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Black screen of Death. Cannot boot system

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Posts: 5
Comments: 3

Windows 10 64bit / Acronis 2017 latest version

Black screen of Death. Cannot boot system after running and the failing the following utility disks;
-Acronis rescue
-Acronis bootable rescue media
-Windows 10 System repair disk
-Dell recovery disk


-I religiously run "full mode" back up's of my system disk weekly on an external hard drive.

-I pulled the system drive and inserted it into an external dock. I can view and open all the folders and contents.

-All my user files are stored on hard drives other than the system drive (Drive c:).

-Can I do an Acronis restore to a blank hard drive mounted in a dock?
-Can I run a restore on the original drive mounted in a dock?
-Is there another solution using my Acronis backup?

Than y'all for your help -Appreciated, Bob


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Forum Hero
Posts: 70
Comments: 8346


I believe you have a corrupted Windows bootloader.  Did you start the full disk recovery from the Windows GUI?  if so, then that is what has occured.  Starting in Windows, forces a reboot, then Acronis modifies the bootloader so the system boots to it instead of Windows.  If all goes well, Acronis returns the bootloader, but if Acronis fails to load, well, then you get stuck like this.  If you have a Windows installation disc or created a Windows repair drive, you can boot to it like you're going to re-install windows.  DON'T install though, go to advanced options and "system repair (not restore) or automatic repair option.  This will hopefully get your OS bootloader fixed automatically.

To answer your questions:

Yes - once restored, then move to the original location in the system.  You can't boot Windows from a USB device.

Yes - however, I would not use the original as the first option. Use a test disk first, if you have the capability.  Once verified to work on your test disk, then feel free to overwrite what's on the primary drive.  

No - I would always recommend you start any full disk restore or clone from your offline recovery media.  This avoids the situation you find yourself in currently and is just as fast to initiate.

Posts: 5
Comments: 3

Thank you for your excellent, to-the-point response Bobbo. I ordered a new Western Digital black drive from Amazon and it will be here Wednesday.

I failed to mention that it has been exceedingly hot here in the Pacific Northwest for a few weeks and I'v had the side off my PC with a fan running to keep it under 120 degrees. This may have contributed.  - Best. Bob

Forum Hero
Posts: 70
Comments: 8346

Happy to try and help out.

Yeah, heat and computers don't always work too well - that could be an issue.  Are you able to see the bios when you startup - just to make sure it's not something else physical like the video card?  Not sure where you're seeing the black screen - or it's always black (which wouldn't be too good).  

If your computer has a hardware diagnostics mode or disk, might not hurt to run it (Dell and HP often have this). Might as well run memtest on the memory to check it out while you're waiting too (if you have a way to grab it with your PC being offline).