Problems with booting after updating Windows Updater and installing first batch of critical/important updates

vbimport

#1

Hey, I hate to ask, but I"m having problems finding an answer to my problem. I recently refurbished a Latitude E5410. When I install Windows 7, either Home Premium 64 bit ISO from a Digital Rivers download, an Ultimate 64 bit ISO off an USB stick, or Home Premium 64 bit off an official Dell reinstallation disc, I can get Windows 7 installed. However, once I update the Windows updater, the “important updates” somehow screw up the bootloader and or other parts of the OS so that I can’t load Windows and it just keep cycling from System Repair to restart. I’ve tried repairing the boot loader via bootsec, done system restores, and done system image restores. However, once I try to install the updates, the computer boots into system repair.


#2

Have you tried a Windows 7 recovery cd & let it do a repair ?
The one that is used outside of Windows & also has a command window.

One other suggestion is to install the Windows updates one at a time.
Reboot after each one & see which one causes the boot problem.


#3

Yeah I used bootsec repair in DOS/command line mode

tried the Windows recovery CD, doesn’t work.

Tried repairing using Windows CD, Dell CD, or USB with ISO. Doesn’t work.

System restore sometimes work, sometimes doesn’t.

If I use a system image it will restore to a workable form of Windows, but will break again when updating.

I tried windows updating one at a time but with over 100 important updates, it was a big time suck between the reboots, installs, and the repairs when I would find an update, if I could even get past the first crapout. and eventually the boot gets screwed up even if I do a system restore.


#4

The win 7 versions that you tried,do they all have SP1 included?
If there are any drivers checkmarked on the critical/important updates,uncheck those and go @ the manufacturer’s site to download and install hardware drivers.


#5

Yep, all have SP1 on them.

The critical/important updates don’t have the machine or Dell drivers in them. It’s all Winblows updates. Though installing the machine drivers has also proven to be a minefield, but I figured out which ones were corrupting the system and haven’t installed them.


#6

No real solution,but just a few things to try:

-check if you have the latest bios
-check the harddisk with a tool like,for example,hdsentinel.
-check the temps with a tool like,for example, hw64info
-check the RAM with Memtest86
-run task manager during the update,to see if there’s no other process goin’ bezerk under the load.


#7

BIOS is behind a couple of versions, though I don’t know why that would be the problem. I suppose its worth checking at this point.
Temps are in the 50’s, Celsius,
RAM works just fine, can use it from Linux live CD and is recognized
There’s no other task going on, scanned machine no obvious nasties.
Defragged the HD after initial install, doesn’t help.


#8

[QUOTE=yojimbo197;2730442]BIOS is behind a couple of versions, though I don’t know why that would be the problem.[/QUOTE]

Perhaps better 64bit OS support in the newer bios…didn’t that laptop came originally with a 32bit OS?

[QUOTE=yojimbo197;2730442]RAM works just fine, can use it from Linux live CD and is recognized [/QUOTE]

Even if it seems to work,1 of the modules still can be erratic…personal experience…;)…Memtest revealed it,replaced the module and my problems were gone…

[QUOTE=yojimbo197;2730442]Defragged the HD after initial install, doesn’t help.[/QUOTE]

Defragmentation is OK,but did you check it for bad sectors too??


#9

I tried to find some info by Goggling.
I’m not sure if this will help.
It is about "hanging on ’ Please Wait’ " .
Some of the posters had Vista & others Windows 7.
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windows/en-US/f3beb19c-b83d-422e-ba53-12eb4df81179/boot-up-hangs-at-please-wait-for-ever-nla-service-is-culprit?forum=itprovistanetworking


#10

I don’t think it is the bootloader. This happens when windows reboots to apply pending transactions which require a reboot. At times this happens when the updates get corrupted somehow and a boot reloop happens.

All the pending updates are in a file called pending.xml in the windows\winsxs folder If you can boot to a recovery disk or the recovery environment on a retail disk, you can delete that file after the incident occurs and generally you should then be able to boot to windows.

You could additionally try this:

After you install the system and either before and/or after installing just one update run these:

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/open-the-windows-update-troubleshooter

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/troubleshoot-problems-
installing-updates#1TC=windows-7

Also try the above if you are able to boot to windows after the incident and after having deleted the pending.xml file.


#11

@ cpubound , This first link doesn’t work (for me anyway).
The second one does & goes to the WU fix it troubleshooter.

I looked up some information on the pending.xml file.
Probably not enough . This post by a MS tech is about editing it but describes what it does.
I assume just deleting the file would result in it being “rewritten”.

I know that one of the workarounds everyone is using is editing the pending.xml file and rebooting the machine. This is seemingly working for everyone that the SetupExecute registry value does not. I wanted to give a brief rundown as to why you only want to do this as a last resort.

During service pack installation, we populate the pending.xml file with all of the files and registry values needed to install a particular update. Service packs are special in that they are broken into critical and non-critical transactions to allow us to recover more quickly and reduce the no-boot window that could occur during installation.

During system shutdown, we process all of the critical transactions first and then the non-critical transactions. If we fail processing the critical transactions, the service pack will just fail and rollback. If the critical operations succeed but the non-critical operations fail, we attempt to process them on reboot using Session Manager (smss) and the SetupExecute registry value. When the system reboots and reads the SetupExecute key, it retries installation first and if that fails it will roll back the Service Pack installation. Deleting the registry value tells smss to not try and run the poqexec. It should be reattempted again during startup processing or fail outright. So effectively deleting the registry value breaks you out of the install fail reboot loop that the machine ends up being in.

Additionally, the pending.xml file has a checkpoint value that tells Windows where the critical transactions end and the non-critical transactions begin. When you delete the checkpoint value in the pending.xml, its effectively marking everything in the pending operation queue as critical. Because your machine has already rebooted, Windows thinks it has nothing to do and just boots normally. The problem with this is that because there are still operations that need to be processed that will not get processed and this could potentially leave the machine in an even worse state. Doing this should be an absolute last resort. The best thing to do here is let the failure occur later on so a rollback can take place.


#12

My edit time has expired. Here is that link:

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/open-the-windows-update-troubleshooter

The pending.xml file will be created the next time you install updates, if there are any that are pending and need a reboot. All updates that were in the file will be installed again. It causes no problem deleting the pending.xml file.

I don’t know the internals of windows update. But I am fairly confident that what I have described is what the problem is. I have seen it before and seen the solution work.

The more important question is why are the updates becoming corrupted in the first place for every type install. I would guess that this can happen if the hdd is corrupted in some way.

I doubt that there is file system corruption because it is always a new install. That leaves physical corruption like bad sectors on the disk which can be corrected by running a chkdsk/r.

Since it is a new install from multiple sources it is unlikely that a system file is corrupted, but a sfc /scannow wouldn’t hurt.

It would be nice to know which update causes the problem and if it is always the same one. Just my two cents.


#13

[QUOTE=cpubound;2730468]The more important question is why are the updates becoming corrupted in the first place for every type install. I would guess that this can happen if the hdd is corrupted in some way. [/QUOTE]

I was thinking the same…:iagree:
Hdd OR memory…

[QUOTE=cpubound;2730468]I doubt that there is file system corruption because it is always a new install. That leaves physical corruption like bad sectors on the disk which can be corrected by running a chkdsk/r.[/QUOTE]

Depends on how many bad sectors there are,and if CHKDSK can isolate or move them to an unused area.
That’s why I recommended to run HdSentinel to check the disk…


#14

[QUOTE=roadworker;2730469]I was thinking the same…:iagree:
Hdd OR memory…
[/QUOTE]

Bad memory can definitely cause restarts. Run memtest overnight.


#15

Well its turns out that the BIOS needed to be updated. Once I did that, a single critical/important windows update file appeared. I installed it and then rebooted. Everything appeared to be stable. Then I started the slog of installing the critical/important updates. So far its been very stable with no problems after each install.


#16

[QUOTE=yojimbo197;2730654]Well its turns out that the BIOS needed to be updated.[/QUOTE]

Great to hear you got it solved!:iagree:
Probably the old bios wasn’t ready for the 64 bit os…:disagree:


#17

The first suggestion made by roadworker in post #6 was to:

-check if you have the latest bios
.


#18

[QUOTE=cholla;2730667]The first suggestion made by roadworker in post #6 was to:
.[/QUOTE]

Yes, I can read. And I acknowledged that it was in fact a BIOS issue.

Also, if you read back, my response was “BIOS is behind a couple of versions, though I don’t know why that would be the problem. I suppose its worth checking at this point.” And indeed it was. I have no problems admitting when I’m wrong. The important thing is that the problem is fixed and I learned something. Hopefully, others will benefit from this as well.


#19

[QUOTE=roadworker;2730658]Great to hear you got it solved!:iagree:
Probably the old bios wasn’t ready for the 64 bit os…:disagree:[/QUOTE]

I was surprised about this because the last laptops I refurbished had no problems. However, those laptops were around 1.5-2 years old so the BIOS may have already had whatever it is necessary to stimulate the Windows Updater download.

Yeah I wish I had seen the number of the kb windows update. Somehow the BIOS update caused that specific update to be downloaded. I have another Latitude to refurbish, so I will try to remember to write down the update and see what it does.


#20

yojimbo197 , My post was meant to be an acknowledgement of roadworker posting the solution . I was already certain you could read.
It wasn’t that you were wrong but had a problem with a computer that you didn’t yet have the solution for.
BIOS was just one of the possibilities suggested . It wasn’t my first thought for a solution.
Since flashing the BIOS can have even dire consequences ; it is never my first solution or suggestion. If the wrong BIOS is used it can “brick” the MB.
The direction the solution was leaning toward was bad sectors in the harddrive or a bad memory stick. From what I read in the link I posted the problem seemed to be related to the network card driver & a wireless connection. That was the direction I was leaning for the solution.