Windows 8.1 Preview has been available for almost a month now. You can upgrade by downloading an update from Microsoft’s website, then going through the Windows Store, or you can download an ISO file, burn it to a disc and install the old-fashioned way. I’ve successfully upgraded a tablet and an ultrabook, but I recently tried to do the update through the Windows Store on an old laptop, which was already running Windows 8 just fine.
This is where I ran into a problem. The install would start fine, compatibility checks would go through, it would reboot, then eventually I would be asked to log in, and when I did, nothing was there other than a couple of tiles. Hardly any settings would work, most things would error out. When I would reboot, I would be alerted that my system was trying to restore to my previous Windows version, which it did successfully. I was back at Windows 8. After the reboot, I was told that Windows 8.1 Preview was not successfully installed, and I got error code 0xC1900101 – 0x30018.
After doing some research, there was no definitive fix for this error. Everything was leading to a hardware conflict, but no one situation was exactly the same. Some people suggested uninstalling Intel-related software, disabling things in your BIOS (EFI, etc), uninstall apps, etc.
For me, it was related to my ATI graphics card. I remember when installing Windows 8, I had some difficulty getting it to work properly. I would get screen flickers and it would take forever to load the login screen. While watching the update, it would get to the “Getting Devices Ready…” screen, then I would get the screen flicker. It would do this for a while, then reboot and get to the login screen where I would only get a few tiles. After restoring back to Windows 8, I decided to uninstall all traces of my ATI drivers and go back to the Microsoft Basic Display Adapter. After doing this, I was able to successfully upgrade to Windows 8.1 Preview.
If you’ve come across this error, leave a comment below with your scenario and solutions if you have them.