For the last few days, after I boot my laptop, it slowly makes it's way to the login page (much slower than normal) and allows my to login like normal. After login, the screen goes black and only the cursor is visible.
I've attempted a Safe Mode boot and it seemed to work quite well. Once I completed system restore I rebooted in 'normal mode'. Back to black screen after login and only the cursor is visible.
I managed to get Task Manager running and ended and re-ran explorer.exe to see if that made any difference. The process of starting Task Manager and simply running explorer took over five minutes. The laptop is severely bogged down yet there are no large processes running.
Upon leaving the computer idle on the black screen for ten minutes, it has managed to bring up the regular desktop display but at the speed it is running, it is near impossible to run anything. The time it took to write this post (on an alternate computer), ie8 still has not fully loaded.
If anyone has something constructive to help with any of a number of possible issues, please let me know. I'm ready to salvage the data and format the drive, it's about due for it anyways.