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Windows not booting properly, issues with MbamElam.sys


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So for a few months now, I've been having trouble with Windows 10 freezing up on me on a regular basis. It's an ASUS Zenbook UX391U and running pretty hot, but it's always been like that. I keep it elevated on a stand. A while ago, I opened it up, cleaned out the fan, and renewed the heat paste, and it seemed to be working better after that with the freezing happening a little less often. Usually, it works fine again after I let it cool down for a while. I often got colorful vertical lines for a moment after a hard reset before it started. But now I can't get it to work at all anymore. Safe Mode seemed to be working slightly longer after startup, and when I pulled up the task manager, it showed 100% disk before it froze up again. At one point, I was able to use Safe Mode long enough to attempt an offline install of Malwarebytes. However, it froze up again before the installation was completely finalized (even though it said 100%), and then it wouldn't boot anymore. Startup repair and automatic repair wouldn't work, fixboot didn't help, uninstalling updates didn't help, and chkdsk kept getting stuck in stage 4. I turned off automatic repair and got the following message:

Recovery
Your PC/Device needs to be repaired
The operating system couldn't be loaded because a critical system driver is missing or contains errors.
File:\WINDOWS\System32\drivers\MbamElam.sys
Error code: 0xc000007b

I was able to get back into Safe Mode by disabling early anti-virus launch, but then neither my mouse/touchpad nor my keyboard were working. I got them to work by disabling legacy USB 3.0 devices in the BIOS and restart into Safe Mode, but then after less than a minute, it all froze up again. Is there any way I can fix this without having to reinstall Windows? I need to get some files before I can risk losing anything. I would really appreciate your help!
 
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8 minutes ago, amillionmiles said:

I was able to get back into Safe Mode by disabling early anti-virus launch,

Did you enable the following setting at any time?

image.png.3713caf643e8b363a436e69346920377.png

8 minutes ago, amillionmiles said:

Safe Mode seemed to be working slightly longer after startup

Can you try to do this in safe mode with networking.

Please download Farbar Recovery Scan Tool and save it to your desktop.

Note: You need to run the version compatible with your system.
You can check here if you're not sure if your computer is 32-bit or 64-bit

  • Double-click to run it. When the tool opens click Yes to disclaimer.
  • Press the Scan button.
  • It will make a log (FRST.txt) in the same directory the tool is run. Please attach it to your reply.
  • The first time the tool is run, it also makes another log (Addition.txt). Please attach it to your reply as well.

Thank you

Edited by Porthos
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11 minutes ago, amillionmiles said:

I did not enable the setting because I was never able to start Malwarebytes.

Do not enable it even if we get this fixed.

For now do the following if you can.

Lets use the support tool and do a clean uninstall but do not reinstall just yet.

Download the Malwarebytes Support Tool.

 

Please close all browsers and programs before running the tool. Right click and quit MB from the system tray also.

Once done it will attempt to reinstall both Malwarebytes and Privacy VPN. Dont install for now.

Please say no and close the X button on the top right for Privacy.

image.png.1d5402b181120ca242e6a37de97d1600.png

Edited by Porthos
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Thank you! It took a few attempts, but I managed to get the uninstall done. And it solved the booting problem! Yay! But Windows still crashes shortly after startup, just like it did before I tried to install Malwarebytes. I have no reason to suspect malware, but I really don't know what to do to stop it from freezing.

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Now that you can boot,use the same tool you used to uninstall, but this time we want to gather some logs... this will enable us to review logs from your computer to see if we can tell what may be happening.

To begin, please do the following so that we may take a closer look at your installation for troubleshooting:
NOTE: The tools and the information obtained are safe and not harmful to your privacy or your computer, please allow the programs to run if blocked by your system.
  • In your Downloads folder, open the mb-support-x.x.x.xxx.exe file
  • In the User Account Control pop-up window, click Yes to continue the installation
  • Run the MBST Support Tool
  • In the left navigation pane of the Malwarebytes Support Tool, click Advanced
  • In the Advanced Options, click Gather Logs. A status diagram displays the tool is Getting logs from your machine
  • A zip file named mbst-grab-results.zip will be saved to your desktop, please upload that file on your next reply
Thank you
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Thank you! I'm trying to get it to work, but I haven't been able to get past the second stage ("Run FRST") so far before it crashes. It doesn't all completely freeze up, and the cursor usually still moves, but I can't click anything and the window says "not responding." I'll keep trying, but is there any way that stage of the process can be skipped? Or, since I have made it through the first stage "Collect Logs," are those logs saved anywhere before they are zipped?

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Over the weekend my dad ran into the same issue with a boot/repair loop like in this thread....

 

He brought me the machine to look at.  I was able to go into command prompt from recovery and disable auto repair.  That let me see what was causing windows to not boot.  Same message as the op related to mbamelam.sys.  I booted back into recovery and went to startup settings and disabled early anti-virus launch.  This let me boot Win 11 in regular mode.  I tried to open mbam and it wouldn't open.  His was expired so I did a Revo uninstall, rebooted and then installed the latest version.  All was well after that.  BTW "enable self-protection early start" was off as it is on all my installs. 

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22 minutes ago, amillionmiles said:

Thank you! I'm trying to get it to work, but I haven't been able to get past the second stage ("Run FRST") so far before it crashes. It doesn't all completely freeze up, and the cursor usually still moves, but I can't click anything and the window says "not responding." I'll keep trying, but is there any way that stage of the process can be skipped? Or, since I have made it through the first stage "Collect Logs," are those logs saved anywhere before they are zipped?

At least try to get a new set of FRST logs, in Normal mode (not safe mode)

Please download Farbar Recovery Scan Tool and save it to your desktop.

Note: You need to run the version compatible with your system.
You can check here if you're not sure if your computer is 32-bit or 64-bit

  • Double-click to run it. When the tool opens click Yes to disclaimer.
  • Press the Scan button.
  • It will make a log (FRST.txt) in the same directory the tool is run. Please attach it to your reply.
  • The first time the tool is run, it also makes another log (Addition.txt). Please attach it to your reply as well.

Thank you

 

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  • Root Admin

I have moved your topic to the malware removal forum

Please run the following. IF Malwarebytes is running, please right-click over the tray icon and exit out of the program first.

 

 

Please download the attached fixlist.txt file and save it to the Desktop or location where you ran FRST from.
NOTE. It's important that both files, FRST or FRST64, and fixlist.txt are in the same location or the fix will not work.

Please make sure you disable any real-time antivirus or security software before running this script. Once completed, make sure you re-enable it.

NOTICE: This script was written specifically for this user, for use on this particular machine. Running this on another machine may cause damage to your operating system that cannot be undone.

Run FRST or FRST64 and press the Fix button just once and wait.
If the tool needs a restart please make sure you let the system restart normally and let the tool complete its run after restart.
The tool will make a log on the Desktop (Fixlog.txt) or wherever you ran FRST from. Please attach or post it to your next reply.

Note: If the tool warned you about an outdated version please download and run the updated version.

NOTE-1:  This fix will run a scan to check that all Microsoft operating system files are valid and not corrupt and attempt to correct any invalid files. It will also run a disk check on the restart to ensure disk integrity. Depending on the speed of your computer this fix may take 30 minutes or more.

NOTE-2: As part of this fix all temporary files will be removed. If you have any open web pages that have not been bookmarked please make sure you bookmark them now as all open applications will be automatically closed. Also, make sure you know the passwords for all websites as cookies will also be removed. The use of an external password manager is highly recommended instead of using your browser to store passwords.

NOTE-3: As part of this fix it will also reset the network to default settings including the firewall. If you have custom firewall rules you need to save please export or save them first before running this fix.

The following directories are emptied:

  • Windows Temp
  • Users Temp folders
  • Edge, IE, FF, Chrome, and Opera caches, HTML5 storages, Cookies and History
  • Recently opened files cache
  • Flash Player cache
  • Java cache
  • Steam HTML cache
  • Explorer thumbnail and icon cache
  • BITS transfer queue (qmgr*.dat files)
  • Recycle Bin

Important: items are permanently deleted. They are not moved to quarantine. If you have any questions or concerns please ask before running this fix.

The system will be rebooted after the fix has run.

fixlist.txt

Thanks

 

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Thank you! I still haven't been able to gather the logs. Just one quick question before I try to run the script: I still need some of my browser data, especially sessions and history, as I had some important work-related things there. Is there any way I can get those before they get deleted? It won't last long enough for me to copy much at once.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
  • Root Admin

Due to the lack of feedback, this topic is closed to prevent others from posting here.

If you need this topic reopened, please send a Private Message to any one of the moderating team members. Please include a link to this topic with your request.

This applies only to the originator of this topic. Other members who need assistance please start your own topic in a new thread.

Tips to help protect from infection

Thanks

 

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