Stuck in Windows 8.1 Automatic Repair Loop
I am stuck in the Windows 8.1 automatic repair with a Dell Inspiron 3847. For no apparent reason (and after making no changes to hardware or software installation), one morning booting up the pc led to the Automatic Repair screen with “Automatic Repair couldn’t repair your PC” . From this screen I was able to get to a command prompt (Advanced options > Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Command Prompt) and access the file: C:\Windows\System32\Logfiles\Srt\SrtTrail.txt which has the following Identification of Root Cause:
Root cause found:
Boot manager failed to find OS loader.
Repair action: File repair
Result: Failed. Error code = 0x4001
Time taken = 922 ms
Repair action: Boot configuration data store repair
Result: Failed. Error code = 0x2
Time taken = 0 ms
I discovered that this means that Winload.exe is either missing or cannot be accessed. So I looked at the C:\Windows\System32 directory where Winload.exe is supposed to be and found that it was missing.
After running through many possible fixes using the Recovery environment such as those with DISM.exe and Bootrec I have had no success. I am also not able to start windows in Safe Mode or even get to a screen with Safe Mode as an option. Every reboot leads to autorepair (fruitless) loop. Here are the attempted repair steps I have taken and their results:
Chkdsk /F and Chkdsk /R : No errors found
Full Virus Scan with AVIRA Rescue Disk : No infections
Sfc /SCANNOW : ERROR – There is a system repair pending which requires reboot to complete. Restart Windows and run sfc again.
DISM.exe /image:C:\ /cleanup-image /revertpendingactions : Error: 2 An error occurred accessing the temporary folder x:\windows\temp\9118EEF6-6D11-4EAC-93CB-D2D5A6F7F7F4. Ensure that the path to the temporary folder exists and that you have Read/Write permissions on the folder. The DISM log file can be found at X:\windows\System32\Logs\DISM\dism.log (see attached)
Dism /Image:C:\ /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /Source:i:\sources\sxs ERROR: Same error 2 as above.
[Note: this source was a USB drive configured as a bootable Windows 8.1 Setup/Repair disk via the windows media creation tool downloaded from the Microsoft website]
Bootrec /RebuildBcd - Succesfully scanned Windows Installations. Total identified windows installations : 0. The operation completed successfully.
Please help. I am stuck in this Automatic repair loop for 4 straight days and basic recovery tools are not working so far.