Windows 10: Trying to run DISM from bootable USB to repair Windows Installation...

Discus and support Trying to run DISM from bootable USB to repair Windows Installation... in Windows 10 Support to solve the problem; Hi all! Quick explanation. I've been given a laptop by a tech-illiterate lady that belonged to her late husband who just passed from cancer. It's... Discussion in 'Windows 10 Support' started by Darkstrike, Nov 11, 2018.

  1. Trying to run DISM from bootable USB to repair Windows Installation...

    Hi all!

    Quick explanation. I've been given a laptop by a tech-illiterate lady that belonged to her late husband who just passed from cancer. It's running Win10 Home. Supposedly the Windows Updates were failing for a LONG time now (months, years?) Something is seriously messed up with the Windows Update system as no updates will go through and something is now messed up with Windows, itself (when booting normally to Windows, nothing network-related works, right clicking on anything crashes Explorer.exe, etc, etc).

    I ran an SFC /scannow from a Windows 10 bootable (it wouldn't work from booted Windows) and it said it found things that were corrupt but were not fixable. (I only ran SFC once)

    I'm now trying to run DISM from said bootable USB in the command line to fix the Windows image on the hard drive, but can't seem to get the command right.

    This is a freshly created Windows 10 bootable USB. I want to run DISM command from there to fix the install on hard drive using the files on the USB. Is there anybody who could tell me the exact command I would need? I've poured over MS TechNet articles and still can't seem to get it to would be very much appreciated! The Windows install drive on the hard drive when booted from the USB is drive is drive E, and the USB is drive X.

    I tried the command:
    Code: dism /Image:E:\offline /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /Source:X:\windows /limitaccess[/quote] ...and get a "Unable to access Image' error.

    I REALLY don't want to have to reinstall if I can help it because her husband was apparently using a lot of cracked software (which I don't condone at all), but if I have to do a reinstall she will lose access to things like her emails in Outlook 2007 because I refuse to find and reinstall a cracked version of Office. She also can't afford to go purchase a legitimate version of Office either....

    Thanks for any assistance!

    Darkstrike, Nov 11, 2018
  2. Agility Win User

    Multi-bootable USB

    Hey guys from TPU, couldn't find any specific thread pertaining to the question asked on title. As mentioned, I'm trying to create a bootable USB, but with many specifics boots available.

    I've been trying to create one with multiple boot device including one that enables me to run Windows 10 directly on the USB Thumb Drive but to no avail.

    The list of bootable images i'm trying to create are

    1. Windows 10 (A full OS running from thumb drive)
    2. Windows 10 ISO (Bootable disk image for fresh install)
    3. MemTest86+

    Have tried YUMI or UUI from the website USB PenDrive Linux but as this is my first time, i don't know how am i screwing up or am doing it right.. Anyone got a rough idea on a step by step guide? Thanks!
    Agility, Nov 11, 2018
  3. Kantastic Win User
    Bootable Vista Installer

    I have a friend who has a Vista Home Premium key (from the bottom of his laptop) and his HDD crapped out so he ordered a new one. His repair disks didn't work and neither of us have CD's with a large enough capacity to store the files we 'found' on the interwebz, so I'm trying to install it from a bootable USB.

    I got up to the step where I successfully turned the USB into an active partition, but I ran into a problem the moment I needed to access the boot sector.

    Can someone kindly walk me through the steps?
    Kantastic, Nov 11, 2018
  4. Kursah Win User

    Trying to run DISM from bootable USB to repair Windows Installation...

    Repair Windows 7/8/10

    Repairing Windows 8

    Further improving on previously deployed OS repair methods, Windows 8, 8.1, Server 2012 and 2012 R2 further allowed advanced repair where an in-place upgrade or total re-install would be required on previous operating systems. In all honesty, before Windows 10 implementation, this was arguably the easiest OS to repair for a couple of years by running more basic commands.

    This has since been advanced to more closely match Windows 10/Server 2016 repairs but with the below information I hope to guide you through performing these advanced tasks more easily!

    Spoiler: Windows 8/8.1 Repair DISM

    If CHKDSK and SFC fail to repair the issues with the system, then it this is your next option and besides restoring from a previous backup might be the second-to-last option before re-installing the operating system. We will utilize DISMfor this next repair option.
    • In some instances, you won't need the OS ISO to perform the DISM image cleanup. You can attempt this on any OS from 8-10 by using the following command in elevated CLI: DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
    • In many cases now due to some changes Microsoft made, you'll need to have a copy of the OS ISO available. The ISO will need to be a standard deployment variety that contains Install.WIM in the Sources directory, otherwise the process will fail. Once you have the correct ISO, mount it in Explorer (can do this natively on Microsoft Windows 8.0+), verify the drive letter, verify Image.WIM in the Sources directory.
      • To download a Windows 8.1 ISO from Microsoft, click here.
    • Enter the following in elevated CLI: DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /source:WIM:X:\Sources\Install.wim:1 /LimitAccess
      • X = drive letter of mounted ISO. Change to match the appropriate drive letter.
      • Say I had the Install.WIM located in C:\Images, I would type the following command: DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /source:WIM:C:\Images\Install.WIM:1 /LimitAccess
    The DISM scan can take a while, often times longer than an CHKDSK or SFC scan. To speed up the process, have the Image.WIM on a faster flash media or on local storage rather than disc media. This will help greatly. In many cases one or two runs of this command will repair most issues I've found with Windows 8/8.1.

    Once the DISM repair process has been found successful, or not, I will perform a reboot. If the repair was unsuccessful, this will be when I attempt a second pass. If the second pass fails, it is time to move onto the next solution.

    However, if the DISM repair passes at any point, reboot the system and then perform an SFC to confirm no further issues are found or need resolved. This step is likely overkill for those not seeking to do optional steps.

    Operating System Refresh

    It should be noted that in the event DISM fails to repair the system, then an OS refresh would be the next suggestion if the deployed that could save the user's files and OS deployment.

    This feature has been an available feature since Windows 8 launched in 2012. The biggest benefit with this option over Windows 7's in-place-upgrade is not necessarily requiring the OS installation media to perform the repair.

    If the system is an OEM, an OS refresh from the OEM partition may mean a reinstall of the OS and loss of user data but the restoration of OEM software and bloatware. But you can still choose a manual OS-only refresh without the bloatware if you take the correct steps.

    The best choice in my opinion is to run an OS refresh procedure from the advanced boot menu or you can run the installation media while in Windows to perform and Upgrade installation, this will keep your files and settings but replace Windows files and components.

    To access the advanced boot menu for Windows 8, there are a several options.
    • When choosing restart from the OS GUI, hold down SHIFT and click restart. This method will work even if you cannot log into a profile on the system which makes it very useful in some situations.
    • If logged in, access PC Settings, and click Restart Now under Advanced Startup.
    • If logged in, open a command prompt window and type shutdown /r /o /t 0 which will initiate a reboot into the advanced menu right with no delay. Without /t 0, there will be a 60-second delay. The number value after the /t is delay seconds.
    Once you've reached the advanced boot menu, choose Troubleshoot. From there you can choose to Refresh your PC, Reset your PC and Advanced Options. For this repair, we want to choose Refresh your PC. It's description reads "If your PC isn't running well, you can refresh it without losing our files." That is exactly what we want to accomplish here!

    Follow the prompts and processes, and after the refresh installation and rebooting, you should be greeted with a login screen back to your profile in your stable OS environment. At this point you should be able to use the system as intended, if in doubt then re-run the SFC and DISM scans.

    In-Place Upgrade

    If CHKDSK, SFC and DISM fail to repair the issues with the system, yet you can still boot to the Windows desktop, then the next option is to perform an in-place upgrade. This is more in-depth than an Operating System Refresh. It re-installs most of the operating system's core image and critical files without losing your profiles, data or programs, but do expect to lose some settings. In many cases this process can fix some major issues and refresh an otherwise corrupt and issue-ridden OS installation back to something stable and usable.

    Time to close the CLI windows and get back into the GUI, unless you want to deploy Windows through CLI. You'll have to source a different guide for that process!

    Requirements to perform an in-place upgrade:
    • Must have installation media that matches the installed OS version and type. This applies to both Windows and Windows Server.
    • Must be able to get to the desktop on the affected system to correctly initiate this process, booting to the media will not allow an upgrade to be performed.
    That last rule is the frustrating part of this repair process if you cannot get that far, backup what you can and do a fresh installation. Otherwise proceed.
    • Start the process by using autorun or manually running setup.exe from the installation media.
    • Windows 8/Server 2012+ can mount ISO's in Windows Explorer, you can use that instead of physical media options to perform this task.
    • You'll come to the installation window, the options will be Upgrade or Custom. Choose Upgrade. This is critical as choosing custom will force you to overwrite, append or wipe out the current install rather than performing any kind of repair.
    • Follow the on-screen prompts, which should be very few for you to interact with. The overall process looks and is the Windows install GUI. Once it is completed, the system will automatically reboot (may need to more than once).
    • After the reboot(s) after the in-place upgrade you should have a fully functional Windows without issues or corruptions.
    Performing an in-place upgrade makes sense, and gives you a stable and clean running operating system when there's an issue or corruption you just can't fix but things aren't broken enough to warrant a fresh installation. The point of this process is to refresh the Windows OS files but retain your data, programs, and settings. That is precisely what the in-place upgrade procedure accomplishes.

    I should also add that this process can be accomplished remotely as well, from start to finish. I have done so with persistent LogMeIn, ScreenConnect and Teamviewer installations on various remote systems I have performed this task on, RDP should work as well. Being able to do this level of repair remotely is a huge benefit to any sysadmins out there looking to keep a client happy and perform that "remote magic" IT guys are known for.

    **If at this point your issues are not fixed, then there is something else occurring that is causing the issue be it Malware, hardware, drivers, etc. Please refer to the OP in this thread to run through some of those tests and diagnostics, or create a new thread seeking help and stating what you've tried.**
    Kursah, Nov 11, 2018

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