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Windows 8.1 Only Restarts to Automatic Repair

Posted on 2016-09-15
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Last Modified: 2016-10-06
On restart Windows 8.1 only restarts to Automatic Repair screen with two options "Restart" and "Advanced Options".  Restart Option displays the "ASUS" logo and the system hangs.  Advanced Options changes screens with "Continue to 8.1", "Troubleshoot", and "Turn Off PC" displayed.  

Selecting "continue" reports an error, then collects some data and finally goes back to the "Automatic Repair Screen" with the original two options and waits.

Selecting "Troubleshoot" provides additional selections, "Refresh you PC" (doesn't work), "Reset your PC" (haven't tried because at this point I don't want to wipe the files out) or, "Advanced Options" is displayed.  Selecting "Advanced Options" yields a screen with "System Restore" ( have tried multiple times to previous dates successfully, but only results restarting to the same "Automatic Repair" screen),
"System Image Recovery" (no image to recover), "Startup Repair" (end result after running is system restarts to same "Automatic Repair" screen.  "Command Prompt" (used to run chkdsk /f and produced same result as all others), "UEFI Firmware Settings" (haven't made any changes), "Startup Settings" (yields the screen with choices 1) thru 9) (have tried safe mode which doesn't get you to safe), if you leave it at this screen without making a selection computer will do a random power off.

My research seems to turn up many instances of this problem with Windows 8.1, some of the suggestions I have tried, but none successfully. Am hoping that someone on this board may be able to help.

Thanks,
John Nelson
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Question by:John Nelson
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LVL 96

Assisted Solution

by:Experienced Member
Experienced Member earned 166 total points (awarded by participants)
ID: 41800705
At the command prompt, try :

System File Checker:

Open cmd.exe with Run as Administrator and run SFC /SCANNOW.
Allow to complete, restart or, preferably, shut down the computer and then start up again.
Test to see if the problem has been corrected.

DISM:

Open cmd.exe with Run as Administrator.
DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /Scanhealth (takes 15 - 20 minutes).
DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-Image /Restorehealth (takes 15 - 20 minutes).
Restart the computer and test.

If these do not work, you may have to do the Automatic Repair.
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Author Comment

by:John Nelson
ID: 41800899
Thanks, John for your suggestions.  The sfc /Scannow runs the verification to 100% and then displays the following statement, "Windows Resource Protection could not perform the requested operation"

The first dism.exe statement, when entered, returns an error code 50, then the following statement: "DISM does not support servicing Windows PE with the /Online option".

I will work on this more tomorrow (Friday, 09/15) morning.

Thanks,
John
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LVL 92

Assisted Solution

by:nobus
nobus earned 167 total points (awarded by participants)
ID: 41801028
usually, such problems indicate a dying disk drive, so i suggest to run a disk diagnostic; 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


**note that it can be necessary to run chkdsk after the diag completes
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LVL 49

Assisted Solution

by:dbrunton
dbrunton earned 166 total points (awarded by participants)
ID: 41801131
I'll second nobus's comment about dying hard disk.  Test as he suggested.

Note sometimes easier to attach hard disk to another machine (make sure it is not first bootable device) and use the manufacturer's diagnostic tools (obtain from Internet) from that machine.

Award points to nobus.  This is just backing up his comment.
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Accepted Solution

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John Nelson earned 1 total points (awarded by participants)
ID: 41802038
Summary of Results:  Systems memory tested OK with no errors.  ASUS Desktop has a Toshiba DT01ACA100, (1) TB capacity and I could not locate on Toshiba Website or UBCD any HDD testing for any Toshiba drives.  Tried other mfg disk utilities, but I wasn't satisfied with any of their attempts to do a deep disk test.  

Bottom line, to avoid spending unnecessary additional time on this unit, I replaced the drive, reloaded OS 8.1 and copied documents etc., from Toshiba drive.

All suggestions were appreciated.

John Nelson
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LVL 92

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 41802636
normally, you can use DFT - Drive Fitness  Test
in many cases, seagate also works

anyhow, good to hear you're running again

so don't forget to close this Q
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Author Comment

by:John Nelson
ID: 41803214
Trying to close this question......
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