Lately, some customers have found themselves with a machine that is close, but yet so far away from working correctly. The specific symptoms are described as “a black screen with a mouse cursor that will only deliver the ‘donk’ sound,” which usually just indicates incorrect input.
Don’t fret, your hard drive has not crashed and trojans have not infiltrated your system. You’re simply experiencing a glitch caused by the OS X software updater.
Apple forums user jesseinma was experiencing the same issue, and fortunately had Apple Support provide a solution. Here are the steps as found on this Apple Support Communities page:
Shut the computer down by holding the power button for 10 seconds.
Restart the computer and press shift at the same time until you see the progress bar start moving.
Once you reach the point where your screen goes dark and you see the cursor, type the first letter of the username for your computer, then hit Enter, then type your password, then hit Enter.
After a moment, you should see the spinning beach ball.
Your screen should then move on to something along the lines of “Completing OS X Installation” (or something to that effect). Let it finish. After that it should go to your normal desktop and the issue should be fixed. (If your screen goes pitch black during this process, hit the space bar. I thought it wasn’t working, but the screen was just sleeping.)
I’ve had this solution work for a number of machines I’ve come across lately, but I will say that knowing your correct username and password are essential. A little bit of patience helps as well — I didn’t always get it right the first time.
/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/TimsTopBanner-for-Videvent.png00w3/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/TimsTopBanner-for-Videvent.pngw32014-12-01 12:52:282014-12-01 12:52:28Stuck Between a Black Screen and a Cursor?