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  1. Joined : Oct 2013
    A Finnish ex-pat in Germany
    Posts : 9,081
    Windows 10 Pro
       2016-06-15 #620

    I hate long quotes but in this case I have a reason to quote your two posts fully. Let's see them first and continue after them:

    Carousel said: View Post
    Hello Kari, my laptop is stuck booting into the Admin ID. But at least the user files are no longer on the C-drive. Here is the background…

    I am preparing my Acer laptop for a new msata SSD. The laptop has a 24GB SSD expresscache today. I want to use a 120GB SSD for the Windows 10 Home system and have the user files on the 500GB HD. I already have the C-drive partition down to 100GB. And I already worked my way through your tutorials for “Move Users Profile Folder to another Location in Windows 10”. Since the laptop originally had Windows 8 on it, I used your instructions to delete the “upgrade” references from the registry. I already had install.wim for recovery purposes on a small E: partition. I created a D: partition to take the user files. There is no DVD drive.

    I got Sysprep underway with relocate.xml as described in your Method Two video. The hard disk was busy for a while. But eventually it brought me to the screen to enter the Windows product key. I had already used “showkeyplus” to get the installed upgrade key in case I needed it. But first, like you did, I tried clicking only that I would enter the details later. But no matter what I tried… not entering the key… entering the key… Windows kept bringing me back to the screen to enter the product key.

    Eventually, I hit Ctrl-Shift-F3 and booted into the Admin ID. From there, I reactivated the user accounts, signed out of Admin, and into the main user account. From there I deactivated the Admin account.

    The user account mostly looked good. The only AppData info left on on the C-drive was for Windows store apps. Though, when I opened Outlook 2016, is started filling up OST files on the C-drive. At least OneDrive took to the D-drive well enough, though I had to reinstall it.

    I never went through or got to the whole temporary account process.

    And when I rebooted, I was brought back into the Admin ID. So, using your EightForums tutorial for “Computer Keeps Booting Into SysPrep”, I changed “cleanupstate” from 2 to 7. But I had no joy. The laptop kept booting into Admin… Eventually, at 3am, I called it quits for the evening.

    Can you help? Any advice? Thanks much.
    Carousel said: View Post
    Hi Kari, I have some updates to my post #609: “my laptop is stuck booting into the Admin ID. But at least the user files are no longer on the C-drive”...
    The laptop is no longer booting into the Admin ID. There were many folders under D: \Users in the form: Administrator.Desktop-93M44HS and TEMP.DESKTOP-93M44HS etc. I deleted all these. But I still have Administrator, Default and Default.migrated folders under there.
    I thought I would make a new system image first before going further. But I received an error message: the backup failed… service cannot be started in safe mode (0x8007043C). In msconfig,
    I checked that normal start up is selected and that windows back is running. But I had to go to work… Perhaps I need to check for some registry settings later. Or maybe turn safe boot on and then back off…
    Any advice would be much appreciated! My new SSD arrived and I would love to get to cloning the c-drive systems while leaving the user files on the D-drive of the old spinning hard disk. But I want to make sure that the base system is stable first. Thank you.

    OK, let's start about that highlighted part in above quote. I am now assuming that with no longer booting to Admin ID you mean it will no longer enter the Audit Mode using the built-in administrator account, but that is contradicted with what you mention next, that Backup refuses to run telling it can't be run in Safe Mode.

    The Audit Mode is basically nothing more than a variation of Windows Safe Mode; for all things important, Windows considers itself being in Safe Mode as long as it is in Audit Mode. Therefore the Backup will not run in Audit Mode (Safe Mode).

    Other than that I have to say honestly that I understand very little of what you have posted. Deleted accounts and such, stuff you should absolutely not do while customizing Windows in Audit Mode.

    My sincere recommendation is that you restore your Windows 8 system from a system image, upgrade it to Windows 10, then if you decide to try this one more time you really concentrate to first read the tutorial through, then watch the video (second one in your case) pausing and going back whenever you have the slightest feeling that you did not get something. Proceed only when you think you completely understand the procedure.

    There's nothing much I can do to assist you at the moment, simply because your explanation about what you have done and what has happened is for me really difficult to understand.

    Kari
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  2. Joined : Oct 2013
    A Finnish ex-pat in Germany
    Posts : 9,081
    Windows 10 Pro
       2016-06-15 #621

    MJP said: View Post
    No - there were no visible updates pending. I had tried rebooting a few times anyway, but that did not visibly apply any updates.
    OK, had to check that.

    This is a very rare Sysprep error. You might want to try fool Windows: install some software, anything, in Audit Mode, for instance browse to videolan.org and install VLC Player. When done, restart, Windows returns automatically to Audit Mode. Now try Sysprep again.

    Installing software and restarting usually does the trick, fools Windows to clear the pending update flag.

    Note   Note
    Edge cannot be used in Audit Mode, you need IE to try the above trick. Right click Start, select Run, type iexplore and hit Enter to launch IE.


    Kari
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  3. Joined : Aug 2015
    Posts : 10
    Windows 10
       2016-06-16 #622

    Stuck in Safe Mode


    Hello Kari, I wrote too soon yesterday morning to say that the laptop is no longer booting into the Admin account. I shut down the PC two nights ago. Or, certainly I thought I did. Note: I have been holding down the shift key when clicking shutdown. And yesterday morning it did not boot into Admin. Rather, it booted to the normal screen where I could select from the two normal users. It was only after this seemingly good sign that I deleted the surplus folders that had been created under D:\users. So I only did this after I thought that the laptop was out of Sysprep. But this morning it booted into Admin again.

    With the weekend coming, I am prepared to restore Windows entirely. Do you recommend that I go all the way back to the original Windows 8 instead of using a Windows 10 system image? I take it that this will set up the system with C:\users again, correct?

    By the way, I did read, print out, and watch all your instructions very carefully, pausing the second video on a tablet at each step. Where the process went wrong for me was on the windows screen, where the product code is requested. I never like it when PC companies / Microsoft do not provide the product codes on a sticker. But I suppose I saved some money when I bought the laptop.

    Thanks again for your help.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  4. Joined : Oct 2013
    A Finnish ex-pat in Germany
    Posts : 9,081
    Windows 10 Pro
       2016-06-16 #623

    Carousel said: View Post
    I deleted the surplus folders that had been created under D:\users.
    That sound dangerous! Sysprep and Windows do not create any surplus folders in Users, nothing there should be manually deleted after sysprepping Windows.

    If your Windows image works and will give you a working Windows 10 then use it to restore. If it is made after your failed attepts to sysprep, then go back to Windows 8 starting from scratch.

    Kari
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  5. Joined : Jun 2016
    Posts : 9
    Windows 10
       2016-06-16 #624

    Kari said: View Post
    First this error:

    Code:
    Error      [0x0f0043] SYSPRP WinMain:The sysprep dialog box returned FALSE

    It is actually not an error and will always be shown in logs. It only means that the Sysprep dialog (the one at middle of the screen when you boot to Audit Mode) has not been used.

    Then: It looks that your issue is that the answer file is not found. According to the log it should be on the same drive F: where your answer file is told to relocate the Users folder. There's something wrong with that drive assignment.

    Try this:

    Although you are not relocating to drive D: as told in the warning box in Method One Step 2, read it and do as told in it to ascertain the drive ID letters will be set correctly. In below quote the warning in question, I've highlighted the part I want you to read:

    warning   Warning
    If you intend to use drive D: as the location for the relocated Users folder, please read this before proceeding!

    Windows "likes" to set the the drive ID letters like this:
    • Drive C: > The system drive where Windows will be installed
    • Drive D: > First optical drive (CD / DVD drive)
    • Drive E: > Second partition on the same disk where the C: is located, or in case that disk only has one partition, the first partition on the secondary disk

    Now when you sysprep telling it to move the Users to D: drive, after the reboot Windows might find that the D: is an optical drive and your intended drive D: is now E:, sysprep fails and you have to reinstall.

    To be sure you are able to use drive D: for the relocated Users folder you need to set the drive letters manually before the sysprep is run. In Audit Mode you can do this for instance with Disk Management by manually changing the drive letters:
    • Change the optical drive letter to something at the end of the alphabet, I use X:
    • Change the drive letter of the partition or disk you intend to use for the Users folder to D:
    • If the partition or disk you want to use already has a letter D:, change it to something else, close the Disk Management, open it again and change the letter back to D:

    See the tutorial at our sister site the Seven Forums: Drive Letter - Add, Change, or Remove in Windows - Windows 7 Help Forums

    I recommend to always set drive letters manually to override the defaults but this is especially important for those wanting to use drive D: for relocated Users folder.


    Now uninstall any possible third party AV programs (Avira, Avast, Panda etc.). Windows Defender is OK.

    When done, change the name of your answer file to unattend.xml and save it to C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep folder.

    Now sysprep with this simple command, without the /unattend:

    Code:
    sysprep /oobe /reboot

    When sysprep is run, it looks if the Sysprep folder contains a file named unattend.xml. If found, that answer file will be used. The /unattend switch followed by an answer file path and name is only required when Sysprep folder does not contain unattend.xml.

    Please try the above and report back.

    Kari
    Hi!

    Did everything as you said, still got a fatal error. I changed my DVD drive to X: and the destination folder from E: to F: and therefore changed unattend.xml accordingly. I've included screenshot of command prompt as well as new panther.zip. Hope they help solving this. Oh yeah, and I didn't connect to Internet at any point of installing/sysprepping. Could that cause problems?

    - Matti

    Panther.zip
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Capture.PNG 
Views:	12 
Size:	21.9 KB 
ID:	85317
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  6. Joined : Oct 2013
    A Finnish ex-pat in Germany
    Posts : 9,081
    Windows 10 Pro
       2016-06-16 #625

    Patti12 said: View Post
    Did everything as you said, still got a fatal error.
    Give me some time to check the latest logs. In the mean time if you are up to it, as yours is a fresh clean install I recommend the following, if you have patience to do it (takes 20 to 30 minutes, depending on your hardware):

    • Start from scratch, shut down the PC and remove all external devices except mouse, keyboard and display
    • Boot with Windows 10 install media, do a clean install, deleting all partitions from first HDD (Drive 0) when you come to this dialog:


      (Screenshot from Windows 10 - Clean Install - Windows 10 Forums)
    • When Drive 0 is one big empty block, select it (Drive 0) and click Next to install
    • When done boot to Audit Mode as told in tutorial
    • Connect to Internet
    • Check the drive letters in Disk Management, change the target drive for Users folder to anything else than your preferred drive ID letter, close Disk Management, reopen it and now change the drive ID to your preferred one
    • Make the answer file, store it as unattend.xml in C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep folder
    • Sysprep with sysprep /oobe /reboot command

    Regardless if you do the above or not, I will in any case study your latest logs and post back later.

    Kari
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  7. Joined : Jun 2016
    Posts : 9
    Windows 10
       2016-06-16 #626

    Kari said: View Post
    Give me some time to check the latest logs. In the mean time if you are up to it, as yours is a fresh clean install I recommend the following, if you have patience to do it (takes 20 to 30 minutes, depending on your hardware):

    • Start from scratch, shut down the PC and remove all external devices except mouse, keyboard and display
    • Boot with Windows 10 install media, do a clean install, deleting all partitions from first HDD (Drive 0) when you come to this dialog:


      (Screenshot from Windows 10 - Clean Install - Windows 10 Forums)
    • When Drive 0 is one big empty block, select it (Drive 0) and click Next to install
    • When done boot to Audit Mode as told in tutorial
    • Connect to Internet
    • Check the drive letters in Disk Management, change the target drive for Users folder to anything else than your preferred drive ID letter, close Disk Management, reopen it and now change the drive ID to your preferred one
    • Make the answer file, store it as unattend.xml in C:\Windows\System32\Sysprep folder
    • Sysprep with sysprep /oobe /reboot command

    Regardless if you do the above or not, I will in any case study your latest logs and post back later.

    Kari
    That's basically what I did earlier today, so I'd rather not try the exact same thing again. Only things that I didn't do as above were that Internet wasn't connected at any time and for example analog-to-digital -converter was plugged in.

    - Matti
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  8. Joined : Oct 2013
    A Finnish ex-pat in Germany
    Posts : 9,081
    Windows 10 Pro
       2016-06-16 #627

    Patti12 said: View Post
    That's basically what I did earlier today, so I'd rather not try the exact same thing again. Only things that I didn't do as above were that Internet wasn't connected at any time and for example analog-to-digital -converter was plugged in.

    - Matti
    I am feeling frustrated... There is no clear reason why sysprep fails. Only understandable error in logs tells a registry key has a value it shouldn't have.

    Let's check registry when in Audit Mode, before sysprep. Before proceeding, please backup the registry.

    First check HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Setup\Sysprep. All four keys there (Cleanup, Generalize, Settings and Specialize) should have Default string value (REG_SZ) with value not set:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2016_06_16_11_56_434.png 
Views:	9 
Size:	39.2 KB 
ID:	85341

    If any of the four keys has any value set, remove the value by double clicking Default, removing the value and clicking OK:
    Name:  2016_06_16_11_51_181.png
Views: 210
Size:  8.3 KB

    The Settings key should be the only one having a subkey (sppnp), which also should have Default string with value not set, and two DWORDs with value 0:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2016_06_16_11_54_063.png 
Views:	17 
Size:	47.6 KB 
ID:	85340

    When done, keep registry editor open and jump back to this tutorial in first page of this thread, browse to last part Upgrade, its Step 2, and do as shown in two screenshots there (yes, I know yours is not an upgrade but this is worth to check).

    Close registry editor, try sysprep.

    Post back and tell if any progress.

    Kari
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  9. Joined : Jun 2016
    Posts : 9
    Windows 10
       2016-06-16 #628

    Kari said: View Post
    I am feeling frustrated... There is no clear reason why sysprep fails. Only understandable error in logs tells a registry key has a value it shouldn't have.

    Let's check registry when in Audit Mode, before sysprep. Before proceeding, please backup the registry.

    First check HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Setup\Sysprep. All four keys there (Cleanup, Generalize, Settings and Specialize) should have Default string value (REG_SZ) with value not set:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2016_06_16_11_56_434.png 
Views:	9 
Size:	39.2 KB 
ID:	85341

    If any of the four keys has any value set, remove the value by double clicking Default, removing the value and clicking OK:
    Name:  2016_06_16_11_51_181.png
Views: 210
Size:  8.3 KB

    The Settings key should be the only one having a subkey (sppnp), which also should have Default string with value not set, and two DWORDs with value 0:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2016_06_16_11_54_063.png 
Views:	17 
Size:	47.6 KB 
ID:	85340

    When done, keep registry editor open and jump back to this tutorial in first page of this thread, browse to last part Upgrade, its Step 2, and do as shown in two screenshots there (yes, I know yours is not an upgrade but this is worth to check).

    Close registry editor, try sysprep.

    Post back and tell if any progress.

    Kari
    You're not the only one getting frustrated. I checked registry and changed CleanupState value from 2 to 7 as per tutorial. Also disconnected everything else than mouse, keyboard and DVI cables. Still no luck getting sysprep to run. Here are the latest log files. Check them in case you find something obvious. If nothing seems out of place I'm just going to stick with Windows 7 as I need to get the machine working. Thanks for your help nevertheless! :)

    Panther.zip

    - Matti
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  10. Joined : Oct 2013
    A Finnish ex-pat in Germany
    Posts : 9,081
    Windows 10 Pro
       2016-06-16 #629

    Patti12 said: View Post
    You're not the only one getting frustrated. I checked registry and changed CleanupState value from 2 to 7 as per tutorial. Also disconnected everything else than mouse, keyboard and DVI cables. Still no luck getting sysprep to run. Here are the latest log files. Check them in case you find something obvious. If nothing seems out of place I'm just going to stick with Windows 7 as I need to get the machine working. Thanks for your help nevertheless!

    Panther.zip

    - Matti
    The highlighted part in above quote: is this a dual boot system, or a virgin / empty HDD with fresh clean installed Windows 10 as only installed OS?

    Anyway, I'll check the logs. I have to tell you I've never seen this stubborn sysprep!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


 
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