Windows 10 Window 10 Black Screen problem


New Member
Aug 24, 2016
I've had Windows 10 for a while on my HP laptop. Yesterday, I got a gray screen and was unable to do anything without resetting the laptop to factory format. Now I have lost windows 10 and am back to Windows 7. Furthermore, my backup CD's won't reset/recover my former settings and all my documents as they were saved as windows 10 versions. Seeing as windows 10 is no longer available for free download, how do i recover all my files?

If you had Windows 10 installed and registered you can reinstall it at no charge.
But the problem is saving your files before you do since it will remove everything when it does it.

You can get a Windows 10 install ISO file here, pick the option to create install media.

Windows 10

I'm not understanding why you can't access the documents in Windows 7 but you should at least be able to copy them someplace safe while you reinstall Windows 10, as far as I know anything that you can open in Windows 10 would probably open in Windows 7.

This is why I always have at least multiple partitions if not 2 drives so that reinstalling Windows doesn't remove any of my data files.

Remember that clean installing Windows 10 will delete everything on your C:\ drive.

If that's not possible let us know what the specifics are.

Hi and welcome to the forum :up:

Did W10 come pre-loaded on your laptop or did you upgrade from an earlier version of windows, such as W7 or W8x?

The next question is you mention backup CDs; what program did you use to create those backup CDs; Windows Backup or something else?
It's important to know that, as Windows Backup has been notoriously unreliable going back to Win95.

Since you mentioned the free download of W10, I'm going to assume you are talking about an upgraded version of W10 from an earlier version such as the Win7 you mention your computer got put back to. The good news is that as long as your W10 upgrade was accomplished by July 29th 2016 (this year), your HP laptop's W7-->W10 license is still intact on the MS Activation Servers. This means that you can do a clean install of W10 using free ISO file downloadable media (DVD or USB) direct from Microsoft's site here:
Windows 10
Reinstalling your W10, Microsoft will automatically recognize your license key once you connect it back to the Internet, and Activation will be free to you! :up:

Unfortunately, there is some bad news here as the process of resetting your laptop to it's factory Windows settings, W7 in this case, probably performed a hard drive erasure, completely deleting all those program settings, desktop personalized settings, as well as documents and settings. :waah: If you did the factory reset yesterday, let's say hypothetically, I would tell you to stop using that laptop immediately and take laptop into your local Computer Pro and pay them to perform Data Recovery on it's hard drive. If you've used that laptop in W7 at all for more than 1 day, it's going to be pretty much unrecoverable at this point.

Continuing on with the assumption that you used a different program to make those Backup CDs, such as AOEMI Backupper or Paragon, you could run the W10 Clean Install I reference above by using a simple DVD disc or USB stick and not have to pay again for your W10 license-that's free. From there, you can reinstall your Backup program (for example AB or Paragon or whatever you have), and then restore all your files from your previous W10 setup back to your new W10 setup on the laptop, and you for the most part would be good to go, as long as your Backup program was set to backup your personal Library Folders (Documents, Downloads, Music, Pictures, and Videos). :up:

If however, you used Microsoft Backup, and that was your only backup on an external hard drive or a flash drive for instance, you are probably going to be out of luck if you used that laptop for more than 1 day after the W7 reversion to factory settings (Out-Of-Box or OOB).:waah:

For future reference, it's best to make what we call an Image Backup of your entire hard drive these days. There are 3 excellent free programs with which you can do this that we've thoroughly tested on W10. Here's the list:
1.) Macrium Reflect
2.) Acronis TrueImage
3.) EASETodo

With these programs, you can preserve 100% of your W10 settings, documents, music, photos, videos, E-mails, as well as all User Accounts and complete personalization settings such as screen size, wallpaper, screen savor, resolution, etc. for each and every User Account you have on your computer. The method you are using to do folder-type backups, will not get back 100% of your windows account user profile settings. These programs will. I use them on all my personal computers, and many of my Customer's computers (over 75 so far). Here's a tutorial on how to do an Image Backup using the free Macrium Software:

Lastly, it's a really good idea to have backups or backup images of your laptop in 2 different places, and 2 different types of media. For example, my laptop at home has a backup on an external hard drive, a 2nd external hard drive, and then on a Cloud backup account which I have is Microsoft OneDrive. You can never have too many backups in too many places! Especially if your laptop is hacked, infected by Ransomware, physically stolen, or a victim of natural disaster such as flood, fire, earthquake, tornado, etc.

Best of luck, :encouragement:

If you mean that you used the factory recovery partition, (I was assuming that you used the utility that rolls back Windows 10) then it formatted your C:\ drive and removed everything.

That's why I advise that, people should never put any of your data files on the same drive as Windows.

As Bear asked, how were your Backup CD created, did you backup your entire C:\ drive?

I'm guessing that that is your best bet for getting your files back, but you will have to be able to open them and for that you will probably need the software that created them.

On the advise for the future side...

If you want to backup data it's always best to just copy it to another location, without getting some 3rd party software involved.
Then you can always recover it just by copying it back using much any operating system.

You should create a backup of your C:\ drive using software that will create a System Image file, that can restore Windows to the way it was when you made the image.

If you've purchased a Laptop with Windows 10 Preinstalled, then you can check the Laptop Bag/Box for Windows 10 Licenses CD with the package. If not, then you can contact your retailer to get back the Windows 10 CD for installation.

You are saying that you Factory Formatted the Windows 10 and back to Windows 7. Have you Just "Restored" the system or Clean installed the Windows 7? Clean installation wipes the entire data on System drive (Usually C:/ Drive). To restore back to Windows 10 with previous settings and files, you need Windows 10 backup CD, which you say is not working.

Just arrange a Licensed Windows 10 CD and install it. Check if you can recover the files (If not Clean installed). Also, check this post to find File recovery software to recover the deleted files from the system. Otherwise, there is no option to recover files (exception of Data Recovery Services). From this time, keep the backup of your system Safe on DVD, USB Thumb drives or other partitions on Hard Drive.
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