I was watching a streaming movie (related to the problem or not I don't know) when the movie started lagging horribly. I opened up to see running processes and there was some randomly named process with the cpu running at about 80% cpu. I could only assume it was a virus so I ended the process. Two minutes later or so I had a barrage of error boxes pop up behind my active window (couldn't really read them) and then windows detected a hard drive issue. It attempted to fix and then crashed. Now, the laptop will turn on but all it will do is put up a "lesser black" screen for a second or two and that is it but will stay on. Also, I can only hear very little hard drive activity. Now, although I did get a hard drive malfunction error I would think I would at least get SOMETHING...."insert disk" maybe access to bios? But nothing. Could this be a burnt CPU? If it were something else like the hd or video card I'd at least be able to get to bios right?
Not sure about the error messages and stuff, but my girlfriend's last laptop started doing the old "black screen at boot" issue after only a couple years. Seems like a fairly common issue, I would guess mostly related to over heating.
The problem is it is very tough to diagnose a laptop since you can't exactly open it up.