I have an HP laptop running Windows 8 that after boot and login goes to a black screen with the white mouse pointer.

The task manager is accessible via CTRL ALT DEL

Thus the PC seems to be working just fine, just not visible to me.

Now I had a very similar issue on Windows 7 (Lenovo laptop) just last week... however the difference was that normally at work my laptop is docked in a multi-monitor setup. After a weekend full of attempts to login via safe mode I was about to give up. Come Monday morning I go to work, dock my laptop and Presto! the PC detects the extra monitors and everything is restored - even after un-docking moments later.

This leads me to believe that the HP Windows 8 laptop is also having a "Screen Configuration Issue" and a simple reset will very likely solve it.

However I have not been able to find a way to reset this or even boot into safe mode. Booting up and pressing F8, Shift+F8, Esc, or F12 just won't let me in (I'm guessing this is an OEM thing to stop me from "messing things up" ;-)

Since I don't have the option of "docking" the HP laptop does anyone have the magic command/option to boot into safe mode so I can attempt to reset the display to a simple single screen?

Update the Control Panel is also accessible via WinKey Y (shows some voice narrator options but the root control panel is also available from here. I've 'removed' the 2 different external displays it might have been confused about but after a reboot I'm still stuck with a black screen. I've also tried pressing via WinKey P to flip in/out of presentation mode with no luck.

3 Answers 3


For blank screen after login, open task manager while your screen is blank by press and hold {Ctrl+Alt+delete} at the same time something will pop_up then open {task manager} then on task manager select {More details} then {File} on top next to Option then {Run new task} then {Browse...} then on {Computer} click the right key on your mouse and scroll to {Open in new window} then on my computer. on the top there is {Uninstall or change a program} then open it or if you can't see it open Control panel then Open it then uninstall avast and when done restart your pc.

Forgive me for my bad English, its not my language


Well, I'm new to this, but again, sometimes the simplest stuff works right. (what this means is heads up, you won't probably solve your issue with my answer).

What I understand is, you log in and boom nothing comes up, just a plain old cursor sitting there saying, yeah, 'sup. So, since u can get to task manager, try the following.

In task manager, did you try to run/restart explorer.exe? You might wanna do that. Just press file > run a new task > explorer.exe

Also, if you installed any recent updates, just uninstall them using Ctrl panel and try again.

If what I understand from ur question is wrong, then sorry. I'll improve my answer if you notify me.


This is more a workaround than a solution, but every single time a problem like you described happened to me (black screen, task manager accessible, some shortcuts working) I can do the following:

  1. Open taskmanager using whatever way
  2. On task manager, go to File->New Task. Type "explorer.exe" (with no quotation marks)

When you do that all the taskbar and rest of things should magically pop. And maybe a window of the windows explorer.

The proper fix, if this happens every time, is to do a clean install of windows, since your installation seems corrupt for some reason. I would suggest to do this instead of trying to recover the manufacturer's, since most of the time they are absolutely bloated with useless software and might exhibit some problems as well.

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