Re: Vista won't start

Maccoy wrote:

Having a problem with our HP laptop. All we get when turning on the unit
is the "Microsoft Corporation" traveling bar screen, and then the mouse
arrow pops up on a black screen, and that is the end of it. Have done
the hard drive and memory tests with both checking good. Can get to the
F11 Recovery screen, but not sure how to proceed on that screen w/o
losing (unfortunately not backed up) picture, music, and other important
files. Any potential help out there? Thanx!

The very first thing to do is retrieve your data. That way no matter what
happens, you won't lose your stuff. And when this is all over, create and
*implement* a backup strategy to external media because Stuff Will Always

Pull the laptop hard drive and put it in a USB external drive enclosure.
Attach this to a working computer and copy off your data.

Now you can try the HP recovery if you like. Read the instructions
carefully. Most of the HP recovery routines will give you a choice to save
your XP install or to do a destructive recovery which will return the
machine to factory condition.

Since I don't know the recent history of your machine, I can't guess the
underlying reason for the problem. Viruses/malware? Physical problems like
overheating, dropping it, etc.?

At the very least if the less destructive restore doesn't work, you can
restore to full factory condition. If you still get problems, then you know
hardware is at fault and can contact HP tech support for

If you can't do the work yourself (and there is no shame in admitting this
isn't your cup of tea), take the machine to a professional computer repair
shop (not your local equivalent of BigComputerStore/GeekSquad).

Elephant Boy Computers - Don't Panic!