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I am trying to fix an issue with Windows registry and services. I tried running sfc command but this is the error message I get?

C:\Windows>sfc /scannow

Beginning system scan.  This process will take some time.    

There is a system repair pending which requires reboot to complete.  Restart
Windows and run sfc again.


But I have rebooted several times since this message first appeared, and I even tried running the command in safe mode and in console mode but I still get the same message. How do I get rid of it?

There is this file in winsxs folder: C:\Windows\winsxs\cleanup.xml

This is it's content:

<?xml version='1.0' encoding='utf-16'?>
<PendingTransaction >
    <POQ postAction="NoReboot">
        <DeleteFile path="\??\D:\$$DeleteMe.CbsMsg.dll.01c85bd2f5893b40.0000"/>

Could this be something? Is this the cause? Is it safe to delete this file?


I tried renaming it but the operation failed.

I ran the explorer.exe with elevated privileges and navigated to the location. I got the UAC confirmation prompt and then the error below.

Destination Folder Access Denied
You need permission to perform this action

How do I rename or delete this file? Do I need to use cmd or be in safe mode to do it?

Update 2

I started safe mode with command prompt and tried taking ownership of the file and then renaming it. Rename failed.

C:\Windows\winsxs>ren cleanup.xml cleanup.xml.old
Access is denied.

C:\Windows\winsxs>takeown /f "cleanup.xml"

SUCCESS: The file (or folder): "C:\Windows\winsxs\cleanup.xml" now owned by user

C:\Windows\winsxs>ren cleanup.xml cleanup.xml.old
Access is denied.


I also issued following command.

C:\Windows\system32>icacls "C:\Windows\winsxs\cleanup.xml" /grant username:F
processed file: C:\Windows\winsxs\cleanup.xml
Successfully processed 1 files; Failed processing 0 files

C:\Windows\system32>cd ..\winsxs

C:\Windows\winsxs>ren cleanup.xml cleanup.xml.old
Access is denied.


It still won't allow me to rename it. I issued these last two commands in normal Windows mode. Does it matter?... I will try a reboot.

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Problem solved, by performing a repair install. –  sammyg Jun 18 '13 at 10:25

2 Answers 2

This command is supposed to do it.

dism.exe /image:C:\ /cleanup-image /revertpendingactions

But this only works in Windows 7 or newer. I don't have the dism.exe tool in Windows Vista. I just thought I would share it with those who find this question and who do have Windows 7. I was of course unable to test this myself, but this guy says he was able to remove this annoying error message out of the world. So it might be worth a try.

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look in the registry under SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Component Based Servicing if you see a key called RebootPending. This is the place where Windows also checks if there is a pending reboot.

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In HKLM (local machine)?... –  sammyg Jun 17 '13 at 9:46
Yeah, I have HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Component Based Servicing\RebootPending and it contains only the default string value, and it's not set to anything. Should I set it to 0 or something? Or maybe remove the key? –  sammyg Jun 17 '13 at 9:49
"Cannot delete RebootPending: Error while deleting key." –  sammyg Jun 17 '13 at 10:18
take ownership of the key: winaero.com/comment.php?comment.news.210 and now delete it. –  magicandre1981 Jun 17 '13 at 14:40
Thanks! I will download that reg tool, I'm sure it will come in handy sometime. So it's probably good to have it in the toolbox. –  sammyg Jun 18 '13 at 10:23

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