Hyper-V VM Troubleshooting

I’ve made VMs before in Hyper-V, it’s a nice way to keep things separate from your main OS and test out configurations. When you haven’t used it lately, it can also be a lesson in frustration.

My solution? It was just embarrassing.

I had a VM set up working fine, however, I didn’t need that OS anymore, and wanted a brand new VM to play with. I spun up a new VM with the same configuration settings as last time, just a different OS. Every time that I tried to boot the VM, I got the same error though.



The boot loader failed – time out.


Maybe the new ISO file was corrupt? I switched back to the original that worked for Server 2012R2 in my old VM. That didn’t make a difference.

I hunted online, I asked around. There were a few suggestions.

Review Configuration Settings. Maybe I screwed up the configuration? I rebuilt the VM and made sure all the file paths were perfect, with a new Virtual Hard Disk, just in case I had moved files or changed some folders. That didn’t change anything though.

Disable Secure Boot. I heard that caused OS boot failures. Except that didn’t change anything, and it didn’t really apply to my situation.

Unblock the files. I hear that’s always a problem on new downloads, but I”ve never seen it actually happen to me. My problems are never that simple. This was the first time I actually checked the file properties and – they were blocked! I was very excited, but this did not make a difference. It’s still a good idea to check this anytime you run a new file as it is a common issue.


The Solution

Finally, at wits end, I reopened the VM console and started the machine, and tried it again. I smashed the keyboard in frustration as it came up. This time, it went straight to installing Windows.

My nemesis in this case was a simple five word phrase that disappeared almost instantly.

Press any key to continue...

It only shows up for a couple seconds at most, and if you start the VM before you connect to it, you’ll never have a chance to hit a key. VMs don’t automatically go into boot mode, instead they just try to load the (non)existing OS.

So after all that confusion, I just wasn’t hitting a key FAST enough. Sure all those other things can be important and you should always verify your settings, but it shouldn’t have been this difficult.

Next week I’ll share the fun I had trying to get internet connectivity on my VM…




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