Windows is one of the most popular operating system around and is used by millions of users around the world. With its popularity, it is also highly prone to attack by hackers, viruses and other malware. Recently I came across a friend with his Windows 7 PC stuck after the welcome screen on a blank black screen. The explorer and the desktop was not loaded even after leaving it in that state for over 30 minutes. In this particular case, I made some observations on that PC which I will share in this article and suggest the solution of the problems with you.
Problem and Observations:
Following are the observations I made on the PC:
- The PC would reach till Welcome screen in the normal mode
- After Welcome screen a blank screen comes up which stays there without any change
- The anti-virus program on the PC had expired
- The PC was booting in Safe mode
- In Safe more, it was not able to install / uninstall any application
- The Windows installer application was missing in Safe mode due to which it was not possible to add or remove any program
- Even after removing most of the start-up items in safe more (using Windows msconfig command), the computer did not boot properly in normal mode
From the above symptoms, it was clear that it is not a boot manager or boot loader problem because the safe more for Windows was working. Also in normal mode booting, the task manager could not be launched which means something is hampering the normal loading of Windows components. Also since the anti-virus had expired, there are high chances that some virus or malicious scrip had modified some windows components or corrupted registry which is preventing normal startup. Now let us look at the possible solutions to fix the problems in the below section.
Since the problem is either corrupt Windows files or virus actions, below steps are recommended:
- Boot in safe more and check if the installer service is running. Run services.msc in run prompt, scroll down Windows installer service “msiserver” and restart it manually. Here is a more detailed troubleshooting guide to fix the installer problems.
- If you are able to use the installer service, access the programs and features and uninstall few recently installed softwares and updates which might be the culprit.
- Use a good anti-virus software, preferably one with boot scan support which can boot the computer and scan the hard disk from USB or DVD. Run a full scan to ensure that there is no virus infection.
- If all the steps above are not working, do a Windows restore which will revert the PC settings and programs to a previously saved state which works in most cases.
- You can also try Windows 7 repair install which works using the Windows 7 installer disk.
- If nothing works, take a backup of all the important data in safe mode and re-install a fresh copy of Windows.
Bonus Tip – Always keep the anti-virus program updated and be careful before installing any new software from any unreliable source, it can infect your computer.
Check out more Windows tips and tutorials by Trouble Fixers.