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I've just installed Win7 Ultimate to my PC. During the install it reboots a couple of times, but 2nd or 3rd reboot I see the "Starting Windows..." message, but followed by a black screen. No mouse cursor, taskbar, anything. The monitor power light is blue (indicating it has a signal) and it was displaying the setup wizard with no problems whatsoever.

Has anyone else witnessed this phenomenon?

Many thanks in advance.


I booted in safe mode, and got a screen saying "Setup is preparing your computer for first use". That's brilliant, although a message box has popped up over that saying:

Windows cannot complete instlalation in Safe Mode. To continue installing Windows, restart the computer.

So I don't really have the opportunity to do any cleverness with drivers or anything. I guess I could try getting a different version of Win7 (I'm installing from an MSDN DVD).

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I have only seen this a few times, typically with hardware failure. (Windows setup loads a graphics driver for a faulty graphics card - SVGA/standard driver works, using the real driver fails).

All I can suggest is try booting in to safe mode and update all drivers, or perform another fresh install and cross your fingers!

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+1 for the safe mode suggestion. It got me a bit further but not all the way (I've updated my question with my findings). – Neil Barnwell Feb 4 '11 at 14:50
ok, with that updated info, I would start setup again, I think it simply failed.... Also, try looking at the setup log if you go to the command prompt during the next setup run. – William Hilsum Feb 4 '11 at 14:52
Ahh right okay. I've done this twice now with the same results. What's the path/filename of the setup log? C:\setup.log? – Neil Barnwell Feb 4 '11 at 14:54
up vote 0 down vote accepted

Actually I was just browsing the related questions on the right hand side, and found this:

Windows 7 blank DVI screen

The answer was in there - I had two monitors hooked up, and when I disconnected the secondary one and rebooted, it all worked fine!

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Yea, I've noticed that Win7 has some real issues with video, especially with older hardware. When I upgraded my old HP laptop to Win7, it kept trying to install the wrong video driver, giving me the frequent black screen. I finally was able to hack in the correct driver and it has worked great since. – BBlake Feb 4 '11 at 16:50

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