When powering up the Toshiba Satellite (C655-S5225) laptop, which is running Win 7 Home Premium, one sees the BIOS screen and then, almost immediately, you get a black screen with a cursor blinking on the upper left hand side.
The BIOS options (Setup and Boot Device Selection) work and the settings seem to be OK (HD recognized in BIOS, HD selected for boot, SATA mode OK, etc.).
I've run multiple test scripts (HD, RAM, system board, etc.) from Ultra X's QuickTech and the hardware seems to be fine. Based on this Superuser question I've booted the laptop with and without [only AC power] the battery, with no difference. As well, following this disassembly guide the CMOS battery was removed, and after a short wait replaced (in an attempt to clear the motherboard). Upon a reboot the BIOS remarked on the battery removal, but the boot to the blinking cursor behavior continued. All of this leads me to suspect a software issue (but see Q2).
Is there a specific hardware issue I should be looking for?
In terms of software issues, it seems it's not booting into Windows at all, but immediately after the BIOS boots it hangs to the cursor. What should be looked at from the software angle that could cause this?
I was wondering if it was safe to delete the Hiberfil.sys file (e.g. using a LiveCD), or if deleting it without first turning off Hibernation in Windows (a step that can't be done as long as it doesn't boot into Windows) can actually cause a boot issue of its own?