but then press a key to skip it, but doesnt work if you boot normally. Not sure what the actual difference in technical terms there is between booting normally, and booting , then having the blue chkdsk screen, skipping it and allowing it to continue normally.

  2. #2

    Gatt's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    Is there anything in the Event Log when u are able to log in to the PC?

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    kearton's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    I'd try running the HD diagnostics from the manufacturer as a next step...

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    Jake's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    No, checked the event log, nothing out of the ordinary.

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    PeterW's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    When you say the screen is black is it that there is a black screen being displayed or is the monitor not receiving a signal?

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    Jake's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    Black screen being displayed..you know how windows blanks the screen just before the login screen comes up, it just stays on the blanked screen. Yet works perfectly if you run the bluescreen chkdsk during bootup (even if you dont actually run the chkdsk but skip it by pressing a key)

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    ninjabeaver's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    I might be barking up the wrong tree, but get it to boot into windows using the chkdsk trick you have, and set the resolution right down. Some of the PC's here do the same. It sounds like the refresh / resolution is to high for the monitor. Bursar fiddling with settings etc.

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    Geoff's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    Check the ram.

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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    Hook up a spare HDD with a clean install of windows on it? This should confirm if its a software or hardware problem your looking at.

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    Jake's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    I am leaning towards it being a software issue, as it works perfectly fine providing that you access the chkdsk bluescreen during loadup. I would have thought that if it was a hardware issue then windows wouldnt work at all, as opposed to working only if the chkdsk bluescreen is activated.

    Though I am a touch perplexed as to what is different in the loading of windows when the chkdsk screen is brought up compared to when windows just runs through bootup normally (especially given that the chkdsk isnt actually being run, but being skipped)

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    contink's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    Gotta say I'm with the other "Hard disk" theorists...

    It doesn't sound good... I'd get a backup if naught else...


    On the off chance it's some other hardware issue it could be a driver that recently got updated via win-update. Might be worth checking if something was updated on there recently using the winupdate > history

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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    I have come in contact with similar problems like this in the past. One way I did resolve this was to clone the problematic windows install onto another drive with Ghost and Ghost appeared to fix some errors that were on the source. Once I booted up the new cloned drive I ran chkdsk again and that appeared to fix it.

    It sounds to me like theres a corrupt driver there somewhere probably caused by hitting the power switch and not shutting the thing down properly.

    I don't know if this method is guaranteed to work in your instance but might be worth a try. I dont think chkdsk is all that great at fixing disc errors in the first place so the norton Ghost imaging route may work. Also have you tried to do a repair install as that used to fix a lot of windows installs that went tits up as a result of people just powering the machines off and not shutting down properly. Either way, I would seriously back up any important info on the drive first just in case.

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    Jake's Avatar
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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    Its just odd that if its something like the hard drive, odd that it boots every single time fine if you bring up the chkdsk screen, and then it continues to work perfectly fine for the entire day without any problem.

    Usually when I see something with a harddisk problem it manifests itself through the course of a number of days in a varied amount of ways, rather than specifically black screening just before login (but not blackscreening before login if the chkdsk screen is brought up)

    I suppose I could try another hard disk check with the manufacturer disk software, but so far all the HD scans I have run with what I have at hand havent found anything out of the ordinary. Cant hurt to try

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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    It definitely sounds like a software issue and doesn't sound like any of the hardware or HDD is at fault. More than likely the manufacturers diagnostic utility will check for hardware faults rather than checksum errors or corrupted sectors on the disc but as you say might be worth a try. Other ways this can be caused are by windows installing the wrong drivers for something but is usually a corrupt driver or system file. Even tho windows may have fixed the disc errors (if any) you could still have some corrupted files on there which may or may not be fixed with further checking utilities. As for it booting via chkdsk route windows must be ordering the way it loads its system files/drivers differently and thus jumps over the problem if booted normally. Either way it sounds like a right biatch.

    Cheers,

    JB
    Ex St Edmunds IT Technician now Freelance IT Engineer / Web Developer

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    Re: Here's a puzzler

    sounds like video driver or video settings (frequency etc) to me. Does VGA mode work? (on the same meny as safe mode). If so, redice the resolution and/or other settings down.

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