What does Microsoft Support’s Self Healing or Software Repair Tool do

Microsoft Technical Support has a new “Windows Self healing tool” (or “Windows Software Repair Tool”) which resets the system configuration, reinstalls main system apps, repairs system files and fixes Windows Update issues.

windows self healing or software repair tool

Here is a detailed report on what the tool does exactly.

The opening screen of the tool reads: Fix Software Problems — Having trouble with your Surface? This tool will make sure it’s up to date and help find and fix software issues.

windows self healing or software repair tool

The tool says it performs the following operations:

1. Repair system components and detect corrupt files

  • Create System Restore Point
  • Resync System Date and Time
  • Reset System Settings
  • Reinstall System Applications

2. Repair system corruption

3. Windows Update

I gave this tool a shot in my test machine, and observed what it does.


First, it creates a System Restore point – that’s a good thing. Windows 10 upgrade disable System Restore by default, and this tool enables System Restore for the system drive before attempting to create a restore point.

Note that if a recent restore point exists (created within last 24 hours), no restore point is created — which is the default behavior in Windows 8 and higher.

1. Starts the Windows Time service and syncs the system date and time using (w32tm.exe /resync)

2. Reinstalls *System* App packages using PowerShell. all the bloatware will be back.

3. Resets Winsock, proxy settings & the firewall settings

4. Resets WSUS cookie/authorization. (wuauclt.exe)

5. Resets Windows Store using wsreset.exe

6. Runs the "WindowsUpdate\Automatic App Update" Scheduled Task.

7. Resets the Security Descriptor for Windows Update and BITS services

8. Stops these 5 system services: Windows Update, BITS, Cryptographic Services, Application Identity, Update Orchestrator service for WU

9. Deletes qmgr*.dat files from “Network\Downloader\” folder

10. Deletes SoftwareDistribution and Catroot2 folders

11. Registers these DLL files:

  • atl.dll
  • urlmon.dll
  • mshtml.dll
  • shdocvw.dll
  • browseui.dll
  • jscript.dll
  • vbscript.dll
  • scrrun.dll
  • msxml.dll
  • msxml3.dll
  • msxml6.dll
  • actxprxy.dll
  • softpub.dll
  • wintrust.dll
  • dssenh.dll
  • rsaenh.dll
  • gpkcsp.dll
  • sccbase.dll
  • slbcsp.dll
  • cryptdlg.dll
  • oleaut32.dll
  • ole32.dll
  • shell32.dll
  • initpki.dll
  • wuapi.dll
  • wuaueng.dll
  • wuaueng1.dll
  • wucltui.dll
  • wups.dll
  • wups2.dll
  • wuweb.dll
  • qmgr.dll
  • qmgrprxy.dll
  • wucltux.dll
  • muweb.dll
  • wuwebv.dll
  • usocore.dll

12. Performs component cleanup using DISM

13. Repairs Windows image using PowerShell/DISM (RestoreHealth)

14. Runs Sfc /Scannow

15. Restores default power schemes.

16. Runs Windows Update after a reboot, and also updates Defender.

That lists most of the things done by this tool – it’s comprehensive and may be a overkill depending upon what you use this tool for. It would have been better if they include checkboxes for each operation so that you can perform a particular or a set of operations to fix a specific issue you may be facing.

Download link: New MS Tool to repair problems with Anniversary Update available – Microsoft Community

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Post last revised on 8-21-2016 to make it more accurate. It’s possible that this tool performs additional repairs along with the tasks listed in this post. Hope Microsoft releases a clear documentation on this tool.

Ramesh Srinivasan is passionate about Microsoft technologies and he has been a consecutive ten-time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional award in the Windows Shell/Desktop Experience category, from 2003 to 2012. He loves to troubleshoot and write about Windows. Ramesh founded Winhelponline.com in 2005.

3 thoughts on “What does Microsoft Support’s Self Healing or Software Repair Tool do”

  1. What, you haven’t upgraded to creators update yet?

    I thought it finally fixed the marketplace prices from USD to EU, that’s a big change for M$ more demand more empty promises. Even schools love being probed by the big man.


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