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Inside Windows 7: Recovering Windows from System Degradation and Boot Failures

44 minutes, 49 seconds


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Windows 7 is capable of certain levels of self-repair, as you've learned. One of the new capabilities in Windows is its ability to recover from serious failures that can impact the OS's ability to boot. How does Windows 7 handle these errors? Can you boot Windows 7 into Safe Mode or to an earlier functional state when something really bad happens? Yes. You can, depending on the nature of the problem. How?

Stephan Doll, Pavan Kasturi, Desmond Lee and Baskar Sridharan make up most of the team that has enabled Windows 7 to be the most recoverable version of Windows to date. By ensuring that every Windows 7 machine has the ability to automatically diagnose and recover from most boot failures with little or no interaction from the user, this team's work promises to greatly reduce—or even eliminate—the impact of a serious issue that would otherwise cause significant pain for Windows 7 users.

Tune in.


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  • Regarding system recovery, I am finding windows 7 backup to be terribly slow.



    It took over 18 hours to backup a recently installed win7 client to a 2008 r2 server.  I have zero confidence that recovering windows from a backup would complete in a usable amount of time.


  • Yeah I always end up scripting "robocopy" to run as a scheduled task instead of using Windows Backup.

  • There is a problem with downloading this .wmv if you live in Australia. The downloading stops after just 1.45MB. Other videos on Channel 9 have the same problem (again: if you live in Australia). Downloading from other US sites is not a problem.

  • I just tried using the Silverlight viewer instead and it stops after a few minutes with the following error: "Media Failure. Try reloading the page or visiting the main site for assistance". It looks as if it managed to download about the same amount of data as before. So it looks as if it is not a Silverlight or Browser thingy but instead a data source issue.


    I have now ended up using a US based Linux server to download the videos. It sure would be nice to get this problem fixed so that people in Australia don't have to do that Smiley

  • CharlesCharles Welcome Change

    Our CDN has been contacted. Any chance you could run a trace and provide some data? This would be helpful.


  • Charles: Happy to help. Let's take this off-line. Do you have an email address I can use to contact you?

  • CharlesCharles Welcome Change



    Thank you!


  • I remember trying this recovery, might've been on RTM I can't remember. It went something like:


    1. Put in an empty SATA HDD alone (system hdd)

    2. In BIOS set SATA to Legacy mode

    3. Install Win7 completely

    4. reboot and in BIOS set SATA to AHCI mode

    5. Windows 7 RC bluescreens

    6. It tries to self-repair and fails.




  • CharlesCharles Welcome Change

    You are referring to this issue? http://support.microsoft.com/kb/922976


  • Elmerelmer I'm on my very last life.

    I agree, the performance is abysmal, and I've given up trying to view or download videos from CH9.

  • CharlesCharles Welcome Change

    How about now? Please try again.

  • I love your honestly, Charles; "chances are Windows OS will slow down over time."  As a long time Windows user I'm aware of this behavior.

  • Windows 7 recovery is definitely improved over previous versions, its saved me from reformatting at least twice now. Is there a way to add recovery options directly to the boot menu like you could in XP?

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