"user profile service failed the logon" Windows 8

Hi Tomshardware Community,
The error described in the title has ruined the past 2 days of my life. I can't login to my win8 system, every fix I found online I tried and didn't work. This thread is a last resort.
The problem is caused on my triple boot laptop (win7+win8+ubuntu) after I ran some patches and booted into win8 safe mode. I currently have the solutions listed below as options, I just don't know how to accomplish them:
1. Create a new win8 account using either win7 or Ubuntu or Win8 recovery.
2. Revert back to normal mode (I used the msconfig option to boot into safe mode, only if I could undo those settings)
3. Find a registry fix for this which actually works (there's one online about .Bak extension at the end of some registry keys, which does not exist for me) and use regedit from recovery to apply the fix.
Any ideas on how to implement any of the solutions above? I'm pretty desperate at this point. Please feel free to offer your own solution if you can't help with the ones provided above.
4 answers Last reply
More about user profile service failed logon windows
  1. To cause the system not to boot into safe mode without entering the operating system. Access the boot files through a Command Prompt through your Windows 8 recovery or installation media. Specifically use the Boot Configuration Database Editor (BCDEdit) to remove the safeboot option using the following command:

    Bcdedit /deletevalue safeboot

    If you’re interested in exploring the capabilities of BCDEdit further, the reference documentation can be found here. Of particular value in Windows 8 is the ability to disable Emergency Management Services (EMS), which can become enabled when installing alternate operating systems in multiboot scenarios and prevents the new Windows 8 graphical boot menu with mouse support.

    While I am unsure where the recommendation to find registry files with the .bak extension originated. The .bak extension usually represents a backup of the registry file in question before alterations occurred. For example, certain registry cleaning software creates a backup of the registry before performing its cleaning operations to protect against the rare case where that cleaning causes corruption of the registry by extension system malfunction. If you have not edited the registry to create this file, or did not use registry altering software, it is unlikely you will have a backup.

    Lastly, if all else fails, you can attempt to repair your operating system using the System File Checker (SFC) utility. Similarly access a Command Prompt and to ensure that SFC is run on the right operating system environment you can run SFC in an offline capacity using the following command:

    SFC /ScanNow /OffBootDir=C:\ /OffWinDir=C:\Windows

    Where C:\ is the drive letter assigned to your Windows 8 partition, which from recovery media or installation media is unlikely to be C:\. You can identify the drive letters assigned to various volumes from the command line you can use the Disk Partitioning Utility (DiskPart) by entering:

    DiskPart
    List Volume
  2. Hi WinOutReach2,
    Thanks a lot for your answer. The only thing is that in recovery mode, the command prompt I get operates under the recovery mode system (x:\), which in my opinion is a temporary mini-OS, so the bcdedit tool provided by that command prompt edits the boot values of the recovery mode system, not the actual windows 8 system. Therefore, when I tried "bcdedit /deletevalue safeboot", I got "Element Not Found", which makes sense based on my explanation.
    Is there a way to load the bcdedit settings of my Windows 8 OS?
  3. Good news: I was able to reset the BCD settings using EasyBCD from my Win7 system!
    Bad news: It still didn't fix the "User Profile" error... :(
    Also sfc scan didn't work: neither from recovery nor from win7. It gives me: "Windows Resource Protection could not perform the requested operation.", which is the least helpful error message I've ever seen.
  4. Darren, the Boot Configuration Database is typically universal for the system. The BCD is stored on the boot partition of the hard drive which has boot priority in the system firmware. It is possible to have more than one set of boot files, but to facilitate multiboot in such a scenario requires altering boot priority in the firmware. BCDEdit will target the active system BCD unless otherwise directed with the /store command. You can verify which operating systems are present in the active system BCD by using the following command:

    BCDEdit /Enum

    It sounds as though you have already managed to resolve the issue with a third party tool, which brings us to the SFC issue. The offline command provided in my previous post is often used to mitigate the error which you have described receiving. Another possible issue you may be experiencing are files with incorrect permissions or corruption which is causing them to be inaccessible. To determine what exactly is going on, you can review the log created by SFC at %windir%\logs\cbs\cbs.log. The Microsoft Support article with instructions on how to interpret the log files is present at this link.
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