Cannot gain access to Windows XP Login Screen, Screen has mouse arrow, but stays blak

By nitesystem ยท 5 replies
Jun 20, 2005
  1. Basically, last week, i bought a 512 stick of RAM, i put it in not realizing my mother board tops out at 768 RAM, and i already had 512 in there. Anyhow, after figuring out that 1 gig of ram wont work, i took the 512 stick out and put the old 256 sticks back in.

    A few days later, i was on my comp (today) and i was online, i tried to use windows media player, it wouldnt work, so i said screw it, i restarted. But it was different, when i was restarting before it shut down, instead of the normal all blue screen that shows up that says "windows is shutting down" a smaller window came up instead that said it was shutting down and saving settings.

    When i attempted to restart everything looked fine, it goes to the black "windows XP" screen with the little bar scrolling back and forth, but when its time to get to the login screen, i get nothing but a black screen, and the mouse arrow. The arrow has the little hourglass near it for a sec, but nothing happens.

    I tried to go into safemode, its like it goes into it, but its nothing but the text "windows safemmode servicepack 2 etc" and the larger version of the mouse arrow.

    The thing is, i plan on getting a new motherboard etc this week, a friend of mine is just going to rebuild another computer for me, but my question is, can i salvage all of the data on my hard drive (which includes a rap album that needs to be given to a studio to be mastered as well as 70 gigs of mp3s/samples/wavs). I mean, im just wondering if there is any possible way i can either get to the login screen, or if at the worst, get the data off of there, i dont care about any programs etc, just the music stuff that i need. I will lose thousands if i cant get that album off there. I know for a fact that the stuff is still on there. When windows ran a "disk check" or whatever, it confirmed i had 14 gigs left from my 80 gig drive.

    Please help.
  2. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

    Just take the harddisk out and put it in another PC, preferably on the Secondary IDE, or else as 'slave' on the Primary IDE.
    Make sure that PC has enough 'own' harddisk space free.
    Boot that PC, check that the 'new' HD is recognised in BIOS, then boot into Windows and get your data of that HD.
    You need to reinstall Windows anyway because of the new mobo, if you want to use the same harddisk.
  3. nitesystem

    nitesystem TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I tried this method here to possibly repair the windows software by loading the old default drivers etc.

    The problem, it may be with my disc, or whatver even though i cleaned it, is that it gets stuck at the part of the installation where it says "Registering Components" with 14 minutes to go, except it stays there with the little green bar moving very slowly. Either way, everytime i restart my comp, the xp installation screen shows up.

    What im wondering is, using my current drive as the slave drive, knowing the data is still on there, will i be able to recover the data on my computer with it being a slave on a different computer even with the condition that its in, basically stuck in a mode where windows is trying reinstall/repair itself?

  4. nitesystem

    nitesystem TS Rookie Topic Starter

    just to double check the data, i tried to load a boot disk to see if my stuff was still there, i tried to view the data by putting in /dir but only 15 items came up and it listed it as "MS-RAMDRIVE" Im a bit confused.

    it said there were 15 items, all made in 1998 with only 1 megabye free on my drive

    *edit, friend of mine says its ok because of ntfs

  5. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

    What you saw was the RAM-disk that is created (in memory only) by the bootup-floppy.
    DOS-bootfloppies can NOT read NTFS harddisks, you need special drivers for that (cost you if you want to WRITE as well.
    That disk with the data on it will be fine for retrieval in another PC, or in your own PC, once you have installed another OS on the other HD.
    Disconnect the slave drive with your 'old' data for the moment, and start the installation afresh on the 'new' disk, by first deleting, then formatting the C-partition.
    Then install XP, install the motherboard drivers, install Firefox, then anti-virus and firewall. Only now should you connect to the internet and go to update the AV immediately. When that is done, install the programs that are needed for the files you want to retrieve from the other HD. Switch PC off, reconnect that HD and do your retrieval. Once you have everything, format that HD and use as e.g. data-HD and/or backup.
  6. nitesystem

    nitesystem TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Your assurance is priceless, words cant express how much it means to know i havent lost all those hours of work, and all the years it took for me to gather samples for music, not to mention an album ready to be mastered. Thank you.
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