Win7 won't boot, black screen with blinking cursor

Have a dual boot

Unplugged 2nd drive to install Win7 (it runs Win XP).

Win7 working OK....had this working with dual boot Vista and Win XP

Plugged 2nd drive back in

Win7 won't screen with blinking cursor

Unplugged 2nd hd.  Still won't boot

F8 comes up wiht F11 system recovery Compaq logo....but goes back to blinking cursor

Win7 in CD luck booting from CD

AGHHHHHHH  I need to be doing bookwork for the accountant TODAY 

H E L P!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Question Info

Last updated December 7, 2018 Views 93,868 Applies to:


References to Vista also apply to Windows 7.

Saving any needed data and re-installing Windows 7 might be the best option though here are a
few others. See "How to do a Repair Install" info below.


Can you access Safe Mode? Repeatedly tap F8 as you boot? If so you can try Control Panel
- Device Manager - Display Adapter - Double Click on - Driver tab - click UPDATE driver -
then Right Click on Device and UNINSTALL - REBOOT.

Another method to try to access the desktop (try in both regular Windows and Safe Mode)
is to CTRL + ALT + DEL and on Process Tab find EXPLORER.exe and END PROCESS on it -
then on Applications Tab - lower right - New Task - type in EXPLORER.exe . Safe Mode is
reached by repeatedly tapping F8 as you boot up.

First check this thread in case its a simple one and if not come back to this thread.

Black screen issues are extremely tough to repair and any fix is usually on a hit or miss
basis. That there is no information on a black screen like there is on a blue screen just
adds to the difficulty. Often using a restore point nor startup repair will have any effect.
You can try a google to see suggested repairs some of which have worked however these
cover a wide field of efforts.

Here is a video of one fix.

Here is another fix

Do you have a Window 7 Disk? You can try System Restore from it. If you do not have the
disks your system maker will sell them cheap. Or try from Safe Mode if you can get

How to Do a System Restore in Windows 7

You can create a Recovery Disk or use someone else's same version (to do the System Restore
it only has to be bootable).

How to Create a Windows 7 System Repair Disc


These require the correct Vista Disks since you can't boot to Safe Mode.

Try Startup Repair -

What are the system recovery options in Windows 7?

How to Boot to the System Recovery Options in Windows 7

Try StartUp Repair from Recovery Options or a Windows 7 boot disk

How to Run a Startup Repair in Windows 7


Here are Google searches where several have found different solutions :

Vista Black Screen - check this one 1st

Vista Black Screen Solution

Vista Black Screen Fix


If needed and you can access regular Windows at all.

If nothing works you can do a repair installation.

How to Boot to the System Recovery Options in Windows 7

How to Do a Repair Install to Fix Windows 7


Another method that sometimes works : In the Command Prompt of a Vista boot disk type :
(type one line or copy and paste one line at a time and then hit enter - do not type
parenthesis or BOLD



cd c:\Windows\System32\winevt        (there is a space between cd and C: )

ren Logs LogsOLD                             (there are spaces between ren and Logs and Logsold) 

REBOOT to Windows

Hope this helps.

Rob Brown - MS MVP - Windows Desktop Experience : Bicycle - Mark Twain said it right.
Rob Brown - Microsoft MVP - Windows and Devices for IT 2010 - current
Windows Insider MVP 2016 - current

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