Is there ANY workaround for Win 7 nondestructive repair install when unable to boot?

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Installation' started by Ninethe, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. Ninethe

    Ninethe Well-Known Member

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    Hi, all!

    I know how to perform a nondestructive repair install of Windows 7 under ordinary circumstances, but everything I've read so far says that you simply cannot perform that procedure if you can't boot into Windows 7 full mode first (using the hard disk partition that you want to perform the repair install onto). Even Safe Mode just won't cut it, apparently.

    But since I'm now always getting the dreaded "Black Screen of Death" (not its Blue cousin), the nondestructive repair install option is reportedly out of the question...

    So my question is: Is there ANY workaround that would allow me to perform a nondestructive repair install anyway, even if the procedure is difficult and/or requires third-party tools, either freeware or commercial?

    For just one possible alternative, would booting from an old backup partition on a separate USB harddisk allow me to do a repair install on the internal HDD & partition with the Black Screen problem? If so, how?

    I realize that I could rewrite the internal disk partition that causes the Black Screen with the backup partition I just mentioned (and then run the repair install), but of course that would destroy all the updates and changes I've made since the backup, which is exactly what I'm trying to avoid by doing the nondestructive repair install in the first place!

    I also realize that if I were able to fix the Black Screen problem in the first place, there would be no need to do a repair install. Unfortunately, nothing I've tried has worked! Here's what I've already tried that have failed...

    I booted up with the installation DVD and tried "Startup Repair" (in fact, I tried it three times in a row, as one site recommended), but that always fails with the message "Startup Repair cannot repair this computer automatically" with one of the problem signatures reading "MissingOsLoader". I found dozens of support sites explaining how to fix that, including:
    ...but I've tried everything they've suggested and nothing yet has solved my problem.

    I've even tried the "Nuclear Holocaust" option described in this very good tutorial from the makers of EasyBCD: Recovering the Windows Bootloader from the DVD, but even after doing all that, the Black Screen always appears when I try to boot (even from Safe Mode and Safe Mode with Command Prompt, etc.)

    For the record, I've tried using System Restore with either of the two recent Restore Points, but no luck there (the older restore points were too old). I've also tried booting with the "last known good configuration", but the results were the same. I also ran "CHKDSK C: /F /V /R", which found and repaired a single corrupt sector, and when I ran it again, no problems were reported. Also, I ran "SFC /scannow /offbootdir=C:\ /offwindir=C:\windows" a few times and it found and reportedly repaired a few problems. Here's the log's contents:

    Code:
    2013-02-09 03:03:45, Info   CBS  Failed to initialize COM security. [HRESULT = 0x800706ba - RPC_S_SERVER_UNAVAILABLE]
    2013-02-09 03:03:45, Info   CBS  Starting TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 03:03:45, Info   CBS  Trusted Installer core was not initialized.
    2013-02-09 03:03:45, Info   CBS  Ending TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 03:51:57, Info   CBS  Failed to initialize COM security. [HRESULT = 0x800706ba - RPC_S_SERVER_UNAVAILABLE]
    2013-02-09 03:51:57, Info   CBS  Starting TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 03:51:57, Info   CBS  Trusted Installer core was not initialized.
    2013-02-09 03:51:57, Info   CBS  Ending TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 03:55:06, Info   CBS  Failed to initialize COM security. [HRESULT = 0x800706ba - RPC_S_SERVER_UNAVAILABLE]
    2013-02-09 03:55:06, Info   CBS  Starting TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 03:55:06, Info   CBS  Trusted Installer core was not initialized.
    2013-02-09 03:55:06, Info   CBS  Ending TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 05:48:21, Info   CBS  Failed to initialize COM security. [HRESULT = 0x800706ba - RPC_S_SERVER_UNAVAILABLE]
    2013-02-09 05:48:21, Info   CBS  Starting TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 05:48:21, Info   CBS  Trusted Installer core was not initialized.
    2013-02-09 05:48:21, Info   CBS  Ending TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 05:59:58, Info   CBS  Failed to initialize COM security. [HRESULT = 0x800706ba - RPC_S_SERVER_UNAVAILABLE]
    2013-02-09 05:59:58, Info   CBS  Starting TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 05:59:58, Info   CBS  Trusted Installer core was not initialized.
    2013-02-09 05:59:58, Info   CBS  Ending TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 08:38:21, Info   CBS  Failed to initialize COM security. [HRESULT = 0x800706ba - RPC_S_SERVER_UNAVAILABLE]
    2013-02-09 08:38:21, Info   CBS  Starting TrustedInstaller finalization.
    2013-02-09 08:38:21, Info   CBS  Trusted Installer core was not initialized.
    2013-02-09 08:38:21, Info   CBS  Ending TrustedInstaller finalization.
    I don't know what to make of any of that, however. But remember that the SFC scans were all done from the Win 7 Install DVD command line, so there was no networking in place and apparently the install DVD repair tools don't run with the "Server" or RPC services running, which perhaps explains those error messages.

    If anyone's interested, I've attached a zip file named BlackScreenLogs.zip that contains two files: bcd.txt - which is the output from the bcdedit enum all command, and ntbtlog.txt - which is a recent boot log (from using F8 to boot with boot log option).

    So now I'm pretty close to my wit's end, but I still absolutely LOATHE the idea of perfmoring a fresh new re-install, which -- considering all the third-party applications and such I'd need to re-install -- would require at least a week of horribly tedious work!

    That's why I'm desperate to find a workaround to this baffling limitation imposed on doing nondestructive repair installs on MS operating sytems more recent than XP.

    Any suggestions, folks?
     

    Attached Files:

    #1 Ninethe, Feb 13, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  2. patcooke

    patcooke Microsoft MVP
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    Black screen is cause by failure to access a critical system file - usually because it is missing/corrupt etc or because it has been compressed. If you can identify the mising frile from any report to the screen during failre you may be able to replace it. Failing that the prospect of reinstalling all from scratch (loathsome though it may appear) may be as nothing compared with the spectre of interminable problems raised by what seems to be a system which has suffered serious corruption and sooner or later would require a clean reinstall which in the long term I reckon is to be the lesser of two evils. I get the impression this problem has already consumed significant time, effort and head banging! For the future I would strongly recommend you look into implementing a regular backup regime of imaging your system drive on a regular basis using something like Acronis True Image. You can download a full working trial copy, it is not expensive and the very first time you need it (incircumstances such as this) it is worth every penny. It is also insurance against total hdd failure, bad malware infection, bad installs and host of other evils.
     
  3. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    Your BCD store appears to be a little different from what I normally see. Since I have not checked what shows from an offline command prompt, it might be because of that.

    But you could try a command, or two to see if it helps. I have not gone through all the links, but if you have already tried, not much else left.

    In the command prompt, type bcdboot C:\Windows this will put the boot files in the system partition, and hopefully set up the boot loader in the BCD Store.

    Are you actually running a Startup Repair from the options page during the repair, or seeing the reboot requested screen when you run it. If it is says reboot to fix, that is only good the first time. The Second and succeeding times, you should dismiss that message and go into the Repair Options.

    Has your hard drive been acting up? Have you changed any anti-virus installs? Have you run a bootable anti-virus?
     
    #3 Saltgrass, Feb 13, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  4. Ninethe

    Ninethe Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, patcooke and my already wonderfully helpful friend Saltgrass!

    Before I continue, I'm thrilled to report that, with the aid of yet another extremely helpful expert who supports both Acronis DiskDirector -and- TeraByte Unlimited's BootIt Bare Metal & TeraByte OS Deployment Tool Suite Pro, I can now perfectly boot Windows 7 SP1 in full mode from the external USB drive! :thumbs_up:


    Now, I'll intersperse my replies with segments of your posts...

    Unfortunately, no errors are reported when trying to boot into the laptop's internal Win 7 partition, even when choosing Safe Mode or Safe Mode with Command Prompt. It just shows a Black Screen with the mouse cursor. I was hoping the boot log I posted would be more helpful, but I understand that ideally I would need to compare it with a boot log from a successful full boot (which I don't have).

    The only thing in there that seems to stand out to a neophyte like me is the fact that although the log reports the successful loading of "\SystemRoot\system32\DRIVERS\AtiPcie.sys" (my laptop's ATI Radeon x1200 series driver), later in the log there's a message that reads: "Did not load driver ATI Radeon X1200 Series".:confused3:


    Oh, indeed, but I'm certainly not ready to surrender yet. And recall that both the "SFC /Scannow" and CHKDSK processes now always comes up clean and successful, so it's likely that there's no corruption left (aside from any possibly corrupted boot-related data).

    I'm well aware of good backup practices (as I've been likewise preaching to all the countless legacy systems users I've supported over the decades), and I've been using Acronis Disk Director for many years (which is precisely why I have those partition image backups I'm working with). The DD 11 backups I do have are fairly recent (from less than 1 month ago), but I agree they're not quite recent enough and I have no one else to blame but myself. As for True Image, I own that app but I don't like it and similar apps at all, particularly since every time I've needed to recover something I've needed to recover the entire partition anyway!


    Actually, I'm very glad indeed that you haven't spent any time going through all those links, friend Saltgrass. You've dedicated so much of your time already in other threads that I'd feel lousy if I'd wasted any more of it!

    But for the record, I have already tried the bcdboot command you suggested (and many, many others besides), but they haven't solved the problem. In fact, I now have considerable doubts that the installation DVD's automatic repair messages relating to the Missing OS Loader are at all accurate. I think they've been a red herring all along! In any case, I've since installed the latest BootIt Bare Metal boot manager, and it reports that there's nothing at all wrong with the OS loader or the rest of the boot system (now that I can use it to boot from the external USB drive's backup partition).

    No, my guess is that there's some kind of damaged or incorrect driver or other piece of system software that's causing the Black Screen, perhaps related to the Radeon x1200-series driver I mentioned above. And so the nondestructive repair install still seems to be the best possible solution, if I can somehow do that to repair the internal HD partition after booting from the external USB partition that's now booting fine.


    I'm not sure exactly what you mean, but what I've been doing is booting from the Win 7 Installation DVD and, after specifying the language etc on the first page, I choose the "Repair your computer" option, which then brings up the "System Recovery Options". It has no trouble finding the correct boot partition on the internal HD. At first I had been choosing "Startup Repair", but as I said, I've come to believe that it's both worthless and a complete red herring. I've also learned that the System Restore doesn't solve the Black Screen, so the overwhelming amount of the time, I've been using the Command Prompt to follow all the guides and tutorials I've listed in my OP.


    The hard drive is in excellent shape (according to the S.M.A.R.T reading and all the perfect CHKDSK /F /V /R runs). But as for the true, full nature of this current problem (which doesn't seem to involve any malware), you're already quite familiar with it from your helpful replies in this other thread: Truly bizarre unwanted instant power shutoff, somehow related to Netflix ONLY!, or this post more specifically: OFF-TOPIC: How I wellered my laptop's OS, and how I'm trying to fix it


    Thank you both very much! Though I'm still hoping to learn how I can perform a nondestructive Win 7 repair install to the internal partition even though I have to start it from the external USB backup partition...
     
    #4 Ninethe, Feb 14, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
  5. Saltgrass

    Saltgrass Excellent Member
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    Glad you got it working.

    But when a BCD store Windows Boot Manager does not have an entry for the default Boot Loader, and yours did not, something did not repair your system correctly. I have not tested what might happen if that entry was left out, but I will later.

    I suppose we have to wonder how it got that way...
     

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