WinRE Installation fails if WinRE has been previously installed

Applies to: Windows 7 EnterpriseWindows 7 Enterprise NWindows 7 Home Basic


When using the reagentc.exe tool to enable WinRE on a system which has previously had WinRE enabled, it fails with 0xc0000005 ACCESS_DENIED error. Normally, when you encounter this error you may run reagentc /disable to uninstall WinRE, however disable will also fail in some scenarios where the BCD store has been replaced or destroyed, or does not contain the original WinRE entries.

For example, this can occur in multi-disk configurations, or if the BCD store has been repaired. If reagentc.exe /disable succeeds, a subsequent enable command should also succeed.


Reagentc.exe /enable encounters the error trying to replace the existing boot.sdi file from the previous install. 

Normally, you use the reagentc.exe /disable command to uninstall WinRE in this scenario. The reagentc.exe /disable command looks at the BCD store to determine where the boot.sdi file was installed to, and will remove it. However, in scenarios where the BCD store is no longer intact, the command cannot locate boot.sdi and will fail.


Depending on configuration, the winre recovery folder may be located on a different volume.

Delete the \recovery\winre\boot.sdi from the previous WinRE installation.

Reagentc.exe /enable command will now succeed. Please reference WinRE documentation for further information on reagentc.exe.