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[Resolved] Boots to Black

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Wxflyer, Feb 11, 2003.

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  1. Wxflyer

    Wxflyer Thread Starter

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    I'm pretty much at a loss here. Here's the long story:

    Upgraded my Gateway Solo 5150 (P2, 233, 160MB RAM) from Win 95 to Win 2000 Pro. Okay, here's one screw up -- I didn't check for driver compatibility before upgrade. And during the setup it told me my monitor driver was not compatible. Pretty stupid, I know.

    But the Win 2k setup worked. It seemed to be okay, as I could access files, programs, etc. Video was fine. I turned the computer on and off several times. Each time it worked as advertised. No problem.

    Then, instead of shutting down the computer, I selected Start-Standby. Went to bed, then awoke 8 hours later. The little green power on light was blinking, just like it always did when I went to "suspend" in Win 95. So I pushed the "on" button once, just like I used to w/Win 95. This is when my problem began.

    The power light then went steady green, but the screen remained black; nothing happened. So I turned off the computer -- only now to turn it off I have to hold the button down for about 5 secs. It turned off.

    Then I push the power button, get a seady green "power on" light, the fan starts up, the hard disk makes a little noise for a few seconds, and the screen is black, hard drive is quiet. Nothing else. Just a black screen and I can't do a thing.

    So I turn it off, then on again, and it just does the same thing.

    I really don't know what to do now. I know it was pretty stupid to upgrade when I new the drivers weren't compatible. But what gets me is that the computer worked fine for awhile after the initial Win 2k upgrade.

    Please steer me in the right direction. Thanks in advance for any help.

    John
     
  2. Rollin' Rog

    Rollin' Rog

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    Messages:
    45,855
    This is just a hip shot on my part, I really don't know what happened there. But obviously it's happening at a very low level involving hardware or CMOS.

    I would try replacing the CMOS battery on the motherboard, and in the process I would look for the jumper pins usually near the battery to reset CMOS. This is just a momentary shorting to cause a reset.

    You should also reseat all your drive cables, memory and video card while you're in there. Could even be a power supply problem.

    You may have some underlying incompatibilty with the BIOS ACPI or APM support and if you can get a display at all, you may have to disable those features in CMOS. This will require you to use the power button for shutdown as you did before, but shouldn't result in any actual errors.
     
  3. Monstrous Mi

    Monstrous Mi

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    Jul 20, 2002
    Messages:
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    I not exactly sure how to fix your problem, but I have a few hints.

    I suspect that your computer went into a power-saving mode like "Sleep" or "Hibernate". When the computer does this, there are several things that can go wrong which makes it difficult to wake-up or turn it back on. I have had trouble like this with my laptop and I basically had to remove the battery.

    Try physically disconnecting the power cord and then try booting again. You also might want to search for advice under "advanced power management" or "sleep" or "power down" or something like that.
     
  4. Wxflyer

    Wxflyer Thread Starter

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    Thanks Monstrous Mi. Just to clarify:


    I disconnected the power cord, then tried booting -- still nothing, same result, same black screen.

    When you say you had to remove the battery, to which battery are you referring?

    I'm a novice here, so please excuse my ignorance.

    Hoping my computer's not a total loss..
    Thanks,
    John
     
  5. Monstrous Mi

    Monstrous Mi

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    623
    I meant the battery for my laptop. This would not apply if you have a desktop computer.

    At this point, I have some suggestions:

    1. You may have a bad video card (or a bad AGP or PCI slot). I doubt it is the monitor or the driver since a computer will go through the entire startup, even if a monitor is not connected.

    Do you see anything on the screen when you first boot? Can you get into your bios? Or is the screen always black? Is the light on the power button for the monitor green or orange?

    2. Another thing to try might be to boot to W2K floppy which has some diagnostic tools on it. Or you could even boot to a Norton CD and run some tests.

    If you see nothing on your monitor and cannot boot to a floppy, then it is almost certain that your video card is not seated properly or is no good.
     
  6. Wxflyer

    Wxflyer Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2003
    Messages:
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    Monstrous:

    Okay, I've made some progress.

    I unplugged, removed the laptop battery, then held down the power button. Nothing happened on the screen, but I heard a faint noise (you know, one of those computer-type noises).

    Well, after putting the battery back in and plugging in, I pushed the power button and the computer booted! It seemed to take a long time, but Windows 2k Pro loaded.

    I've been discussing this problem w/Gateway, and the tech said that Win 2k is not fully compatible w/my computer. Now that I'm in, I'm going to use her instructions to go back to good old Win95.

    Looks like I'm okay for now.

    I can't thank you enough for your time and effort. I owe you a cold one!

    Cheers,
    John
     
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