Black Screen on Boot
For a Microsoft Windows XP version of this article, see 314503
When you restart a Microsoft Windows x86-based computer, the computerstops with an empty, black screen immediately after the power-on self test(POST) is completed.
The master boot record (MBR), partition tables, boot sector, or NTLDR file is corrupted.
- Create a Microsoft Windows boot disk to start the computer. Foradditional information, please see the following article in theMicrosoft Knowledge Base:
119467If you can start the computer without errors, the damage is limitedto the master boot record (MBR), boot sector, or the NTLDR file. After Windows is running, immediately back up any data of value. Use DiskAdministrator to verify that partitions on the boot drive are thecorrect size. If there are invalid partitions, the best solution is tore-create those partitions and reformat the affected drives, thenrestore the data from the most recent back up tape. If the systemcannot be started from a Windows boot disk, you will most likelyhave to reinstall Windows and restore from tape.
How to Create a Bootable Disk for an NTFS or FAT Partition
- Run the latest virus scanning software to verify no virus is present.MS-DOS-based virus software is sufficient for this purpose, even if thefile system is NTFS. MS-DOS-based virus programs can be run from anMS-DOS boot disk.
- Ensure the master boot record (MBR) is valid. Boot from a virus-freeMS-DOS version 5.0 or later boot disk with FDISK on it. Run thefollowing command:
FDISK /MBRWARNING: If your computer is infected virus, using the FDISK /MBRswitch may prevent you from being able to start your computer. Beforeusing the FDISK /MBR command, you should be certain that your computeris not infected with a virus.
Before you perform this step, see the following Microsoft KnowledgeBase article:
Using FDISK /MBR for Troubleshooting Windows NT Boot Problems
- If the primary boot partition is a file allocation table (FAT)partition, boot from an MS-DOS disk, perform a SYS C: command to makethe drive MS-DOS bootable, and then perform step 5 to replace theWindows boot sector.
- Run Windows Setup and choose the Repair option. Choose theInspect boot Sector and Restore Startup Environment options. If theboot sector on the boot drive is corrupted, this should repair it.
- If the system still fails to boot correctly, use Attrib.exe orFile Manager to remove the file attributes from the NTLDR file locatedin the root of the system partition. Copy a new NTLDR file from thei386 directory of the Windows CD-ROM to replace the existingone.
- If you are running Windows and the system partition is NTFS, you may have a fragmented MFT that prevents the system from booting.For additional information, click the article number about updating the boot sector below to view the article about updating the boot sector in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
Windows NT Does Not Boot with Highly Fragmented MFT
4.00 tshoot troubleshoot repair
Article ID: 155053 - Last Review: 06/22/2014 18:04:00 - Revision: 4.0