Clean Install Black Screen Blinking Cursor/ MSFT Tech via phone and GeekSquad unable to help

Microsoft phone help and geek squad both didnt know what was wrong...

computer goes through the initial 5 phases of installing windows and then states it will restart in 10 seconds and counts down and restarts... from here it restarts and I get a black screen with blinking cursor and once I got a "non system disk" error on a friends machine.

completely reformatted my drive
reset/cleared CMOS and BIOS
tried different displays
different connections and cords (vga, sata, dvi, hdmi)
tried bootsect.exe /fixboot /fixmbr
HDD checks out as ok from microsoft store diagnostic test
tried restore point and auto fix (back before reformat)
tried in friends computer
tried windows 7 and vista neither work upon initial restart phase
HOWEVER Hirens boot disk works to boot mini xp off the ram

the display (nvidia gtx570) works enough for me to click through and begin to install windows
can get into bios and can reset it everything fine there
HD passes HD specific diagnostic test

I have no idea what is wrong...

as of now it is having a full hardware diagnostic run overnight at my local microsoft store and i will post back tomorrow with any update however I would love if someone would shed some insight on this as I have posted once regarding this and received no advice.

if any further information is required to offer assistance I am glad to offer it to the best of my ability.

Hello Marpo,
to Windows 7 Forums,

I've seen this before and most recently on customers machine and a hard drive I removed from my laptop.
The hard drive comes up clean on initial tests, however, the drive is in fact failing.
The 2 I mentioned did in fact completely fail, fortunately, after I retrieved all the files needed off of them.
I would try another drive if you have one available.
Also check the installation DVD for scuffs/scratches. If it's a burned DVD from a download, it may be corrupt.

Hope this helps and keep us posted


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
I will agree with Don, it seems the system is not able to locate the install. I once had a brand new hard drive which would seem to install fine, but the reboot rarely worked. A new drive solved the problem.

If you could give some information about your system, it might help. Knowing how old it is, UEFI or not, and other specifics might give us a clue.

The other way I have seen black screens, but I believe the mouse cursor is active, is when the display has switched to another device and you do not see it. HDMI used to be related such a scenario.

thanks, that is really good advice, for now it is still getting full diagnostics at the shop but i have been unable to try another drive for the time being

i have tried multiple installation discs though so that narrows out the discs. also a friend of mine since posting referred me to this post:

(Windows 7 does not boot from first restart during clean install)

stating to remove the disc in between the installation restart and check to see if boot order has changed for any reason

i will check back when more develops but i am still open to more advice from the community. thank you!


I am hoping that, that is the only issue is just a new HD, as far as the black screen with blinking cursor goes no i do not have a mouse available and have tried with multiple displays and display cords

as far as system specs i can give you now:

HD: 500gb seagate (i havent checked the actual model in a while)
MB: Asus P8P67 LE (i will look up UEFI but i believe i have seen that in the bios, if that helps)
GPU(S): Nvidia gtx 570-primary Nvidia gtx 260-secondary
CPU: i7 2600k sandy bridge
1000 watt coolermaster power supply i can get the exact model later today after i pick it up

I hope these specs answer what you were asking about and my next step is to try with a new hard drive asap.


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