Black screen issue on Windows 10 usually occurs after an upgrade or when an automated Windows Update installs updates on your system. Since this black screen is a most likely a hardware (GPU) problem we will need to assess and troubleshoot various settings to diagnose and fix it.
Now days, PCs are getting more and more advanced with multiple graphics cards for heavy usage. So, if you are having a graphic card other than the Intel’s onboard Graphic controller, you would probably be having this boot to a black screen issue.
Windows takes this as if there are two monitors attached to the system. So, Windows loads the output signal to a Black Screen.
Before we go into any extensive troubleshooting; we need to check some basic settings.
If you are using multiple monitors disconnect/reconnect and test with your primary screen. If this resolves the issue; you’re lucky. If not proceed with the steps below:
Method 1: Fix it blindly
This method is all about fixing the issue blindly as you can’t see anything on a black screen.
- When the Windows gets stuck at the black screen, wait for the white mouse cursor to appear on the screen. You can check its presence by moving the mouse-pad.
- After the cursor has appeared on the screen, press the space bar on your keyboard and press ctrl key once on the keyboard. Enter login password or pin code blindly (You can’t see on the black screen). It would login in to the Windows using your credentials.
If you can’t see the desktop after logging in to your account and you are stuck on the black screen, then press Win + P + Down Arrow Key (Twice) on the keyboard and enter the details again.
Method 2: Power Cycle
If it is a laptop with a user-removable battery then;
- Take the battery out.
- Unplug the power adapter.
- Press & Hold the Power button for 10 seconds
- Release the power button.
- Connect the charger back and try turning it on.
Test, and see if the issue is resolved; if not then proceed to Method 4
Method 3: Turn off Fast Startup
Windows 10 is released with a Fast Startup feature. As the name suggests, it allows a fast booting of the operating system so you can resume your work or play quickly.
NOTE: The Fast Start-up feature only works when you perform a Shutdown and then Turn On your system, it doesn’t apply when you perform a Restart.To turn off fast start-up option; follow these steps
Boot using your Windows 10 Installation Media. You may need to change the boot order from bios.
see: how to create a bootable windows 10 media
- Click Repair your Computer at the bottom
- Click on Troubleshoot
- Click on Advanced options
- Click on Startup Settings
- Click on Restart
- Select Safe mode with Networking
- When the PC starts to Go to Control panel;
- Select Power Options; Select Choose What the Power Buttons Do to your left.
Here, scroll down and find the Fast Startup option and uncheck it.
Method 4: Uninstall Display Adapter
When you see the black screen:
- Hold the CTRL+ALT+DEL keys together to see if Task Manager pops up. If it does, click File -> New -> and type explorer.exe
- If it opens the Explorer window; login and uninstall antivirus software/graphic card and then re-install.
Note: you can also choose to temporarily disable the Antivirus instead of uninstalling it.
- To Uninstall Graphics/Display adapter; if CTRL+ALT+DEL is successful and you see the explorer window then hold the win key and press R
- Type hdwwiz.cpl and click OK
- Note down the name of your display adapter;
- Expand Display Adapters -> Select Uninstall
After it has been uninstalled, go to the manufacturer’s site to download the latest driver. Reboot & TEST
Method 5: Restore your system back to its factory defaults
This method will erase all your data and put/install the original operating system that came with your computer. Since there is corruption; and if the data is not important we can restore it back to factory defaults then do a clean install of Windows. The upgrade option may no longer be there after this.
Refer to your system manual for factory restore instructions.
Method 6: Simply restart your computer
Some of the Windows 10 users who have suffered from the black screen issue in the past report that simply turning their computer off using its Power button and then starting it back up again did the trick and got rid of the issue for them. As bizarre as it may sound, this solution is certainly worth giving a shot.
Method 7: Update your GPU’s drivers to their latest versions
Windows 10 is a big step up from the previous versions of Windows, which is why all GPU manufacturers had to create entirely new drivers designed specifically for the new Operating System. Not having the updated Windows 10-compatible drivers on your computer is another thing that can cause your computer to be affected by the black screen issue. If outdated drivers are behind the black screen problem in your case, all you need to do is go to the official website of your computer manufacturer or your GPU’s manufacturer and download the latest drivers for your GPU (they should be available in both locations). Make sure that the drivers you download are specifically designed for Windows 10 to ensure the success of this solution.
Method 8: Change your laptop’s plugged in brightness to anything but 100%
On laptops that had high-end graphics cards and were updated to Windows 8, the black screen issue often presents itself when they are plugged into an AC power outlet. If that is the case, simply opening the Start Menu, searching for Advanced power settings, opening Advanced power settings and changing your laptop’s screen brightness when plugged into anything except for 100% (even 99% will do) will get rid of the black screen problem.
Method 9: If you have two graphics cards, disable the onboard one
A decent fix for the black screen issue for people whose computers have tow graphics cards – the onboard graphics card that came with the computer and the graphics card that they have added to it (such as an Nvidia or AMD graphic card) – is to simply disable the onboard graphics card. Apparently, having two graphics cards on a Windows 10 computer can result in a clash that consequently gives birth to the black screen issue. If that is the case, simply going into Device Manager, expanding the Display adapters section, right-clicking on the onboard graphics card and clicking on Disable should fix the issue.
If you do not see your onboard graphics card in the Display adapters section, click on View in the top left of the Device Manager dialog and click on Show hidden devices. This will make your onboard graphics card (or, in some cases, cards) visible, and you can then right-click on it and click on Disable.
Method 10: Refresh your computer
The infamous black screen issue on Windows 10 can also be fixed by simply refreshing your computer. Refreshing your computer has almost entirely the same effect as resetting it to factory settings, with the exception of the fact that a refresh only deletes installed programs and applications and keeps your personal data whereas a reset gets rid of everything on your computer. To refresh a Windows 10 computer, you need to:
- Open the Start Menu.
- Click on Settings.
- Out of the array of different options provided, click on Update & Security.
- Click on Recovery in the left pane.
- In the right pane, click on the Get started button under the Reset this PC
- When provided with a choice to either keep your files or remove everything, click on Keep my files.
Follow the onscreen instructions and dialogs, and once you are done, your computer will have been refreshed and the black screen issue will be no more.
You can further try to:
- Boot your computer in safe mode and check if the issue persists over there. This will help you to isolate these issues from a specific app that is causing it.
- Press “Windows” + “P” to switch displays that might fix this.
- Update your Bios
- Disconnect the Second monitor
- Try to use an HDMI cable for connection instead of a DVI or VGA one.