Do NOT add a newer boot file into an older Windows Deployment Service

In my company, there is a Windows Deployment Service (WDS for short) hosted by Windows Server 2012 R2. Since I got the new release of Windows Server yesterday, named Windows Server 2012 R2 with Update, I added the boot.wim from the new CD into this server and began my nightmare.

Result: All boot images from installation CD work great. But all capture images are failed to start, no matter the capture image is pre-existed, new created or copied from other servers. They’re failed in 2 ways:

  • Error in \Windows\System32\boot\winload.exe with status code 0xc000000f after the loading bar completed; or,
  • Black screen after displaying the Windows logo.

To fix this, I’ve tried to remove the new added boot image but this trying is ineffective. Finally, I googled and find there is a person who added a Windows 8 Preview boot file into an old WDS server, which lead to the similar result. The way to fix is:

  1. Stop the WDS;
  2. Restore the Boot folder from a previous version; and,
  3. Restart the WDS.

If you don’t have backup, you may need to reinstall WDS.

I guess when you add a new boot image into a WDS, it will update the existed boot folder to the latest version, which may not be compatible with other boot files. Maybe it will be fixed after patching the server OS, but it’s better never to do such a thing again.


Update: There is another way to fix the broken capture image file directly. But you have to do that for every capture file. http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/a164b948-1778-42bd-8d77-9cef1ca70866/image-capture-boot-image-fails-with-0xc000000f?forum=winserversetup

19 thoughts on “Do NOT add a newer boot file into an older Windows Deployment Service

  1. You are a legend among men! Just spent a couple of hours trying to figure this one out! Thank you, restore from an old Boot folder backup worked perfectly!

  2. I’m having a similar issue. Fresh install of 2012 R2 x64. For install and boot images, I used Windows 7 Enterprise with SP1 x86 from MSDN. Created Capture image from the Boot WIM of Win7 Enterprise SP1 x86, and same failure, 0XC000000F with required file is missing or contains errors (winload.exe).

    Any insight to resolution? I just redid the 2012 server install thinking that was the issue and didn’t use the 2012 WIMs, went straight to Windows 7 WIMs.

      1. Do you think it is possible the issue is because I used Server 2012 R2 with Update ISO to install the server? This is a completely fresh install, trying to test out WDS, but have run into this issue in the beginning of testing. I will try the Win 8.1 x86 Boot.WIM though. Not sure if it will work. Will see.

      2. Everything is possible. After I upgrade WDS to 2012 R2 Update (KB2919355), I have to restore the Boot folder to the previous snapshot.

      3. Yeah, I don’t have any previous snapshot since this is a fresh install using 2012 R2 with Update ISO. Then the install and boot WIMs were grabbed from 7 Enterprise SP1 ISOs. I will remove the roles, delete the remote install folder, readd the roles, and test with the 8.1 x86 ISO to grab the install and boot WIMs. The strange one is that the install image works, just the capture image sits on the black screen with mouse cursor after loading.

  3. We just purchased a new server from Dell. It’s loaded with Windows 2012 R2. It’s completely updated as of today. I installed WDS. I used the Windows 7 64bit disk for my BOOT.WIM and INSTALL.WIM files. I added the NIC drivers for the BOOT.WIM. I can boot and install windows 7 fine. Now I created a CAPTURE file. When I PXE boot into the Capture I loads the .WIM. Then I see the Microsoft Logo then screen goes black with mouse cursor I can move but that’s it. Nothing else is happening. It’s not launching the Capture Image Wizard. Anyone have any ideas?

      1. So what your saying is WDS is broken on 2012 R2 if you do windows update?

        Would a complete re-install from the ISO and not doing any windows updates fix the problem?

        When was this update 1 released for server 2012 R2 so i know if my ISO has it or not?

        Thanks

      2. No matter how you get the update, WDS will be broken after KB2919355 (Windows Server 2012 R2 with Update) is applied.
        If you re-install the whole system, it works before KB2919355 applied. But I don’t think you want to do that.
        You should check the name of your ISO file to make sure whether update is included or not. If the ISO is downloaded from MSDN Subscriptions site, there will be “with_update” in the file name if it contains that. There isn’t any clear marked in the file name if it’s grabbed from VLSC.

      3. Will going into control panel and uninstalling that specific update fix the WDS server? or doing a full re-install of the server be the only way around it?

        The ISO name we use is “en_windows_server_2012_r2_x64_dvd_2707946.iso”

      4. Your iso is not shipped with that update. All you need is backup the boot folder after WDS installed (without update). After that patch applied, stop the WDS, restore the backup of the boot folder and restart it. Before you add any boot file from wim with that patch included, it should work. The restore process can be applied any time you need.

        You can install a whole new server with WDS role just for getting that boot folder. That should be able to be restored to the servers you have currently.

    1. Hey Allen,

      I fired up a brand new VM Server with the fresh August 2013 ISO of Server 2012 R2. Set it up on our domain, added WDS role etc. and made sure Windows update wouldn’t run at all.

      There are two hard drives in the server (C:\ and E:\) The C is for boot and E is the storage for images. I then progressed to mounting Windows 8.1 x64 Enterprise and adding the boot image to WDS. After i added the boot image i right clicked it and created a capture image from it. After that was done i added the drivers for the NIC Cards we use to WDS.

      WDS is now fully setup for capturing. The DHCP Server is on another box as we have a large network and require that. DHCP is setup with Option 60, 66 and 67 for WDS (that works for booting into Deploy).

      We have option 67 set to “/boot/x64/wdsmgfw.efi” as we need to boot to UEFI hardware.
      Option 66 is set to the IP of the WDS server and Option 60 is set to “PXEClient”.

      Now when i go to the machine i want to capture i am still hitting the same resulting black screen with error message. Its an identical error message to the one above just .efi instead of .exe (seen below).

      Error in \Windows\System32\boot\winload.efi with status code 0xc000000f

      Booting to the deploy image still works with these settings. Just in case it matters, the VM that hosts WDS is on BIOS not UEFI mode.

      Any help is much appreciated.
      Thank you

      1. First, I’ve not tested it with UEFI hardware.

        Here are my suggested steps:
        1 Create a new server (VM is fine) with original version or Windows Server 2012 R2;
        2 Add WDS Role;
        3 Add a boot image from the same version of Windows Server 2012 R2 disc (without update);
        4 Stop the WDS Service;
        5 Copy out the Boot folder within the WDS folder;
        6 Go back to the server which have a boot problem;
        7 Stop the WDS Service;
        8 Delete the Boot folder within the WDS folder there and restore it with the copy from step 5;
        9 Start the WDS Service.

      2. Hey Allen,

        Thank you! That was the missing piece to get it all working. It now boots up into the deploy image in UEFI mode as well.

        Thank you again for persevering and lending a big hand in solving this.

  4. My problem is similar. After adding new OS image, I need to restart WDS otherwise the client cannot view any distribution in the OS list during the setup. No need to restore image directory.

  5. I had to say thank you for the help in this post!

    I tried to use win8.1 x19 update 1 and messed up ALL of my boot images. Following these instructions I at least am up and running without having to rebuild my WDS server.

    I used this method.
    1 Create a new server (VM is fine) with original version or Windows Server 2012 R2;
    2 Add WDS Role;
    3 Add a boot image from the same version of Windows Server 2012 R2 disc (without update);
    4 Stop the WDS Service;
    5 Copy out the Boot folder within the WDS folder;
    6 Go back to the server which have a boot problem;
    7 Stop the WDS Service;
    8 Delete the Boot folder within the WDS folder there and restore it with the copy from step 5;
    9 Start the WDS Service.

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