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XP won't boot. blinking cursor with blank screen


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#76
Whocares01

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I know it may be late, but it is also possible the NTLDR file in the root C:\ has become corrupt. Perhaps a virus? Try taking the file from another XP box and replacing the one you have. Worked for me.

Edit:

I also had the problem, ran fixboot and the mbr one to no avail, as well as a chkdsk. Replacing the ntldr is what fixed the problem.


I know it may be late, but it is also possible the NTLDR file in the root C:\ has become corrupt. Perhaps a virus? Try taking the file from another XP box and replacing the one you have. Worked for me.

Edit:

I also had the problem, ran fixboot and the mbr one to no avail, as well as a chkdsk. Replacing the ntldr is what fixed the problem.


Thank You DCypher this is EXACTLY what the issue was.

Blank screen with flashing cursor.
Tried chkdsk /r
Tried fixboot/fixmbr
Tried bootcfg /rebuild

almost gave up...got to the last post and voila worked perfectly.

I registers just to post this reply and say thanks as well as saying to others that are having the same issue, TRY THIS.

Have a good one!
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#77
Kenbobb

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For Someone else who may be troubled by this problem--I just fixed it on a Dell Dimension computer by disabling UDMA in the Bios.

I had previously tried pretty much everything except the NTLDR replacement.
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#78
zbest

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I have an xp, that won't boot into windows xp. All i get is a blinking cursor on a black screen. All indicator lights are green on back, thats good.

I shut it down and restarted and a dos style like program chkdsk program popped up before i got to xp startup screen one day asking me if i wanted to run it
(I was kind of heistant to run it, fake chkdsk virus?) so i did it took about a half hour to complete and said something about changing orpaned files and a bunch of other files.

Ever since I ran this i cant get into xp.

f2 and f12 are the only options i can get into.

I cannot get into safe mode or the screen that says reset to the best known config, which I would love to right about now.

I have tried windows repair cd done everything on that and it just shows the blinking cursor again. I have tried re-seating my memory and video all nothing.

<b>So if anyone knows how to fix the blinking cursor problem any other way please help.

thank you</b>


I fixed this problem
I did everything in this thread
and found that the problem was caused by
and stick of ram that was bad
I replaced all the RAM and it fired right up and worked perfectly.
It took me two days to get this working hope this helps others
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#79
C57

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If your hard drive is larger than 137GB and your BIOS doesn't support LBA48, this can happen.
Happened to me when I had a 250GB drive in my laptop. Installed fine, but one day Windows update put some critical files past the 137GB limit and although XP/SP3 culd use that space, when I rebooted the BIOS couldn't use it.

I shrank hte partition with GPartEd, rebooted and all was fine. Then formatted the extra space created by the partition shrink and moved My Documents to it, so that loss of the boot disk will still allow me to reinstall Windows without losing my data, should that happen.
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#80
googxmsr

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I used TestDisk6 (from the UltimateBootCD 4.1 disk) and successfully restored the Master File Table. I then recreated the Master Boot Record and the system came up with no problems.
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#81
mca7715ter

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This problem is usually fixed by following steps others have already posted. I was googling around because I have fixed this problem before but this time the machine I was working on was not fixable with these steps. In the BIOS there was a setting for "Large Disk Access Mode"
the choices were "DOS" or "other" it was set on "DOS" but switching it to "other" was the trick.

Hope this helps.
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#82
Happy Camper

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Hello All,
New to this forum but computer consultant for over 20 years.
Easiest fix for black screen with flashing with cursor = boot off a Windows XP CD
R for repair on the first screen
At the command prompt type fixboot and hit ENTER ("Y" to agree to perform command)
Then type fixmbr and hit ENTER ("Y" to agree to perform command)
Type EXIT
Reboot
It is fixed.

J


Hi. I just wanted to register to say THANK YOU ALL!

I had this same problem as the OP. I am a total computer illiterate. I used a friend's laptop, googled 'computer won't boot blinking cursor' and got this page. I read thru this thread, and tried a few things, and the above fixed it!!! I have no idea what I did, I just followed the instructions - ha ha!

I don't have money for a new computer, or a repair person. So this saved my butt!

Also, do you all think this is a virus? I was reading the garbage gossip site TMZ (I know, embarrassing), and when I clicked on the link to the comments under some story, my computer totally froze up. I had to force quit. And when I tried to restart......the blinking cursor of doom!

Anyway, thank you, thank you, thank you!
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#83
rshaffer61

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Congratulations. ;) Camper for a successful resolution for your issue.

You are very welcome. I'm glad we could help and please let us know how everything works out for you.
If there is anything else we can do to help please feel free to ask.
Thank you for choosing GeeksToGo for help. :D ;)
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#84
draz54

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Hello All,
New to this forum but computer consultant for over 20 years.
Easiest fix for black screen with flashing with cursor = boot off a Windows XP CD
R for repair on the first screen
At the command prompt type fixboot and hit ENTER ("Y" to agree to perform command)
Then type fixmbr and hit ENTER ("Y" to agree to perform command)
Type EXIT
Reboot
It is fixed.

J

The gift that keeps on giving... I too had to register to send thanks your way.
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#85
noname12345

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Just wanted to chime in on this.
Same problem. Tried all of the repair console tricks and the ntldr replacement.
The fix for me was disabling UDMA in BIOS.
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#86
sclieu

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Just experienced the same crappy problem.

I was previously working on fixing the computer and upgraded from XP SP2 to SP3, installed AVG antivirus, updated some other software...everything was working great...The last thing I did was to defrag the drive. I rebooted, and found that stoopid blinking cursor.

I used BartPE and was able to access the harddrive, so knew my partition was ok.

I tried the following which did not work:
- fixboot
- fixmbr
- Used partition magic to confirm my partition was ok..it corrected 1 partition problem, but did not help

I saw one of the final post about the Large Disk access and it looked familiar. HOWEVER, in my case, I changed 2 settings to the following (which was opposite of the above post):
- Large Disk Acces Mode: DOS
- Installed O/S: Win98/W2000

Restarted and low and behold, IT WORKED!!

Once Windows started and I logged in, it immediately said that Windows finished installing a new device, and needs to reboot.....yada yada

I guess SP3 probably made some changes to what it detected, or how it communicates to something, and it was only after restarting did all the new changes take affect.

Phew. Good thing I found this post to steer me in the right direction. I was going to throw the computer out the window. I had spent most of the week getting rid of viruses and updating software for a friend. Everything took forever because it's an old beast with only 384MB RAM!!!

BTW, it had that stupid "Windows PC Defender" crap on it, and that was a nightmare to get rid of. I think it's called a rootkit virus or something like that..

HOpefully, this will help others.

Edited by sclieu, 22 January 2011 - 04:47 PM.

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#87
sailioffwithme

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I have a emachine that does this every time the temperature changes in the office
it is a hardware problem.
Take the computer and remove the ram and remember what order the ram came out of the computer
use some compressed air and clean the ram and the ram slots
replace the ram in a different order than you removed it
and it should load properly. This has worked every single time for me!

For some reason the ram slots expand or contract and the contacts either get use to the slots
or get worn a bit and don't make good contact and with the temperature change causes them not to work.

Edited by sailioffwithme, 10 February 2011 - 11:21 AM.

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#88
Bkberger

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Hello All,
New to this forum but computer consultant for over 20 years.
Easiest fix for black screen with flashing with cursor = boot off a Windows XP CD
R for repair on the first screen
At the command prompt type fixboot and hit ENTER ("Y" to agree to perform command)
Then type fixmbr and hit ENTER ("Y" to agree to perform command)
Type EXIT
Reboot
It is fixed.

J


I know all of you are here to help. I have been following this post doing everything as directed. I was about to give up and I tried this, fixboot and then fix mbr. It worked. I think I have a problem with my onboard video but this made XP boot for the first time in awhile.
Thanks.
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#89
pippy

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Ok two ways to get back and boot again, use a backup and restore it to os hdd partition or disk if no partition, assuming is recent and not lose lots of data. If recent and don't want to lose data but accept upset xp os settings back to as was when first installed os. Boot with xp os install cd and get to the stage where after it says press F8 to continue installing. There is a line that can repair the os which is far better than the first chance to repair os. This one will take files of cd it needs and after will be able to boot into your os drive again.

(xp cd repair deatil explained: With xp cd you get two changes during install to repair os. Fisrt from memory is when run the cd on first or second screen. The one you need is when you can choose to install xp. Or just after that and is the one to use. Forget the first it is hopless. Of course maybe you backup using xp and have a floppy disk for that. Never used it but guess would be same as using a third party backup tool. I would use that since settings won't get changed with xp cd repair. My menory for this is hazy because i use third party tool for backup and restore. Not used xp cd for many years to do this.)

But this is not finding the actual reason why it happens, which i'm sure is a system os file. In dos MHDD, victoria show all hdd as good after bad sector scans and smart scans. It's not boot.ini, ntdlr or mbr at fault but something else since i have tried replacing and repair for those.

As i now have a disk image .img of after it has happened with no boot. I will next mount the .img and compare it to the system right after repair. To show which files are different, looking more at those critical os files which shouldn't change in size normaly


Though be sure this isn't a BOOT.INI, NTDLR or MBR problem first. Which there are remedies are in this thread for how to cure them. Even a net search for a simple NTDLR fix disk can be found, also for MBR and boot.ini problem fixing.

I now go and try find out the cause of this, as every so often it will happen again. So far i know it is not bad hdd or devices on pc. Neither any virus, trojan or malware affected file.

I have for a while on and of played with floppy disks using win98se and dos7 disks. So i can get the os to do this when i need it to with using the win98se floppy boot disk install image file. By description here you may think of the answer to this, do test this first before writing so no to annoy others of a unworkable sollution.

I have made a disk to emaulate a bad floppy disk, one that has a bad sector so cannot read, write or format. After made bad sector on disk that is a full data disk. I select to delete a file on which this bad sector is. Disk grinds away and reports cannot be deleted. So next i select all files on floppy disk and select to delete them. This time disks grinds away and soon the xp explorer crashes. That is everything on the desktop including taskbar, folders, icons - all dissapear. For a few moments nothing, until explorer comes back to normal desktop screen. That is as the desktop is after a reboot, no folders open etc. The floppy disk has stopped take it out of the drive.

Now look in ":C\documents and settings\your-user-folder\locale\temp\" you will see some files that are named clusters, recovered etc. Look at those the contents is a list of what is on the floppy disk. Delete those files (not to trash bin) and reboot pc. For me pc will post and remain on black screen with flashing cursor. Even on a pc which gives on screen status (there is no status). Onboard bios status (mothboard diagnostic) all shows ok and should be booting.

Something on the win98se floppy disk has changed a xp system file so it doesn't boot. That is boot disk win98se OEm if someone else like to try this http://www.bootdisk.com/bootdisk.htm with tools to make bad floppy disk sectors for a file on disk such as winhex and others. For ease of finding, it is one of the files on the floppy. IO.SYS, COMMAND.COM, CONFIG.SYS, MSDOS.SYS etc

Next i will compare the a backup os image to the backup image of after this occurs. That is, after restored os to hdd and will be bootable (not yet booted to os so files change least as possible). Will check this in dos may take a liitle while as need to find a tool to mount images in dos (ntfs) then a tool to compare each byte in dos on those mounted hdd images. Got any ideas which tools incase i am still looking by time you read this. :D

Edited by pippy, 18 February 2011 - 09:22 PM.

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#90
backupworth

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geekstogo are hot!! Gotta give it to you guys - blinking cursor is a common problem since XP 1st hit the market. You good smart folks broke down just about every possible solution in ONLY 6 pages (impressive). Little chatter plenty QQ. You all helped me fix my blinking cursor issue (i wound up needing the fixmbr solution myself) a million thanx. May i just add one link to this superb thread - it is microsoft's solution - not as good as you guys but may be helpful to someone who reads this A+ thread.

http://support.micro...kb/314503/en-us
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