SOLVED: Windows Black Screen With Mouse Pointer Only, No Desktop

If in both normal boot and Safe Mode you see just a black screen with mouse pointer you can try several things to resolve the issue. 

windows-black-screen-with-mouseFor me all was well until I ran through a series of reboots for Windows Updates and my Windows 7 64 bit Professional PC had a problem with one.  I have seen this problem before and this time I tried everything listed below but in the end the fix for me was to CHECKDISK with repair switches (/F /R) the drive as detailed in number 5 below:

  1. Unplug EVERYTHING you can from the machine: printers, wireless NIC’s… and try to boot up
  2. Try LAST KNOWN GOOD in the F8 boot menu.
  3. press the left SHIFT key 5 times quickly.  This should load the STICKY KEYS, EASE OF USE tool and will tell you if your operating system is responding at all.
  4. press CONTROL + ALT + DEL, bring up a TASK MANAGER, END TASK on EXPLORER.EXE if it is in the PROCESS LIST, then click FILE, RUN and type EXPLORER.EXE .  Perhaps Explorer has just crashed and you need restart it.
  5. Get your PC / Laptop into REPAIR mode (one way to do this is to boot from the Windows DVD, and choose the small REPAIR link at the bottom left), then bring up a COMMAND PROMPT and run CHKDSK D:\ /F /R (note that in my case D:\ was the drive letter for my primary partition when booted from the DVD).
  6. Get your PC / Laptop into REPAIR mode and try to restore to a PREVIOUS VERSION.

UPDATE: It turns out that the hard drive is bad according to Seagates SEATOOLS and so I used EASUS TODO BACK UP to clone (ghost) the disk onto a new disk and now all is well.  The CHKDSK was at least good enough to get my Windows operational so I could easily clone it.


  1. Avatar
    Idrees January 14, 2015 at 2:32 am

    What a sloution dude. You saved me getting my ass kicked

  2. Avatar
    bakemeacake July 8, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    You didn’t solve anything.

    This is just a workaround to a Microsoft bug they do not appear to be able to fix.

    The permanent fix appears to be switch to Linux or buy a MAC.

    • Ian Matthews
      Ian Matthews July 30, 2014 at 9:00 pm

      Correct, this is a work around, but changing Operating Systems is hardly practical.

  3. Avatar
    Charlie June 16, 2014 at 8:20 am

    My computer wasn’t responding at all to ctrl alt delete, but your suggestion to try stickykeys by pressing shift a bunch did help.

    1. press shift a bunch
    2. go to control panel from dialogue box
    3. search to open task manager
    4. run new process
    5. enter explorer and press enter

  4. Avatar
    Mark Judge January 3, 2013 at 2:39 am

    I had similar issue on windows 7 which only happened when my laptop was connected to the domain. It turned out to be because my windows password had expired. Resetting the password resolved the issue.

Questions or Comments?