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Problem booting Acer Aspire ES15 laptop

  stlucia2 15:00 25 Feb 2019

For some time now my Acer Aspire ES15 laptop has been failing to boot properly. When I hit the power button, it starts okay and quickly shows me the Windows 10 introduction screen with the nice picture. I hit return and am presented with the password screen, so I input my password and hit return again. It then quickly shows the welcome screen with my name, and the little blue rolling circle indicating that it's doing something. But then, after anything between 1 and several seconds the screen goes blank. My mouse cursor is still there and can be moved, but the whole screen is black.

After waiting a couple of minutes I press Ctrl-Alt-Del and get the options to log out, switch user, etc., so I opt to switch user and straightaway get the password screen again, but when I input the password it's the same again. Today it took three goes before it progressed to the Windows desktop screen, sometimes it needs more.

Any ideas what's going on here please? My HDD is partitioned into C: and D: drives, with Windows 10 and installed programs on C: and all my data on D:. C: has 61Gb used and 406Gb free; D: has 285Mb used and 463Gb free.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 17:23 25 Feb 2019

Sounds as if the user account is corrupted.

One way may be to create another user account and transfer (take ownership of the files) into the new account. Once you are certain the new account has the files you can then delete the old account.

  stlucia2 19:59 25 Feb 2019

Thanks Fruit Bat, but after a few attempts it eventually boots up okay -- would a corrupted user account not prevent it from ever doing so?

I've just had another thought: This afternoon and, I think, all the other times it did this I had the mains charger connected, charging the battery. Later this afternoon, and again this evening, it booted up from cold (I always power down, rather than leaving it on standby) without a problem, without the charger connected.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 21:30 25 Feb 2019

Can't see why charger should make any difference.

might be worth checking the HDD by running chkdsk /F/r from a command prompt.

  stlucia2 21:56 25 Feb 2019

Hmm ... I've got the command prompt in administrator mode, looking at C:\ drive, but 'chkdsk F/r' results in 'The drive, the path, or the file name is not valid'. If I just type 'chkdsk' I get 'The type of the file system is NTFS'.

BTW, the computer booted up correctly again, without the charger plugged in! I'll check with the charger again tomorrow to try and see if there is a link.

  stlucia2 15:49 26 Feb 2019

All okay this afternoon.

This afternoon my laptop booted up quicker than ever, with the charge lead connected so, as you suggest, that was unlikely to have caused the problem.

This has been going on for a few months, during which time there have been a few Windows 10 updates. Yesterday afternoon there was an update too, so maybe that fixed the problem, whatever the cause was.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:07 26 Feb 2019

Don't you just love windows :0)

  stlucia2 15:34 07 Mar 2019

It's doing it again!

This afternoon first session was okay, nice and quick boot-up as I reported a couple of posts back. I powered down while I was doing something else, and on powering up again the problem was back. It took four or five cycles of Ctrl-Alt-Del then Restart before it completed a start-up -- as before it would show me the nice picture, accept my password/PIN, and then almost immediately go to a black screen displaying only the mouse cursor. At one time I checked Task Manager while it was failing to start, and found my CPU usage was fluctuating between about 46% and 100%, with Service Host Local (3) using the most. Actually, it's showing 100% now, as I write this.

  Bris 18:36 07 Mar 2019

I found out by accident that the best way to get a black screen with just the mouse pointer was to terminate Windows explorer (explorer.exe) from task manager'

Next time it happens try going into task manager and look for windows explorer under the processes tab its almost at the bottom. If it is missing you can start it again by clicking on the "file" tab, click on "new task" then type "explorer" then OK.

However this problem points to some corruption in Windows so try running SFC /scannow with an elevated prompt. Before going any further I would back up my data and create a restore point. Try the CHKDSK /f/r command again as I reckon you mistyped it last time.

  stlucia2 20:00 07 Mar 2019

Thanks Bris. I've tried CHKDSK /f/r several times, but I was unable to get the hang of invoking elevated mode. This evening I've managed it, and it's currently 'Scanning and repairing drive (C:)'

I'll report back how it performs over the next couple of days.

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