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Cloned Windows 2008 R2 virtual machine fails to boot with the error: autochk program not found - skipping AUTOCHECK (2004505)

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After cloning a Windows 2008 R2 SP1 virtual machine, you experience these issues:

  • You are unable to boot the cloned virtual machine
  • The new virtual machine fails and gets into a reboot loop
  • You see the error:

    autochk program not found - skipping AUTOCHECK

  • If you disable automatic restart, you see the error:

    STOP: c000021a {Fatal System Error

    The Session Manager Initialization system process terminated unexpectedly with a status of 0xc000003a (0x00000000 0x00000000).
    The System has been shut down.


 This issue may occur if the System Partition created during the installation of Windows Server 2008 is assigned a default drive letter.


This issue is resolved in ESX/ESXi 4.1 Update 2 and ESXi 5.0 Update 1. For more information, see the Resolved Issues section of the release notes:
This is still a known issue affecting ESXi 5.1.

To workaround this issue on previous versions of ESX/ESXi 4.1 and ESXi 5.x:
  1. Power down the source virtual machine.
  2. Backup the .vmx file of the source virtual machine.
  3. Change the value of the disk.EnableUUID parameter to False. For more information, see Tips for editing a .vmx file (1714).
  4. Save the changes made to the .vmx file.
  5. Clone the virtual machine again.
If these steps do not resolve the issue, try this alternate workaround:
  1. Power down the source virtual machine.
  2. Boot the virtual machine using the Windows Server 2008 R2 .iso file.
  3. In the Installation Wizard, select Repair your Computer. For more information, see the Microsoft Knowledge Base article 2261423.

    Note: The preceding link was correct as of August 18, 2011. If you find the link is broken, provide feedback and a VMware employee will update the link.

  4. Select Command Prompt.
  5. Run these commands in the specified order:

    list volume
    select volume 1
    attributes volume
    attributes volume clear nodefaultdriveletter

  6. Restart the virtual machine after removing the mounted .iso file.
  7. Clone the virtual machine again.
Note: If you cannot power down the source virtual machine, you can apply this alternate procedure on the resulting cloned virtual machine as well. 


boot-vm-fails  boot-cloned-vm-fails

See Also

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  • 37 Ratings