I experienced an issue today where my Windows 10 instillation was stuck in a boot loop. It would display a ‘Preparing for update’ message instantly followed by ‘Restarting’ and would then promptly restart. Rinse and repeat!

I tried to boot into ‘Safe Mode’ but the same was happening before even that would boot.

After some frustrating web searching on my phone (many, if not all, of the info found described similar but different booting issues) I came across a somewhat old post which suggested using DISM to revert the pending updates.1

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


Replace C:\ with your drive letter. This is typically not C:\ in the repair cmd shell

And this was the solution to my rebooting loop. Windows 10 booted normally to the login screen.

  1. Darrell Gorter, ‘How to removing a pending update that is preventing a successful boot’ (TechNet IT Pro forums, 2 December 2010) <https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windows/en-US/48d20da9-0535-462f-b177-f30f48992203/how-to-removing-a-pending-update-that-is-preventing-a-successful-boot?forum=w7itprogeneral> accessed 26 September 2020. ↩︎