One of my clients called saying they had a power outage the night before. When she powered her Windows 7 computer back on, she was presented with a cursor, a black screen and nothing more. She was not able to see any of her icons or access the start menu. When she pressed CTL + ALT + DEL, nothing happened. In researching this issue, I noticed that someone had coined the phrase Windows 7 Black Screen of Death.
I found that to be very fitting and quite amusing. Although this issue is as annoying as a BSOD, it’s not as severe. My first thought was to run a System Restore using the Command Prompt. Lucky for both of us, it worked!
Below are the steps to resolve the Windows 7 black screen with cursor issue.
- Power the PC off.
- Access the Advanced Boot Options menu by pressing F8 repeating on startup.
- Select the option “Safe Mode with Command Prompt”.
- At the command prompt type: rstrui.exe and press enter.
- Select a previous date. (A date when the problem did not exist.)
It normally takes 3 to 5 minutes for the Windows restore process to finish. Older computers may take longer. After the restore process is finished, the computer will restart. When the computer comes back on, you should now have your desktop and be ready to work. If the initial restore does not work, try it again using a previous date. If you only see a couple of restore points when the Windows System Restore utility appears, you may have to check the box that says, “Show more restore points”.
Let us know if this worked for you. Your comments, suggestions and questions are always welcomed.
About the Author (Author Profile)John Bousman is an MCSA, MCTS, MCP, Net+ and A+ Certified Technician. He is also an avid Web Developer, WordPress Jedi, SEO Connoisseur and owner of an IT Firmed in the Midwest. During the day he helps tackles Server Administration and Desktop Support issues for small business. With over 15 years experience installing, configuring and troubleshooting retail and enterprise software, he's seen it all. Make sure you checkout his profile on Google+.