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Windows 7: Windows 7 fails to load completely

18 Nov 2011   #1

Win 7 Home premium 64 bit
Windows 7 fails to load completely

I would like to be able to solve a problem with my operating system which is not loading all the way. I want to solve it without having to do a clean install.

The Problem:
Windows will stop loading at a point just before the initial desktop screen “Windows 7 screen”. The screen is black with the mouse cursor and stops. No matter how long I wait it will not proceed any further.
The History:
I purchase this laptop (Dell Studio 1747) 13 months ago with a touch screen, i7, 320gig/5400rpm hard drive, 4 gig of ram and with Windows 7 home premium. The first modification I made to the system in Jan 2011 was to add a Kingston 128gig v+ SSD. In installed Win7 with the ability to boot to either drive. In Sept I installed the Win8 developers preview. I shrank the original hard drive to be able to install Win8 in a new partition. I now had three OS's installed. I have been using the SSD drive as my main system for obvious reasons. Every week I would install any updates in the original Win7 installation.
The events leading to the initial problem:
This past week when I booted to Win8 I was unable to access the other disk partitions using Windows Explorer. I also was presented with a window indicating that a large number of files had an 'invalid security code and was being replaced with a default security code. After logging off Win8, I restarted Windows7(SSD) and found that it would stop loading at the place I described earlier. I then tried 'Safe BOOT' and it stopped at the same place. I then tried Win7 on the original hard drive and found the same issue/problem.
What I've done so far:
I've reinstalled Win7 in the original partition on the 320gig drive and run all updates. At this point Windows Explorer sees the SSD drive but ‘assess is denied’. I can still boot to the Win8 partition.
When booting Win7 on the SSD, the Win7 load still stops at the point I described earlier even in safe mode. I ran my ‘System Repair’ disk without success.
I then inserted the original OS/DVD which came with the computer and started from the DVD. I tried both the ‘repair’ and ‘system restore’ options. System repair did not find any issues and system restore did not find any restore points to use. I did open the command prompt option and was able to review all drives, directories and files including those in the SSD.
I was able to open/view log and ini files. In reviewing the 'windowsupdate.log’ file it shows the last update was on Nov 09th 2011. I didn’t see any issues in that log.
I ran ‘chkdsk’ and the process did not find any disk errors or issues on the SSD.
I tried booting with boot logging but have not found any file showing the list of boot processes.
I was hoping to find the reason why it stops and correct it but I'm at a loss on where to turn.
It’s not that I can’t reinstall the OS... It’s trying to find the problem and fix it. That is one way I learn.
But I could use some help...
How would I find out what failed in the load process?
Could it be a registry issue?... a bad dll?.. a bad ini file?
How would I find out?

Thanks in advance for any thoughts you may have!..


My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Nov 2011   #2
Microsoft MVP


What a mess.

Can you post back a screenshot of maximized Disk Management drive map with listings of any of the OS's which are still bootable, while all HD's are plugged in. We can advise you better.

If not, unplug all but the SSD, making sure it is set to boot first in BIOS setup (after DVD drive), mark Win7 partition on it Active so it will accept the System boot files: Partition - Mark as Active (Method Two)

Next boot into Win7 DVD Repair console to run Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times until Win7 starts with its own boot files instead of booting off of the other HD.

You can now plug back in the other HD and boot it using the BIOS one-time Boot Menu key so the HD's remain independent. If it needs repair to start, do so using the same procedure as above with the SSD unplugged using the Win8 DVD Repair console.

If you still want to boot the rescue Win7 you installed on HD, add it to Dual boot when starting that HD only, using EasyBCD 2.0 from Win8. But I would delete it's partition in Disk Mgmt unless you have an extra Product Key to activate it and a need to keep it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Nov 2011   #3

Win 7 Home premium 64 bit

Thank... Here is part of you request...
I've booted to the original OS on the 320g disk. This disk also includes a partition for Win8 which is part of a dual boot on this drive.
The SSD drive was/is my main system which is not part of the dual boot process so I use the BIOS to place it in first boot sequence.
I've also unplugged the original 320g HD and performed the suggested boot on the SSD from the install DVD where I run the repair process multiple time... but still have the issue.

Attached Thumbnails
Windows 7 fails to load completely-disk-management.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec

19 Nov 2011   #4
Microsoft MVP


SSD is correctly marked Active but must have the System Boot files written to it to boot on its own. Did you run Startup Repair 3 separate times with reboots in between, with the other HD unplugged and SSD set to boot first?

If so boot free Partition Wizard bootable CD, confirm Win7 active flag, then click on HD to highlight it, from Disk tab select Rebuild MBR, Apply. Reboot to see.

Next I would try installing EasyBCD 2.0 to the other HD to Add Win7 on SSD with all HD's connected.

If this fails it is likely because Recovery partition is not accepting the editing of the System boot files it holds. I hope you made your Recovery Disks because it may be otherwise corrupted. If you'd like to move your System boot files to C to try adding SSD, follow the procedure given earlier with SSD unplugged. You can later move Active flag back to Recovery if you need to run it, use the Disks as back up.

It might be easier to clean reinstall to SSD with HD unplugged, if repair efforts fail.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Nov 2011   #5

Win 7 Home premium 64 bit

Good question... not sure if I did startup repair 3 times with the HD unplugged followed by reboots... I'll go thru that right now and get back to you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Nov 2011   #6

Win 7 Home premium 64 bit

well, I'm back after removing the HD and running the System repair from the DVD 4 times... I still have the same problem...

Each time it says there is no problem...

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Nov 2011   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-Bit

If you don't mind me jumping in, I don't know whether this has any relevance, but I see on your hard drive you have the recovery partition marked as active, when normally it's the system (OEM) partition that is active.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Nov 2011   #8

Win 7 Home premium 64 bit

Ok... back again... I've downloaded the Partition Wizzard (bootable cd) and burned to a dvd...
I removed the original HD and booted to the wizzard...
It shows the SSD as active but the Mini version does not support the disk option to rebuild the MBR..
The option is grayed out..
I'll see about downloading the professional version and try again...
Will pick this up again tomorrow...

Thanks for the help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Nov 2011   #9
Microsoft MVP


Rebuild MBR is included in the free version.

You must have not highlighted the HD first by clicking on it.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by seavixen32 View Post
If you don't mind me jumping in, I don't know whether this has any relevance, but I see on your hard drive you have the recovery partition marked as active, when normally it's the system (OEM) partition that is active.
Some OEM's mark Recovery Active so you don't have to use the hotkey to do so, normally when F8 Repair console is used for Factory Recovery. I'd try to Repair it first while keeping Active flag there (if that's where it was orgiinally) but before giving up I'd move the Active flag to Win7 partition to try 3 Repairs again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Nov 2011   #10

Win 7 Home premium 64 bit

You are again correct gregrocker. I had not highlited the disk icon.. This morning I was able to 'rebuild to MBR' but I still have the same issue where the boot process starts but stops between the "Starting Window" screen and the "Welcome" screen.
Just wondering if there is a dll, regestry, data file, bootloader something that is bad that I could replace...
I wish I could find out what was loading at the time it stops and maybe replace that file/program/etc.
... Ok... I have a question before moving on to the next try..
You stated earlier "Next I would try installing EasyBCD 2.0 to the other HD to Add Windows 7 on SSD with all HD's connected.".. I'm assuming that the "other HD" is my 320g WD disk which is working/booting just fine. Is that what you ment?.. Secondly... What does "Add Windows 7 on SSD" do?.. Will it move the OS from the 320 disk to the SSD?
Thanks again...
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Windows 7 fails to load completely

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