A black screen of death is the only alternative to a blue screen of death. And a black screen that doesn’t even toss you a bone by telling you what’s wrong is worse than a black screen of death. Using Windows 10, this is possible.
Black screens have been observed by a number of users during installations, upgrades, or seemingly at random. On occasion, nothing at all shows up on the screen. You might also have a mouse and keyboard in some situations, but no desktop environment.
In any event, a good ol’ methodical troubleshooting is the only approach to finding and fixing the problem when Windows 10 gives you a black screen without an error message. Let’s proceed step by step.
What Causes the Black Screen of Death?
A catastrophic issue in your computer’s operating system that results in the “black screen of death” can be brought on by a problematic device driver, a flaw in the hardware, or a Windows software bug. Finding the source of the black screen is not always simple, but it is typically fixable. Here are some typical reasons for a black screen in Windows 10:
- A Windows update went wrong
- A faulty startup application
- Outdated or faulty drivers
- Connection issues between your PC and monitor
- Software defects
- Hardware defects
- Problems with your graphics card
- Loose cables connected to your PC or laptop
We’ll walk you through each step needed to identify and resolve the problems causing the black screen of death, both before and after logging in, in the section below. If you get a completely black screen prior to logging in, there is likely a hardware problem or a faulty device driver to blame. If the blank screen appears after logging in, Windows is probably malfunctioning.
This could be due to a problematic Windows 10 update or an issue with an installed application. If you believe there may be a problem with your hard drive, read our guide on hard drive failure before assuming your computer is permanently broken. Before signing in, we’ll first discuss options for a black screen. After that, we’ll talk about how to fix a black screen of death that occurs after logging in.
Solutions For a Black Screen of Death — Before Logging In
The problem is frequently simple to fix if you have a black screen before the Windows login screen opens. Check out the potential fixes listed below to try to solve the problem.
1. Optimize Your Startup Applications
If you only sometimes experience a black screen, you can speed up boot time by turning off several starting components. All unnecessary programs can be disabled and put to sleep automatically with AVG TuneUp. To make the most of your RAM and CPU power and have more resources available at startup, AVG TuneUp has a built-in Sleep Mode.
2. Check your Cables and Connections
If everything is running smoothly until your computer suddenly displays a blank screen, there may be an issue with your monitor or computer cables. How to inspect your wires and other crucial connections is provided below.
1. Unplug and reconnect your video cables
Your HDMI, DVI, DisplayPort, and VGA visual wires should all be disconnected and reconnected. Blow inside the ports while you’re at it to remove any dust or other debris that might have become lodged there. To check whether it resolves your black screen issue, try re-connecting all of your video cords.
2. Try a Different Monitor
Cables that are often plugged in and out wear out over time and eventually break. If you use a laptop and an external monitor, it happens frequently. Try connecting an alternative video cable, such as the one from your TV, that you are certain functions properly to see if that resolves the black screen issue. It’s time to purchase a new computer cable if the cable connection results in an image rather than a completely blank screen.
3. Try a Different Monitor
Another factor that may contribute to a black screen on your monitor is a malfunctioning or incorrectly configured display. If you have access to another display, try connecting to it. Or, switch to your TV instead of your monitor (or vice versa). A resolution and monitor mismatch could be the blame for the blank screen.
For instance, a projector unable to display high resolution may not be compatible with a gaming PC. Try connecting your Windows 10 computer to a conventional monitor if the projector connection causes a “boot error” to appear. If images appear normally on an ordinary monitor, the projector’s inability to display a very low resolution is most likely the cause of your issue.
Read More: How to Fix Lag in Android Phone Easily?
3. Unplug All Unnecessary Accessories
External hard drives, USB connections, Wi-Fi antennae, and VR headsets might occasionally interfere with a device’s ability to boot. If your laptop’s screen remains black after startup, unhook everything that isn’t absolutely necessary for your PC to function; simply keep your keyboard, mouse, and monitor connected.
Then, restart your computer. Try eliminating all extraneous parts from a larger desktop computer, such as sound cards and extra RAM sticks. You can also replace the graphics card and entirely upgrade your RAM if that doesn’t work.
4. Check the Boot Order and Try a Bios/UEFI Reset
Older PCs are powered by BIOS, whereas newer versions are powered by UEFI. The basic hardware setting is governed by BIOS/UEFI, which also ensures that the operating system launches. Try restoring to the default settings if you’re experiencing a black screen of death.
Here is how to restart the BIOS or UEFI: Hit the power button to restart your computer after turning it off. You’ll be prompted to press a specific key at startup to enter setup (usually F2 or the DEL key). Repeatedly press that key. You can now test these two options:
1. Reset to Default Settings
Locate a line that reads “Load defaults” (or Optimized defaults or something similar). Depending on your device, BIOS/UEFI may have a different appearance, but the entry’s general structure should be the same. Everything is returned to its default settings when this option is chosen.
2. Make Sure Your Pc Boots from Its Hard Disk
The BIOS/UEFI is also in charge of how your computer boots up. If you needed to install Windows, your computer might start with a USB thumb drive, a CD/DVD, a hard drive, or even a floppy drive. Ensure that the hard drive option is chosen in the Boot Priority (or First Boot Device) settings.
Running a CPU stress test is another way to assess the performance of your BIOS and UEFI. Your machine may have outdated BIOS/UEFI drivers if it fails the test and displays the black screen of death. With one of the best free driver updaters available, updating your drivers is simple.
5. Launch a Windows Repair
You should restart your computer numerous times if it starts up to a blank screen. The Windows Startup Automatic Repair screen ought should automatically open after performing this several times. Getting automatic repair started Tap Restart. Go to Advanced settings and choose System Restore if it doesn’t resolve the black screen problem.
Create a bootable Windows 10 drive, plug it in, and apply the disk-boot advice from above to ensure your computer starts from the USB drive if the Windows repair doesn’t work. Choose a system restore point that is a few days old after the system restore program has launched.
Then, as Windows restores all necessary files and puts everything back in working order, press Next. Some applications or updates that you installed after the restore point but before you encountered the black screen of death might need to be reinstalled.
6. Boot into Safe Mode
Your computer will start up in Windows Safe Mode with the fewest drivers or open programs possible, helping you avoid a black screen. Safe Mode implies that only Windows starts up, removing any distractions from pointless drivers or programs.
Using the instructions listed above, start the Windows Repair program to enter Safe Mode. Click Startup Settings this time. Select See other recovery options, then click Startup Settings if you don’t see that option.
- Windows starting settings can be modified.
- Then select Restart. You’ll see the Startup Settings screen a little while later.
- the choice of Safe Mode
- To start your computer in Safe Mode with Networking, hit the number 5 key on your keyboard. When it starts up, it will resemble something like this:
- You may now begin ruling out possible causes for the black screen of death. Use these two strategies:
First, remove any programs that can obstruct your boot, like network drivers, audio drivers, and graphics drivers. Then, utilize Task Manager to disable each starting item. Go to Startup by selecting Task Manager from the context menu on your taskbar. Click on each item in this tab and choose Disable to disable it completely.
Now perform a standard system reboot. Reverse the aforementioned options one at a time if the black screen has vanished and everything is functioning. Activate one item in Task Manager, restart the computer, and check that everything functions. Repeat the same with the following item on the list after that. This will enable you to locate the application obstructing a system reboot.
7. Roll Back or Update All Drivers in Safe Mode
As was already noted, a bad device driver can prevent a system from booting. Remove any problematic device drivers from your computer to fix the issue. Click Device Manager from the context menu of Start. Visit the troublesome device driver (usual drivers like display adapters, network adapters, or sound, video, and game controllers).
Roll back the driver by double-clicking the entry, such as NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650, and then select the Driver tab. To confirm, click Yes. If that is unsuccessful, updating your drivers may be able to resolve your Windows black screen issue. See our comprehensive guide on locating and installing device drivers.
Get AVG Driver Updater and perform a free scan if you want to update your drivers right now and keep them updated automatically. The simple-to-use dashboard of AVG Driver Updater will assist you in finding and updating any obsolete or defective drivers, resolving any remaining driver problems, and returning your machine to peak performance.
Solutions For a Black Screen of Death — After Logging In
You can still identify the source of the black screen using one of the solutions below if it appears after you log in (you input your password and then nothing appears). Here’s how to fix a black screen on Windows after logging in:
1. Disable All Automatic Applications
A problem with your Windows operating system is preventing your desktop and icons from loading if you see a black screen after logging in. Typically, it’s a program that is starting up automatically. Press Ctrl, Alt, and Delete at the same time, then choose Task Manager to turn it off.
Use the instructions above to boot into Safe Mode if the black screen prevents you from accessing Task Manager. Disable each item under Startup in Task Manager. Restart your computer, then verify that everything functions as it should.
Using Task-Manager, disable startup items As part of routine PC maintenance, check Task Manager. It’s simple to speed up PC boot time and prevent the black screen of death by disabling resource-hungry apps at startup.
2. Start explorer.exe
It is the responsibility of the application explorer.exe (Windows Explorer) to load your desktop and icons. If the application doesn’t load, Windows Explorer won’t launch immediately after logging in, and you’ll just see a black screen with a moving pointer. This is how to remedy that:
- To open Task Manager, first press Ctrl + Alt + Delete on your keyboard (or Ctrl + Shift + Esc to launch it directly).
- Click File in Task Manager and choose Run new task. After entering explorer.exe, click OK.
- You should now see your desktop again.
Why is Windows Explorer not loading properly? You must make changes to the Windows Registry, the brains of the Windows operating system, in order to solve this. Make a backup of your PC or a system restore point before making any modifications. (You may also clean up and fix any damaged registry items on your Windows PC using a specialist registry cleaning program.)
Here’s how to modify the Windows Registry to make Windows Explorer launch properly:
- Press R while continuing to hold down the Windows key. Regedit should be typed in the Run box. Press Enter.
- launching Regedit to make registry changes
- Next, navigate to the HKEY LOCAL MACHINE > SOFTWARE > Microsoft > Windows NT > CurrentVersion > Winlogon folder (also known as a key).
- Double-click Shell on the right side of the screen. Verify that explorer.exe appears in the Value data column. Enter explorer.exe if the field is empty or already contains something else.
If the Value data portion contains additional text, it may include malware, a virus, or some other potentially undesirable application. Google the program’s name and do some research to find out. Even if nothing comes up in your search, you should do a virus check right away.
A powerful antivirus tool, such as AVG AntiVirus FREE, will thoroughly scan your computer to look for any dangerous malware. The malware will then be removed, and defenses will be put in place to identify and prevent any potential future threats.
3. Install a New Graphics Driver
Your graphics driver may be at blame if the screen on your computer keeps going black seemingly at random. You ensure that your graphics card functions properly, and make sure to frequently update all AMD, Intel, and NVIDIA drivers. Visit our guides on GPU performance monitoring and updating your graphics drivers for further details.
4. switch Between Screens
You risk mistakenly switching to an unlit screen if your PC is linked to many displays or even a VR headset (which Windows recognizes as a monitor). Hold down the Windows key on your keyboard while pressing P when you see a blank screen. You can switch between the various display modes as shown.
Avoid the Black Screen of Death With PC TuneUp
This guide should have assisted you in fixing your black screen issues. If all else fails, you might need to completely reinstall Windows because the problem is probably more severe or unfixable. Otherwise, keep your system up-to-date by performing monthly maintenance on it to help avoid problems like the “black screen of death.”
Use AVG TuneUp for PC to keep your computer as clean, efficient, and fluid as possible. The Automatic Maintenance feature of AVG TuneUp adjusts your computer once every week, while the Sleep Mode feature turns off unwanted programs. Additionally, the integrated Software Uninstaller removes programs that can prevent your system from booting. Try AVG TuneUp right now to put an end to Windows black screen problems.