Why does my computer turn on but no display or power to keyboard Windows 11?

Confirm Keyboard and Display Are Properly Connected

The first step when dealing with a computer that powers on but does not display anything or turn on the keyboard is to check that all cables are properly connected. Make sure the keyboard and display cables are fully inserted into their respective ports on the back of the computer. Sometimes cables can work themselves loose over time, especially if moved around frequently.

For a desktop computer, check that the keyboard cable is firmly plugged into one of the USB ports. Try unplugging it and plugging it back in to get a good connection. Make sure the monitor’s video cable, whether VGA, DVI, HDMI or DisplayPort, is properly attached to the graphics card or motherboard video output. Push the connectors all the way in.

For a laptop, verify the keyboard is seated correctly and that no debris or damage is preventing proper contact. Check that any external monitors are connected via the correct port such as HDMI or DisplayPort and that the cables are not faulty. If possible, try using alternate cables to rule out a defective cable.

If reseating the connections does not restore keyboard or display function, the issue likely lies elsewhere. However, improper connections are an easy potential cause to eliminate early on when troubleshooting this type of problem.

Try Using a Different Display and Keyboard

One of the first troubleshooting steps for this issue is to connect a spare display and keyboard if available to test if the problem lies with the original peripherals. Connect the spare display to the computer’s video output port, and connect the spare keyboard to one of the USB ports. Then power on the computer and see if the spare display and keyboard function properly.

If the spare display shows an image and the keyboard works, then the issue is likely with the original display and keyboard. There may be a loose connection, hardware failure, or driver problem with the original peripherals. However, if the computer still does not show a display image or recognize the spare keyboard, then the problem is with the computer and not the peripherals. This indicates an issue with the video card, motherboard, BIOS, Windows installation or drivers.

Testing with a spare display and keyboard is a quick way to determine if the peripherals are faulty before moving on to other troubleshooting steps. This can save significant time in resolving the no display or power to keyboard issue. Having backup peripherals available is useful for situations like this.

Check Display and Keyboard on a Different Computer

An easy way to test whether the display or keyboard themselves are faulty is to connect them to a known working computer. Follow these steps:

1. Disconnect the display and keyboard from the problematic computer.

2. Connect the display to another computer via the video output port (VGA, HDMI, DisplayPort, etc).

3. Connect the keyboard to another computer via the USB or PS/2 port.

4. Power on the working computer and check if the display shows an image and the keyboard is responsive.

If the display and keyboard both function properly on the separate computer, then the issue likely lies with the original computer rather than the hardware itself. This indicates a software, driver or configuration issue on the original computer rather than a hardware failure.

However, if the display or keyboard still do not work on the known working computer, then the hardware itself is likely faulty and will need to be repaired or replaced.

Reset CMOS Settings

Clearing the CMOS will reset BIOS settings back to factory default, which can resolve issues caused by incorrect or corrupted BIOS settings preventing the display and keyboard from functioning properly. The CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) stores your computer’s BIOS settings, like the system time and hardware settings. Resetting will erase any customized configurations that could be interfering with the display and keyboard connections.

To clear the CMOS on a desktop computer, locate the CMOS battery on the motherboard, remove it for a few minutes, then reinsert it. There may also be a “clear CMOS” jumper on the motherboard that can be used. Consult your motherboard manual for the exact steps. On a laptop, the steps vary by model but often involve removing the battery and AC adapter, holding down the power button for 30 seconds, then reconnecting everything.

Resetting BIOS settings to their factory defaults will often resolve issues caused by corrupted settings being retained in the CMOS. However, clearing the CMOS alone may not fix the root cause if there is a hardware failure. Still, it is a fast and simple step worth trying before more complex troubleshooting.

Boot into Safe Mode

Booting into Safe Mode loads only the minimal drivers needed to operate Windows, which can help bypass issues caused by third party drivers or software. To boot into Safe Mode on Windows 11:

  • Restart your computer and press the F8 key on your keyboard repeatedly until you see the Advanced Boot Options menu.
  • Select “Safe Mode” using the arrow keys and press Enter.
  • Windows will then restart and load into Safe Mode.

Once in Safe Mode, check if the display and keyboard are functioning properly. If they are, it points to a driver or software issue when booting normally. You can then troubleshoot driver conflicts or uninstall problematic third party software.

As suggested on the TechInferno forums, running the AMD cleanup utility DDU in Safe Mode then reinstalling GPU drivers can resolve boot up display issues caused by faulty drivers (source).

Update or Reinstall Display and Keyboard Drivers

Outdated or corrupted display and keyboard drivers can sometimes cause issues with peripherals not being detected properly. It’s a good idea to check if your drivers are up to date and reinstall them if needed.

Many users on forums like Tom’s Hardware 1 and Reddit 2 have reported losing display signal after updating GPU drivers. Reinstalling an older graphics driver version or clean installing the latest one often resolves the issue.

Likewise, updating motherboard drivers, chipset drivers, or other hardware drivers can sometimes lead to keyboard and mouse failure. Reinstalling keyboard and mouse drivers may be necessary to restore functionality.

Go to the manufacturer’s website and download the latest display and keyboard drivers for your specific hardware. Use Device Manager to uninstall the existing drivers, restart your PC, and then install the freshly downloaded ones.

This should refresh the driver files and settings which may fix any peripheral connectivity problems. Be sure to reboot after installing new drivers to fully initialize them.

Check for Malware, Viruses or Corrupt Files

Malware or corrupt system files can prevent proper loading of drivers/components needed for the display and keyboard to function. Viruses, spyware, and other malware sometimes target critical system files as part of their malicious actions. A virus infection can also lead to corrupted system files over time.

Run a full system scan with your antivirus software to check for infections. Malwarebytes is a good option that can detect and remove viruses and malware that other antivirus software may miss. If you don’t have antivirus software, download a free scanner like Malwarebytes to run a scan.

You can also run the System File Checker tool in Windows to scan for and restore corrupted system files. To do this, open an Administrator Command Prompt and type sfc /scannow. The scan can take a while to complete.

If malware or corruption is detected, remove any infections, reboot the computer, and run the scanner again to verify. This may resolve the display and keyboard issues if they were caused by malware.[1]

Reset Windows

One potential solution is to reset Windows to factory settings if the issue started after an update or system change (Nanjundeshwara, 2022). A factory reset will reinstall Windows and remove any installed programs and custom settings that could be causing problems.

To reset Windows 11, go to Settings > System > Recovery and select “Reset PC.” This will give you the option to keep personal files or remove everything. It’s recommended to back up data first, just in case. After the reset completes, Windows will need to reinstall updates and drivers which can take time.

Resetting Windows repairs corrupt system files, registry issues, and malware that could prevent Windows from loading correctly. It’s an effective troubleshooting step for boot and display issues before trying hardware repairs (WindowsForums, 2015). After resetting Windows, check if the keyboard and display work normally. If the problem persists, it’s likely a hardware failure.

Test on Separate User Account

If you are having issues with the display and keyboard after logging in to a specific user account on your Windows 11 computer, it’s possible the problems may be isolated to that user profile.[1] To test this theory, follow these steps:

  1. Create a new user account in Windows. You can do this by going to Settings > Accounts > Family & other users > Add someone else to this PC.
  2. Log out of your current account and log in to the newly created account.
  3. Check if the display and keyboard work properly in the new account. If they do, it indicates the problems are isolated to your original user profile.
  4. In that case, you can try resetting your old user profile by renaming the profile folder (located in C:\Users\name) before logging back in. Windows will recreate the profile. This should resolve any corrupt files or settings causing problems.[2]

Testing on a separate user account is an easy way to determine if the issues are restricted to an individual profile, or if they exist at an operating system level. If the problems disappear in a new profile, you can be confident a profile reset will fix it.

Hardware Failure

If none of the software troubleshooting steps resolve the no display issue, it’s likely due to a hardware failure with a core component like the motherboard, GPU, RAM, or peripherals (Secure Data Recovery Services). When a PC turns on but the monitor remains dark, it often indicates a faulty graphics card or GPU. The GPU may not be properly seated in the PCIe slot or could have failed completely. Reseating the graphics card or trying a different GPU can help isolate this issue.

Likewise, no display could point to RAM failure or incompatibility. Trying each RAM module individually in different slots can determine if one stick is defective. A damaged motherboard with issues in the CPU socket, PCIe lanes, or display output can manifest as no video signal as well. In these cases, replacing the motherboard may be required if reseating connectors and clearing CMOS does not work. As a last resort, swapping in known working components like the CPU, RAM, PSU, and GPU can help identify a bad motherboard or peripheral.

Hardware failure typically requires component replacement or professional repair. If internal hardware fixes are unsuccessful, the motherboard, GPU, RAM sticks, or peripherals may need replacement. Seeking professional repair or replacement of damaged hardware is recommended when all software and internal hardware troubleshooting has been exhausted.