Windows Server 2012: Hyper-V hanging on boot

Breaking it

During the week, I tried a straight upgrade for my Hyper-V box from Windows Server 2008 R2 to Windows Server 2012, and wandered off.

Noticing the Internet hadn’t come back a half hour later (TMG VM), I found my server hung at the new Windows logo. Hung hard: no capslock activity.

Rolled back; cued it up for today.

Long story short, one fresh install later I’d worked out it was only hanging when I added Hyper-V, and was trying to find a solution that didn’t involve buying a new motherboard after 4:30pm on a Friday afternoon!

Solving it

The solution was to: (drumroll please)

Disable USB 3.0 support in the BIOS for my Gigabyte Z68MA-D2H-B3 motherboard. THANK YOU Illho Ye for the post. Now I have my virtual machines and they’re, like, working!

I’d seen other forum mentions of other whizbang processor features (C3-C6 states) causing similar problems, but for me, the problem turned out to be something to do with the USB 3 controller (in Advanced BIOS Features or Integrated Peripherals, I forget which) causing the boot hang. Toggling it back on caused it to hang again, so it doesn't appear to be just a first-run problem.

Bricking it (not really)

Amusing moment: I’d tried a BIOS update as part of my troubleshooting before finding the winning post, and had that “OHNOIBRICKEDIT!” feeling when the computer didn’t seem to be doing anything immediately afterwards… only it turns out the flash had just changed the Init Display order back to the PCI Express X16 board, rather than the onboard video.

That made me happy! And sheepish.

[Update 2016-11-13] Loads of things have probably changed since my original post (BIOS updates and OS updates...) Just re-enabled USB 3.0 on Windows Server 2016; whatever the initial cause, it's no longer a problem, and Things Boot Now.

Comments (14)

  1. Tristan K says:

    Ron: Only the usual no-idea suggestions - OS Integration components, host drivers and BIOS are what I'd guess are most likely to cause something sounding like that. Haven't seen it myself so far.

  2. Anonymous says:

    This worked for me , after scratching my head for a few days trying other solutions.

  3. Opposit Problem says:

    I have jus the opposti problem - Hyper-V machines under 2012 hang when shutting down or restarting.  Requires rebooting the Host machine to get them working again?  Thoughts?

    Ron Mitchell

  4. James K. says:

    Run the UEFI updater (BIOS replacement) from Gigabyte and you can use USB 3.0 on the Gigabyte Z68 boards.

    I used a FreeDOS USB boot drive to flash it with no issues.

    You may need to re-install the OS to recognize UEFI. At least I would recommend it...

  5. JPaisley says:

    Thank you....  Same Motherboard, Same Issue with Hyper-V and Solution worked for me.   Thanks again....

  6. A3off says:

    Different MoBo (ASRock A75 Pro4/MVP) but solution worked like a charm for me ...

  7. Masterdope says:

    Hello, I have the same Problem as Ron Mitchell that Hyper-V machines under 2012 hang when shutting down or restarting. Have you already found a solution? I have a Zotac h55-itx-c-e Mobo with USB 3.

    Do I have to disable USB 3?

  8. Dave says:

    For my H55-USB3 ver. 1, I also had to disable legacy USB support to get the machine to boot with hyper-v

  9. markpattersonesq says:

    Same problem here. Your solution worked for me.

  10. justin says:

    Disabling USB worked for me, will try update bios later

  11. Joost says:

    Worked for me 2 on a Gigabye mobo, Thanx

  12. anonymous says:

    I had my windows server 2012 r2 hang after installing a virtual switch with one of two nics. My server is an old foxconn a79a-s motherboard with two integrated lan ports (realtek 8111b each one). I learned the following:
    1) Assign only one nic for virtual switch (realtek 8111b #2 - NOT shared with host o.s.) and the other nic (lan port) for the host.
    2) Order is important: Nic 1 (realtek 8111b #1) for windows server 2012 R2 (host o.s. for hyper-v) . nic2 (realtek 8111b #2) exclusively for virtual switch.
    3) Virtual switch not shared with windows server 2012 r2 (like i mentioned in point 1) )

    Good luck, from Caracas - Venezuela

  13. Worked for me, i use a gigabyte GA-N3150N-D3V (rev. 1.0)
    Thank you boss

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