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Dell PC software problems

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Best Answer BerDov , 08 June 2021 - 09:51 AM

Once again, thank you very much, Phillipower2 and peterm! Before I click on [Mark Solved], would like to share that, after returning the computer to B&H, I bought another version of the sa... Go to the full post »


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#1
BerDov

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Geeks,

 

Please help analyze what's happening with the computer. It is Dell PC with Win 10 Pro.

 

Firstly, it was OFF when I returned home (it stays ON most of the time). It was a bit strange because Win updates usually end with Restart. I turned the machine ON, moved some image files from a card to a hard drive and tried to open one in PhotoShop. Photoshop program opened and immediately displayed an error message: "An unexpected and unrecoverable problem has occurred.  Photoshop will now exit." Clicking OK displayed a new message from Visual C++: Runtime error. The Application has requested the Runtime to terminate it in an unusual way." Clicking OK, did not did not close the PS, it just froze. When trying to kill the process in the Task Manager, the PS process displayed for a second and vanished.  Re-opening the Task Manager, I was greeted with "There are no running apps" message.

 

Restarting computer led to the same problem, i.e. PS starts, freezes, etc.

 

Next, checking for Windows Updates, the only option to execute was "Feature update to Win 10, version 20H2" which I decided not to run just yet. Clicking on "View optional updates" showed a blank screen.  Clicking on 'back' arrow, displayed another error message: "Something went wrong. Try to reopen Settings later.

 

Instead of Shut Down / Restart options, there were "Update and Shut Down" and "Update and restart". I chose the first option, but saw a "Restarting" message.

 

Please help run diagnostics.

 

Thank you!


Edited by BerDov, 04 April 2021 - 08:21 PM.

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#2
phillpower2

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See if you are able to force the computer to start in the Windows Recovery Environment (RE) by starting up and shutting down the computer two or three times using the case power button, please note that you need to shut down the computer after the MBs splash screen and just before Windows attempts to load, if successful you should then continue to the Troubleshooting options and then hopefully be able to use a system restore point that is before the issue happened. 


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#3
BerDov

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Thank you, Sir.

 

When the Power Button is pressed, a large Dell logo in a circle appears for a second or two, followed by the three line message which stays for about two minutes:

 

>> Checking media presence...

>>Media Present.....

>>Start PXE Over IPv4. Press ESC to abort PXE boot.

 

This message is replaced by a small circle of rotating dots which *I assumed* was the beginning of the Windows loading process and shut down the machine.

After 3-4  times repeating this on/off operation, the computer Gods heard me and a white screen appeared, stating:

 

"SupportAssist is running a system scan to detect any potential h/w problems"

 

The next screen read: "No h/w issues were found. Click Continue to launch the SupportAssist OS recovery for further help in resolving your problem..."

Which I did.

 

The SupportAssist checked 3 items:

 

Partition tables

Boot files,

Windows health.

 

No issues were detected.

 

Next, I chose "Backup and restore" button.

 

It brought up a screen with two options: Local Restore "...to original manufacturer settings", and cloud restore.  There was no reference to the system restore point mentioned in your first reply.

It did state that SupportAssist will give an option to backup the system but I decided to opt out because I thought the process would wipe out the applications installed on the computer. I also assumed I'd have to install all updates to the OS.

 

Restarting Windows, I saw that the Photoshop issue was still there. ("An unexpected and unrecoverable problem has occurred...")

 

Another, probably related, issue noticed was the loss of the network connection. (I have two computers plus my wife's laptop, all hard-wired to a modem/router).

 

My plan is:

 

1. Check functionality of ALL installed programs;

2. Uninstall-reinstall Photoshop. If it works, consider case closed (until the next time).

3. If PS still not functional, reinstall the OS to the factory settings, etc.

 

Please advise.

 

Thank you!


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#4
phillpower2

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Dell Support Assist and the Windows (RE) are two separate things and so it is Dell`s own recovery set up that has got you back up and running.

 

My plan is:
 
1. Check functionality of ALL installed programs;
 
2. Uninstall-reinstall Photoshop. If it works, consider case closed (until the next time).
 
3. If PS still not functional, reinstall the OS to the factory settings, etc.

 

 

Add checking that Windows is fully up to date and creating a new system restore point.

 

The mention of the below suggests that the boot order may have been changed in the BIOS.

 

>>Start PXE Over IPv4. Press ESC to abort PXE boot.

 

 

This should never be mentioned in the boot sequence unless a computer has previously been set up to boot from a network, Wake on LAN for example, any further problems the first thing to check would be that the storage device that has Windows on it should be first in the boot sequence. If no further problems, leave well alone and don`t be tempted to go into the BIOS when there is no need.

 

You are welcome  :)


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#5
BerDov

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I'd like to make things clear in my mind before pushing the first button, so:

 

I assume that Windows is fully up to date because there was no message about installing "important updates", only a suggestion to "View optional updates" which highlighted another issues (see my very first post).

 

The only option is to upgrade (my understanding) to "Feature update Win 10, version 20H2". Should I do it? I have not heard of 20H2 and cannot afford to become a guinea pig at this time.

 

It is my understanding that you agree with the 3-point plan (to which you added the 4th.)

 

What is better to do: upgrade to 20H2 or restore Windows to the factory settings?

 

Regarding the PXE boot message, I am confused.  I did see the same, or a very similar, message on my wife's laptop a month ago when trying to tune it up, but never before on my computer. The three computers we have are connected but each is supposed to boot from its own C:\ drive. So, I will

 ignore this message for now...

 

Thank you!


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#6
phillpower2

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Version 20H2 is the latest version of Windows 10 and was released in October 2020 which technically means that you are not fully up to date, I say technically not up to date because as long as you have been installing any version 2004 updates and you are being told by Windows that you are up to date you are for that version of Windows.

 

Yes it was agreed that your three point plan was the way to go but do note that there were two additional steps that were suggested.

 

What is better to do: upgrade to 20H2 or restore Windows to the factory settings?

 

 

The two are a world apart I`m afraid.

 

Contained in version 20H2 are all the bug fixes that version 2004 required and if you were to go back to factory settings you would have to reinstall all of the updates from the date that Windows was originally installed right up to version 20H2.

 

I would stick to your original three point plan + add checking that Windows version 2004 is fully up to date and then creating a new system restore point.

 

If all good leave as is until you are ready to install version 20H2 at you leisure or alternatively any problems, back up your data and update to version 20H2 which you can download from here

 

You are welcome  :)


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#7
BerDov

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I am at a loss.

 

There are not many programs installed on this machine. Only 2 do not work. Photoshop, and now Filezilla. When checking the latter, I was suggested an upgrade.  The upgrade apparently uninstalled the old version but did not install the new one: "Failed to write xml file" error message.

 

I then proceeded to uninstall Photoshop. That could not be done: "In order to deactivate please connect to the internet..." But the computer IS connected to the internet. Tried this twice.

 

I then managed to open the Dell Support Assist OS Recovery and selected Local Restore. The last screen read "We are currently reformatting the hard drive and restoring the factory image on your system..." After 20% progress, a message appeared: "There was an error in re-imaging the drive".

 

The last thing I did was to insert a Win10 Recovery USB drive, created as soon as the computer was turned on the first time. The assumption was that the computer will attempt to boot from this USB drive, but it did not. It just proceeded to boot from C:\.

 

I am all ears, I mean eyes.


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#8
phillpower2

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I then managed to open the Dell Support Assist OS Recovery and selected Local Restore. The last screen read "We are currently reformatting the hard drive and restoring the factory image on your system.

 

 

That would wipe everything installed on the drive apart from the factory installed Dell bloatware, is that what you wanted, if yes, it was not the way to go nor was it what was suggested;

 

If all good leave as is until you are ready to install version 20H2 at you leisure or alternatively any problems, back up your data and update to version 20H2 which you can download from here

 

 

 

There is no guarantee that your present OS can or will be able to upgrade to version 20H2 but it is more likely to succeed than the Dell factory image on the HDD.

 

Also worth mentioning is that whenever you install a major Windows 10 update such as version 20H2 you should also create a new recovery drive, this because there are many new features in the later versions of Windows 10 that the original recovery drive may not recognise or possibly not be compatible with.


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#9
BerDov

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phillpower2 , thank you. So, what should be the next step in this situation?
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#10
phillpower2

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From your reply #7#

 

The last thing I did was to insert a Win10 Recovery USB drive, created as soon as the computer was turned on the first time. The assumption was that the computer will attempt to boot from this USB drive, but it did not. It just proceeded to boot from C:\.

 

 

As you are able to boot into Windows sticking with the following is your best option;

 

back up your data and update to version 20H2 which you can download from here

 

 

 

Make sure that you have any software product codes that you may need written down ready for when you reinstall Photoshop etc


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#11
BerDov

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Thank you!

 

Yes, the computer boots. I opened the web page, noticed .../en-gb/... and replaced it with /en-us/. They look identical, so I am ready to click on [Update now].

 

Product codes are written somewhere and no data backups are needed as I keep all data on two external hard drives.

 

Lasts question, before the Big Click: is the 2 y.o. Win 10 recovery USB drive still needed? I do not have an extra USB drive handy, so if it is not needed, I will reformat and reuse this one.


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#12
phillpower2

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Once version 20H2 is installed and fully up to date you can then create your new recovery drive.

 

You are welcome btw  :)


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#13
BerDov

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Well, I clicked on [Update now], something loaded for about 10 min, then another screen with 0% complete appeared, then, in a few seconds:

 

"Something went wrong.

 

You can contact MS support. Here is the error code: 0x800700c1."

 

What do I do now, please?


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#14
phillpower2

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Can you post the model name or number of this Dell PC for us so we can check on driver availability etc.


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#15
BerDov

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The computer is Dell XPS 8930 desktop, bought in Dec 2018;

 

FWIW, I just ran speccy. The URL is http://speccy.pirifo...G52CWppXKeIM0gI

 

When looking for the system info, I saw this:

 

"Restart to repair drive errors

We found errors on a drive..."

 

Did not go there.

 

Thank you!


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