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Windows 10 "clean" install failures

Posted on 2016-08-03
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Last Modified: 2016-08-15
After several failed attempts to upgrade Windows 8.1 to Windows 10, I tried a clean install using a CD and a valid key. I tried booting from the CD and go through the upgrade and also starting the process from within win 8.1. In all the cases, the first but stops at the Windows flag! The system was checked for compatibility and it is fine.

I do not care about preserving the contents of my drive so I wonder how can I initiate a format from the Windows 10 CD. Any recommendations?
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Question by:gaspan
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18 Comments
 
LVL 18

Expert Comment

by:Edward Pamias
ID: 41741268
Is that the upgrade tool on CD? Or is that the retail version? Did you try downloading the upgrade tool and doing it that way?
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LVL 56

Assisted Solution

by:McKnife
McKnife earned 1000 total points
ID: 41741275
Could be a problem at a low hardware level, had this once and a bios update helped.
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:gaspan
ID: 41741285
Additional info:

I have tried both the upgrade tool (clean install) and the CD which is a retail edition with key. I have seen a lot of threads that lead me to believe that an "upgrade" error could be hardware driver dependent. But what I want to do is a clean install and this is why I am puzzled...
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LVL 56

Expert Comment

by:McKnife
ID: 41741302
You saw my comment, I hope. Please see if you can update your bios.
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LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41741314
What key are you using? Remember that the deadline for the free upgrade has expired, so if you are using the key of the previous OS that could cause it to fail. You would need a valid Windows 10 key.

Otherwise just try the installation without inputting a key. That way you will still be able to install windows 10. It just won't activate and run in trial mode with reduced functionality.
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LVL 49

Expert Comment

by:dbrunton
ID: 41741502
>>  Remember that the deadline for the free upgrade has expired, so if you are using the key of the previous OS that could cause it to fail.

Not quite correct.  You CAN still install using the previous OS key.

See https://www.thurrott.com/windows/windows-10/75159/can-still-use-windows-78-x-product-key-activate-windows-10 and http://www.zdnet.com/article/windows-10-free-upgrade-is-still-available-using-windows-7-and-8-product-keys/ but I'd do it now rather than tomorrow.
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LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41741520
That is a special loophole where you are required to accept that you are using assistive technologies. You need to run the file you download from the m$ site and it only has been made public when the free upgrade was closed. It definitely isn't the normal procedure and I very much doubt the asker knew this when he posted his question.
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LVL 49

Expert Comment

by:dbrunton
ID: 41741585
Well, no it's not.

The assistive technologies is one method.

The key loophole as described by Mary Jo Foley and Ed Bott and Paul Thurrott http://www.zdnet.com/article/windows-10-free-upgrade-is-still-available-using-windows-7-and-8-product-keys/ is another.  Simply it appears that Microsoft has NOT yet turned off the activation for users with Windows 7 and 8 keys.

I suspect that they are giving users a little bit more time to get their machines upgraded to Windows 10.
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LVL 56

Expert Comment

by:McKnife
ID: 41741779
This is not about activation. It's about an installation that doesn't finish.
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LVL 92

Accepted Solution

by:
nobus earned 1000 total points
ID: 41741819
what system is this, and what disk drive?
before doing the install, i would test Ram and disk, to be sure about the basics - i use the UBCD for this :
Hardware diagnostic CD    UBCD
---------------------------------------------------
go to the download page, scroll down to the mirror section, and  click on a mirror to start the download
Download the UBCD and make the cd   <<==on a WORKING PC, and boot the problem PC from it
Here 2 links, one to the general site, and a direct link to the download

since the downloaded file is an ISO file, eg ubcd527.iso - so you need to use an ISO burning tool
if you don't have that software, install cdburnerXP : http://cdburnerxp.se/

If you want also the Ram tested - run memtest86+ at least 1 full pass,  - you should have NO errors!
 
For disk Diagnostics run the disk diag for your disk brand (eg seagate diag for seagate drive)  from the HDD section -  long or advanced diag !  (runs at least for30 minutes)

http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/      

**  you can make a bootable cd - or bootable usb stick
*** note *** for SSD drives  use the tool from the manufacturer, like intel 's toolbox :
https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/18455/Intel-Solid-State-Drive-Toolbox

for completeness -here's how i handle disk problems : http://www.experts-exchange.com/Storage/Hard_Drives/A_3000-The-bad-hard-disk-problem.html
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LVL 49

Expert Comment

by:dbrunton
ID: 41741848
>>  This is not about activation. It's about an installation that doesn't finish.

Yes.  Apologies.

What exactly is your system?  Make, model, CPU, hard disk, RAM?
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:gaspan
ID: 41746379
Thank you for suggesting UBCD...might try this approach and format the drive, then start clean. Will do a system check for the heck of it but this system although older, passes the hardware compatibility test for Win 10 and runs perfectly with win 8.1
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LVL 92

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 41746698
ok  -awaiting results
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LVL 56

Expert Comment

by:McKnife
ID: 41747068
Me too, the bios...
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:gaspan
ID: 41753082
BIOS is current so that is not the problem McKnife.
Did not find the time to work with UBCD yet but will let you guys know. Thank you for the suggestions.
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LVL 56

Expert Comment

by:McKnife
ID: 41753117
Ok.

Some approaches: take out the disk and start the installation in another machine and let it pass the first phase on the other machine. At first reboot, shut down the machine and put the disk back to where it belongs. Might sound wild, but could work.

Also try to disconnect any unneeded devices and set your bios back to defaults. If still no better, try a different hard drive and, if removable, different video adapter.
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LVL 92

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 41753411
yes, you can install it on another system; it will PROBABLY work, and update the needed drivers - but no guarantee for all systems

however the fact that upgrading did not work could point to a hardware problem, so let me ask : were there any problems before, or was it running fine?
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LVL 1

Author Closing Comment

by:gaspan
ID: 41756816
Memory issue,,, what a pain? Apparently that was not an issue while 8.1 was running but I was able to nail it down with UBCD.
Thank you for your help.
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