Windows 10 Kernel Ntoskrnl, Automatic Repair Loop With Error Code 0Xc0000221

The 0xc0000221 error code is encountered by some Windows 10 users, right after the computer fails to boot. Several users report being stuck in an Automatic Repair loop with this error code. In this post, we will demystify the possible causes and then provide solutions to remedy the issue.

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Once you get to the Advanced Startup Options screen, select Troubleshoot and then click on Advanced options.Inside Advanced options, click on Startup Settings, and then click the Restart button.


When you get to the Startup Settings again, press F4, F5 or F6 to boot with one of the three Safe Modes available.If your computer boots successfully into Safe Mode, it’s safe to say the diagnosis, is a service from an application that you recently installed is triggering the error. In which case, you can start uninstalling recently installed programs that you feel could be causing the issue or, you can try to systematically exclude programs and services from the startup process until you manage to find the culprit.But if you got the same 0xc0000221 error while booting in Safe Mode, proceed with the next fix below.2) Perform an SFC, CHKDSK and DISM scan, in that order.By running these three built-in utilities designed to fix Windows file corruption, you can eliminate the possibility that the 0xc0000221 error code is not occurring due to a system file or file system corruption.Below is how you can use these utilities to troubleshoot this error:You begin by running the System File Checker. If you are unable to get past the startup screen, follow steps outlined above to get into the Advanced Startup Options menu, then go to Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > Command Prompt. Then, type the command below and hit Enter to run the System File Checker.sfc /scannowOnce the sfc/scannow process is complete, restart your computer and see if the error persists. If it still is, return to an elevated Command prompt as shown above, and type in the following command and hit Enter, to run CHKDSK:chkdsk /f C:Note: In the above command, if your Windows 10 installation is not residing on the C drive, change the letter accordingly.When the procedure completes, reboot PC and see if you can get past the startup screen. If the same error repeats, return to the elevated Command Prompt as described above and copy and paste the following command and hit Enter, to run the DISM scan:dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealthOnce this process completes, restart your PC and see if it boots without the error. Still not resolved, you can try the next fix.3) Verify RAM for issues.You can verify if your installed RAM modules are triggering this error. To do so, simply open up your PC and remove one of the modules (if you’re using two RAM sticks). If your PC boots successfully with only one RAM stick, try swapping the position of the two RAM sticks – issues sometimes occur when the faster memory is placed behind the slower memory.Additionally, you can run a MemTest on both RAM sticks. If you confirm your RAM modules isn’t triggering this error, you can proceed with the next fix.

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4) Remove secondary GPU and external HDDs/SSDs.Here, simply disconnect every unnecessary device – secondary HDD, external HDD, DVD optical drive, second GPU from SLI (or CrossFire setup), non-critical peripherals. Once you have stripped your PC to the barest minimum, power up your PC and see if it boots successfully. If it boots without the error code 0xc0000221, systematically re-connect the non-essential components until you manage to identify the culprit.If this fix doesn’t remedy the issue, proceed with the next fix.5) Perform System Restore.You might start experiencing this issue right after installing a Windows Update. In which case performing a System Restore could resolve the issue.If you don’t have an appropriate System Restore point or the procedure failed, you can proceed with the next fix.6) Perform a Windows 10 OS repair install.If at this stage you’re still unable to resolve the 0xc0000221 error, you can repair install Windows 10 – this will retain your personal files, settings and applications.

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That’s it folks. All the best!


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Obinna Onwusobalu, has studied Information & Communication Technology and is a keen follower of the Windows ecosystem. He runs a computer software clinic. He says it”s best practice to create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your PC. You can contact him on Twitter

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