Question about Gateway e-4200 P2 400MHz Tower (2048272368) PC Desktop

1 Answer

Black screen and blinking underscore before loading OS

I have some old computers that I'm trying to upgrade. So I took a known good hard drive loaded with Windows XP Pro and plugged it in to the computer I'm trying to upgrade. I just wanted to make sure all the parts are working. The computer goes through all the POST test, beeps and then goes to this black screen with blinking underscore. I know it's not the OS or the hard drive because it works on another computer. I have all the minimum requirements to run Windows XP Pro. There is no problem with the memory. So I'm at a loss as to what is the problem. Please help me!

Posted by on

  • stepht319 Feb 04, 2009

    so if I get a new drive, everything should be fine?

  • WebDevChick Feb 27, 2009

    I have the same issue:

    IOldish IBM notebook which I haven't used in a long time. I

    So, Laptop turns on, goes throught the POST test, doesn't beep and then I get the grayish screen with blinking underscore. I read the answer to the post however I have another problem. I do not have or will never find the OS cd. I am not a pro but have dealt with issues before and never reformatted my pc's or laptops MUST I REFORMAT? I had to get some stuff out of there :( Any thougths?



1 Answer

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.


    An expert who has answered 20 questions.


    An expert that hasĀ over 10 points.


    An expert whose answer gotĀ voted for 2 times.

  • Contributor
  • 23 Answers

Chipset drivers that are loaded onto the harddrive are not the same as the ones in the "new" computer you put it into.

The only way to do that is format the drive and start from vanilla.

This is very common. -Jeff

Posted on Feb 04, 2009

  • Jeff Wolfe
    Jeff Wolfe Feb 05, 2009

    Well i cant say, it will be "fine" as you mentioned the computer is old and you are testing it. and to do so you have to go in order.

    I would just use an old 2 gig Harddrive "or whatever you have laying around". and format it on the system your testing. remember to change the boot order in CMOS to boot from CD for your windows OS. that will be in the cd tray waiting for your format instructions.

    please dont forget to rate thx, I hope this helps.



1 Suggested Answer

  • 2 Answers

SOURCE: I have freestanding Series 8 dishwasher. Lately during the filling cycle water hammer is occurring. How can this be resolved

a 6ya Technician can help you resolve that issue over the phone in a minute or two.
Best thing about this new service is that you are never placed on hold and get to talk to real repair professionals here in the US.
click here to Talk to a Technician (only for users in the US for now) and get all the help you need.

Posted on Jan 02, 2017


Add Your Answer

Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add



Related Questions:

2 Answers

Hi , went to bed at night laptop was fine. When I woke up and tried to open, The dell load screen appear and 1sec later it goes to the black screen with a white underscore blinking top left corner. Windows...

The hard drive may be going bad. Try booting into Safe Mode to see if it boots into Windows. Then I highly recommend backing up all documents onto a flash drive or portable hard drive.

Mar 22, 2015 | Dell Inspiron Computers & Internet

2 Answers

Black screen

re-seat your hard drive and check your settings in the bios.
make sure your adapters are properly configured for the boot drive you are trying to boot from.

Jun 12, 2013 | Computers & Internet

2 Answers

Aspire 5349 Windows 7

harry not a joke but this happen many a times.
dont know d reasons. but try with win xp.
Format c drive properly.
then if you want upgrade with win7..

Dec 17, 2012 | Acer Computers & Internet

1 Answer

I turn my laptop on and it's a black screen and a blinking underscore thats it please help

Its because the hard drive is not detected properly on your computer.
Try resetting BIOS.
Check the hard drive connections.
If that doesn't help, check the hard drive on a different computer.

Nov 19, 2010 | Computers & Internet

2 Answers

I got this computer off side of road and can't get windows to load it's try's then the screen goes black . here is what happens . I turn it on the screen comes up black it asks what I would like to do ?...

The first screen (start windows normally etc) appears because the computer ahs not shut down normally before. Since you choose to start windows (normally or last known...) and the Windows logo comes up with the loading bar, this means that the computer is starting to boot. Some hardware or software (windows) problem appears and the boot never ends. Possible reasons: motherboard failure or hard disk failure. A good idea is to re-install windows to check the results. Mention that in case of reinstalling the windows, during the procedure choose to reformat the hard disk so it will be checked for errors and reported.

In case of a problem or clarification, don't hesitate to post me a reply before rejecting my answer.
If you are satisfied, rate my solution with the "thumbs" or (even better) add a testimonial.

Thanks and regards
Please kindly rate this solution
direct FixYa link:

Sep 02, 2010 | Intel Motherboard

1 Answer


Are you trying to set up a raid configuration? If not I would reformat using the 98 disk and reinstall. (You may be able to skip installing 98, try installing xp first and it should ask for the disk containing the software (win98) that qualifies for the upgrade.

Jul 11, 2010 | HP Compaq Presario SR1650NX...

2 Answers

Windows doesnt load up stays on this black screen

Most probably it is the problem with your hard drive's MBR (master boot record).

First try booting the system from bootable CD or DVD, if that succeeds that will be the sign that everything is ok with your machine but you have problem with your OS (operating system).

Try reformating the hard disk and resintalling Windows or doing system recovery from CDs provided from your vendor.

To get bootable CD with OS, easiest thing to do is to get one of the linux distributions that can be loaded from the CD.
Smallest and simplest is SLAX.

Burn it on CD and try booting your computer.

Good luck,


Jun 01, 2009 | Computers & Internet

1 Answer

After post test black screen with underscore blinking

I had a computer that done that once, turned out to be memory. Mine wasn't a Gateway though but might be the same problem. Just something I have seen, maybe that will help.

Feb 27, 2009 | Gateway e-4200 P2 400MHz Tower...

Not finding what you are looking for?
Computers & Internet Logo

Related Topics:

574 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Gateway Computers & Internet Experts

Les Dickinson
Les Dickinson

Level 3 Expert

18410 Answers

Prashant M
Prashant M

Level 3 Expert

2263 Answers

Alun Cox

Level 3 Expert

2668 Answers

Are you a Gateway Computer and Internet Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides