Black screen plus pointer alternates every 2 seconds

  1. Posts : 4
    Windows 10

    Black screen plus pointer alternates every 2 seconds

    Every 2 sec it shows a few symbols along the bottom of the screen and a "wait" hourglass before changing back again. This is after successful log-in followed by a prolonged "welcome" screen. I can get to Task Manager, but can't see anything there that I understand - yes, an absolute beginner, so any simply-worded help gratefully received!
      My Computer

  2. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 30,373
    Win 10 Pro (1903)

    Hi, welcome to tenforums. Many questions as we know almost nothing yet about your PC and its history.

    a. What is your current windows build?
    Windows key + R, winver
    or from Task Manager, File, New task, winver
    b. When did this start happening?
    c. Before this started happening, was your PC working correctly?
    d. Can you think of anything that happened- download, update, installation... before this started?
    e. Have you enabled System Restore? (Look it up with a search engine if unsure about this)
    f. Please complete details of your PC (see mine for comparison - click My computer below my post - tutorial available to help you if unsure in the Tutorial section).
    g. Please post a screenshot of your task manager thus:
    Black screen plus pointer alternates every 2 seconds-1.jpg
    To post a screenshot please use the Insert Image icon above your post.
    Tutorial available if needed.
    If you can't capture a screenshot, please post a clear photo.

    h. Have you run full antivirus scans? If so, with what?

    Let's start there- and for others reading this, best wait for a response I think.
      My Computers

  3. Posts : 4
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Thanks for replying, Dalchina. Here's the result of trying to answer your questions
    a) I've looked this up as you guided and it's version 1803 (OS build 17134.285)
    b) it started yesterday and c) had been OK till then and d) I can't think of/didn't notice anything unusual happening except had a problem ordering a gift from Hotel Chocolat - had to give up and do it by phone.
    e) I've had a look at the guide to checking if System Restore is enabled, but as the machine won't open in a usable form, don't see how I can follow it
    f) It's a PC, Hewlett-packard P6126UK, new in 2009, but I can't find a record of any of the spec details - sorry
    g) we've taken a photo of the task manager display that I will try to attach after this
    h) we have AVG that does its work automatically, but i also sometimes run it manually.
    Thanks again, durban
    PS. The screen-shot pic seems to have arrived below - hope you can open and see it
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Black screen plus pointer alternates every 2 seconds-screen-shot-001.jpg  
      My Computer

  4. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 30,373
    Win 10 Pro (1903)

    Hi, some quick points, then I'll think a bit more:
    a. As it just started yesterday, it would be ideal if you can use a system restore point.
    System Restore will only have been running if you specifically ever enabled it (and after any upgrade)

    You can launch the SR dialogue from the task manager:
    File, Run new task, rstrui.exe

    If you have any restore points, you can use the dialogue to start system restore.

    Note however that restoring is notably unreliable, and quite often fails. However, no harm will be done and worth trying.

    b. Your task manager shows high CPU use- but the process is further down the list. Please click on the column header to organise the list high to low and repost.

    I'm going to guess you may not yet have started to use disk imaging routinely- if you have a disk image, restoring that is a great way to get back to a previous working state, saving a huge amount of time and effort. Please advise if you have.

    c. When did you upgrade to 1803? If some weeks ago, then something else has caused this, not an upgrade. Maybe it's allergic to chocolate.

    d. Can you boot to Safe Mode? Shift + left click restart and follow the prompts through..
    (If unsure consult relevant tutorial here).

    E.g. At click the power button bottom right on the login screen, Shift + left click restart .....

      My Computers

  5. Posts : 4
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Just tried (a) above but got a different response to cntrl+alt+del: "The sign-in process couldn't display, etc" It advises power off and go again, which i will do. Will re-sort screen-shot and send when wife and her camera return this evening. On (c) we got W10 long ago, but I don't know about 1803. Will also try (d) and report back when everything done. thanks for your patience - durban
      My Computer

  6. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 30,373
    Win 10 Pro (1903)

    Try shutting down, powering off, wait a bit and reboot. Might help- or not. See if you can get to the login screen (no need to log in - use the power button there as previously).

    The upgrade to 1803 came out in around April, released over the following couple of months or so. Would have meant your PC spent an hour or more with a restart or two upgrading.

    If you can get to Safe Mode, again, you can run System Restore from there.

    If you can't run System Restore, I think it will be necessary to create a bootable live disk- the PC boots from it and you then have a range of useful progs available.
    Windows 10 Recovery Tools - Bootable Rescue Disk - Windows 10 Forums

    Download the iso and create a bootable USB disk (or burn a DVD if the laptop has such a drive).

    You can follow the instructions here (Option 2), but use the iso above.
    Create Bootable USB Flash Drive to Install Windows 10 | Windows 10 Tutorials
      My Computers

  7. Posts : 4
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    I followed your instructions from the start screen and ran System Restore, and was delighted by what appeared to be a return to normality. But then I discovered there was no connection with the internet. This I have now solved, by luck rather than judgement - it involved a couple of restarts. It still takes a long time in the various steps of starting up, but in practical terms, it's working again and I'm most grateful for your help. I wonder at your ability not to discover, but to store, all this knowledge: Thanks!
      My Computer

  8. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 30,373
    Win 10 Pro (1903)

    Excellent- you're really lucky System Restore ran ok - it doesn't always.

    It still takes a long time in the various steps of starting up,
    Some people with build 1803 have reported this - search the forum for 'slow boot'.

    Now there are two major parts to this-
    a. the time to the lock screen
    b. the time from log in to all startup programs being loaded and running.

    Which seems slow?

    A key thing to do to protect yourself is to start routinely using disk imaging.
    This basically creates compressed copies of the used parts of the partitions/disks you image on (external) storage.

    If sthg goes badly wrong, restoring the image means you are back where you were when you created the image. Also you have a full backup.

    Most here strongly emphasise using this. Many of us like Macrium Reflect (free) - there are others.

    Imagine your disk fails. Buy a new one, restore your image, you can be back up and running.
    Same if your PC becomes unusable and no one can help you (assuming sthg on disk).

    A useful thing to have is a disk monitor - something that alerts you to early disk failure.
    E.g. Crystal diskinfo (free); Hard Disk Sentinel is, I think, the best- great summary- recently given away.
      My Computers


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