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Windows Server 2008 Repair Install

    Question

  • I have a Windows Server 2008 64bit Enterprise server that won't boot into Windows anymore and I would like to perform a "repair install" like in Windows 2003 but I can't seem to find the option.

    Does anyone know how I can just install the binaries overtop so I retain all my existing data and programs?

    Thanks.
    Friday, November 28, 2008 8:54 PM

Answers

  • Hello Terran0925,
    the repair option to boot to the cd is no longer an option due to the changes in setup for Windows Server 2008.  Since it uses a image based deployment option, the file by file copy method is no longer available.
    You can boot to the Windows Server 2008 and choose the repair in the lower left hand corner of the screen.  this should open a CMD prompt.
    From here you can run sfc and use the offline options,
    /OFFBOOTDIR     For offline repair specify the location of the offline boot directory
    /OFFWINDIR      For offline repair specify the location of the offline windows directory

    This repairs the boot files, allowing you to boot back into the OS, if you are still having issues you could try doing an upgrade with the media then.
    Thanks, Darrell Gorter[MSFT] This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights
    • Proposed as answer by David Shen Monday, December 01, 2008 4:06 AM
    • Marked as answer by David Shen Thursday, December 04, 2008 6:12 AM
    Monday, December 01, 2008 3:52 AM

All replies

  • Hello Terran0925,
    the repair option to boot to the cd is no longer an option due to the changes in setup for Windows Server 2008.  Since it uses a image based deployment option, the file by file copy method is no longer available.
    You can boot to the Windows Server 2008 and choose the repair in the lower left hand corner of the screen.  this should open a CMD prompt.
    From here you can run sfc and use the offline options,
    /OFFBOOTDIR     For offline repair specify the location of the offline boot directory
    /OFFWINDIR      For offline repair specify the location of the offline windows directory

    This repairs the boot files, allowing you to boot back into the OS, if you are still having issues you could try doing an upgrade with the media then.
    Thanks, Darrell Gorter[MSFT] This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights
    • Proposed as answer by David Shen Monday, December 01, 2008 4:06 AM
    • Marked as answer by David Shen Thursday, December 04, 2008 6:12 AM
    Monday, December 01, 2008 3:52 AM
  • Upgrade is not available since I cannot boot into windows and sfc /offbootdir /offwindir doesn't work for me. Any other posibilities?

    Thx :)
    • Proposed as answer by MrShhhhh Thursday, April 16, 2009 12:17 AM
    Wednesday, February 25, 2009 1:26 PM
  • Hi there...

    I have the same problem, I followed the advice further up...
    And came up with this command, which seems to work... (It does something... Not done yet).

    sfc /SCANNOW /OFFBOOTDIR=d:\ /OFFWINDIR=d:\windows
    Where "d:" is your windows drive.

    Good luck ;)
    • Proposed as answer by BigBK Sunday, June 20, 2010 8:07 PM
    Wednesday, April 29, 2009 7:54 PM

  • This repairs the boot files, allowing you to boot back into the OS, if you are still having issues you could try doing an upgrade with the media then.
    Thanks, Darrell Gorter[MSFT] This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights

    You cannot do an upgrade when you've booted from the media - only by running it from within Windows I've just found out :'(

    • Proposed as answer by Chun-Chu Friday, November 06, 2009 11:36 PM
    Thursday, May 28, 2009 11:11 PM
  • Boot from OS install disk

    Select next after making sure the language options are correct.
    Select Repair option
    Select CMD
    CD into recovery
    Type Dir
    Run the StartRep.exe command in the list.

    That should do a basic repair to the OS.
    • Proposed as answer by Chaoticflyer Thursday, February 18, 2010 9:22 PM
    • Edited by Chaoticflyer Thursday, February 18, 2010 9:24 PM
    Tuesday, November 10, 2009 8:10 PM
  • Boot from OS install disk

    Select next after making sure the language options are correct.
    Select Repair option
    Select CMD
    CD into recovery
    Type Dir
    Run the last command in the list. (don't remember the name off of the top of my head)

    That should do a basic repair to the OS.

    sfc did not work for me. This did. Thanks a million!
    The command to run is StartRep.exe
    • Proposed as answer by el3ashe2 Tuesday, March 08, 2011 11:02 AM
    Thursday, February 18, 2010 4:17 PM
  • Wow, so does this do a repair install?
    • Proposed as answer by Ahmad Dawod Monday, November 28, 2011 10:12 AM
    Friday, February 19, 2010 9:36 PM
  • It certainly does not - that is merely the startup repair function similar to the fixboot, fixmbr commands of old (though a little extended to be fair)

    No point in looking - there is NO ability to repair Server 2008 or higher OSes any more. A massive setback for network administrators. As bad as the fact that you can no longer slipstream hotfixes into Outlook etc., but instead you put them in an "updates" folder that installs Office SP0 and then installs SP1 or 2 on top. Bizarre, your Office install now takes twice as long.

    Some day Microsoft will need to think of the guys on sites who actually have to care for/install their products.

    - This coming from a Microsoft fan-boy, btw.

    (you'll know that I'm a fan-boy as I haven't mentioned the train-wreck that was DPM 2007 (for anyone using it, jump to DPM 2010 RC quick))
    Friday, February 19, 2010 10:09 PM
  •  Hi Chaoticflyer ,

    You are my saviour.  I had my windows 2008 64 bit server on one disk and the boot loader on another and finally figured out how to make the OS disk bootable. Thanks a lot..

    I have used the steps from http://vidmar.net/weblog/archive/2008/11/01/dual-booting-windows-server-2008-and-windows-xp.aspx and followed yours.
    Sunday, March 07, 2010 12:52 PM
  • This totally saved my skin! Thanks!! :>
    Monday, May 31, 2010 3:01 PM
  • The article below helped me.

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/927392

    Friday, June 04, 2010 9:07 PM
  • This is great!  Also saved me.  My ntoskrnl.exe had become corrupt.  Thank you.
    Thursday, July 22, 2010 5:58 PM
  • Boot from OS install disk

    Select next after making sure the language options are correct.
    Select Repair option
    Select CMD
    CD into recovery
    Type Dir
    Run the StartRep.exe command in the list.

    That should do a basic repair to the OS.

    The instructions above also saved me.Thanks a lot Chaoticflyer.

    • Proposed as answer by ibennaMVP Monday, October 04, 2010 1:29 PM
    Monday, September 27, 2010 3:36 PM
  • No problem, glad it helped!
    Monday, September 27, 2010 4:04 PM
  • Hi,

    I was 2 days trying to repair this for a windows 2008 server.

    Lots of forums, solutions that didn't work, nerves... and finally startrep.exe .

    It worked and saved me!!

    Thanks a lot.

     

    Tuesday, October 19, 2010 7:41 AM
  • StartRep.exe worked for me as well, thanks tons!
    Friday, November 19, 2010 7:16 PM
  • HELP

    how can i get to the StartRep.exe

    Saturday, November 20, 2010 9:20 PM
  • @femi adewale:

     

    StartRep.exe is located in \Sources\Recovery.  


    E.g. cd recovery

    as soon as you enter CMD because you'll be in <drive letter>:\Sources

    Sunday, January 16, 2011 3:15 PM
  • Had a Fatal Erro after a windows Server 2008 R2 Servcie pack installation.

    Raid Controller reported a Hard Drive error at the same time, just my luck.

    After rebooting into the Os, and then rebooting the registry became correputed.

    Running this process (StartRep) a few times it solved the issue.

    Thanks for the Post!

    Wednesday, March 09, 2011 1:33 PM
  • Startrep.exe did not work for me.

    I will try the other repair methods listed above.

    Monday, April 04, 2011 7:40 AM
  • WOW, after 2 hours of trying everything to get my server working...(i almost decided to reinstall it)...i found your solution and IT REALLY WORKED!!!!AWESOME!!!

     

    Thaks a lot

    Tuesday, April 05, 2011 12:04 PM
  • You save my life too, thank you so much

    Thursday, April 07, 2011 4:48 AM
  • Boot from OS install disk

    Select next after making sure the language options are correct.
    Select Repair option
    Select CMD
    CD into recovery
    Type Dir
    Run the StartRep.exe command in the list.

    That should do a basic repair to the OS.

     

    The instructions above also saved me.Thanks a lot Chaoticflyer.


    I'm getting some funky problems relating to SCCM2007 (specifically, the Management Point role) not seeing/communicating with WebDAV even though I have confirmed that WebDAV is configured correctrly for SCCM.  I am not saying that this is definitely a problem on the OS level, but the thought is beginning to cross my mind.

    Would this approach possibly work for me as well?  How would it affect any roles/applications that are already set up on the server (like IIS, SQL server, DHCP, AD, WDS, whatever)?  Would you need to run the repair on a "vanilla" install so as to not foul up roles or back-end apps that are already on the server?


    -Brian McKnight
    Thursday, June 09, 2011 5:44 PM
  • this worked for me, too.

    i was aware of various cmd utils for fixing boot-up problems, but StartRep.exe was new to me.

    after expanding the size of a Svr2008's VHD file, it stopped booting.  this StartRep.exe fixed it instantly.

    thanks heaps.

    Anthony.

     

    Friday, June 17, 2011 3:09 AM
  • Hi,

       Now i execute the command successfully,but still get restart continuously kindly guide me to resolve this issue

     

    Thanks in advance

    Jeriesh


    Cheers : Jeriesh
    • Proposed as answer by spnz Saturday, January 07, 2012 1:48 AM
    Tuesday, June 28, 2011 12:28 PM
  • Thanks a million! My Raid-1 crashed and StartRep got the surviving disk up and running again! Whoaaa!
    Thursday, September 01, 2011 9:19 PM
  • Run the tool a few times and it may help. I had to run it twice.

    Cheers

    Friday, October 21, 2011 5:43 AM
  • I have a server set up with Raid 5. Unfortunately I was not involved in the configuration. It seems that I have 2 Raid 5 with virtual disks.

    Out of my 6 HDs two are failing (0 and 4) and I ma trying to repair the systam now.

    Following the recommendation to run startrep.exe (ran it threee times already) always gives me the following diagnosis:

    Root cause found:

    A hard disk could not be found. If a hard disk is installed, it is not responding.

    Is that the ultimate "Gone" for my system or are there other options to recover?

    Thanks.

     

    Thursday, November 17, 2011 4:57 PM
  •  Thanks a LOOOOOT, this was just the end of 2 painful days avoiding to do a clean install....

    At this point, I just have a little question : WAS IT SO HARD TO MAKE THIS OPTION AVAILABLE IN THE REPAIR MENU OF THE INSTALL DISK?

    Or is just that some Microsoft - Staff team have a mission?

    Saturday, June 16, 2012 12:29 AM
  • f

    Hi there...

    sfc /SCANNOW /OFFBOOTDIR=d:\ /OFFWINDIR=d:\windows

    Where "d:" is your windows drive.

    It worked for me.  Thannk you very much Michael

    Thursday, August 23, 2012 6:54 AM
  • Hi,

    Boot from OS install disk

    Select next after making sure the language options are correct.
    Select Repair option
    Select CMD
    CD into recovery
    Type Dir
    Run the StartRep.exe command in the list.

    That should do a basic repair to the OS.

    StartRep was not showing in the list so simply type recovery\startrep.exe

    Ran it twice - job done!!

    perfect thanks

    Thursday, August 23, 2012 9:27 AM
  •  

    Fatal Error c000021a

    Had a Fatal Erro after a new online windows update in windows Server 2008 R2 Servcie pack 1
    and now restart in boot time .
    Upgrade is not available .
    sfc is not work . and say restart next run sfc , ...
    startrep can not repair .
    pls help me .
    Saturday, August 25, 2012 2:33 PM
  • This does not cause problem to the existing active directory and installed software? I face the same problem, but the database and other thing inside it have huge configuration and other data! plz help 

    binyam

    Tuesday, October 23, 2012 11:33 AM
  • StartRep.exe is much helpful to recover my critical server with in a minute..

    Thanks to everyone....

    Friday, February 01, 2013 7:33 PM
  • Chaoticflyer u given a good solution.. StartRep.exe fix my boot problem, excellent

    Friday, July 19, 2013 5:45 AM
  • Chaoticflyer you're such a great guy! You save our day.... Thank you so much
    Thursday, August 01, 2013 6:56 AM
  • Hello guys,

    I have the same issue but i tried doing everything above but nothing worked !

    i did the following :

    chkdsk

    sfc

    bootrec

    startrep

    but nothing worked !!

    my windows system partition letter is E and i have 2 more partitions windows 2008 r2 64 installed on hyper-v 3 

    Please assist , thanks


    Daoud Ghannam

    Sunday, August 25, 2013 9:39 PM
  • Thank you glansing!

    This worked for me after copy de disk using gparted in order to increase the disk space.

    Thursday, March 20, 2014 11:28 AM