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DISM Fails: The Source Files could not be Found (Lets Fix it)

Getting DISM error 0x800f081f the source files could not be found while run the DISM restore health command? Here is how to fix it

In Windows, You may face some common problems. These have common solutions. We run many commands in the command prompt to fix many problems or to do something else. Sometimes, We may need to fix corrupted system files. In that case, We may need to run DISM commands. It works great. But sometimes, It may show you an error code 0x800f081f and a message “The source files could not be found”. This is a very common issue. But many peoples don’t know the way to get rid of it.

Why DISM causing The Source Files Could Not Be Found?

This error usually occurs because DISM tool cannot find the files you need to repair online or the Windows image file (install.wim) specified as the repair source is not correct.

How to Fix the Source Files could not be Found – DISM Fails

If you face this problem on your Windows 10 device, You will have two things to do. Any of these will work. At first, You can clean up system image components to fix it. Then, You can try to specify an alternative Windows image repair source. Anyway, Let’s know in detail.

Clean up System Image Components

To do it, You will need to run another DISM command. Anyway, here are the instructions –

  • Press Windows Key + X and click on Command Prompt (Admin) to open the command prompt as administrator.
  • Now, Type the following command and hit Enter.

Dism.exe /online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanup


  • After doing it, You will get a successful message. Now, You can run your normal DISM commands like /RestoreHealth. I hope You won’t face the source files could not be found problem again.

If it still fails to solve the problem, You will need to follow next method.

Specify alternative Windows Repair Source

To fix the source files could not be found problem, You also may need to try this method. You can configure alternative repair sources. It should work for you. Here are the details.

  • Open Run by pressing windows key + R from the keyboard.
  • Type gpedit.msc and press Enter.
  • Navigate to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > System.
  • Double click on Specify settings for optional component installation and component repair settings.
  • Mark Enabled. You also may mark “Never attempt to download payload from Windows Update” and “Contact Windows Update directly to download repair content instead of Windows Server Update Service (WSUS)“.
  • You must give the image source in the Alternate source file path box.

This policy setting specifies the network locations that will be used for the repair of operating system corruption and for enabling optional features that have had their payload files removed. If you enable this policy setting and specify the new location, the files in that location will be used to repair operating system corruption and for enabling optional features that have had their payload files removed. You must enter the fully qualified path to the new location in the “”Alternate source file path”” text box. Multiple locations can be specified when each path is separated by a semicolon. The network location can be either a folder, or a WIM file. If it is a WIM file, the location should be specified by prefixing the path with “wim:” and include the index of the image to use in the WIM file. For example “wim:\\server\share\install.wim:3”. If you disable or do not configure this policy setting, or if the required files cannot be found at the locations specified in this policy setting, the files will be downloaded from Windows Update, if that is allowed by the policy settings for the computer.

  • After giving the source file path, Click on Apply and OK.
  • Now, Try to run DISM command and see if you are still facing the source files could not be found problem.

What I’ve used as the source file path:

Actually, You may become confused which one you should give. You can follow my way. Here are the things, You have to do.

  • At first, You have to download Windows 10 ISO (Matching with your version). Just click here and select your installed Windows 10 version and confirm it. Then you will get the download option. Download it to your hard disk.
  • Now, Go to the download location. Right click on the ISO file and select Mount. If you have installed WinRAR or similar software, You can right-click on the ISO file and navigate to Open with > Windows Explorer.
  • Now, Go to This PC and see the driver latter where the ISO file has been mounted. Suppose, The driver later is D.
  • So, I will use D:\sources as an alternate source. Anyway, You also can run the following command to get rid of all problems.

DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /source:WIM:D:\Sources\Install.wim:1 /LimitAccess

  • After doing this thing, You should get rid of this DISM fails problem.

I hope, Doing all of these things will help to fix the source files could not be found the problem. If you know any better methods, You can share with us.

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