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Windows Server 2008 Unable to Load Profiles - C: drive boots as H: drive

Posted on 2013-12-05
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Last Modified: 2015-06-23
My windows server 2008 R2 crashed.  I was unable to reboot and ran bootrec which allowed me to boot.

When logging in to the server the "preparing desktop settings" displayed for several minutes and then went into a blue screen with just the mouse pointer.

I was able to access task manager and manually run explorer.exe but then received a message that the user profile did not load correctly.  

I cannot access any programs...some just don't load or attempt to load (nothing happens or I receive a message that says the program is not responding) and programs that rely on .NET give an error indicating that I must install .NET framework (which is installed).

I went into explorer and noticed that my C: drive booted and shows as the H: drive.  

I have tried the following to try to resolve my issue with no success:
- tried logging in as a different user
- deleted user profile (including from the registry)
- ran bootrec.exe (/Fixmbr, /Fixboot, /ScanOS & /RebuildBcd)
- ran diskpart.exe and it shows my C: as the boot drive
- I tried running startrec.exe but it kept receiving the error unable to start startrec.exe (not other information provided)

I am at a loss.  I've read that Remote Desktop may be hung due to users not logging off correctly (multiple hung sessions) but I can't find a way to kill those sessions.
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Question by:mnmbrush
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dlethe earned 500 total points
ID: 39700131
Well, you've pretty much done all you can. Next step is to go to a backup & restore.   If your backup is ancient, then I'd do a fresh install on another HDD, and selectively restore what you can then manually copy over files from the older system and refresh the uncorrupted files.

NO matter what, you should make an image backup of the broken O/S drive now so it won't get any more screwed up.  If that disk is booted it IS going to just make things worse because some background or scheduled service could munge up a file that is still good.
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by:lionelmm
ID: 39700675
The fact that your Windows is showing up on Drive H is a problem. For it to do that indicates that there are other drives connected to the server, other internal drives and/or external drives, USB drives, thumb drives. Remove them all except the drive(s) that have your Windows installation on it and bootup and see if that will allow you to run repair steps.
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by:Seth Simmons
ID: 40845808
This question has been classified as abandoned and is closed as part of the Cleanup Program. See the recommendation for more details.
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