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Fix a Windows Server 2003 machine that freezes during boot?

Posted on 2008-06-18
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Last Modified: 2010-04-21
Rebooted my Exchange 2003 server today, and when it got to applying computer settings it froze. Same thing with last known good config, and when I boot into any of the safe modes I can get to a login screen, but apparently whoever setup the servers used a different local admin password than the network one. Anyone have any ideas what I can do next to troubleshoot this?

Note - when it's sitting at the login script I'm able to access the HD's on the server remotely ( \\server\c$ )
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Question by:eric281
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Expert Comment

by:alikaz3
ID: 21815800
Also, did you add any hardware/device drivers to this system lately?  And have you tried a blank password for that local admin account?
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Author Comment

by:eric281
ID: 21815833
No APC Powerchute.

I have done driver upgrades, but not sure how to roll anything back in the current state.
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LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:ryansoto
ID: 21816015
You really need to get access to the DC via safe mode.  Ths way you can see what services are booting up with the machine.  Most lilkely a driver or confg issue

Use this program to reset the admin password
http://www.lostpassword.com/windows.htm?utm_source=petri&utm_medium=banner&utm_content=v1

Once done get back to us and what services are running when the machine boots.  Uninstall any new software added and check DNS for configuration

In tcpip properties the dns server should be itself and the secondary should be another internal DNS machine, never an ISP DNS.
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swappedsr earned 1500 total points
ID: 21817624
Yeah check for services to see, which ones might be hanging.
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Author Closing Comment

by:eric281
ID: 31468511
I solved the problem by booting up, then connecting to the server using computer management from another server. I was able to disable most non essential services and then the server would let me login. From there I turned them on one by one, until I found an Exchange server that was hanging. Used the KB to find the problem with that particular service and all was well.
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