Windows 8 wont boot after windows update

I have a dell xps 8500 that passed the upgrade assistant. So I decided a 2 weeks ago to upgrade windows 7 to 8. Everything ran great until this past wednesday when i restarted my computer for windows update. It restarted twice giving the error code 0xc000021a. Then it tries to automatically repair. That fails and then I'm on a screen that says troubleshoot or shutdown pc. Under troubleshoot I click refresh pc and am told my hard drive is locked. Resetting does not work either, a required drive or partition is missing. So I click on advanced options and try restoring, this says I need to specify which operating system I am restoring. I didnt keep windows 7 so  i dont know what this means. Called microsoft support and we downloaded windows 8 on my laptop which is running windows 7 and burned a dvd to just do a clean install. We select custom install but windows does not see my hard drive. He has me run dell diagnostics and everything passed. Tier 2 support is suppose to call me back but If anybody has any answers for me I would like to try to get it fixed myself. They were suppose to call me at 11am friday but didnt call till 2:30 when i was leaving for work. The guy said something about trying to type something at the command prompt, but I didnt have time. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
Thanks

Please answer each of the following [admittedly tedious] diagnostic questions in a correspondingly-numbered list in your very next reply, preferably without quoting this post:

 

1a. When (approx. date) did you purchase the Win7 computer?

 

1b. When (exact date, preferably) did you upgrade to Win8?

 

1c. Was Win8 Release Preview (beta) ever installed?

 

2. Is it a 32-bit or a 64-bit computer? See...

 

    • Is my PC running the 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows?
      http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/find-out-32-or-64-bit

 

3. What is the full name of your installed anti-virus application or security suite and when (approx. date) does your current subscription expire? What anti-spyware applications (other than Windows Defender) are installed? What third-party firewall (if any)?

 

4. Has a(nother) Norton application or a McAfee application EVER been installed on the computer since you bought it?

 

5. Did a Norton free-trial or a McAfee free-trial [PICK ONE] come preinstalled on the computer when you bought it? (Doesn't matter if you never used or Activated it.)

 

6. Are KB2792100, KB2797052, KB2778344, KB2799494, KB2790655, KB2789650, KB2789649 & KB2819372 all listed in Installed Updates (not Update History)? [1]

 

7. Is Firefox, Chrome or any other alternate browser installed and if so, was it already installed when you were still running Win7?

 

8. Are you in the habit of using "Registry cleaners" (e.g., Registry Mechanic; System Mechanic; RegCure; RegClean Pro; Advanced SystemCare; Registry Booster; McAfee QuickClean; AVG PC TuneUp; Norton Registry Cleaner; PCTools Optimiser; SpeedUpMyPC; PC Doctor; TuneUp Utilities; WinMaximizer; WinSweeper; Comodo System Cleaner; Advanced System Optimizer; CCleaner Registry Cleaner)?

 

=======================================================
[1] Control Panel | Programs and Features | View installed updates (in left-hand menu)

--
~Robear Dyer (PA Bear)
Microsoft MVP (Windows Client) since October 2002

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1a. August 2012

1b. February 24,2013

1c. no

2. 64 bit

3. Just Mcafee security center expires august 2015

4. no

5. Mcafee came with the computer I paid for a 3 year subscription through dell

6. Unfortunatley I cant boot up so i am unable to tell which updates are installed.

7. Yes, Chrome was installed when I had windows 7

8. Have not used a registry cleaner on this computer

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So McAfee Security Center's been installed from Day One & you've been upgrading to new versions as they became available, is that correct?

 

[McAfee (and Norton) applications are notorious for not upgrading (or uninstalling) cleanly. The McAfee "leftovers" is the most-likely troublemaker here.]

 

PS: Can you boot into Safe Mode?

 

PPS: May I ask why you upgraded to Win8 and if it's all that you expected it to be?

--
~Robear Dyer (PA Bear)
Microsoft MVP (Windows Client) since October 2002

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Correct, Mcafee has been installed since day one and updating regularly.

I have tried to boot into safe mode, I read to use the f8 key to get into safe mode but couldnt do it.

For the week and a half i had win8 running it was allright. I only upgraded because a friend of mine with little computer experience purchased a new computer with win 8 and I knew i was going to be getting a lot of calls for help and wanted to be familiar with the OS

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McAfee (and Norton) applications are notorious for not upgrading or uninstalling cleanly. Chances are the years' worth of McAfee "leftovers" caused your problem.

 

Ideally, you would have uninstalled the McAfee application AND THEN downloaded/run the McAfee Consumer Products Removal Tool & rebooted BEFORE you upgraded to Win8.

 

Now you have to make a decision: Do you wanna stick with Win8 or go back to Win7 and if the latter, do you have a set of disks that came with the Win7 computer when you bought it or a set of (Win7) Restore Disks that you created?

--
~Robear Dyer (PA Bear)
Microsoft MVP (Windows Client) since October 2002

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Actually Dell didnt ship any disks with my computer. So it looks like I'm sticking with win8. Which is fine if it works.

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Only a Reset (not a Restore or a Refresh) can save your bacon now, Brian. See http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/restore-refresh-reset-pc

 

Good luck!

 

Tip => If I were you, I'd stick with Windows Defender (i.e., after doing the Reset).

--
~Robear Dyer (PA Bear)
Microsoft MVP (Windows Client) since October 2002

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Thanks for trying but that doesnt help me If you read the original post my computer wont boot to the dektop only to the troubleshoot screen. And once there I am unable to refresh or reset for reasons  listed in the first post.

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Oops, I forgot about that. Sorry...

 

Try beginning your own, new thread in the Repair & Recover forum & ask for assistance => http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_8-system

 

PS: Others who recently upgraded to Win8 tell me they've gotten no-charge support for such problems via the Answer Desk. YMMV => http://answerdesk.microsoftstore.com/ [the first 15 minutes is free for all comers]

--
~Robear Dyer (PA Bear)
Microsoft MVP (Windows Client) since October 2002

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Last updated March 24, 2018 Views 1,733 Applies to: