Repair Windows Server 2016 Boot Files

How To Repair Windows Server 2016 Boot Files & System Files Steps

Have you faced an issue with your server not booting up? Well, there may be several reasons you may be facing the issue of boot failure on your Microsoft Windows Server. How would you repair your Windows Server 2016 boot files? The solutions would depend upon the exact causes and as such may vary considerably. However, we will make an attempt at understanding repair Windows Server 2016 Boot Files.

Microsoft Windows Server 2016 – Quick Overview

The Microsoft Windows Server 2016, commonly known as Windows Server 2016 (Microsoft loves calling it just Windows Server) is a part of Windows NT operating system. The version is developed concurrently with Windows 10 operating system.

The Technical Preview version of the tool came up on October 1, 2014. The final and commercial build was released on September 26, 2016. Made available to the public on 12th October 2016, the server has been the latest update to the Windows Server family.

Windows Server Boot Failure – An Introduction

Your Windows Server may fail to boot for several reasons. It may be beyond the scope of this article to check out all the reasons and possible fixes for the boot failure.

While you boot into Windows Recovery Environment, the drive letters would be assigned on a first come first served basis. The WinRE or Windows Recovery Environment will have a different letter for the drives than when booted in Windows. The best option would be to use DiskPart utility.

Repair Windows Server 2016 Boot Files

Follow the steps here below for the proper understanding of the steps to repair boot files.

  • Boot to the Windows Server DVD.
  • If you do not need the driver, press the key combination of Shift+F10 to launch Command Prompt.
  • If you need the drivers, Click
  • Now, click on Repair Your Computer.
  • If you do not need a driver, you can click on
  • If you do need a driver, you may click Load Drivers.

You will need to insert the media drive that contains the driver. Navigate to the folder that contains the driver file. Click onOpen.

Once the Command Prompt appears, go through the following steps.

  • Type in DiskPart at the Command Prompt.
  • Type in Disk Vol when you get DiskPart prompt.
  • Check the drive letter for the DVD Drive and note it down.
  • Note down the drive letter for the system reserved drive.
  • Type in Select Vol 1. Please replace 1 with the correct number based on what you find on your DiskPart screen.
  • Type This will make the selected drive active.
  • Now, type You will return to the Command Prompt.
  • Type Copy f:BootMgr c:

You would have two options here. If the Boot Manager is already present on the drive, you will be asked to confirm whether you want to overwrite it. You will need to type N to avoid overwriting. If not, the Boot Manager file will be copied.

  • Now type Bootrec /Fixmbrat the Command Prompt.
  • Next, type in Bootrec /Fixboot. This should fix the boot files.
  • The next step would involve typing Bootrec /rebuildBCD

The command will scan for the Windows installation files on your system. If the command finds the Windows installations, it will list out the installations. You will be asked to confirm if you want to add them to the Boot Configuration Database or BCD. Click Y to confirm.

Your system will now be configured to boot from the normal partition. You can exit the DiskPart command and reboot into Windows Server in the normal mode.

Congratulations. You have successfully repaired and restored the boot files for your Windows Server 2016 installation.

What if the above steps fail?

Well, executing the command Bootrec /rebuildBCD will look for the Windows installation files on your system as you have already observed in the above steps. The building the BCD will continue successfully if you have the proper installation files and only boot files need to be restored.

However, the command may fail to find the Windows installation files. This can happen for any of the following reasons –

  • The Boot Configuration Database is already available.
  • The Operating System is not available and lost out
  • The Operating System has been damaged beyond repair.

In case, the Boot Configuration Database is already present, you can simply boot into the Windows server 2016 after exiting the Command Prompt. However, in case the Operating System has been damaged beyond repair or is not available, you will need to reinstall the system image from scratch.

Other Possible failures

Well, your bootrec /rebuildbcd and bootrec /fixboot may also give you an error stating that Element Not Found error. There can be only one option you would need to opt for. You would be forced to go for the full format install. Of course, we are aware that this may not be an easy task. However, you have no option than opting for a complete reinstall.

And yes, before you can reinstall Windows Server, check if there are any hardware failures. Changing the port can also be a reason. Check if there are any issues with the port or cables.

In Conclusion

Well, as we stated before – there are several reasons you may end up finding your Windows Server 2016 not booting up in Windows. One of the possible reasons for such an eventuality would be the corrupted boot files or a damaged Operating system. The steps above should guide you through the steps involved in sorting out the boot failure issues you may have gone through. Please note that the above steps can only be useful if you have corrupted or misplaced boot files for Windows Server 2016. In case your Operating System itself is damaged or not recognized by the bootrec, you will only need to reinstall your Windows Server 2016 once again.

Have you used any other method to repair or restore your bot files so that you can easily boot your Windows Server into Windows? If yes, do share the tips and tricks with us. Your tips would be useful for our readers in addressing the concerns that they may have in booting their Windows Server 2016 easily.

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