Solved

ntoskrnl.exe corrupt or missing after Windows Updates !!!

Posted on 2004-10-14
12
391 Views
Last Modified: 2010-04-19
I have a Windows Server 2003 (Standard Edition) and when i tried to install some critical updates the Server crashed, then I tried a cold reboot and on startup I got the following error 'ntoskrnl.exe corrupt or missing please re-install', tried several approaches including expanding the original ntoskrnl.ex_ file (of the CD) to the \<root>\windows\system32 directory and now the server keeps rebooting. Its also a Mail server, running Exchange 2003 so a rebuild/reinstall is out of the question.

Can any offer any advice/help - I'm at my wits end here.

cheers, paul.
0
Comment
Question by:pbgormley
  • 5
  • 5
  • 2
12 Comments
 
LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:KickR
Comment Utility
Can you get to F8 boot menu? Have you tried last known good configuration?
Do you have any backup? Then maybe we can help you recover the system state!

Good Luck!!
0
 
LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:nihlcat
Comment Utility
There is always a chance your boot.ini got chewed up instead of ntoskrnl, so you can create a floppy and try to boot with it.  Couldn't hurt:
http://www.cybertechhelp.com/html/downloads/download.php/id/38
0
 

Author Comment

by:pbgormley
Comment Utility
Tried F8 and last known good configuration - still no joy, we have a backup on DAT72 using Veritas but at this stage we can't access the backup :(
0
 
LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:nihlcat
Comment Utility
Still the ntoskrnl thing?  Did you try to make a boot floppy from the link I sent and boot with it's boot.ini?  I've read (but not personally experienced) that a corrupted boot.ini file can toss your error.

Since you have no viable backup, this is your mail server, and are running low on options, I'll toss out an option of last resort:  Assuming you have enough disk space, what about installing a second instance of windows 2000 in a different directory, say in C:\winnt2?  This give you access to the file system, and you may be able to work a fix.
0
 

Author Comment

by:pbgormley
Comment Utility
Tried several approaches including expanding the original ntoskrnl.ex_ file (of the CD) to the \<root>\windows\system32 directory and now the server keeps rebooting.
0
 
LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:nihlcat
Comment Utility
Darn it!  Well, my last recommendation (install a SEPERATE copy of Windows 2000) won't solve that on it's own, but it will give access to the old file system and you will then have the option of moving your information store, or trying other things to fix the original installation of Windows 2k.  I know how people are about their e-mail and I don't want you to lose it.
0
How your wiki can always stay up-to-date

Quip doubles as a “living” wiki and a project management tool that evolves with your organization. As you finish projects in Quip, the work remains, easily accessible to all team members, new and old.
- Increase transparency
- Onboard new hires faster
- Access from mobile/offline

 

Author Comment

by:pbgormley
Comment Utility
cheers, quick note its Server 2003, my last resort is calling MS but why the h*** should i, after all it was Windows Update that caused the problem !! Then having to fork out loads for support - I fear the worst :(
0
 
LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:nihlcat
Comment Utility
Whoops, I meant 2003.  The installing a second, minimal copy would work as far as I know to get the server to boot, because it would show 2 operating systems to choose from to boot up.  Obviously you would select the second one.  You may wish to try this in conjunction with calling them, as I am unsure how much they can do without any access to the sysem.
0
 
LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:KickR
Comment Utility
You need to:
 "Assuming you have enough disk space, what about installing a second instance of windows 2000 in a different directory, say in C:\winnt2?  This give you access to the file system"
Then you need to install veritas on the new operating system and restore and overwrite over the old. Works like a charm.
Keep a copy of the following files on a floppy: boot.ini, ntdetect.com, ntldr and boot.ini. With these files you can boot into the operating system you need (you will have two), you just need to make an additional line in boot.ini

Hope this helps! Guys, post comments please.

Good luck!
0
 

Author Comment

by:pbgormley
Comment Utility
Got it sorted (thankfully) - Went through setup again (as if i where installing a fresh) and the 2nd level Repair option worked, basically it fixed the corrupt system files and i was able to get the Server back, unfortunately I'm now in a position where I have 27 updates required :/ - here we go again ;)

Would like to close out this question by asking advice on Windows Updates, anyone got any, .i.e, testing, best practice etc ?

cheers,

paul.
0
 
LVL 6

Accepted Solution

by:
nihlcat earned 500 total points
Comment Utility
Outstanding!  I'm glad you're back up!.  Since it's obvious that one of those updates doesn't like your mail server, give attention to current backups prior to installing:

A full system backup (tape backup), and include the system state if your backup software allows for it.  If not you could alsways use Windows Backup and choose 'System State Only'

Create you ASR disk
http://www.computerperformance.co.uk/w2k3/disaster_recovery_system_state.htm

Ultimately, Windows SPs and Critical Updates are always a leap of faith.  They are supposed to install and work without any problems, but there's no guarantee that they will.  Don't apply them all simultaneously.  Try one at a time, so will know which update causes you troubles.
0
 

Author Comment

by:pbgormley
Comment Utility
nihlcat, thanks for everything mate - over the weekend i'm going to update the server and if things go well i may even install exchange service pack1 ;)
0

Featured Post

PRTG Network Monitor: Intuitive Network Monitoring

Network Monitoring is essential to ensure that computer systems and network devices are running. Use PRTG to monitor LANs, servers, websites, applications and devices, bandwidth, virtual environments, remote systems, IoT, and many more. PRTG is easy to set up & use.

Join & Write a Comment

Organizations create, modify, and maintain huge amounts of data to help their businesses earn money and generally function.  Typically every network user within an organization has a bit of disk space to store in process items and personal files.   …
This may not be a text book method to resolve VSS backup issues but it seemed to have worked on few of the Windows 2003 servers we had issues while performing a Volume Shadow Copy backup. If you have issues while performing a shadow copy backup usin…
It is a freely distributed piece of software for such tasks as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring. It works on many operating systems, in many languages.
This video demonstrates how to create an example email signature rule for a department in a company using CodeTwo Exchange Rules. The signature will be inserted beneath users' latest emails in conversations and will be displayed in users' Sent Items…

763 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question

Need Help in Real-Time?

Connect with top rated Experts

5 Experts available now in Live!

Get 1:1 Help Now