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Windows 7: Can't boot to Windows. HDD failure??

20 May 2014   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
Can't boot to Windows. HDD failure??

My Toshiba Satellite L505-13E / Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit has been acting up lately but I was busy and postponed trying to fix it after my first attempts to do so were unsuccessful. At the moment it is impossible to access the HDD. The BIOS setup and the Boot Menu are accessible but should the HDD be selected then one of three things will happen:

1. The HDD spins up and the LED for it will flash briefly before both stop and the PC is left hanging in a black screen.
2. The HDD cannot be accessed and the system returns to the Boot Menu.
3. The HDD cannot be accessed and the system returns to the Boot Menu after first going through the other possible boot devices.

If 2 or 3 happen then another attempt at booting though the HDD usually results in 1 happening. The F8 menu doesn't work and if I try to boot into a System Repair Disk then that too fails for some reason. The disk will begin to spin up but then stop and the PC will be left hanging at a black screen. Despite this, an Ubuntu Live Disc will boot without problem and can access the HDD.

Before it got this bad the system would sometimes refuse to boot to the HDD at first and do either 2 or 3 but never hang. It would also have issues resuming from hibernation and sleep. I do not know if it is related but at some point I noticed almost constant access to the HDD but I do not know when this behaviour fist appeared. Note that once the system successfully booted into Windows there would be no apparent issues with the HDD other that the frequent accesses.

This is actually the second time that the PC has hanged in this manner since the problems first appeared. I couldn't do anything on the first time but "it got better" overnight and continued having these issues but has not hanged for a week.

I have run Avira and Malwarebytes but they did not detect anything. I also tried Startup Repair and chkdsk. Both of them detected and supposedly fixed some issues but did not really fix the problems.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 May 2014   #2
Microsoft MVP


Test the HD with the maker's HD Diagnostic extended CD scan, followed by a full Disk Check from the installer or System Repair Disk Command Line.

If it passes continue with the steps for Troubleshooting Windows 7 Failure to Start.
The necessary disks are provided until you can get to the desktop, or if necessary rescue your files to do factory Recovery or the superior Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 May 2014   #3

Intel(R) Core(TM) i3 CPU M 370 @ 2.40GHz

I think its a common problem with toshiba satellites , I see hundreds of posts like this, I my self am in huge trouble due to this, To access hdd you need to download an ISO of win 7 startup repair and burn it to a dvd or usb, then when you restart your laptop spam f12 , and select the disk or usb having the iso, it will take you to repair screen , its the only way to access it , I had tried a thousand different things but this has been my last resort and through this method I was able to do full hdd recovery , chk dsk , system restore, bootrec and a lot more.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

21 May 2014   #4

Windows 7/8 64-bit dual boot

Its a good idea to do backups before using the Windows 7 start-up repair, just in case its something to do with the HDD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Can't boot to Windows. HDD failure??

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