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Aero issues - Black screen after user login, temporarily solved by turning off Aero in registry RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have a rig here running Windows 7 pro x64 and as per the subject upon logging in as a user (any user) the screen fades to black. Ctrl-alt-del will bring up the options screen (bring up task manager etc) and logging out will bring back the login screen, but once any user is logged in just a black screen.

    I narrowed it down to Aero. I noted in safe-mode it was fine and disabling the video driver it could log in normally (no aero available due to default driver). I tried re-installing the latest video driver for the onboard intel graphics, no go. I disabled the onboard, dropped in an Nvidia card (suspecting driver issues with the builtin) and the same issue.

    I was able to disable Aero via the registry in safe mode (used this guide: http://www.mydigitallife.info/disable-windows-aero-via-vista-registry/ ), and it would log in fine at full resolution with the video driver enabled. 

    If I select "Personalize" and choose a theme Aero gets re-enabled and works (yay!), until the next reboot.

     

    I thought it might be an issue with the user account, but it occurs with any account (though now I just thought of creating a new local account to test that.. I'll try that and post back). 

    I also tried reverting to the oldest checkpoint (suspecting an update or application change caused the issue). It didn't make a difference.

    Any ideas?


    • Edited by dubbreak Thursday, November 17, 2011 4:43 PM fixed title
    Wednesday, November 16, 2011 7:14 PM

All replies

  • Hi,

     

    Have you tried to use the Aero troubleshooter to check what the result is?

     

    Click Start, type aero in the Start Search box, and then click Find and fix problems with transparency and other visual effects

     

    Guided Help: Troubleshoot Aero problems in Windows 7

     

    Alex


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    Friday, November 18, 2011 6:59 AM
  • Just tried that. The only issue it found was the WDM (Windows deslktop manager, or whatever it is called) service was not on (not surprising as I had aero disabled). So it enabled it. Aero came up fine while I was logged in (as it has before), so I tried logging off of the user and back on and... black screen.

    Any other ideas?

    Friday, November 18, 2011 4:34 PM
  • Quick update:

     

    Still no solution to this.

     

    I created a new user (the main local user I use still had aero disabled). When I logged in as the new user it went through the "creating desktop.." etc.. then black screen. However my main local user still has aero disabled (good, because I didn't really feel like logging into safe mode, changing the registry and rebooting).

     

    It's so strange that I can turn it on once I'm logged on as a user, but will get the black screen the next time I log in.

     

    Any error logs I can check to see what's failing?

    Sunday, November 20, 2011 6:39 PM
  • Hi,

     

    Please check the Event Viewer to check if you have encountered any mistake related to Windows Desktop Manager.

     

    Also, install the following hotfix to check how it works:

     

    You see a black desktop background after the computer switches between graphics adapters in Windows 7 or in Windows Server 2008 R2

     

    Alex Zhao


    Please remember to click “Mark as Answer” on the post that helps you, and to click “Unmark as Answer” if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.
    Monday, November 21, 2011 7:12 AM
  • I'm hesitant to try the hotfix as:

    1. this originally occured with one graphics card (the onboard intel graphics) and it relates to running multiple cards, specifically multiple cards in a laptop (or similar) where different cards are used in different power states (high performance and low)

    2. The symptoms are a black desktop background. I don't have a black background, I have no desktop at all.. black screen, no explorer, nothing.. in the linux world it would be as though gnome, kde, xfce etc didn't come up after the login splash.

    It really doesn't sound like the hotfix addresses my issue.

     

    Here are the event view items (computer name and username removed). I'd assume some are due to me having Aero disabled via the reg hack in my first post:

    Log Name:      Application

    Source:        Desktop Window Manager

    Date:          19/11/2011 11:04:21 PM

    Event ID:      9003

    Task Category: None

    Level:         Information

    Description:

    The Desktop Window Manager was unable to start because a composited theme is not in use

    Event Xml:

    <Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">

      <System>

        <Provider Name="Desktop Window Manager" />

        <EventID Qualifiers="16384">9003</EventID>

        <Level>4</Level>

        <Task>0</Task>

        <Keywords>0x80000000000000</Keywords>

        <TimeCreated SystemTime="2011-11-20T07:04:21.000000000Z" />

        <EventRecordID>9320</EventRecordID>

        <Channel>Application</Channel>

        <Security />

      </System>

      <EventData>

      </EventData>

    </Event>

     

    Log Name:      Application

    Source:        Desktop Window Manager

    Date:          15/11/2011 10:23:18 AM

    Event ID:      9007

    Task Category: None

    Level:         Information

    Keywords:      Classic

    Description:

    The Desktop Window Manager was unable to start because WDDM is not in use

    Event Xml:

    <Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">

      <System>

        <Provider Name="Desktop Window Manager" />

        <EventID Qualifiers="16384">9007</EventID>

        <Level>4</Level>

        <Task>0</Task>

        <Keywords>0x80000000000000</Keywords>

        <TimeCreated SystemTime="2011-11-15T18:23:18.000000000Z" />

        <EventRecordID>7034</EventRecordID>

        <Channel>Application</Channel>

        <Security />

      </System>

      <EventData>

      </EventData>

    </Event>

     

    Log Name:      Application

    Source:        Desktop Window Manager

    Date:          19/11/2011 11:02:05 PM

    Event ID:      9009

    Task Category: None

    Level:         Information

    Keywords:      Classic

     

    Description:

    The Desktop Window Manager has exited with code (0x40010004)

    Event Xml:

    <Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">

      <System>

        <Provider Name="Desktop Window Manager" />

        <EventID Qualifiers="16384">9009</EventID>

        <Level>4</Level>

        <Task>0</Task>

        <Keywords>0x80000000000000</Keywords>

        <TimeCreated SystemTime="2011-11-20T07:02:05.000000000Z" />

        <EventRecordID>9201</EventRecordID>

        <Channel>Application</Channel>

        <Security />

      </System>

      <EventData>

        <Data>0x40010004</Data>

      </EventData>

    </Event>

     

    Log Name:      Application

    Source:        Desktop Window Manager

    Date:          18/11/2011 8:21:59 AM

    Event ID:      9009

    Task Category: None

    Level:         Information

    Keywords:      Classic

    Description:

    The Desktop Window Manager has exited with code (0xc00002fe)

    Event Xml:

    <Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">

      <System>

        <Provider Name="Desktop Window Manager" />

        <EventID Qualifiers="16384">9009</EventID>

        <Level>4</Level>

        <Task>0</Task>

        <Keywords>0x80000000000000</Keywords>

        <TimeCreated SystemTime="2011-11-18T16:21:59.000000000Z" />

        <EventRecordID>9009</EventRecordID>

        <Channel>Application</Channel>

        <Security />

      </System>

      <EventData>

        <Data>0xc00002fe</Data>

      </EventData>

    </Event>

     

    Log Name:      Application

    Source:        Desktop Window Manager

    Date:          20/11/2011 10:28:56 AM

    Event ID:      9019

    Task Category: None

    Level:         Information

    Keywords:      Classic

    Description:

    The Desktop Window Manager was unable to start because the desktop composition setting is disabled

    Event Xml:

    <Event xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event">

      <System>

        <Provider Name="Desktop Window Manager" />

        <EventID Qualifiers="16384">9019</EventID>

        <Level>4</Level>

        <Task>0</Task>

        <Keywords>0x80000000000000</Keywords>

        <TimeCreated SystemTime="2011-11-20T18:28:56.000000000Z" />

        <EventRecordID>9475</EventRecordID>

        <Channel>Application</Channel>

        <Security />

      </System>

      <EventData>

      </EventData>

    </Event>

     

     

    Monday, November 21, 2011 7:40 AM
  • Hi,

     

    Let’s try to adjust for best appearance under Performance Options for test.

     

    If this issue persists, I suspect Aero theme got corruption, please try to run SFC command to check the result:

     

    How to use the System File Checker tool to troubleshoot missing or corrupted system files on Windows Vista or on Windows 7

     

    Meanwhile, if it is possible, you could replace the "C:\Windows\Resources\Themes" folder with a known working one.

     

    Alex


    Please remember to click “Mark as Answer” on the post that helps you, and to click “Unmark as Answer” if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.
    Tuesday, November 22, 2011 2:48 AM
  • Hmm.. thought I replied but it disapeared.

     

    Tried running SFC, it came up clear.

     

    I can try replacing the themes folder some time tomorrow most likely.

     

    In the meantime I tried changing which theme was in use. Same deal, logout, log back in and.. fade to black screen.

    Tuesday, November 22, 2011 5:04 AM
  • So how do I get around the trusted installer to replace the themes folder? I ran Windows Explorer as admin and that didn't work.

     

    My google skills are failing me on this one.


    • Edited by dubbreak Tuesday, November 22, 2011 7:45 PM oops, singluar not plural
    Tuesday, November 22, 2011 7:44 PM
  • Hi,

     

    You could refer to the SFC article which mentioned a method to achieve this:

     

    How to use the System File Checker tool to troubleshoot missing or corrupted system files on Windows Vista or on Windows 7

     

    The takeown command also apples to folder.

     

    Alex

     


    Please remember to click “Mark as Answer” on the post that helps you, and to click “Unmark as Answer” if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.
    Wednesday, November 23, 2011 3:42 AM
  • A couple notes on the process (while I remember and before I possibly have to reboot in safe mode.. again):

    I wanted to do each command recursively so that I don't have to manually descend into each folder withing themes..

    takeown /f c:\Windows\Resources\Themes\ /R

    icacls c:\Windows\Resources\Themes\* /GRANT ADMINISTRATORS:F /T

     

    Then I deleted the existing and copied the known working over. Now to give it a whirl...

     

     

    Edit: I also turned off the Desktop Window Manager Session Manager before the delete/copy (otherwise files would be in use)
    • Edited by dubbreak Wednesday, November 23, 2011 4:11 AM additional info
    Wednesday, November 23, 2011 4:10 AM
  • I turned the  Desktop Window Manager Session Manage back on, then selected a theme (din7 default) and all the aero effects turned back on.

     

    Log out, log back in.. fade to black screen.. again.

     

    So it looks as though it's not due to a corrupted theme.

     

    Any other ideas?

    Wednesday, November 23, 2011 4:24 AM
  • *bump*

     

    No other suggestions?

    Thursday, November 24, 2011 11:31 PM
  • Hi dubbreak,

     

    Sorry for my late reply.

     

    Since this issue is abnormal, I suggest you perform an In-place upgrade to fix this issue,

     

    How to Perform an In-Place Upgrade on Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 & Windows Server 2008 R2

     

    Alex


    Please remember to click “Mark as Answer” on the post that helps you, and to click “Unmark as Answer” if a marked post does not actually answer your question. This can be beneficial to other community members reading the thread.
    • Marked as answer by Cloud_TS Thursday, December 1, 2011 10:34 AM
    • Unmarked as answer by dubbreak Thursday, December 1, 2011 4:09 PM
    Friday, November 25, 2011 1:03 AM
  • I haven't had time to try this yet, until I have confirmed it working I don't think it should be marked as the answer (in case someone with the same issue comes across this thread).

     

    Unfortunately I have deadlines and little time to futz with Windows acting up right now. My inactivity should not be interpreted as the issue being fixed. I will be attempting this and will report back on whether it worked. Until then this issue is open.

    Thursday, December 1, 2011 4:12 PM
  • I've been having this same issue for the last couple of days myself.  You log into the machine and it's just black.  If I load up the Task Manager, I see explorer.exe there, but it's not using nearly the memory it usually does (stuck around 8800K).  When I had this problem a couple months ago, I figured it was because I was using the downloadable themes because I stopped having a problem once I switched to a slideshow on my computer.  Now I have no idea what's causing it since I haven't changed anything theme related in weeks.  Previously, I could end the explorer task and restart it. Now that does nothing - explorer just goes back to the state it starts in.

    Every now and then if I reboot it several times, it'll log in and the desktop will show up without a problem, but this is getting quite annoying.

    Saturday, December 3, 2011 8:00 AM
  • I found that if I boot up in safe mode and disable the theme service, I no longer receive the black screen.  Not a clue why, but at least I can get back to using this machine again.
    Saturday, December 3, 2011 8:36 AM
  • *bumb*

    I have been having the exact same problem. After spending £300+ on a rig upgrade, after doing all installation correctly, the least i expect is for it to work.

    Friday, March 30, 2012 8:24 PM
  • I have the same problem. It started happening yesterday, when I log in with my user it takes a very long time to let me do anything, the explorer/start menu/desktop is non-responsive, the screen goes black, then Aero is disabled. It re-enables aero later on, but it can happen that it's sometimes disabled again afterwards.

    Tuesday, April 24, 2012 6:42 PM