I had left my stock N810 (never flashed) on the table over night, and in the morning the battery was flat. It's done this before; some process gets stuck (Gizmo5, I think) and it never goes to sleep properly. Usually no big deal but this time when I charged it back up, it fails to boot all the way. I get through the hands picture / chime stage, the screen goes all-white, and then after a long pause, about 1/2 inch of something graphic (is it the desktop image?) gets painted on the left side of the screen. Then it goes back to all-white and back to the stripe. After it cycles for a bit, the machine's watchdog kicks in and it reboots.
I also notice that there is a window of time while it's doing the graphic stripe thing that the lock and power buttons are active, and I can do a proper shutdown and stop the cycle. I can also access the 2gb internal flash over USB from my PC during this time, and it appears sane. So, it's kind of alive, but there's something keeping the machine from coming all the way up.
So, the obvious question - how can I get the machine to finish booting? I'd strongly rather not re-flash the root file system, as it appears that all the repositories have moved on from Diablo to Freemantle, and I would have no way to re-build the set of Apps that I had. (I keep getting upgrade notices from the Application Manager, all with dependency problems.)
Any ideas or pointers? On a regular PC, I'd boot a Live distro from CD and poke around the disk, but that doesn't appear to be possible without flashing something (and the first rule is "do no harm!").