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Windows 7: Looping "Starting Services" After OOBE from Audit Mode

29 Oct 2012   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit
Looping "Starting Services" After OOBE from Audit Mode

When I turn on the computer...


...I get the Dell startup screen...


...then the Starting Services screen...


...and then I get this "looping" error...


...and it restarts it all over again.

I found Jonathan_King's article Common Installation Problems and Their Solutions and should I try this?:

Problem: Setup forces computer to reboot, and never finishes installation

What to try:
Sometimes setup fails when recovery partitions are still present. For example, Acer and HP both put a special recovery partition on their systems, that cannot be easily deleted.

To delete the partition using Diskpart:
Open a copy of Diskpart following the instructions given earlier.
Enter list disk
Enter select disk n
Enter list partition
Enter select partition n
Enter delete partition override

Now try reinstalling Windows.
This looping restart began after I'd been trying to enter OOBE after running it in Audit mode. I believe I ran a Microsoft Hotfix, and it began looping on restart. Here's why I ran the Hotfix:

I was following the advice in this tutorial: New Installation: How to Create a General System Image in Audit Mode

But when I open sysprep I get a fatal error:

System Preparation Tool 3.14
A fatal error occurred while trying to sysprep the machine.

Attachment 237600

Running sysprep

Attachment 237601

The fatal error

I ran a slmgr/dlv command as recommended by somone on this forum and I got this:

Attachment 237602

Thanks for your help!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2012   #2

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit

I ran a DISKPART command and it only shows my main disk (Disk 0) and only 1 partition on Disk 0, so I don't think Jonathan_King's solution (above) will work.

If you're having trouble understanding what Audit mode has to do with my problem, here's the sequence of events:

1. Did clean re-install of Windows 7
2. Booted into Audit mode
3. Installed software and created system recovery disk (couldn't figure out how to do system image)
4. Tried booting into OOBE through SysPrepTool, got a fatal error.
5. Downloaded a recommended Microsoft Fix and ran it
6. Upon computer restart, getting error as stated in previous post

Really need to get this computer up and running, so any assistance is appreciated!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2012   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64

Might be connected with the software you installed, Perhaps some incompatibility.

Win sys image will pop up if you type sdclt in cmd prompt.

I didn't have any difficulty running sysprep /oobe, but I hadn't installed anything at that point - so it may be that?

I will have to ask Kari what the point of that is.

I would have thought making an image after /oobe /shutdown was a better idea.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

29 Oct 2012   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit

Well, the reason I tried booting in audit mode in the first place, was I was trying to follow this tutorial: New Installation: How to Create a General System Image in Audit Mode

I suppose that maybe a software (that was running fine in Audit mode) incompatibility would keep Windows from starting OOBE services. However, I'm not sure where I can go from this point, I can't access safe mode to do uninstallations.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2012   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64

You will probably find it easier just to reinstall.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2012   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit

I went ahead and redid the clean install. I didn't boot it into Audit mode this time and I was able to setup services and set a username.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Looping "Starting Services" After OOBE from Audit Mode

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