My Windows 7 SP1 installation nightmare!


Y

Yousuf Khan

Well, I'm entering the 4th day of the nightmare installation. It started
out quite innocently as a notification from Windows Update that there is
the SP1 patch available for download. I clicked to let it download the
package, and went off to sleep. Next day I found that it was stuck still
trying to download the SP1 package. I kept cancelling and restarting the
SP1 download and it would always get stuck at some percent of the
overall complete package downloaded. I figured that Microsoft's update
site must be overloaded. This was the small network stub package of the
SP1, rather than the full SP1 package.

So then I decided to download the full SP1 package off of their download
site (this is a 900 MB download vs. the 90 MB download for the network
stub). It took a couple of hours to download this, and fortunately it
did complete. When it was finished, I ran it, which took another couple
of hours. At the end of it, it asked for a reboot. After the reboot, it
came back up and began applying the new patches (something like 270
thousand of them!). Then somewhere after it had installed 100 thousand
of the patches, it got stuck on an error while trying to update some
registry entry, and it wouldn't get beyond that! I tried going into safe
mode, it was hang there. I tried going into last known good config, and
that didn't help. Totally hosed!

So then I tried using a backup image. I had a full system image saved,
but unfortunately it was from September of last year (7 months old).
Better than nothing so I began the restore. This is over 800 GB of stuff
that needed to get restored, because the restore program doesn't give
you the option of picking and choosing what to restore; it's either all
or nothing! The image was stored on an external USB hard drive. It
continued restoring for 25 straight hours! That's when you really wish
for internal storage, as USB is just painfully slow. It finally finished
restoring, and so I tried booting into it. It began the boot process,
and then within a few seconds, you see a BSOD which disappears off the
screen too fast for you to read it. Tried going to Safe Mode again, and
the exact same BSOD happens there too.

I tried running the repair installs from the installation disk, and it
can't find any solution, it complains that some storage driver is
corrupted. Why it doesn't just replace that driver with its own version
of the driver, I don't know. That used to be what Windows XP used to be
able to do, but I guess it's not an option in Windows 7.

So now I'm on my last resort here. I've now reinstalled the OS from
scratch. And I'm reconfiguring everything back to where it was by hand
from my own memory.

Fortunately, one thing that was rock solid throughout all of this was
Ubuntu Linux. I had it installed alongside Windows for years on this
machine. I'm posting this message from Linux, right now. It's really an
advantage to have two separate OS'es available as an option. For those
who don't see the need for Linux, this is it! I've been able to research
the Windows problems from the same machine that's having them, because
it has the Linux as a fall-back.

Yousuf Khan
 
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B

Big Steel

For those
who don't see the need for Linux, this is it! I've been able to research
the Windows problems from the same machine that's having them, because
it has the Linux as a fall-back.
I am not buying it. I had no problem with the SP1, which was done in
about 20 minutes when it came in the Windows Update, along with several
other updates.

Some people have bad luck.
 
E

Ed Cryer

Well, I'm entering the 4th day of the nightmare installation. It started
out quite innocently as a notification from Windows Update that there is
the SP1 patch available for download. I clicked to let it download the
package, and went off to sleep. Next day I found that it was stuck still
trying to download the SP1 package. I kept cancelling and restarting the
SP1 download and it would always get stuck at some percent of the
overall complete package downloaded. I figured that Microsoft's update
site must be overloaded. This was the small network stub package of the
SP1, rather than the full SP1 package.

So then I decided to download the full SP1 package off of their download
site (this is a 900 MB download vs. the 90 MB download for the network
stub). It took a couple of hours to download this, and fortunately it
did complete. When it was finished, I ran it, which took another couple
of hours. At the end of it, it asked for a reboot. After the reboot, it
came back up and began applying the new patches (something like 270
thousand of them!). Then somewhere after it had installed 100 thousand
of the patches, it got stuck on an error while trying to update some
registry entry, and it wouldn't get beyond that! I tried going into safe
mode, it was hang there. I tried going into last known good config, and
that didn't help. Totally hosed!

So then I tried using a backup image. I had a full system image saved,
but unfortunately it was from September of last year (7 months old).
Better than nothing so I began the restore. This is over 800 GB of stuff
that needed to get restored, because the restore program doesn't give
you the option of picking and choosing what to restore; it's either all
or nothing! The image was stored on an external USB hard drive. It
continued restoring for 25 straight hours! That's when you really wish
for internal storage, as USB is just painfully slow. It finally finished
restoring, and so I tried booting into it. It began the boot process,
and then within a few seconds, you see a BSOD which disappears off the
screen too fast for you to read it. Tried going to Safe Mode again, and
the exact same BSOD happens there too.

I tried running the repair installs from the installation disk, and it
can't find any solution, it complains that some storage driver is
corrupted. Why it doesn't just replace that driver with its own version
of the driver, I don't know. That used to be what Windows XP used to be
able to do, but I guess it's not an option in Windows 7.

So now I'm on my last resort here. I've now reinstalled the OS from
scratch. And I'm reconfiguring everything back to where it was by hand
from my own memory.

Fortunately, one thing that was rock solid throughout all of this was
Ubuntu Linux. I had it installed alongside Windows for years on this
machine. I'm posting this message from Linux, right now. It's really an
advantage to have two separate OS'es available as an option. For those
who don't see the need for Linux, this is it! I've been able to research
the Windows problems from the same machine that's having them, because
it has the Linux as a fall-back.

Yousuf Khan
I find your praise of the dual boot for Linux extremely ironical. It's
probably the very fact that it is there which has screwed up the SP1
installation.

However, ten out of ten for stoical endurance and perseverance. You're a
man after my own heart.

Ed
 
P

Paul

Yousuf said:
Well, I'm entering the 4th day of the nightmare installation. It started
out quite innocently as a notification from Windows Update that there is
the SP1 patch available for download. I clicked to let it download the
package, and went off to sleep. Next day I found that it was stuck still
trying to download the SP1 package. I kept cancelling and restarting the
SP1 download and it would always get stuck at some percent of the
overall complete package downloaded. I figured that Microsoft's update
site must be overloaded. This was the small network stub package of the
SP1, rather than the full SP1 package.

So then I decided to download the full SP1 package off of their download
site (this is a 900 MB download vs. the 90 MB download for the network
stub). It took a couple of hours to download this, and fortunately it
did complete. When it was finished, I ran it, which took another couple
of hours. At the end of it, it asked for a reboot. After the reboot, it
came back up and began applying the new patches (something like 270
thousand of them!). Then somewhere after it had installed 100 thousand
of the patches, it got stuck on an error while trying to update some
registry entry, and it wouldn't get beyond that! I tried going into safe
mode, it was hang there. I tried going into last known good config, and
that didn't help. Totally hosed!

So then I tried using a backup image. I had a full system image saved,
but unfortunately it was from September of last year (7 months old).
Better than nothing so I began the restore. This is over 800 GB of stuff
that needed to get restored, because the restore program doesn't give
you the option of picking and choosing what to restore; it's either all
or nothing! The image was stored on an external USB hard drive. It
continued restoring for 25 straight hours! That's when you really wish
for internal storage, as USB is just painfully slow. It finally finished
restoring, and so I tried booting into it. It began the boot process,
and then within a few seconds, you see a BSOD which disappears off the
screen too fast for you to read it. Tried going to Safe Mode again, and
the exact same BSOD happens there too.

I tried running the repair installs from the installation disk, and it
can't find any solution, it complains that some storage driver is
corrupted. Why it doesn't just replace that driver with its own version
of the driver, I don't know. That used to be what Windows XP used to be
able to do, but I guess it's not an option in Windows 7.

So now I'm on my last resort here. I've now reinstalled the OS from
scratch. And I'm reconfiguring everything back to where it was by hand
from my own memory.

Fortunately, one thing that was rock solid throughout all of this was
Ubuntu Linux. I had it installed alongside Windows for years on this
machine. I'm posting this message from Linux, right now. It's really an
advantage to have two separate OS'es available as an option. For those
who don't see the need for Linux, this is it! I've been able to research
the Windows problems from the same machine that's having them, because
it has the Linux as a fall-back.

Yousuf Khan
1) You should have done a backup first.

2) If you have 800 GB of data, it shouldn't all be on C:. I've got
Windows 7 on my laptop, on a relatively small (~30GB) partition.
Perhaps that's too small now, but the thing is, with 800 GB of
data, you should separate some of that off so that it doesn't
get backed up when you need to do C:. The 800 GB isn't going to be
program installations - some of that must be movies, media or other
kinds of data, which could be located on a separate partition.

*******

You should also allow time, for the early adopters to test SP1. For
example, if a certain percentage of users have a TDSS root kit on their
computer, how many of them will be bricked by SP1 ? Does the System
Readiness thing do any good ? What error numbers and symptoms have
been logged on the Microsoft web forum ?

(This is to cure Windows Update problems. Did you have Windows Update problems ?)

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/947821

I don't see a reason to rush the installation of SP1, because, it
doesn't *do* anything :) Maybe in a month's time, I'll think about it.

Paul
 
Y

Yousuf Khan

I find your praise of the dual boot for Linux extremely ironical. It's
probably the very fact that it is there which has screwed up the SP1
installation.
Now, what evidence do you have that that's the case? Linux has its own
separate partition. And the only difference between Windows 7 without
Linux alongside and with it alongside is the boot loader which is simply
a mechanism for passing control to Windows' own native boot loader.

I suppose if I had a dual-boot to Windows XP and Windows 7, this
wouldn't have also happened?

Yousuf Khan
 
E

Ed Cryer

Now, what evidence do you have that that's the case? Linux has its own
separate partition. And the only difference between Windows 7 without
Linux alongside and with it alongside is the boot loader which is simply
a mechanism for passing control to Windows' own native boot loader.

I suppose if I had a dual-boot to Windows XP and Windows 7, this
wouldn't have also happened?

Yousuf Khan
The following webpage is my evidence, milud; that and the fact that I
read it some days back.
http://tinyurl.com/67cm5gx

Ed
 
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Y

Yousuf Khan

1) You should have done a backup first.
As I said, I had one, just seven months old, that's all.
2) If you have 800 GB of data, it shouldn't all be on C:. I've got
Windows 7 on my laptop, on a relatively small (~30GB) partition.
Perhaps that's too small now, but the thing is, with 800 GB of
data, you should separate some of that off so that it doesn't
get backed up when you need to do C:. The 800 GB isn't going to be
program installations - some of that must be movies, media or other
kinds of data, which could be located on a separate partition.
Well, that 800 GB of data is completely safe and backed up in multiple
places by now, I haven't lost any of it. The only problem with it is
that when you do a system image, you don't have a choice to exclude it
from the backup. The 800 GB is comprised of over 500 GB of non-OS
related data, and 300 GB of OS-related data (including "users" and
"program files" folder stuff, which has to go alongside the OS).

So by a similar token, you couldn't pick and choose what to restore
either. But anyways, that's not the problem, it turned out that the
restore didn't even work, ever after all of that time restoring it. For
whatever reason, it came up with BSOD after restoration.

Yousuf Khan
 
J

John Aldred

Ed Cryer wrote:

[Snip]
I find your praise of the dual boot for Linux extremely ironical. It's
probably the very fact that it is there which has screwed up the SP1
installation.

However, ten out of ten for stoical endurance and perseverance. You're a
man after my own heart.

Ed
I have a dual boot system. Ubuntu 10.10 / Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit on a
Dell Inspiron 580. No problem encountered here when applying the Windows 7
SP1 update via WU.
 
D

DaVinci

Alias said:
Really? Please explain. This should be really good. Pssst, I have a
triple boot with Win 7, XP and Linux Mint and the SP 1 install went
smooth as silk.
He may just be correct if the Windows partition is not marked as active.

http://blogs.technet.com/b/joscon/a...-r2-service-pack-1-fails-with-0x800f0a12.aspx


"UPDATE: Based on the feedback in the comments below another workaround
(particularly for Linux installations) is to make sure that the System
Reserved or Windows partition is marked as Active before installing
Windows Service Pack 1. You can do this using Disk Management as a
quick check or the other utilities mentioned in the comments below."
 
P

Paul

DaVinci said:
He may just be correct if the Windows partition is not marked as active.

http://blogs.technet.com/b/joscon/a...-r2-service-pack-1-fails-with-0x800f0a12.aspx


"UPDATE: Based on the feedback in the comments below another workaround
(particularly for Linux installations) is to make sure that the System
Reserved or Windows partition is marked as Active before installing
Windows Service Pack 1. You can do this using Disk Management as a
quick check or the other utilities mentioned in the comments below."
Interesting.

In some experiments I've done here, I discovered the Active or Boot Flag
in the MBR, isn't used by my Linux machine. I tried to change the Boot
flag from sda2 to sda3, when setting up a dual boot scenario, and nothing
happened. I was puzzled for a while, until I started reading up the
details on Grub, and discovered it doesn't seem to use the flag. Due to
the multiple stages of Grub, and using sectors before 63 and the like,
it just jumps to the partition you *installed* it for. In other words,
if you did what I tried, just change the Active or Boot flag, Grub
doesn't even use that. I had installed Grub for sda2, and it didn't change
to sda3 until I reinstalled grub.

So my guess would be, you might be able to change the Active flag, to suit
Windows, because your Linux stuff doesn't need it.

My dual boot, was two Gentoo installs, one 32 bit, the other 64 bit,
for some head to head performance comparisons on "math". The 64 bit
side did math 65% faster for what I was doing. The 32 bit side was
installed that way, as it's a "distcc" server for another machine.

Paul
 
C

Char Jackson

Fortunately, one thing that was rock solid throughout all of this was
Ubuntu Linux. I had it installed alongside Windows for years on this
machine. I'm posting this message from Linux, right now. It's really an
advantage to have two separate OS'es available as an option. For those
who don't see the need for Linux, this is it! I've been able to research
the Windows problems from the same machine that's having them, because
it has the Linux as a fall-back.
More and more people have multiple computers now, so it's usually much
easier to just switch to another computer to un-hose the one that got
hosed. Bottom line, I don't see any need to dual boot Linux.
 
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C

Char Jackson

As I said, I had one, just seven months old, that's all.
And that's exactly why he said you should have done a backup first. If
you had, you'd have at least two backups instead of one, and your
latest backup would be less than a day old instead of 7 months old.

In addition, it's always a good idea to test your backups before you
need them. It's a bit of trouble, but it can save a lot of time later.
Well, that 800 GB of data is completely safe and backed up in multiple
places by now, I haven't lost any of it. The only problem with it is
that when you do a system image, you don't have a choice to exclude it
from the backup. The 800 GB is comprised of over 500 GB of non-OS
related data, and 300 GB of OS-related data (including "users" and
"program files" folder stuff, which has to go alongside the OS).
To reiterate and reinforce, if you have 800GB of data on your
boot/system drive, you're not organizing your system in an optimum
way. I'm in full agreement with Paul in saying that you could have
moved all or most of that extra (non-OS) data to another location so
that you'd never have to routinely backup and restore that much data.
So by a similar token, you couldn't pick and choose what to restore
either. But anyways, that's not the problem, it turned out that the
restore didn't even work, ever after all of that time restoring it. For
whatever reason, it came up with BSOD after restoration.
Two final points.
1. If your backup solution is that inflexible, it's time to look for
something better. I use Acronis True Image, but there are free
programs that reportedly also do very well and don't come with the
limitations you've outlined above.

2. If your backup program can't restore you to a bootable state, it's
definitely time to look for a replacement.
 
R

ray

More and more people have multiple computers now, so it's usually much
easier to just switch to another computer to un-hose the one that got
hosed. Bottom line, I don't see any need to dual boot Linux.
A lot of people don't see the need for a spare tire in their car, either.
 
Y

Yousuf Khan

Two final points.
1. If your backup solution is that inflexible, it's time to look for
something better. I use Acronis True Image, but there are free
programs that reportedly also do very well and don't come with the
limitations you've outlined above.

2. If your backup program can't restore you to a bootable state, it's
definitely time to look for a replacement.
I'm talking about the default Windows 7 backup program here. But I have
tried other options other than that, and they don't do it either for
system backups.

Yousuf Khan
 
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Y

Yousuf Khan

The following webpage is my evidence, milud; that and the fact that I
read it some days back.
http://tinyurl.com/67cm5gx

Ed
Interesting, so that is an example. However, that's not what affected
me. Quite obviously the installer was working, until it got to a
registry entry it couldn't handle at less than the 50% mark. If I had
run into this problem you quoted, the installer would've failed immediately.

I have my grub set so that always sets the active flag on the Windows
partition prior to starting it.

Yousuf Khan
 
C

Char Jackson

I'm talking about the default Windows 7 backup program here. But I have
tried other options other than that, and they don't do it either for
system backups.
Have you asked for recommendations? Acronis works perfectly for me,
but isn't free. Other people have previously recommended free options,
so you're definitely giving up too easily.
 
M

milt

Have you asked for recommendations? Acronis works perfectly for me,
but isn't free. Other people have previously recommended free options,
so you're definitely giving up too easily.
Either giving up too easily or just trolling...
 
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K

Ken Blake

Have you asked for recommendations? Acronis works perfectly for me,
but isn't free. Other people have previously recommended free options,
so you're definitely giving up too easily.

I'll second the recommendation for Acronis True image.
 

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