Black screen of death

  griffon 56 00:07 30 Apr 07
Locked

A young relative has a two year old Acer desk top running XP which has just today started to switch on as far as the boot screens, then, as soon as Windows starts to load, the monitor displays a black screen with a white box, within which are the words "No signal". After a few seconds the screen goes all black and remains that way. There is no POST bleep.

  griffon 56 00:20 30 Apr 07

Sorry everybody, forgot to ask politely for help in solving problem! The only advice I could give was to replug all the cabling and try again. Ideas please.

  Kate B 00:52 30 Apr 07

Graphics problem? "No signal" usually means there's no output to the monitor.

  griffon 56 10:57 30 Apr 07

I'm thinking that way too Kate but I want to cover any and all other reasons why such a message might appear. Anybody else come across this before?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 12:17 30 Apr 07

could be a corrupt graphics driver.

try booting to safe mode (tap F8 during boot up), if it loads ok in safe mode then uninstall the graphics (display adaptor) driver from device manager.

reboot into normal mode and reload the graphics drivers.

  griffon 56 16:10 30 Apr 07

Thanks Kate and Fruit Bat I just happened to be passing PC World this morning and they thought that too. I'll pass on your info and get the young lad to give it a try. It could be anything really, I don't think he's too particular about defending his machine against viruses etc., and it has been infected before All his friends and relatives got the benefit of that in an email. I'm not saying he's been anywhere he might have picked one up or particularly careless but I think he falls into the category of user who thinks that once Norton is loaded that's it, you're safe.

  mick73 19:05 30 Apr 07

I have a similar problem to this, but in the top left hand corner comes the message "boot failure"
I have to shut down and leave for sometimes an hour and it will start O.K. I`d be grateful for any help, Mick66

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:12 30 Apr 07

Please start your own thread on this subject then YOU and not griffon 56 will be notified when you get a reply posted.

Boot failure means that it canot find the boot files on the hard drive due to either
1. corrupt files
2. hard drive failure or slow to spin up

I suspect the latter in your case.

As drives get older, they can take longer to get up to speed and become ready (available). This can then exceed the time it takes for the booting to look for the drive - so it doesn't find it.
The solution is often to make the initial part of the boot take longer, by disabling "Quick power on self test and/or making the system look for the floppy drive first by enabling "floppy seek".
Some BIOS even have a facility to put in a delay before the hard disk is checked.

  griffon 56 10:12 02 May 07

Thanks Fruit Bat, I didn't know that, tho' I don't actually have a need for the info right now, it will come in handy. Interestingly, or not, as you please, following booting from a DVD for a specific purpose I haven't returned the boot sequence to normal so mine looks for the CD-ROM to start with and then IDE-0.

The young person has all his course work on the affected hard drive with no back-up!!, so he has elected to impoverish his poor mother by going for professional recovery of data, admittedly by a family friend, but arms and legs are being talked about already. Thanks again for your help.

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