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HELP-Computer stuck on black screen with blinking white cursor

This is a discussion on HELP-Computer stuck on black screen with blinking white cursor within the Motherboards, Bios & CPU forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. One day i switched off my computer as normal and the next time i switched it back on, i experienced


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Old 03-02-2011, 06:53 PM   #1
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One day i switched off my computer as normal and the next time i switched it back on, i experienced this problem. I havnt made any changes to my system recently-software, hardware or otherwise.

I would say my computing skills are at an intermediate level, but im really stuck with this problem.

Heres goes:

Computer POST'S, i see the bios screen (all details are correct) and then when the computer tries to boot, it doesnt go past the black screen with a white blinking cursor in the top left corner. Usually this will mean that the OS or some system files are corrupt or hdd has failed and at the worst case scenario you may have to reload windows or replace hard drive, but this isnt the case here. The nonsense thing about this problem is that it wont even boot from the optical drive, it gets stuck on the same screen, so i doubt theres anything wrong with the hard drive either.

Things ive tried (in no particular order):

--Tried to enter safe mode-the option doesnt even come up, no matter how many times you hit f8

--reset bios (have a asus crosshair so did all three, removed battery, hit the clear CMOS button and changed the jumpers over) and restored defaults

--changed bios battery

--checked bios that it recognised the cpu, the speed, the optical drives, the 3 hdd's, their capacity etc-all are correct.

--removed both RAM sticks (computer doesnt post and makes the correct beeping noises-motherboard seems to be responding as it should)

--put one RAM stick in at a time-same results-tried different slots-same result

--disconnected all three HDD's and set the boot priority to optical drive-still the dismal black screen, white cursor (btw tried 3 different OS boot discs so its not the disc either)

--removed everything from the rear of the pc, except the vga and keyboard, removed all pci cards etc, only left the video card in-still the same problem

--changed over video card-same results

--changed over cpu-same results

--removed usb headers on motherboard

--unplugged all headers/cables and reseated everything-same results

--disconnected optical drives and then connected hard drive with OS-no change

--have 2 optical drives-so unless they have both spontaneously combusted at the same time, its not them either

--tried Barts PE CD and UBCD-Same results (have used both discs in the past sucessfully)


I dont want to think its the power supply, because its only around 5 months old, its 600watts and i barely need 300 to run my system. The computer always starts first time, never struggles etc. I have no reason to suspect its my motherboard, but ive tested almost every other component and dont know what else to attribute it to (by power of deduction).

The last thing im going to do is download the latest bios update for the motherboard (version 1207-which the bios is currently already on) and i hope that the old one has become corrupt for some reason and updating it again will fix it. If that doesnt work, im all out of ideas and will have to bring out my sledgehammer.

So please guys, if theres anything ive overlooked or if you have suggestions or know of a different community you think may help, please let me know.

Cheers

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Old 03-02-2011, 07:16 PM   #2
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You certainly have coverd about everything the only thing I can think of is the optical and/or hdd's data cable

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Old 03-02-2011, 07:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doby View Post
You certainly have coverd about everything the only thing I can think of is the optical and/or hdd's data cable
Hi, i did think of that, but then i thought what are the chances of both of them failing at the same time :(
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Old 03-02-2011, 07:24 PM   #4
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sometimes if sata cables are pinched/twisted it damages them so I think its worth a shot
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Old 03-02-2011, 07:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doby View Post
sometimes if sata cables are pinched/twisted it damages them so I think its worth a shot
I just used a different sata cable from the other attached hdd to the drive that contains the OS-to no avail

The strange thing is that theres no clear answer on the web, most people that come across this symptom can boot using a disc, so all they have to lose is their time reinstalling an os. I think i may have to take the motherboard to a local pc shop and ask them to have a look (although i dont know what they can do differently)
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Old 03-02-2011, 07:56 PM   #6
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I don't think they can do anything differently, I think its either a drive or data cable.

Just to cover all the bases,,,,,, have you tried to boot with each optical drive seperatly with no hdd installed and different sata cables?
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:12 PM   #7
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something else I just thought of can you boot from a ide drive with no sata drives installed?
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:28 PM   #8
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Hi doby, both the optical drives are ide, its the only ide devices left in the computer, and i have tried from both the drives seperately. Ive also selected both of them individually from the boot menu by pressing f8, but still nothing changes.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:46 PM   #9
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how about a bad ide cable? I think you eliminated that before though by trying to boot from the sata hdd only? Correct?
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Old 03-03-2011, 03:29 AM   #10
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Hi, yes, I tried a sata Hdd with dual boot os, so even if one is corrupt, the menu options for the other should come up or atleast the safe mode options etc.
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Old 03-03-2011, 07:30 AM   #11
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The blinking cursor generally indicates no OS.
Try booting from a Linux disc to bypass the Hdd.

PC Specs?
Pre-Built Brand & Model Number
Custom Built-Brand & Model of Mobo-CPU-RAM-Graphics-PSU.
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Old 03-03-2011, 06:53 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyree View Post
The blinking cursor generally indicates no OS.
Try booting from a Linux disc to bypass the Hdd.

PC Specs?
Pre-Built Brand & Model Number
Custom Built-Brand & Model of Mobo-CPU-RAM-Graphics-PSU.
Hi, i tried barts pe disc and UBCD, but the interesting this about this is that the computer stopped booting from the cd rom drives at the very same time it stopped booting from the hdd's.

Specs:

Motherboard: Asus Crosshair
RAM: Kingston 2 x 2gb (Kingston KVR800D2N6K2/4G / 4GB DDR2 800Mhz PC2-6400 / 240pin DIMM / Dual Channel Memory Kit) (tried different slots, now just have one stick in the comp)
Graphics: XFX GeForce 210 Graphics adapter - 512 MB or 1gb not too sure - but ive tried a different video card, same results
PSU: X-Power atx 600w
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:38 AM   #13
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The issue is resolved now, thank you all who tried, the culprit wasnt anything that i would have suspected and therefore didnt check for it when trying to identify the problem. Basically it was the bios chip on the motherboard, it wasnt faulty but for some reason was causing the boot issue.

After exhausting all possible logical steps, in desperation i decided to reflash the bios but when i tried it kept getting stuck on rewriting the block, so i had to manually switch the computer off. Then, intermittently, i kept getting BIOS ROM errors, stating the following:

Award BootBlock BIOS v1.0
BIOS ROM Checksum error
Detecting Floppy drive A media
INSERT SYSTEM DISK AND PRESS ENTER

so i thought the bios chip may have to be replaced, so to see how easy it would be to replace, i just tapped on it and ran my finger on it. The computer then booted fine and has done ever since. Amazing. I have since been able to reflash the bios sucessfully, so i am inclined to think that little tap on the bios chip must have aligned contacts or something. The bios chip isnt loose or anything, so it was a lucky discovery, i was actually looking into a replacement board.

I havnt put everything back together yet, but im hopeful that this issue is resolved.
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Old 03-08-2011, 11:15 AM   #14
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Thanks for letting us know

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