How does Windows boot to advanced recovery option e.g. command prompt?

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  1. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 30,094
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
    Thread Starter
       #31

    AndreTen said:
    Have to read through your other thread (why did you separate them?).

    When topgun (or was it Navy..) suggested you to clean install and restore just C: partition, you said you did. But you didn't clean install, just did in-place upgrade. I could misunderstood, of course.
    I did a then b as per original thread.
    a. Clean install, (worked) then restored image of C:
    b. Subsequent to that I tried an in-place upgrade repair install (hence my two recovery partitions).

    (why did you separate them?).
    In this thread I was simply hoping to learn how this works, rather than investigate my particular problem.
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  2. AndreTen's Avatar
    Posts : 23,375
    Windows 10 (Pro and Insider Pro)
       #32

    dalchina said:
    I did a then b as per original thread.
    a. Clean install, (worked) then restored image of C:
    b. Subsequent to that I tried an in-place upgrade repair install (hence my two recovery partitions).


    In this thread I was simply hoping to learn how this works, rather than investigate my particular problem.
    Thanks :) Interesting debate, happy to learn from you guys
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  3. topgundcp's Avatar
    Posts : 2,767
    Linux Mint 20.1 Win10Prox64
       #33

    if you open admin command, copy and paste: reagentc /boottore&shutdown /r /f /t 00
    Does it boot into recovery ?
    - that gives me a 454 'Unexpected error'
    This tells me that the BCD is partially corrupted.

    The commands: shutdown.exe /r /o /f /t 00
    or: %SystemRoot%\System32\Cmd.exe /c reagentc /boottore&shutdown /r /f /t 00
    should boot into Recovery if everything is configured correctly.
    FYI, If Windows is configured correctly:
    1. If Reagentc is disabled, you still can get into Recovery but with limited options.
    2. If Reagentc is enabled, you'll get all options.
    3. If you boot Windows using Recovery USB stick, You'll get into Recovery with couple of options missing.


    Here's my suggestion if you want to try:
    OPTION 1: Will save the trouble of re-install Windows.

    1. Download the image of my first 3 partitions (450MB Recovery, 100 MB EFI partition, and 16MB unformatted primary)
      EFI_Boot-00-00.7z - Google Drive
    2. Run Macrium and restore the image from step 1, overwriting your existing 1st three partitions, leaving C alone.
    3. Delete the 490MB Recovery partition.
    4. From Macrium, run fix boot problems.
    5. Reboot. Open Admin command prompt then run Reagentc /info to make sure that it is enabled. If not, enable it.
      if failed to enable, reboot and try again.

    OPTION 2: Assuming you've already had Windows backup with Macrium.

    1. Wipe out the first 5 parttiions. (450MB, 100MB, 16MB, C Drive, 480MB)
    2. Fresh install Windows 10
    3. Restore C drive from backup image, run fix boot problems
    4. repeat step 5 from OPTION 1 above.
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  4. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 30,094
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
    Thread Starter
       #34

    Many thanks, will take a look when time permits.

    If the BCD data is corrupted, I'm surprised rebuilding the EFI partition, or clean installing and restoring the Windows partition didn't resolve this.
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  5. lx07's Avatar
    Posts : 5,479
    2004
       #35

    dalchina said:
    I did a then b as per original thread.
    a. Clean install, (worked) then restored image of C:
    b. Subsequent to that I tried an in-place upgrade repair install (hence my two recovery partitions)..
    Are you saying that after you did a clean install you did a repair install and it made another recovery partition? That never happens - repair install (or upgrade) only makes a new partition if the existing recovery partition is too small (unless this is a new bug).

    It seems to me you didn't do a clean install - what you did was delete C. The installer found not enough space for recovery and made another. Back up C, delete all partitions and do it again.

    If you have one instance of WinRE.wim and it is registered then it will work (could be on C or on recovery partition).

    If you don't have WinRE.wim registered it won't work. There isn't much more to it than that really.

    The other possibility is you have to reset NVRAM but that is more a boot issue.
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  6. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 30,094
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
    Thread Starter
       #36

    Thanks for your interest.

    As you suggest, I may just repeat the whole process again, as it makes little sense that a fully working clean install should lose access to the advanced startup options as a result of restoring the Windows partition, but not for the reason you suggest.

    Now I do know what a clean install is. I deleted all the Windows partitions on my SSD.
    All the partitions were thus replaced when I did a clean install.
    Following the clean install I had exactly the correct number of partitions.
    I did not only delete the Windows partition.

    I have done this procedure previously - a year ago- (Clean install and replace the Windows partition from and image)

    And finally, I did insert the installation DVD and progress through a normal installation process.

    Subsequent to having done all that, finding the advanced startup options now missing, I did the in-place upgrade repair install.

    That's the second time I've seen an in-place upgrade repair install create a second recovery partition (the other was a year ago or so).

    This time I know a bit more, so can try to investigate what's happening,
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  7. lx07's Avatar
    Posts : 5,479
    2004
       #37

    dalchina said:
    That's the second time I've seen an in-place upgrade repair install create a second recovery partition (the other was a year ago or so
    The only difference between what you have done (and what works for me) is I made the partitions manually and made recovery 500MB and put it after C as recommended here UEFI/GPT-based hard drive partitions | Microsoft Docs

    Could be Windows Upgrade team doesn't talk to Install team.

    It is worth a try though. 500MB after C works for me (but then 450MB before C worked in the past too but I've not tried it on 1507).
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  8. topgundcp's Avatar
    Posts : 2,767
    Linux Mint 20.1 Win10Prox64
       #38

    dalchina said:
    Many thanks, will take a look when time permits.

    If the BCD data is corrupted, I'm surprised rebuilding the EFI partition, or clean installing and restoring the Windows partition didn't resolve this.
    Rebuilding the BCD will only fix boot problems, it does not fix the Recovery problem, you'd need to use reagentc for this.

    FYI, there's other programs, when run also modify the BCD. For example, when you run from admin command: reagentc /boottore
    an entry will be added to the BCD:
    bootsequence {31416d29-611c-11e6-8f31-90f4a30e3b92} ====> GUID of the Recovery partition.pointing the GUID of the Recovery partition so when you restart, Windows will get into the Recovery environment dirrectly.

    In addition, the file "ReAgent.xml" under: C:\Windows\System32\Recovery is modified with info as shown:
    When Eanabled
    <?xml version='1.0' encoding='utf-8'?>

    <WindowsRE version="2.0">
    <WinreBCD id="{00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000}"/>
    <WinreLocation path="" id="0" offset="0" guid="{00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000}"/>
    <ImageLocation path="" id="0" offset="0" guid="{00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000}"/>
    ......

    When Disabled:
    <?xml version='1.0' encoding='utf-8'?>

    <WindowsRE version="2.0">
    <WinreBCD id="{31416d2b-611c-11e6-8f31-90f4a30e3b92}"/>
    <WinreLocation path="\Recovery\WindowsRE" id="0" offset="1048576" guid="{f32021c5-b6b3-4c83-8a3c-ad3d2eac74d0}"/>
    ......

    As you can see, Windows save all the info for the Recovery partition. So, when you re-enable it, it will set to the correct location.


    OPTION 1 mentioned above was used successfully to fix the exact same problem for a friend in the past.
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  9. AndreTen's Avatar
    Posts : 23,375
    Windows 10 (Pro and Insider Pro)
       #39

    @dalchina
    Do you now this toy? Bootice

    See it somewhere and remembered this thread...
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  10. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 18,812
    10 Home x64 (20H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #40

    dalchina said:
    None of my advanced recovery options (restart to Safe Mode, command prompt, startup repair, system restore) have worked since upgrading to the Creator's build. They were ok in the Anniversary build. The upgrade went smoothly.
    Remembering your problems, I tested advanced recovery after upgrading to Fall Creators Update. All working in 1709 as it was in 1703 (and 1607 before that).
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