Windows 10: System won't boot to W10 (even USB, WinPE, WinRE)

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  1. Posts : 93
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit, Build 16299
       20 Nov 2017 #1

    System won't boot to W10 (even USB, WinPE, WinRE)


    Hi All,

    I bought an old, but in good condition Dell Inspiron 560 for cheap off some people who had recently purchased a new machine. I thought I'd use it as a sort of test system while studying for my CompTIA A+ exam. First thing I did was upgrade the BIOS so I could put a better CPU in it, and then I also upgrade the RAM. I also installed a 120GB SSD and kept the old 750GB installed for storage purposes. Additionally, I installed a new PSU. The system originally came installed with W7, but had been upgraded to W10 when Microsoft forced it upon everybody. I upgraded it further to W10 Pro since I wanted to play around with Hyper-V. I followed Kari's tutorial on moving the User's Directory to my storage drive to free up space on the SSD and to help the system boot up faster. Everything at this point worked fine.

    However, a couple of weeks ago I started receiving some SMART errors on boot up, so I purchased a new HDD to replace the one currently in the system (the drive with the User's Directory). I installed it a few days ago and performed a clean install of Windows 10 Pro Fall Creator's (1709) edition. I did the same procedure as before and installed Windows on the SSD while moving the User's Directory to the new HDD. This time, however, I've encountered some boot problems. I originally thought maybe I messed up somewhere in the process of moving the User's Directory to the HDD, so I redid it. Unfortunately, the boot issues still exist.

    Basically, the computer boots up to the Dell Splash screen and the "loading" bar either gets all the way to the end of about halfway and then the computer reboots, and then ultimately ends up in a reboot cycle. Periodically, it will make it to the Automatic Repair screen, but then reboots before completing. And then, sometimes it makes it through the repair process and tells me Windows could not repair the problem. Rarely, it will even make it all the way to the login screen, I will login, and everything works normally.

    I was initially able to enable boot logging and in the log file I noticed numerous "not_loaded" errors that seem to be related the driver loading process. Unfortunately, I failed to save the text file to a USB drive when I had the chance and now I can't get back to it (I will keep trying). I've since tried to boot in to Safe Mode and use various options under Troubleshooting in the W10 Recovery Environment, but every time I try to run one of the options the computer reboots. I have even tried booting to my W10 USB drive, but the computer reboots when I tried to boot from it as well. I've used two tools to make a W10 USB drive (Rufus and Media Creation Tool), but it doesn't seem to make a difference.

    I've tried various other troubleshooting methods including running the built-in Dell Diagnostics (everything passed), taking out the new RAM and using the old RAM that originally came in the system, unplugging the storage drive and just leaving the System Drive plugged in, replacing the CMOS battery, verbose boot mode, reset BIOS/Cleared CMOS, etc. I've come to the conclusion that it's likely some sort of hardware compatibility problem.

    On a whim, I tried a Linux Live USB and it booted perfectly. I then made a W7 Install USB using Rufus and it booted just fine as well. This pretty much makes it seems like it's something specifically with W10. I plan on trying to install an older edition of W10 to see if it works. Haven't done so yet, though.

    (Other Notes: I created my W10 USB in Rufus using "MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI-CSM" since it is an older system, but it still doesn't work. The System Drive (SSD) is plugged into the SATA 0 port. Boot sequence in BIOS is correct. I even disabled booting from everything but the system drive.)

    Anyone have any ideas on what I might try to get this system working with W10? I'm at a loss.

    Thanks
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    20 Nov 2017 #2

    Start the computer and press F2 and Boot into Setup (Bios) On the Left panel expand System Configuration highlight SATA Operation. Make sure AHCI is selected and not ATA, IDE or Legacy
    If booting from a USB Flash drive created with Rufus, Under General/Boot Sequence, Move USB Storage Device to First Boot Device. Save and Exit. Or press F12 at bootup to do a one time Change of Boot Order.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails uefisata[1].png  
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  3. Posts : 93
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit, Build 16299
    Thread Starter
       20 Nov 2017 #3

    spunk said: View Post
    Make sure AHCI is selected and not ATA, IDE or Legacy
    Hi Spunk,

    Thanks for the response. Yes, it's set to AHCI. Forgot to mention I had checked that. I've checked so many things I'm having a hard time remembering what I've already done
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    20 Nov 2017 #4

    And what about booting from USB? Did you change the Boot order?
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  5. Posts : 14,134
    windows 10 professional version 1607 build 14393.969 64 bit
       20 Nov 2017 #5

    Please clarify:
    1) booting using windows 7 iso > no problems
    2) booting using Linux > no problems
    3) booting using windows 10 iso > unable to break loop
    4) new CPU
    5) new 120 GB SSD
    6) new PSU
    7) BIOS upgraded
    8) upgrade history: windows 7 > windows home > windows pro
    9) Users folder on 750 GB HD
    10 SMART errors on 750 GB HD > replaced HD drive
    11) clean install SSD > Users on HD > repair loop
    12) have you consider another clean install (HD removed) and creating a new user on the SSD to check compatibility issues?
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  6. Posts : 1,944
    Windows 3.1 to Windows 10
       20 Nov 2017 #6

    Copy the contents of the Windows 10 ISO
    to a FAT32 Formatted USB
    Use F12 if needed to boot from USB Stick..
    Do Not Use Rufus.................
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  7. Posts : 93
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit, Build 16299
    Thread Starter
       20 Nov 2017 #7

    zbook said: View Post
    Please clarify:
    1) booting using windows 7 iso > no problems
    2) booting using Linux > no problems
    3) booting using windows 10 iso > unable to break loop
    4) new CPU
    5) new 120 GB SSD
    6) new PSU
    7) BIOS upgraded
    8) upgrade history: windows 7 > windows home > windows pro
    9) Users folder on 750 GB HD
    10 SMART errors on 750 GB HD > replaced HD drive
    11) clean install SSD > Users on HD > repair loop
    12) have you consider another clean install (HD removed) and creating a new user on the SSD to check compatibility issues?
    Hi ZBook,

    Yes, looks like you got everything except for new RAM. I haven't tried another clean install because when I try to use my bootable W10 1709 (Fall Creator's Update) USB it hangs and then restarts as well. However, I just created another bootable USB with W10 1703 and it boots to it just fine and looks like it's going to allow me to go through with the clean install process. Wondering if either A) My system just isn't compatible with 1709 (not sure why that would be the case) or B) I've got a corrupt/bad 1709 ISO?

    I tried using 1709 ISOs from 2 different sources: 1) The Heidoc Windows ISO Downloader and 2) The Microsoft proprietary Media Creation Tool. Neither work.

    I'm going to use my bootable 1703 USB to wipe the drive and then reattempt to clean install 1709 on just the SSD to see if it works. I'm also going to download a fresh 1709 ISO and use it instead of the one I previously downloaded. I'll let you know what happens.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  8. Posts : 93
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit, Build 16299
    Thread Starter
       20 Nov 2017 #8

    spunk said: View Post
    And what about booting from USB? Did you change the Boot order?
    Yes, boot order is correct. I can boot to any USB (Linux, W7 Pro, W10 1703) except for the bootable W10x64 1709 USB I created.

    Although, I was able to boot it to it originally to do the clean install, but now for whatever reason I can't anymore.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  9. Posts : 93
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit, Build 16299
    Thread Starter
       20 Nov 2017 #9

    Kyhi said: View Post
    Copy the contents of the Windows 10 ISO
    to a FAT32 Formatted USB
    Use F12 if needed to boot from USB Stick..
    Do Not Use Rufus.................
    Hi Kyhi,

    Can you expand on the problem with using Rufus? I also attempted this with the Microsoft proprietary Media Creation Tool and it still doesn't work.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  10. Posts : 14,134
    windows 10 professional version 1607 build 14393.969 64 bit
       20 Nov 2017 #10

    See if you can make a new windows 10 iso: Download Windows 10
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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