Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Windows 8 not booting from either of two hard drives.

  1. #1


    Posts : 5
    Windows 8 32 bit

    Windows 8 not booting from either of two hard drives.


    Computer: Dell Inspiron 530
    Operating System: Windows Vista home prem. upgraded to Windows 8 home Pro. 32 bit.
    BIOS Rev. 1.0.15
    Hard drives: (# 1) Samsung 500 Gig with 2 partitions. (# 2) WD 500 Gig with 2 partitions. Clone of #1
    Ram: 3 Gig
    Problem: On start up with either drive, the system goes to a blue screen with a clock (different time zone) on pushing Ctrl + Alt + Delete a log in prompt comes on. After logging in a window with the circling dots and Preparing Windows comes on That stays on for about 4 minutes and then a black screen comes on. Pushing the power button will cause Shutting Down to appear breifly and then the machine shuts down.
    I have a backup of Drive #1 on an external drive.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Sloe Deth, Californicatia
    Posts : 3,908
    Windows 8 Pro with Media Center/Windows 7


    Sounds like an Activation Problem - You have a totally black screen with only the mouse cursor? From there you should be able to pull up the task manager and run a program, stick your upgrade disk into the Drive and just run the setup again. Run Task Manager and run program, you will be able to browse to the drive where your setup.exe is located. Run that. I've had to do this twice when my activation failed on two separate computers, same install disk. The upgrade disk should allow an In-Place install. You can try it, and if you can't use the upgrade disk, it will tell you. You will want to do an "upgrade" which is what you have to do to perform an In-Place install.

    Before you do this, I'd check both drives for failure, download Hiren's Boot CD from the link in my sig, you can run ViVex from there, do a "smart remap" and it will fix any read errors the drive may have, if any. If not, it is just good to check them from time to time.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Posts : 5
    Windows 8 32 bit


    Sorry but your response did not fall on deaf ears. I am only getting around to it now. My problem continues because I cannot launch Task Manager. Let me walk you through the start up sequence. The Dell announcement window is followed by a black screen and then a blue/green screen with a clock. When I click on that screen a login screen comes up after typing in my password the login box is replaced by the dots going around in a circle and Preparing Windows comes up. After a couple minutes a black window with a white arrow comes up. If I push Control, Alt, Delete the options including Task Manager comes up. Clicking on Task Manager causes the black screen and arrow to come up again.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Sloe Deth, Californicatia
    Posts : 3,908
    Windows 8 Pro with Media Center/Windows 7


    Ok, it may still be the activation problem. Do you have an install disk? If so, boot from the Install disk, and open a command prompt. then run Bootrec /fixmbr and then bootrec /scanos, see if it finds all of your windows installations, it should only locate Windows 8 Installations.

    If that has no effect, then you should scan your hard drives for any kinds of Read errors, you can download Hiren's Boot CD from the link below and use GWscan to do a quick heck, it's in the "Dos Programs/Hard Drive Tools" section around the 3rd page in. See if it finds "Read Element Failure" and if so, just hit "y" and it will scan the whole drive. Do this for both drives.

    If you do that and it finds errors, you should run a CHKDSK. you can use either the Windows 8 Install disk via a command prompt, or Mini-XP which is on Hiren's, and all you would need to do for now is a quick check. There is a link to it already to go for a quick check in Mini-XP, you just enter the drive letter and hit enter.

    If the screen still comes up black after all that, then try to pull up Task Manager again, and see if you can check your activation. But right now, something is preventing your task manager from working. So you should check your drives for any errors using GWscan, there are also OEM-based drive tools on the disk.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    BELGIUM
    Posts : 503
    WINDOWS 8.1 x64


    if what XWeAponX says does not work, how about puttind in your DVD or whatever with Windows on and try a repair.

    I mean if nothing else works


    Jeff
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 5
    Windows 8 32 bit


    I have a Windows 8 Back up disk. I am uncertain if it is the same thing as an install disk. That is what I got from Microsoft along with the key.

    When I put it in the drive it spins up, then the blue/green screen with a clock comes up. If I click on that screen a login box comes up. After putting in my password the circle of dots and "Preparing Windows" comes up eventually followed by a black screen and arrow.

    Nothing else will work after that except forcing a shut down.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Sloe Deth, Californicatia
    Posts : 3,908
    Windows 8 Pro with Media Center/Windows 7


    It should only say "Preparing Windows" at one time in the history of any Windows 8 Installation Lifespan - Immediately after it is installed. After that, if it says "Preparing Windows"- It may mean you are being shunted over to a temporary Profile, and in your case, it does not appear to be fully booting. But unless the Desktop or Start Screen comes up, we can't tell if this is what's happening. The Black Screen may be a Start Screen in a Temporary Profile, which would be devoid of any items. but there would be a Desktop shingle. Try hitting "Enter" while in that black screen.

    The only other thing you can do is use that Restore disk, see if it will restore your Windows 8. If it is an actual Install disk, you can do a fresh install and we can deal with the "Windows.old" folders later.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

Windows 8 not booting from either of two hard drives.
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