Highlighted
xxxthebxxx
1 Nickel

XPS 8700, won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

My XPS has been pretty solid in the last 3 years I've had it. It has an i7 4790 and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 745. Yesterday, I my XPS functioned just fine, and I put it to sleep when my day was done.

This morning, I woke up to the PC on a black screen. The monitor was on, and the power light white. I could move the mouse around, but the whole time, it shows the Windows 10 "busy" blue circle icon, not the usual pointer. I had to go to work and wasn't sure how long it had been like that, so I hard powered down the system.

Hours later, and I'm still having the same issue. I went to power the PC on, and after about 30 seconds, it was back to the same black screen with the busy icon. I tried unplugging the power source completely after that, and all USB devices other than the mouse and keyboard. This time, when I powered on, the screen displayed the typical Dell logo in a circle, with the white caterpillar going in a circle below it. This lasted about 10 seconds, then the Dell logo disappeared and only the caterpillar remained. Eventually, the caterpillar also disappeared and I was back to the black screen with the busy icon for the mouse. I can still use the mouse to move the busy icon around, but that's it.

I tried tapping F2 many times when I did have the Dell logo up, but nothing happened. I've been using the Backup and Restore tool with one of my external drives on this XPS for quite awhile, but can anyone help me with my issue?

 

Tags (2)
0 Kudos
1 Solution

Accepted Solutions
RoHe
6 Indium

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

Great to hear that it passed the diags.  

Sometimes it's little things (like fresh batteries) that make can all the difference for a PC...

Glad we could help.

Please mark this thread as Answered. Thanks.

 

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I am not a Dell employee

26 Replies
Tesla1856
6 Gallium

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

If you are using machine without a good UPS (like APC), it probably took a surge-hit from the AC-Power-plug over-night.

The other thing it could be is just the hard-drive failed ... but if that was the case, you would still be able to tap F12/F2 on boot and get to BIOS and/or run ePSA Diagnostics.

 


Registered Microsoft Partner and Apple Developer
- Like many of you, I can appreciate a good game-engine.
- I answer questions here, but I'm not a Dell employee.
- Consider giving posts you like a "thumbs-up"
- Posting models-numbers and software versions speeds trouble-shooting.
- Click "Accept as Solution" button on any post that answers your question best.
RoHe
6 Indium

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

Since this happened yesterday, I wonder if it was "busy" because it was installing (or at least trying to install) Windows updates. Tues 5/8/18, was Microsoft's regularly scheduled Update Tuesday...

Power it on again, and if you get the "busy" again, leave it alone for a while and see if it finally finishes what it was doing.

If not, you may have to boot from a bootable USB stick with the Windows ISO file on it (free download from MS) and see if you can repair the installation. You can download the file here, for Win 10.

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I am not a Dell employee

xxxthebxxx
1 Nickel

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

Thanks for the responses! I do use a Cyberpower UPS, so I don't think a power surge would causes issues for my PC...at least I hope not.

I'm using my laptop to create a bootable USB drive as I type. How can I get my PC to recognize this drive when it's complete? I left it alone on the waiting screen for close to an hour at one point, and nothing. F2 still won't take me anywhere.

I will say that when I powered it on once since my first post, my PC immediately went to a blue screen that gave me repair options or the ability to continue to Windows 10. I wasn't expecting that and clicked continue quickly...and then soon went back to the black screen with the busy icon.

0 Kudos
RoHe
6 Indium

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

Power PC on and immediately  press power button to turn it off, and immediately  press power button again to turn it on again, for a total of 3 cycles of on/off/on. That should launch the Windows repair option. And then follow the prompts...

If that doesn't work, power off and connect your USB stick to a USB2 port on the PC. Power on and immediately press F12. Look for the option to boot from USB and follow the prompts to do a repair...

Sure hope your files are all backed up on external media!  If not, you might want to consider removing the HDD and installing it in an external drive enclosure that connects to another PC via USB so you can retrieve your files before you go any further.

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I am not a Dell employee

xxxthebxxx
1 Nickel

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

Thanks for the detailed information! I pressed F12 and was able to get the USB to boot.

I was taken to a menu to install Windows 10, but I instead clicked repair computer in the bottom left. From the next menu, i clicked "Use a device", then selected the USB flash drive for a repair. After a few moments, I was simply brought back to the menu at the beginning which asked me to install Windows 10 again.

I see under "Troubleshoot" there are a few more options. Startup Repair sounds promising, as does System Restore, Go back to a previous version, or even System Image Recovery as I think I have some on an external drive.

Is it worth it just trying all of these?

 

*UPDATE* I chose Startup Repair, since I assume I'm having startup issues. That seemed to do something. Eventually, the low-res screen running off of the USB drive went back to the normal resolution. However, I ended up with the blue screen I described before, that said "Windows Did Not Load Correctly." Last time I skipped by this, but now I chose to Reset this PC and keep my files. We'll see what happens!

0 Kudos
RoHe
6 Indium

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

While your files may be retained by the Reset, you' re probably going to have to reinstall your apps (and all recent Windows updates), but that's way better than losing everything if you had to do a clean reinstall...

If you still have problems after the Reset, reboot and press F12. Look for the option to run the diagnostics and run them, especially the extended HDD tests. If the HDD fails, you'll need to replace it and do a clean install of Windows on a new drive.

Even if the old HDD fails, you may still be able to install it as a secondary drive, once the PC is running ok again, and copy off your files onto the new one.

Good luck and keep us posted...!

 

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I am not a Dell employee

xxxthebxxx
1 Nickel

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

Well, things looked promising after the reset. I was back to my desktop and my files were safe, most of which I had backed up anyway.

I didn't install any programs and promptly shut it down to do a HDD test just in case. And then, issues cropped back up. When I powered on, nothing happened. The fans were running and the power light on, but my monitor suggested it was sleeping. I shut it down again, and after powering it up the next time, it did return me to the login screen and all was okay.

I tried another restart, and mashed F12 this time, but it decided to go straight to the login screen. I decided to not take any more chances with my data. I tried multiple external drives on various USB ports, but none were being recognized. I didn't want to restart again and risk not getting back to a somewhat-usable desktop, so my PC has spent all night so far uploading lots of data to OneDrive.

I'll try doing some diagnostics after this, because something is clearly still wrong unfortunately...

0 Kudos
RoHe
6 Indium

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

Well that's progress in the right direction! Still sounds like something still isn't quite right. Symptoms suggests -to me- a possible HDD issue. So diagnostics are in order as soon as everything is backed up. Sure glad you're able to rescue your files, but don't forget email in/out boxes, address book(s), browser favorites lists, etc.

And when was last time you replaced the motherboard battery? CR2032, 3-volt coin cell, ~$2.00?  You might want to do that before going too much further, if nothing else than to rule the battery out. First, reboot and immediately  press F2 to open BIOS setup. Copy down all current settings to be safe. Then power off and swap the battery. See the Service Manual for instructions to remove/replace the battery.

Are you saying only some USB ports are working, because I assume you're using USB mouse and keyboard, but USB HDDs aren't working?

Can you check to see if only USB2 ports work, but not USB3 ports, or if it's a combo of USB2 and USB3 that don't work. You might want to update or reinstall the chipset drivers:

Intel 8 Series Chipset Driver

Intel AMT HECI Driver

And if you have one, connect a powered USB hub with its own external power brick to the PC and plug those USB drives in through the hub. Do the drives work that way?

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I am not a Dell employee

xxxthebxxx
1 Nickel

Re: XPS 8700 won't reach login screen

Jump to solution

HDD issue is what I'm leaning with, too. After a restart, all USB ports starting working again, and I was also able to retrieve my Outlook files.

I've had many more issues since then, and I've restarted it at least 15 times. No matter what I try, I can't get F2 or F12 to register on the boot up. Now, when I initially hit the power button, the screen remains black for about 10 minutes at times before jumping to a screen that reads "Please Wait" with a caterpillar, and then it goes to the login screen. There is no Dell logo anymore.

When in Windows, I've tried going to Settings, then Recovery, then Advanced. This brought me to the blue menu I was at when I went to reset Windows yesterday. Here, I tried Troubleshoot and then UEFI, since I couldn't get there with F12. However, this led to another restart, and the computer just went to a black screen.

I truly appreciate your help to this point, since I would not have made an progress at all otherwise. I'm just not sure what steps I can do at this point to run tests without just seeing a professional. This PC is only 3 years old, I know that's practically a dinosaur in technology, but my 6 year old laptop runs just as good right now.

 

0 Kudos