I have the following setup:

  • Windows 7 Ultimate
  • Deep Freeze

I "thawed" my machine last night and performed a Windows Update. The update is having issues (it gets stuck at 32%, fails, and restarts my machine). When it reboots it attempts it again, and again, and again, etc. (Endless loop).

I looked online and found some solutions, but none of them seem to be working:

  1. When I run Safe Mode, Safe Mode w/ Network, or Safe Mode w/ Command Prompt it attempts to revert the Windows Update changes. However, the problem is with Deep Freeze on (and now in "Frozen" mode) the reverted changes don't stay, and I'm back into the loop of death. Oh, and side note: "Safe Mode w/ Command Prompt" does not actually take me to a command prompt window? Perhaps because it is attempting to complete the Windows Update changes first?

  2. I have tried to select the option to NOT restart when an windows error occurs, but it still does.

  3. I tried the remainder of all the other options in the F8 screen.

The only other option left is to find my Windows 7 Media Disc (I can't find it right now) and use it to repair windows (because for some reason the repair option does not show up in the F8 screen).

Is there a way to disable Deep Freeze from loading? When I selected "Safe Mode w/ Command Prompt" I noticed that it loads the DpFrz.sys file. I know that when I'm in the Windows Boot Manager if I press F10 instead of F8 (while highlighting Windows 7) it takes me to an "Edit Boot Options" screen:

Edit Windows boot options for: Windows 7

Path: \Windows\system32\winload.exe

Partition: 2 Hard Disk: 8e90e329


Update: I found my Windows 7 Media Disk and it did not help out. The laptop had the "System Restore" as a partition on the HDD. I later received (in the mail) a Windows 7 Upgrade Disc from Sony to upgrade my system from Windows Vista to Windows 7 Ultimate. I placed the disc into the DVD drive and it does not come up as a "bootable" disc. I'm going to try to find an alternative disc to see if I can get into Command Prompt.

Update 2: I got a Windows Repair disc and got into a command prompt window. I got into the registry and disabled Deep Freeze. Also:

  • I renamed the Pending.xml file to Pending.old
  • I cleared out the Windows Temp directory

I still am stuck in the loop (though, it isn't an issue with DeepFreeze anymore because I can make changes to the hard drive and they persist). Not sure what to do at this point?

Update 3: I ran the repair option and it couldn't repair, but it did point me to something. It says the error was due to a driver that was failing. I have a feeling it is my UPEK Fingerprint scanner.

  • 2
    If you are an end-user and not corporate, I would highly recommend that you use a ghost-type solution in the future. Deep Freeze is unnecessary for the average end-user, and will only serve to limit your system's performance. Jul 13, 2011 at 18:05
  • Are you able to get a desktop at all via safemode, or does it reboot before that point? Mar 30, 2012 at 17:26
  • I HIGHLY recomend calling Faronics support. Their support is some of the best in the industry, you seldom ever have to wait to talk to somebody and their techs know their product well.
    – MDT Guy
    Jan 31, 2013 at 18:23
  • @MDTGuy: Although I've since moved on from this problem by going through a reformat instead (due to not finding an answer), it should be noted that Faronics did not provide me with support. I had purchased the laptop along with the software installed from another party over the internet. Faronics advised me that the software license was non-transferrable. The most they could do was tell me that a solution does exist, but that's about it.
    – myermian
    Jan 31, 2013 at 21:02

5 Answers 5


Is it the 3 of 3 reboot loop?

After installing updates from Windows Update, you may get into a Reboot loop where you machines gets to “configuring updates 3 of 3. X% complete” then freezes or reboots.


1a. Boot from the Windows 7 System Repair Disc and choose the repair option in the lower left hand corner, choose System Restore, and select a Restore Point predating the attempted installation of the updates.

1b. If you don't have the DVD and Vista/W7 came preinstalled on the machine, use F8 at the bios splash screen to get the Windows Advanced Screen, choose "Repair Your Computer" from the list, let Windows RE load then do a system restore.


2 . If restore fails, load the recovery environment "command prompt" enter

Del C:\Windows\winsxs\pending.xml

exit recovery environment and restart the pc, you may get 3 of 3 again but be patient, the desktop should load. Create a restore point and Turn off Automatic updates until you can figure out which update caused the loop.

  • Point 2 (del ...pending.xml) saved me with a combinasion of "safe mode" reboot after. That lets me desactivate DeepFreezer and then reboot and let the update to complete its dark job.
    – Le Droid
    Nov 9, 2014 at 23:45

Here is the solution that worked for me:

  1. Hold down the power button for five seconds.
  2. Restart the PC and just before the Windows screen appears, hit F8.
  3. Then choose to boot into Safe Mode with Command Prompt.
  4. Once you're in Safe Mode, you can hit Ctrl-Alt-Shift F6 to access the Deep Freeze applications.
  5. At this point, just choose to boot unthawed.
  6. Reboot and allow the SP or update to finish.
  7. Once the system is done updating and rebooting, then go back into Deep Freeze and lock it down.
  8. In the future, don't choose reboot unthawed after 1 or 2 to restarts, choose unthaw and then manually freeze it when done...fewer problems this way.

When the machine reboots enter the bios and set the date to at least sixty days in the future. This will disable deepfreeze and allow you to resolve the loop problem. Don't forget to set the clock back when you're finished.

This is the ONLY solution that worked for me as I couldn't get a command prompt through the F8 method. It DOES work on the paid version (not just the trial) but you have to set the date far enough ahead that it passes the expiration date - I set it to 2 years ahead. Thank you so much to the previous posters on this thread... I would have been in deep trouble without this fix!

  • How does changing the time do anything? Feb 27, 2012 at 3:47
  • 1
    It disables deepfreeze. That's the way the code is written. Setting the time at least 60 days in advance will mean upon restart, the computer is thawed.
    – eichoa3I
    Feb 27, 2012 at 5:52
  • This is (one reason) why those of us who rely on DeepFreeze lock the bios. Tthe other is to lock out boot from cd/usb. Mar 30, 2012 at 17:27
  • Oh, and it's late now, but this should do it: it will allow the update rollback to complete so that he can get to safemode and thaw the machine in the normal way. Mar 30, 2012 at 17:29
  • 1
    This solution only works for users with the Trial version, it does not help with users with the full version. It's a good solution, just not for my particular situation.
    – myermian
    Oct 21, 2012 at 22:28

Start from a Windows CD. Go to the command prompt. Go to the Deepfreeze directory and rename the Deepfreeze executable. Reboot. When you're done, rename the executable file back

  • This could break the system. Deepfreeze relies on a low-level kernel driver. If that driver is not there, the system won't load correctly. Jan 31, 2013 at 18:22

Did you tried to use the command "sfc /scannow" when you are on cmd window with your Windows 7 dvd????

Another way i wolud suggest you is take a look at this registry entry:

"HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\BootExecute" See over BootExecute Key, the default value must be "autocheck autochk *" However, if you cant at least boot on Safe Mode you wont be able to test this.

  • I can not get to the command prompt window even if I select "Safe Mode w/ Command Prompt". Also, I updated my question because while I found my Windows 7 DVD it does not seem to be a bootable DVD? Probably because it was a Sony Windows 7 Upgrade DVD.
    – myermian
    Jul 13, 2011 at 14:45

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