Question Desperate For Help - Toshiba Laptop Won't Start

Aug 4, 2020

I am in dire need of assistance. I have an older Toshiba laptop that is either a L55 or something for the model from 2012 (don't think this is that important) that won't start up. It was working fine as of last night, it isn't a virus or anything, and I do not believe it recently updated to my knowledge. It is still running Windows 7 and has been pretty good and reliable until now. This is what happened this morning when I went to boot it up:

  • Turned it on and it brought up the screen that it did not turn off properly, giving me the basic prompt of launch startup repair or start windows normally.
    • It does say windows error recovery at the top of the screen, and along the lines of windows failed to start because of a possible hardware/software change.
    • When clicking either of the options, it will load up for a few seconds, and then get to a black screen where the mouse is frozen in the center and do nothing.
      • Sometimes it will then show a super quick flash (maybe 0.5 seconds) of a blue screen I can't read it, and then goes back to the did not turn off properly screen.
So I'm guessing it is something to do with windows maybe? I have also tried going in safe mode (all options), rebooting with the most recent configuration, taking out the battery and unplugging everything, but nothing has worked so far...

I'm not a tech expert, but I have some basic knowledge. Trying to give you guys as much info as possible, but I'm not exactly sure what the problem is or where to look. Is it possible it could be a hardware issue like the hard drive being too old or something? I guess it would best to identify the problem and go from there, but I'm not sure how or what I'm looking for... I tried the BIOS thing, but again I don't know what I'm doing/what I'm looking for.

Ideally I would like to fix it, but mainly I need what is on the hard drive. I am graduate student, and have some important work on there I would like to recover ASAP, and would appreciate any help or assistance! I will also be around and checking the thread regularly if anyone has questions/needs more info etc.

Any help would best amazing, thank you in advance!
The old Toshibas are renown for overheating the video chip, which eventually leads to the laptop not booting. The odds are there is nothing wrong with your hard drive. To verify this, use a windows 7 install disc and see if your laptop will boot. If it does boot, you can use notepad to save your data files.

If your laptop does not boot, get yourself an external enclosure for your laptop hard drive, and plug it into another computer and again, you should be able to save your data files

And in the future, make sure at least your important files are backed up.