"The drive where Windows is installed is locked.Unlock the drive and try again."

After two weeks with Windows 8, I find it the least stable OS

I've decided to move my comments about Windows 8 as "the least stable OS" to a new thread because my problems continue.
My question is:
What to do when you get the following message on "the most stable", Windows 8, operating system?
"The drive where Windows is installed is locked. Unlock the drive and try again."

I got that message after the following:
I wanted to open a PDF file from my customer on OUTLOOK - a regular, every-hour procedure - and my computer froze.
After I restarted, I could not get passed the login screen - my computer used to enter the "blue background color and nothing else" mode.
I decided to use USB Flash drive to repair but it failed. I wanted to refresh my Windows 8, but I got that message:
"The drive where Windows is installed is locked. Unlock the drive and try again."

I truly believe that Windows 8 and I have the same personal feeling about each other.

What should I do besides another "clean install" of Windows 8?

Sponsored Links:

Hi Guys,

I have a fresh install of Windows 8 Pro on a new PC and have done for some weeks. On Friday i hit the shutdown option Update and Restart. On the Saturday (yesterday) I turned on my machine to greeted with the Windows 8 Logo then a blank screen and doesn't boot at all into Windows (And not i have checked both monitors and they connected fine.

What was i doing just BEFORE "Update and Restart".......

1. Enabled UEFI on the BIOS
2. Installed the Hyper-V Windows 8 Features
3. Created and installed a Virtual Switch
4. Created and installed a Virtual Machine and installed Windows 8.
5. Onto the VM i installed Visual Studio 2012 Web (MVC4) and SQL Server Express 2012 (NOT LocalDb)

Then after than i ran the Windows Update on the main PC and pressed "Update and Restart".

What have I tried doing to resolve this issue?

Booted (F12) using the OEM Disc. I have then Repair your computer->Troubleshoot....

1.1 Advanced Options
1.2 Automatic Repair
1.3 This fails and I get the following error:


then i tried....

2.1 Refresh PC
2.2 I get the following error:

"The Drive where Windows is installed is locked. Unlock the drive and try again"

then i tried....

3.1 Reset PC
3.2 I get the following error:

"Unable to reset your PC. A required drive partition is missing"

then i tried....

4.1 System Restore
4.2 This fails and i get the following error:


So I'm completely at a loss. I presume if I unlock the primary disk I should be able to boot or at least repair? Anyway i really don't want to wipe and uninstall if possible.

Not sure if this should be here under Win 8 or in Hardware under SSDs.

Emboldened by my recent successes in converting from Win 7 32 bit to 64 bit then to Win 8 64 Bit and finally replacing the second HDD on my PC witha 1 TB unit (in place of previous 500 GB unit) I decided to go for a 256 GB OCZ Vertex SSD as my boot drive.

Using a tutorial to do same in Win 7 out of a local PC mag as a guide I made a System image of the C drive on an external 2 BTB drive then set to and installed the SSD.
Sys Image was about 70 GB

All went well, I ended up in troubleshoot and selected advanced options which has System Image Recovery, that found my system image on the external Drive, I then excluded the 1 TB internal drive from the re-image process, then clicked next, again it confirmed where my system image was and that my computer w=ill be restored from it click finish and then Yes.

System buzzes for a few seconds then I get a message " The system image restore failed"
Error Details: The Disk that is set as active in BIOS is too small to recover the original system disk. Replace the disk with a larger one and retry the restore operation. (0x80042407).

I then tried the refresh your PC option but that gives a message "The drive where Windows is installed is locked. Unlock the drive and try again."

May re install original HDD and wait until someone comes up with suggestions re how to get around the problems I have.

Appreciate any help.


Bob t

I was having some odd Printer problems and wanted to try a Refresh of Windows 8. Unfortunately I can't get it to work.

If I try a Refresh from Windows 8 it asks me for my DVD, it copies some files and then restarts. The Refresh stays at 0%, the machine re-boots, and I get a message on the screen saying that the refresh failed. When I click on the link for more information I get nothing.

So I tried the Refresh booting from my Windows 8 DVD. Then I get the error message, "The drive where Windows is installed is locked. Unlock the drive and try again."

I have no clue why my C: drive might be locked on a clean boot from the DVD.

I have tried to install ubuntu server version 11.04 and it was installed in a D: drive the partition which i have installed has been missing but is in healthy partion.Before i opened my system by using windows then in windows it gave me pop to format the drive to open it
where in that drive i have kept windows sever also init.so please how to remove all thing from my laptop and make it as single O.S
I had no time plzzz As soon as possible.

True Crypt


Free open-source disk encryption software for Windows 7/Vista/XP, Mac OS X, and Linux

Main Features:

- Creates a virtual encrypted disk within a file and mounts it as a real disk.

- Encrypts an entire partition or storage device such as USB flash drive or hard drive.

- Encrypts a partition or drive where Windows is installed (pre-boot authentication).

- Encryption is automatic, real-time (on-the-fly) and transparent.

- Parallelization and pipelining allow data to be read and written as fast as if the drive was not encrypted.

- Encryption can be hardware-accelerated on modern processors.

- Provides plausible deniability, in case an adversary forces you to reveal the password

- Hidden volume (steganography) and hidden operating system.

- More information about the features of TrueCrypt may be found in the documentation.

In fact, it's very very simple: with True Crypt, you create an encrypted virtual drive (which consists of a file that can be deciphered with your password by True Crypt only) and then mount this file. In your system it appears as an extra hdd partition on which you can store data and install software. (To mount this drive you have to enter your password)

Step 1.

Download, install, and start True Crypt.

Step 2.

True Crypt program window -> Menus bar -> Volumes > Create New volume ..

Step 3.

Follow the instructions of True Crypt Volume Creation Wizard, I use defaults

Choose the name and location of your virtual file:

By default, I use AES encryption which is quite strong:

When specifying the size, check the appropriate box Kb, Mb, or Gb, and then enter a number next to it, e.g. 4 Gb or 4096 Mb:

Set a password for your volume :

Check mark if you're gonna be using files larger than 4 Gb:

You can choose which file system you want, I leave it NTFS, and click "Format":

Step 4.

Finally, select the drive letter and enter your password to mount the encrypted virtual file:

You'll get a hard drive partition at your disposal which can be accessed from your account until you unmount it, reboot, shutdown, log off, or turn the power off. All the changes to this drive will stay:

Encrypted virtual drive.jpg

Please note that True Crypt offers many more options and features than just described here. For more information and updates, visit:

TrueCrypt - Free Open-Source On-The-Fly Disk Encryption Software for Windows 7/Vista/XP, Mac OS X and Linux

I have a Dell Inspiron 1721 connected to a new Seagate external hard drive.

The Inspiron has 280GB of which 85 are free.

The Seagate has 465GB with 445GB free.

Several times I have attempted to back up the Inspiron and so far have been unsuccessful.

The message I get is:

Your last backup did not complete successfully.

Windows Backup could not create a zip file. This could because the drive that Windows is installed on does not have enough space, or it could be a temporary error. Make sure you have at least 400MB of free space and try again.

None of this means a thing to me. Can any smart guy out there tell me what I can do to fix this?

Thanks, in anticipation,

Art Leat

Windows Modules Installer Stopped Working


I frequently receive the error message: "Windows Modules Installer stopped working and was closed. A Problem caused the application to stop working correctly."

This error seems to appear spontaneously, at least, I am unable to identify what is causing it to appear.

I am using Windows Vista .
Any help or suggestions would be appreciated

I have a Tosh satellite L505D-ES025 that I purchased in May 2010. The hard drive ("HD") failed in June 2012. In checking the Toshiba forum for this model.I have noticed a number of owners have similar problems with HD failures . Toshiba wants $250 for a replacment drive. I have installed a Western Digital HD Blue 500G, which is win 7 compatible. Toshiba recovery disk would not install and If it did, it would eliminate all the critical drivers, among them, installing a display driver that causes the system to freeze. I took the tosshiba hd from my other toshiba notebook and it installed everthing to factory. I decided not to use toshiba's recovery disk because I believe it is doing things beyond restoring windows and is selective towards using Toshiba Drives that fail in less than two years.
I have downloaded and tried Windows 7 Iso. I could not read the product key on my notebook, and I tried getting it from Toshiba many times without success. I also have an HP notebook and I "borrowed" the product key, to see how windows7 retail worked. This allowed me to use windows 7 for almost 30 days. On install, windows did not have the modem and camera, and Fn function card reader drivers, which are Toshiba proprietary drivers. I have downloaded those drivers from Toshiba's website. A few days ago, I encountered problems. All my windows services started locking down and I could not enter any of the safe modes. I tried startup repair (with the win 7 cd) but had no luck. Also tried system restore, without any luck. I tried reinstalling windows, using a product key that microsoft support gave me. The reinstall, though, would not installl my HD sound driver or usb controller. My usb drives can power devices, but not read them. In addition I can no longer install the drivers I downloaded from Tohibas website, which includes (the modem, camera, and usb card reader)
This HD was under 30 days old, so I returned it for another WD HD. I reinstalled win 7 and amazingly microsoft remove the 30 activation to 3 days, Where is Microsoft info store? This is a brand new drive! I haven't even configuered my lan or internet!
I believe the product key I misused from my HP notebook has caused microsoft to "black list"my notebook.
What can I do to get windows to load the drivers and allow the toshiba drivers to be installed as they were on my initial install from the win 7 iso cd? I have paid for the use of windows and both Microsoft andToshiba seem to be Forgetting this

My wife's computer is running Windows XP, SP3 on an 80GB hard drive on a Dell desktop. She has periodically gotten warnings about her HD being full, so I'd suggested that she back up some photos to another drive to make room. Now that the holidays are here, we finally had some time to really look at the problem, and thanks to a wonderful little program called TreeSizeFree (Thanks, Eike), I was able to determine the real problem.

As you can see from the screenshot below, her HD appears to have a massive tumor growing in it. Out of a total available HD size of 75.796GB, Windows is taking up a massive 48.734GB, 48.423GB (91.9%) of which is the Installer folder . By way of comparison, that same scan on my XP, SP2 Dell desktop showed Windows at 5.798GB and the Installer folder at 0.861GB, and on my Dell XP SP3 laptop Windows was 6.485GB with an Installer folder at 0.471GB.

Windows XP Installer 48.7GB.jpg

Clearly, something is (literally!) hugely wrong here and I'd appreciate any thoughts or suggestions that might help me to resolve it. I've owned and played with computers since 1985, so I'm moderately computer savvy, but I'm certainly no "techie," so if the solution to this turns out to be a super high-tech or high risk operation, I'll probably just hand it over to a "computer doctor" here in town and let them handle the "tumor removal."

Thanks in advance for any and all help.

Hey, I tried to search for this problem but could not find what I was looking for.
I downloaded Windows 7 64 bit from my university via the MSDN AA program. I know that I need a clean install to upgrade this PC from XP to Windows 7. I downloaded the files and made the iso which I then burned onto a DVD. When I try to start the computer with the install disk in (the first boot device is the DVD drive)
Boot from CD:
comes up like it should during the start up and hangs there for a few seconds, then just continues on to load XP, as if it looked at the disc and determined that it was not a boot disc.

In My Computer, the disc shows up fine and i can explore and see all the files, and it yells at me when I try to run setup in XP like it should, I know there is no path from XP to 7, so it seems like the disc has everything it should have.

I realize that I need to wipe XP off the drive in order to install win 7, though I want to make sure the dvd boots first, and just wipe the drive via the install program. If someone can help me out or direct me to a thred where this problem is answered that would be great.

In the meantime I will try to boot with a flash drive. Thanks in advance.

I'm new to the forum. Saw all the great help that has been offered to people (though I haven't found a solution to my problem yet, as it seems to be VERY specific). While looking for solutions I seemed to come very close to finding someone with my exact problem, but not quite. Here goes:

I had a hard drive with Windows 7 installed. Everything worked, etc. Got a new hard drive, and installed 7 on there as well without making changed to the old hard drive (prompts displayed during new installation saying "old" windows files would be saved). I've been using it for a while now, however I want to use the old hard drive strictly for storage, so I tried to format it to clear the space out. I got the notice "Windows cannot complete format." Went to the forums and looked thru several suggestions, which brought me to try deleting the files individually.

Included in all this were attempts to give myself (the only user on the computer) full control of all files (which was already the case), to take ownership (via right click options AND command prompt "takeown" and "cacls"), to change permissions/ownership via "properties" for the drive/folders, command prompts to remove the "active" status of the old hard drive, as well as removing "boot" status from old drive (while making sure the new drive had "boot" status), tried everything I can think of using Disk Management AND the DiskPart utility, as well as countless other suggestions that I can barely remember. I'm still getting the "You need permission to perform this action." What I don't get is, if I'm THE administrator (and the only user), how do I not have access to this?

I'm really hoping you guys can help me out as I've been all throughout several forums and have found nothing.

I'm sure there are some details I'm leaving out, but I've been at it for hours. Let me know if there's something you need to know. Running Windows 7 Ultimate 32bit, 4GB RAM, 3.2 Ghz AMD Athlon II.

And thanks in advance, I know the help that's offered here is free and coming from people taking time out of their own day, so I don't expect a miracle (but one would be welcome).

My mother asked me to fix her computer, his window XP is badly corrupted, so I tried to install Window 7 on her computer. However, the hard drive didn't show on the screen. I found it quite odd because BIOS detected it as IDE driver, and it's a SATA driver. I tried to install with old Window XP installation CD. Same thing, doesn't show on the window XP installation screen either.

I tried to hook hard drive on other computer, and was testing with Window 7 XD and see if it was working, and it did. It shown on the disk screen. My guess that it's probably the BIOS that occurred, or perhaps other things. I have one hard drive, nothing more.

Any suggestions?

This was my first PC build and everything went well except for installing Windows 7.
I am clean installing Windows 7 Professional 64bit.
My BIOS is able to detect all my hardware (2 harddrives, dvd rom drive, dvd burner, 4 sticks of ram 2gb each, etc.)
Hard drives are in RAID1

While I am installing Windows 7 Professional 64 bit I get up to the point where it is installing Expanding Windows Files and it says 0%... and stays there. It has been hanging at 0% for 20 minutes and I tried to find out why. One source said to only have 2 sticks of RAM in when installing windows 7 and then put the other 2 sticks in after.

Currently I have 2 2GB sticks of RAM in my computer. What do I need to do so I can get passed the Expanding Windows Files installation? Could it be my windows 7 disk? I have it burned onto a DVD and it runs perfectly up to that point.

Here are my system specs:

Intel Core i7-860 Lynnfield 2.8GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor
Newegg.com - Intel Core i7-860 Lynnfield 2.8GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops

Mother Board
ASUS P7P55D PRO LGA 1156 Intel P55 ATX Intel Motherboard
Newegg.com - ASUS P7P55D PRO LGA 1156 Intel P55 ATX Intel Motherboard - Intel Motherboards

Hard Drive
Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
Newegg.com - Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory
Newegg.com - G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-4GBRH - Desktop Memory

Graphics Card
SAPPHIRE 100282SR Radeon HD 5850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16
Newegg.com - SAPPHIRE 100282SR Radeon HD 5850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card w/ATI Eyefinity - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards

Power Supply
Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W Continuous Power ATX12V version 2.3
Newegg.com - Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W Continuous Power ATX12V version 2.3 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC "compatible with Core i7/Core i5" Power Supply - Power Supplies

Newegg.com - LITE-ON Black 18X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model iHDS118-04 - CD / DVD Drives

Newegg.com - PLEXTOR Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 24X DVD/CD Writer LightScribe Support - CD / DVD Burners

Internal Card Reader
Newegg.com - Rosewill RCR-IC002 74-in-1 USB 2.0 3.5" Internal Card Reader w/ USB port / Extra silver face plate - Card Readers

NZXT Lexa S case
Newegg.com - NZXT LEXA S LEXS - 001BK Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases

I messed up completely... this is what happened. I was running Windows 7 and I decided to test out Linux Ubuntu so that I would know what I was talking about with the OS. The disc run was pretty bare bones so I decided to install it onto my system. Bad news is that it completely messed up Win7 somehow and I was pretty much forced to do a re-install of my Win7 installation. When I went to re-install to fix the lag errors, it says I can't install on any of my hard drives because they have been all changed to ext3 format by Linux. I have no idea how to change them back to NTFS format for Windows. So my question is, is it possible to format my hard drives back to NTFS using the command prompt that is in the Win7 install disc?

Had the common problem of Windows 7 Professional installing very slowly. Removed the 2 - 6 USB port cards – only cards installed, disabled the USB port and floppy drive in the BIOs and removed all but one stick of memory. The installation went fine. Rebooted several times, could go on-line, everything seemed fine. Enabled the USB & Floppy in the BIOs, added the four 1 Gig sticks of memory and two USB cards. Now the computer is back to being glacial slow. Tried tuning off the USBs & floppy, separately and together. Different variation in the memory…. All for not. Any help would appreciated.
Asus P5B SS – Intel – Quad Core.
4 x 1 Gig of memory
ATI Radeon HD 4350
SSD – Kingston 128 Gig – Where Windows is Installed.
2 x 500 Gig Western digitals.

Found this on the forum. Did not work. Cleared Window's installs choice of video driver and installed the current ATI drive.....
Any help would be appreciated.

From this Forum:
I did it
I'm so happy. What I did?
I have search a lot at this forum all my free time. I was sure that I could find the solution.
I boot up at save mode.
Then I went to my computer then properties, then my hardware, and I deactivated the two drivers installed for the graphic card.
Reboot and VUALA.....everything was working perfect. This is all I did.
I would like to thank you all that have read my message.
I will still reading here at the forum.
A very big thanks to the poster off the topic where I found my solution. Sorry but as I have opened many pages I can find where I have seen it.

Dear all,

Firstly, wow you have a wonderful forum here, seems nice, anyway I'll get straight down to my problem.

I have a Windows Vista machine, a custom modified/built machine,

I am not sure if it is a hardware error or compatability error but I can't find anything to say it isn't,

It is a upgraded Dell Dimensions C521, Dual core 64bit 3.5ghz, 4gig of Crucial Ram, upgraded ATI HD4550 GFX card, everything else is pretty standard, generic Dell DVD/CD drive, 600w psu,

thats my pc history, now for the background and the problems.

I lost my Win Vista Disks and needed to reformat so I spent £70 on a copy of Win7, thought why the hell not, looks good and it's been good when I used it,

I pop the disk in, boot up, go to install and select custom install, format the drive I want to install too, install, it installs fine, restarts and goes to the logo screen and gives a message saying updating the registry, the screen go blank and then it restarts again, goes to the loading screen and says "windows is starting" screen goes blank, I can move the cursor but that is it, now if i try it in safe mode it goes but says "windows is starting for the first time" or something like that, then i get an error message about it not being able to be installed in safemode and restarts.

This happens with both a 32bit install and 64bit install

I do not believe I can give much more information but any help would be appreciated. ps I did spend 4 hours on the phone to Microsoft Tech support, installing 64bit OS 4 times and 32bit 3 times before they gave up.

I never noticed this until today when I went to add more space to the Windows 7 drive on my disk. Even though I had Windows XP and then installed Windows 7 my computer shows Windows 7 as Drive C and Windows XP as Drive D. I have no idea how this occurred since i presumed Windows 7 would auto be Drive D with Boot installed to Windows XP Drive C.

Now the problem is the actual cylinder boundaries show Windows XP as C and Windows 7 as D but not on the computer opening My Computer. This is something new to me so I have no idea how the computer or Windows 7 install managed to change the drive mapping. Since one cannot just go in and change drive letters does anyone know how to fix this so the drives are correct? Both partition managers I have show it correctly but the computer does not on Windows 7.

Reinstalling Windows 7 is a nightmare specially since you have to call to get a new activation and go through about a hour of hoops and loops.

Having multiple problems im trying to resolve after installing windows 7 pro. The back story is this computer had xp on an IDE harddrive. Then i wanted to upgrade my harddrive and windows os to windows 7, so I bought a sata 1tb hdd and got win7 and installed the hdd (while still using xp) then installed windows 7 to the new sata 1tb hdd. So I had the option once that was all done to either chose windows 7 os or an "older version" of windows on startup. I apparently dont have something right because when I try to format my c drive (which is the drive with windows xp) it says windows was unable to complete the format. It immediately says this after i click format. I tried manually deleting all the files (which probably wasn't a good idea) but there is still 16gig taken up on the c drive that had xp on it that i cant format, even though it now shows nothing on the hdd when i open it. And even though ive deleted all i can from my c drive that had xp it still gives me the option when i boot up to chose windows 7 or an older version of windows....Anyone know how i can fix this? Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Edit: Finally found how to disable the multiple os option at startup by going into my computer -> properties -> advanced system settings -> startup and recovery settings and changed the time to display windows os to 0 seconds. I dunno if thats necessarily the best way but it worked! Still cant format my IDE (C) drive...

I have Windows 7 Pro installed on a brand new 1 TB HDD, itself in a new system which contains old HDDs.

My homemade Tyan Tiger server/ workstation works it seems but for one important detail: it boots to the black and white screen of the "Windows boot manager". Only when I pick Windows 7 from the two choices available and press Enter do I
finally get to go to Windows Heaven.

The system itself contains another HDD which previously had Windows XP Pro on it before I wiped it out,leaving only the boot directory invisible to XP Windows Explorer. This invisible boot directory cannot be erased or deleted. Maybe is it this
unknown directory left after I erased everything else that causes the problem, because Windows 7 may have "seen" it during installation.

What follows is the skimmed result of BCDEDIT.EXE without the mishmash of Globally Unique Identifiers (GUI) and their "hexadecimal mysteries". At first after installing Windows 7, BCDEDIT.EXE would yield "Boot Configuration Data" of the kind:


Windows Boot Manager
identifier: {bootmgr}
device: partition=X:

Windows Legacy OS Loader
identifier: {ntldr}
device: partition=X:

Windows Boot Loader
identifier: {current}
device: partition=C:


Then I used "Windows Recovery Environment" booting from the DVD of Windows 7 and BCDEDIT.EXE gives this:


Windows Boot Manager
identifier: {bootmgr}
device: partition=X:

Windows Boot Loader
identifier: {current}
device: partition=C:

Windows Boot Loader
identifier: {long series of alphanumeric}
device: ramdisk=[C:]Recovery same long series of alphanumeric Winre.wim


In the Boot Configuration Data, rather noticeable is the fact that the "Windows Legacy OS Loader" is gone after using "Windows Recovery Environment" and that "Windows Boot Loader" has now two entries instead of a single one. But I am still booting to the same black and white screen of the "Windows boot manager", where the choice of the Legacy OS has been replaced by "Windows Recovery", itself to be replaced by "Ramdisk Options", about which I have next to no idea what to do with!

The problem remains, it's just not booting directly to Windows 7, but to the black and white screen first, where a choice of OS must be made manually in Windows Boot Manager. They go as follows:

Windows 7
Ramdisk Options

Is this a case where BOOTSECT.EXE should be used or has been used already by Windows Recovery without me knowing? I searched my HDD and couldn't find BOOTSECT.EXE anywhere, and yet it is there in the boot directory of the Windows 7 DVD.

So, should I use BOOTSECT.EXE or BCDEDIT.EXE, and in what way?

Above is a view of my Disk Management window. Any help is great help.