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Solved: Black Screen on startup BUT Safe Mode works

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Renni, Mar 14, 2008.

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  1. Renni

    Renni Thread Starter

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    I have scanned through the other posts and the closest thing that I could find to my problem seemed to involve a video card going kaput. I'm just hoping maybe one of you can confirm this for me before I take my pc up to the repair shop and they try to sell me something I don't need.

    So, here's what is going on. Yesterday my Dell Dimensions (2500 I think?) was working just fine. I noticed the fan was running for quite some time so I got up to check and just as I suspected virus scan was performing a scan of my system. After the scan was completed I exited out of virus scan and figured the fan would stop running shortly. A few hours later I notice the fan is still running, so when I go to check my pc all I see is a black screen. The button on my monitor is flashing between yellow and red, so I restart my monitor and the test page comes up. It says my monitor is working and to check pc connection. After that I manually restart and the windows logo comes up but then we're right back to that black screen. I am currently in safe mode with networking which is obviously working just fine.

    Now -- about two weeks ago the monitor that came with this system died. I snatched an older monitor from a spare pc in the house and attached it to this system. I don't know if that has any bearing at all on the events that have taken place but I wanted to let you know that I had infact made a change recently.

    Thanks in advance for your help.
    Ren
     
  2. Renni

    Renni Thread Starter

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    So I talked to a guy at our local pc shop and he seems to think the most logical cause might be a virus. Now I'm really confused. Haven't taken it in to him yet. Was hoping I could at least find out the problem before taking it in to be fixed. I really don't want to end up paying for a bunch of stuff that isn't necessary.

    I also failed to mention in my previous post that I am running windows XP.
     
  3. rodeognome

    rodeognome

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    I would still say its your video card - when in safe mode - go to the device manager - and see if there are any yellow marks in there?
     
  4. Renni

    Renni Thread Starter

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    Thanks. No yellow marks. Everything looks pretty normal (as far as I can tell).

    I tried starting up choosing the "restore to last known working configuration" option and still .. black screen. I get a couple of little flashes of colorful lines up in the top left corner just for a second -- then just black.
     
  5. Byteman

    Byteman Gone but Never Forgotten

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    Hi, Probably just the video settings> your older monitor might not be able to handle the display as well, and affected the video drivers...

    I am going to let the person helping continue with you, but just wanted to post that if it becomes neccessary to check for malware, we can do that right here by you posting a Hijackthis log.

    Wait for that until the video part has been worked on a bit.
     
  6. Renni

    Renni Thread Starter

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    TY byteman, I appreciate your help.

    I've been nosing around a little bit and found that the card I have installed is a NVIDIA GeForce4 MX 4000. I'm guessing it's pretty outdated. lol I took a look online at some other NVIDIA cards and I didn't see anything under an 8000 series.
     
  7. Byteman

    Byteman Gone but Never Forgotten

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    Hi

    What was your old, broken monitor, an LCD type, or, was the old good one that you connected now, an LCD or older CRT tube type...?

    Video cards generally, do not get "outdated" enough to not work...it's more like the refresh rate vs. the new, old monitor, these are just settings and we can change them to something compatible.
     
  8. Renni

    Renni Thread Starter

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    The monitor that came with my pc was not lcd I don't think. It was a typical old style 19 inch monitor -- you know, the kind that takes up the entire desktop. The one we swapped to is a 17 inch even older monitor (probably about 9 years old).

    Someone had mentioned testing the ctrl + alt + del thing in another thread and so I tried doing that while the screen was black and still got nothing. No task manager came up, no shut down happened.

    Out of curiosity, if I did go out and purchase a new video graphics card and install it, would it fix the problem immediately if that were indeed the problem? Would I be able to see my screen without having to do some type of software install for the new card? Or would I need to enter into safe mode and install the software (drivers etc) for the new card to work?
     
  9. Renni

    Renni Thread Starter

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    Just an update: I disabled my graphics video card and did a system restore. Windows loaded beautifully with NO black screen! yay!

    But then ... my McAfee popped up saying there were some files missing and when I reinstalled I was unable to access the internet. Thus, I did another system restore to a couple of days ago and entered in safe mode, and here I am. Not sure what I'm going to do about the McAfee.

    Anyway, I'm going to go pick up a vid card today and once it's installed and everything is working I'll mark this thread solved. Thanks for all your help. Of course I may be back soon!!
     
  10. oshwyn5

    oshwyn5

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    Sounds like the system crashed and that some of the files in use (the video card driver and the antivirus real time scanner) got damaged.
    System restore recovered the video card driver but probalby not the antivirus updates.

    My advice would be to go to the video card manufacture or Dell driver site and redownload and isntall the video card driver for your computer. It may work just to go into device manager and remove the video card (in safe mode) and restart and let windows discover the card and load the best driver it can find on your system (the backup copy ) , then update your antivirus.
    If that does not solve the antivirus problem try uninstalling and clean installing it.
     
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