Win10 Stuck on Spinning Dots on Startup
Attempting to help a friend with a custom built gaming PC she bought from a on-line gaming friend. Nicely built in terms of case, hardware, etc. However, ever since she received it, when booting it simply sits on the Win10 screen with spinning dots (with blue Win logo above dots) for hours and hours. Occasionally, it will show login screen between 2 and 8 hours from restart. Other times, screen goes black (must be in sleep or hibernate mode based on power config?). It will not boot into Safe Mode with F8 or Shift+F8. I was able to get to command prompt a few times and ran chkdsk and also sfcscannow to no avail. I also updated Windows updates fully. This took FOREVER due to restarts and hours/days of waiting for Windows to be useful. No System Repair points available nor is there a system recovery option available in Advanced Options on Startup.
From my research, in 2016 MS put out a update that caused this exact issue when USB devices were plugged in. However in this case, unplugging USB's doesn't have any impact.
Edited to add: No minidump files and nothing in EventViewer that pointed to this kind of problem.
#2 Edited to add: Win10 Version 1903 (OS Build 18362.1016)
Here are the things I hope to check or consider doing in my troubleshooting:
- Re-seat all internal components such as RAM, SSD, etc.
- CMOS Battery reset / replacement
- Attempt to roll back as many Win Updates as possible??
- Full virus/malware scan using various tools (i.e. MBAM, etc.)
- If I can get it to boot to Win again, there is a Tweaking.com Win Repair free utility that many have used and stated it works well for these types of issues ... and "appears" legit.
Outside of a fresh install of Win10 (and the seller didn't provide a key!!! So she will need to purchase one) in "hopes" of resolving the issue, does anyone have any suggestions?
Many thanks for any help!
Last edited by Woodcycl; 08-19-2020 at 02:22 PM.
You may be able to reinstall Windows 10 without a product key:
If there is nothing in Event Viewer, that would tend to indicate a Windows 10 issue of some sort, probably one of the updates. Which one is another questions though, as there have been more than one that caused the Spinning Wheel of Doom (Dots) issue.
How to boot into Safe Mode in Windows 10:
Stark Raving MOD
What are the make/model of the motherboard and video card?
Things to try:
System Restore is DISABLED by default in Win10. You would have had to enable it.
You could also to try and repair Windows 10. To do this you need to "upgrade" Windows -- I know, sounds weird --, using the same edition of Windows that's already installed. This "upgrade" requires Windows 10 installation media, which you can obtain using Microsoft's free Media Creation Tool.
Download the correct Windows 10 ISO and then double-click it to mount it as a virtual drive. (Or if you prefer, you can create a bootable USB flash drive, open that removable drive in File Explorer and double-click "Setup" to begin the process).
When it asks if you want to download updates, recommend selecting "Yes" to avoid potential problems.
When prompted what you want to keep --[Important]-- choose "Keep personal files and apps".
Now simply follow the prompts to finish setup.
After a couple restarts, you'll have a refreshed installation of Windows 10, with your programs, apps, and settings all intact.
Support.Microsoft.com > Recovery options in Windows 10
Mobo: MSI MPG Z390M Gaming Edge AC
Originally Posted by Midknyte
Video: GeForce RTX 2080
I may just use SpywareDr's suggestion below and rebuild Win10 from scratch. May be easiest thing at this point.
I've personally had the opportunity to use this approach on several occasions and it's worked great. Windows is refreshed and all of your programs and 'stuff' are still there. We used to refer to this as a "Windows No-Reformat, NonDestructive Reinstall" (thanks to good 'ol Fred Langa).
SpywareDr ... you ARE da' MAN!! Thank you so much for this idea. Worked fast and beautifuly wihtout any issues and now the PC boots up and goes to Win login screen in NO time. Again, thanks you!
Originally Posted by SpywareDr
You're welcome, and Thanks Brian! Great to hear the good news . . . especially now-a-days eh?!
SpywareDr ... Absolutely!