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Quick Technical questions

So, my sister's computer is broken, and I arrogantly said I could have it fixed by tomorrow (I appear to be wrong on that front :S).

I thought all I'd have to do is reinstall windows because I was told that there was a BSOD but when I actually turn on the computer, all I get is a black screen. I'm not even getting the BIOS settings, so it can't just be a windows problem, can it?

I did manage to get the thing to turn on once and everything loaded I had just managed to back up the desktop files when it restarted. Even though it tried restarting several times it never got back on really, until eventually, I just had this black screen with no activity.

Does this sound like maybe a different problem from just Windows problems?

Also, I tried removing the computers HD and hooking up an external HD (through a USB connection) that does have windows installed. Would the computer be able to start and run off that other HD in this scenario? I've never tried it before. I'm slightly concerned that if the BIOS isn't even showing that it's not getting to the reading of the other HD part but as I said, I've never tried this before.

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