SP2 stuck in "automatic repair" following attempt to restore to factory settings

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 2' started by haigsp2, Apr 13, 2015.

  1. haigsp2

    haigsp2 New Member

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    Hi guys

    I am new to this forum. I have an SP2 and had copied restore files to USB and deleted from main memory, to save space. A few days ago, I tried to reset the SP2 to return to factory settings, but the process failed, and now it is stuck in a never ending loop. When it boots up I get a black screen with the "surface" logo, followed by "preparing automatic repair", which is then followed by "diagnosing your pc", and finally "automatic repair couldn't repair your pc". I have created a recovery USB from the MS website, and have tried all the advanced options, as well as powering up by holding the volume up and power buttons, with the USB plugged in, but I keep getting a message saying the restore media is not valid. I tried downloading the windows 8 repair media from the MS website, so as to reinstall W8, which starts fine, but then asks me for the product activation key, which I can't find anywhere. I have tried to buy a new activation code from MS, but as I am outside the USA, this also does not work. Any ideas on what I can do from here?

    Sorry if this has been posted before, I did a search and found partial matches, but none with all the above.

    Many thanks in advance :)
     
  2. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    How are you preparing the USB Recovery Drive? It needs to be FAT32 to be able to boot and other format will be seen as not valid. I typically use an Elevated CMD Prompt to create the media using Xcopy with the switches /e/f/s . Assuming the Virtual Optical Disk is "D" and the thumb drive is "E" use the following:

    xcopy d:\*.* /e/f/s e:

    Once finished, plug the drive into the SP2, hold volume rocker down and power up, it should boot from the Recovery Drive at this point.
     
  3. haigsp2

    haigsp2 New Member

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    Hi Jeff

    Many thanks for your reply. I have formatted my thumb drive as FAT32, and the drive on my laptop where I am downloading the recovery files is "D". I am afraid after that I am a bit lost, as I have very few IT skills. Would it be possible for you to walk me through what you mean by: "use an Elevated CMD Prompt to create the media using Xcopy with the switches /e/f/s . Assuming the Virtual Optical Disk is "D" and the thumb drive is "E" use the following:

    xcopy d:\*.* /e/f/s e:"

    I would really appreciate a step by step guide, but if you think I might screw things up, maybe I am better going to a repair shop?

    Many thanks in advance.
     
  4. haigsp2

    haigsp2 New Member

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    Sorry, and my local disk is C
     
  5. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    The recovery image should be an ISO File or IMG File, these can be mounted using the Virtual DVD-ROM in explorer (assuming you are using Windows 8.x). An elevated CMD prompt is accessed by searching cmd and right click and run as administrator.
     
  6. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Last time I downloaded the Recovery Image it was a Zip file.
     
  7. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    Ok, disregard the ISO format, its a simple copy and paste to a FAT32 drive after extracting the zipped folder....
     
  8. haigsp2

    haigsp2 New Member

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    Thanks guys. I have tried extracting the zips file and copying it to the FAT32 formatted USB, but when I boot up the SP2 it still carries on with the automatic repair/diagnosing pc loop, and then says that the recovery file is not valid. I guess I have to buy a new W8 license and reload windows :-( Thanks for your input though.
     
  9. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    Or try a different drive...
     
  10. haigsp2

    haigsp2 New Member

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    Will do, thanks :)
     
  11. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Contact support, there's no reason to buy a Windows license.
     

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