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What's DOS?
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎03-30-2017
Location: US
Views: 2,153
Message 1 of 3

B540 Frozen on startup - please help!

Hi all - hoping somebody can help me with this.  I have a B540/Windows 8.1 and it has been a great computer for 3 years or so, no major problems.  Yesterday, I restarted the computer and noticed that it was taking forever to restart (the blue restarting screen with the spinning dots) - then after about half an hour it simply froze.  The computer was completely unresponsive and so i had to unplug it and plug it back in.


So now, when I restart the computer simply displays the white Lenovo logo.  No spinning dots.  The hard drive indicator light in the lower left hand corner flickers briefly on restart and then no lights are on except the monitor light in the bottom right hand corner.  Holding down F1, F2, F8, F10 or any other function key does no good during restarts, although if I hit ctrl-alt-delete on the keyboard, the computer restarts but to the same screen.  I have tried leaving the computer unplugged overnight, and still the same issues today.  The only peripheral that was plugged in was the Lenovo wireless keyboard/mouse adaptor and removing that also did no good. 


So does anybody have any ideas where I might start or what the problem might be?  I had a lot of files on this computer that I would hate to lose, and as I said I had no indication (funny noises etc) that anything was wrong previously.  I only want to have to take the computer in for repairs as a last resort.


Thank you for any and all possible help in this situation 

Bit Torrent
Posts: 3,138
Registered: ‎12-11-2015
Location: US
Views: 2,135
Message 2 of 3

Re: B540 Frozen on startup - please help!

I could be a failing hard drive, but it could be something else too, so I would try a few things first.


Wait until it appears to hang at the Lenovo screen, unplug it,  and then plug it in and turn it on.    Do that for 3-4 times, and if Windows is hanging while trying to load, it should force Windows to go into its Recovery/Startup Repair mode.


Another option, if you have access to another computer, you can go to and install the Windows 8.1 installation media creation tool.    Using that tool you can create a Windows 8.1 installation DVD or USB key that you can used to boot the computer, and then use its tools to try to repair your system.


That said, if you have never done that before, and you have data on the system that is very important to you, taking it to get it repaired, or seeking the advice of a knowledgeable friend might be a good idea.


Note also that if it is the hard drive itself that is going south, the actions of trying to repair it could cause it to fail completely, and reduce your chance of recovering your data, where as a good tech can mount the drive on another PC and copy your data off, even though the drive cannot boot to Windows.   


How to Use the Advanced Startup Options to Fix Your Windows 8 or 10 PC


Good Luck,

What's DOS?
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎03-30-2017
Location: US
Views: 2,116
Message 3 of 3

Re: B540 Frozen on startup - please help!


Thanks so much for your prompt reply and helpful information.  Although it wasn't the issue with my computer, you helped lead me to a solution.  Unplugging the computer in an effort to force Windows to enter Recovery mode didn't do anything, so I looked at creating an 8.1 disk and wondered where to get an activation code.


On a whim, I put a random DVD (music I think) in the disc drive, and low and behold after trying to read the DVD the computer promptly booted correctly.  Then I removed the DVD and restarted just to be sure and the restart was successful.  So for some reason (who knows) the computer was trying to boot from somewhere else.  Maybe if anyone else has this problem they can try my solution.  And now I am frantically backing up all important info just in case something more permanent happens next time.


Thanks again!

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