MDOP and DaRT Windows 8 Tools

Windows 8 MDOP and DaRT Tools

Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) contains the Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (DaRT).  Microsoft's idea is to provide a set of tools which can diagnose and recover your Windows 8 if it goes offline.

MDOP and DaRT Topics


Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP)

System crashed?  Forgotten the local Administrator's password?  Check out the capabilities of these handy Windows 8 tools.

Capabilities of DaRT:

  • Determine the cause of a system crash.
  • Recover Windows 8 boot volumes.
  • Restore the master boot record.
  • Restore deleted files
  • Uninstall hot fixes.
  • Remove root kits.
  • Reset the Windows 8 administrator's password.
  • Review the event logs.

With the DaRT 8.0 Recovery Image tool you can create a bootable image that contains the Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset. You need to create an image to match the Windows 8 32-bit or 64-bit architecture.

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How to Use DaRT

  1. Check that your BIOS is set to boot from a DVD drive
  2. Select the boot device if prompted.
  3. Select 'Initialize network connectivity in the background.
  4. Choose your keyboard layout.
  5. Select Troubleshoot.
  6. Select Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Tool set.
  7. Select Windows 8 as the target operating system.
  8. Choose the appropriate tool from the Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset.

List of DaRT Tools

Here is a list of handy tools on the DaRT recovery disk:

Crash Analyzer:
Use this tool to determine the cause of your Windows 8's failure.  It works by  by analyzing the memory dump.  If you can identify the driver that caused the operating system to fail, then you can disable it with device manager.

Disk Commander:
With Disk Commander you could restore the master boot record, recover lost volumes, or restore partition tables.

Disk Wipe:
As the name suggests, this utility deletes all data from a disk. Look out for the four-pass overwrite if you want to wipe data left behind after reformatting the disk.

Hotfix Uninstall:
Rollback service pack or other Windows 8 updates. 
Tip: uninstall one hotfix at a time.

This tool allows you to change the password for the local Administrator.  Handy if you have forgotten the password; naturally, it does not work on domain accounts.

Solution Wizard:
If all else fails, call for the Solution Wizard, it may jog your memory for something you have not already tried.

TCP/IP Config:
When you boot from a DaRT disk it is programmed to automatically obtain its TCP/IP information from a DHCP sever.  Should this fail, you can use TCP/IP Config to manually configure the TCP/IP settings, as you would on a normal network adapter.

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Other Familiar Tools Included in DaRT

Computer Management:
This is the usual selection of Windows administrative tools to begin your troubleshooting, for example, check the event logs and the device drivers.

In this situation Defender is available if you need to check for rootkit viruses.

File Restore and Search:
DaRT include Windows Explorer so that you can search for files needed for the recovery.  With this tool you can also restore files that were deleted it also works on volumes that were encrypted by BitLocker.

Register Editor: Good old Regedit is here incase you need to edit import keys or edit values.

SFC Scan:
The System File Repair Wizard is available for identifying, and hopefully, repairing system files that are preventing the operating system from starting.

Next: See how to make a bootable USB drive. »

Summary of Windows DaRT Tools

With the Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (DaRT) you have a chance of recovering recover your Windows 8 when its offline.  Utilities include Crash Analyzer, Disk Commander and the LockSmith.

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Microsoft Windows 8 Troubleshooting Topics

Windows 8 Overview  • Windows 8 Event Viewer  • Windows 8 Shutdown  • Mobile Admin

Windows 8 Task Manager  • Windows 8 MDOP and DaRT Tools  • Windows 8 Printer Problem

Win 8 Troubleshooting  • Windows 8 V4 Printer Drivers  • Windows 8 Sleep Problems  • Tookit