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Repair a Windows Server 2016 installation

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This is more for my benefit in the future, but hopefully it can help someone else too.

We recently had problems with a development server not installing Windows Updates. The fix was to repair the installation using the Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) tool.

All commands should be run from an elevated command prompt.

  1. Run dism /online /cleanup-image /scanhealth
  2. Run dism /online /cleanup-image /checkhealth
  3. Run dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
  4. Mount the Windows Server 2016 ISO as a drive (E: in this case)
  5. Run dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
    /source:WIM:E:\sources\install.wim:1 /limitaccess
  6. Run sfc /scannow
  7. Run Windows Update

Good luck!

Photo by Matt Artz on Unsplash

9 thoughts on “Repair a Windows Server 2016 installation”

  1. Please note that VIM index might not be `1` in every case. `1` is usually ServerCore option while `2` is desktop edition. To find out which one use following `dism /Get-WimInfo /WimFile:F:\sources\install.wim /index:4`

  2. Actually, there are some media with sources for all 4 versions and /index:4 shows DataCenter (Desktop Version).

    In actuality if this command is typed:
    /index:1 – you may get a response W2016 Standard – Installation: Server Core
    /index:2 – you may get a response W2016 Standard (Desktop Experience)
    /Index:3 – you may get a response W2016 DataCenter – Installation: Server Core
    /Index:4 – you may get a response W2016 DataCenter (Desktop Experience)

    This would be media that would allow you to chose what version at installation…

    Even OEM media MS Manufacturer Silk Screened as Windows 2016 Server Standard has all 3 versions on it; so be very careful about what switch you use to run DISM with for the repair..

    Also, please verify everything said here for yourselves before you run any repair.


  3. sorry typo all 4 versions of Windows 2016 Server 2 Core and 2 Desktop Experience…

    Stay Safe – Stay Healthy.


  4. Does the ISO version need to match the installed version? Where can you get older ISOs if needed?

    1. The ISO should match, yes. Good question on where to get older ones (which means I have no idea). I get ISOs from my MSDN subscription.

  5. Hey, thanks for quick reply. Any ideas where to turn if DISM returns “source files not found” even when pointed at a proper ISO?

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