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  1. #1
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    Windows 8 startup stuck at black screen

    I recently decided to upgrade my laptop from Windows 8 to 8.1. I downloaded it through the terrible Microsoft store and started to go through installation. Everything was fine until the pc restarted and got to the "Getting Ready" phase. The circular logo kept spinning but it sat stuck there for over 24 hours. Eventually I restarted my pc, rather foolishly assuming that Microsoft would have some kind of resume feature for when installation of an OS is interrupted. It does not. It booted up, went past the logo screen, but then instead of going to the login screen just leaves me on a blank black one.

    Restarting makes no difference. I decided to try burning a Windows 8 disk to perhaps get the installation repair feature to run, but I get no option to boot from a disk on startup. Just the same logo and then black screen problem. I've also tried creating a bootable usb device and have the same problem. And yes, I've changed boot order in the BIOS.

    So yeah, I'm stuck with a laptop that cant get past a black screen or boot from another device. Anyone have any suggestions? I don't mind if I have to fully reformat my HDD, I'd just like this thing to work again. It's still under warranty so I could send it for repairs, but I'd rather fix it myself as at this time of year I'd probably be looking at not getting the thing back until after christmas.

    The laptop is an Acer Aspire V3-571G. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    This probably won't work, but have you tried pressing CTRL-ALT-DEL at the black screen? If you can get some kind of task manager up then you have options. Or holding a key to start in safe mode (i don't remember what that is for win8). It's weird that you can't boot from other drives? If you have another PC you could try burning a linux live cd and seeing if you can boot from that. It's a very long time since I've done it, but don't you sometimes have to select special options to burn bootable CDs or to enable boot from removable media in the bios? Do you think windows is starting, but just not displaying? Or it's not starting at all?

  3. #3
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    I tried installing a Ubuntu disk, just to see if anything would happen. Windows got oddly defensive about the idea of booting up something that wasn't Windows and blocked it. Keyboard commands have no visible results.

    The Windows disk I made gives the Windows logo before going back to the black screen. I know the disk works on other systems.

    I took the issue to Microsoft and Acer forums as well. Microsoft naturally weren't very helpful, replying with stock responses that made me think they haven't read the post at all. Acer suggested that the Windows 8.1 had removed all my specific laptop drivers and, as such, has left me without a display driver. I'm inclined to believe this as my hdd light still flashes as if it was working, which makes me think windows is booting up, just not displaying.

    Really, I think I need to boot into safe mode. But that seems almost impossible to do without actually being able to get into windows. Unless someone knows every keystroke from the login screen to restart into safe mode and I could try it blind? :P

  4. #4
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    Shift F8 seems to be the advanced start up settings option in win 8. (luckily, i haven't had to use it yet, so i don't know much about it). It seems like they've changed it a lot from previous versions. That should give you some trouble shoting options, and if those don't work then there is a convoluted way to get into safe mode: http://www.howtogeek.com/107511/see also:http://pcsupport.about.com/od/window...fe-mode.htmNot sure why they've hidden safe mode in such a hard to reach place. Good luck.

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus somini's Avatar
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    If all else fails, try disabling UEFI on the BIOS (har har har) screen, then boot into Ubuntu live CD, remove all your windows partitions and try to reinstall it. If you don't have any installation disks just DON'T remove the recovery partition or you will enter a world of pain, aka Microsoft Support.

    I tried to reinstall Windows 7 on a disk with some leftover Windows partitions and it just refused to install.
    There aren't even Win8 Official ISO like for 7, so you're on your own.

    You can also "downgrade" to 7...
    Steam(shots), Imgur, Bak'laag, why do you forsake me?

  6. #6
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    Shift-F8 is near impossible to make work - it apparently polls for it for a fraction of a second at best so GL with that one.

    The W8 'advanced options' screen is a Windows and not a DOS menu too - so if drivers are fucked, it won't work - WTG there MS.

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by somini View Post
    There aren't even Win8 Official ISO like for 7, so you're on your own.
    There are Windows 8 ISOs, when I had a TechNet sub there was one for each version. They just generally don't include recovery CDs with new computers anymore and rely on the recovery partition for some dumb reason instead.
    Nalano's Law - As an online gaming discussion regarding restrictions grows longer, the probability of a post likening the topic to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea approaches one.

  8. #8
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    I've just tried downgrading to 7. The display actually works, but it seems to hang on "Setup is starting". Not a complete freeze, the wheel still spins and the cursor can be moved, but it sat there for an hour so...

    I guess I'll switch from UEFI to legacy bios and give the Ubuntu disc another shot.

    On a less optimistic note. If I had to send it off for repairs to solve this, which would be faster? Sending it to the laptop manufacturer or the retailer I bought it from (Amazon in this case).

  9. #9
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    Ok update. Finally managed to successfully install Ubuntu. That all runs fine so I thought I'd give another stab at reinstalling 8. Display actually works now but I can't install Windows 8 because the drive is not formatted properly. The problem here is the format option is greyed out. I tried going into the troubleshoot options on the install disk to refresh or reset the pc and get this

    "The drive where Windows is installed is locked. Unlock the drive and try again."

  10. #10
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus somini's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Creeping Death View Post
    I've just tried downgrading to 7. The display actually works, but it seems to hang on "Setup is starting". Not a complete freeze, the wheel still spins and the cursor can be moved, but it sat there for an hour so...
    Exactly what happened to me on Win7, but I left it in that situation and went to bed.
    In the morning it was exactly the same, so I forced a reset and my disk was completely borked.
    Had to boot a Mint Live CD and
    Code:
    sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sda
    to be able to reinstall windows. It will completely erase the disk, so that you can start again.
    Steam(shots), Imgur, Bak'laag, why do you forsake me?

  11. #11
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    I'd go with windows 7. Too many bugs to fix on 8 because it's relatively new and in my opinion unnecessary.

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