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How to Fix DISM Error 87 in Windows Server 2016 and Windows 10

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Introduction

DISM Error 87 in Windows Server 2016 can be cause by any of the following:

  1. Running DISM command with a space between DISM and one of the switches or space in any of the switches.
  2. Using /Online parameter with just /Cleanup-Image without /RestoreHealth
  3. Running DISM /Image:c:\ from within Windows

How to Fix DISM Error 87 in Windows Server 2016

Now that you know what could cause DISM error 87, here are the steps to fix it.

1
Remove Any Space from the Command and Include Forward Slash (“/”) before a Switch

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The first thing to check is that there are no spaces with your command. Also ensure that you use “/” before any DISM switch. Finally, do not leave a space between “/” and a DISM switch.

To run any of the command discussed in this guide, open command prompt as administrator.

Search command prompt, right-click it then select Run as administrator.

Lets see how each of the situations described throws DISM error 87 in Windows Server 2016.

Type the command below in command prompt then press enter.

DISM /Online/Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

Here is the result. Error: 87 “The online/cleanup-image option is unknown.”

dism error 87 server 2016

Now, I will run the command with a space.

DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

Command is running successfully!

Another command mistake that causes error 87 is to exclude the “/” before a DISM switch.

To see how this could cause the error message, type this command and press enter:

DISM /Online Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

Here is DISM error 87 in Windows Server 2016 again!

Solution? Add a “/” before Cleanup-Image. Here is the amended command:

DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

2
When you Use /Online, Include /Cleanup-Image and /RestoreHealth

Another command mistake that leads to DISM error 87 is to run the command shown below:

DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image

Here is the DISM error message:

Error 87: “An error occurred while processing the command. Ensure that the command-line arguments are valid”

dism error 87 server 2016

The fix? Use the complete command parameters as show below:

DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

3
To Run DISM Within Windows Use /Online Instead of /Image Switch


Another cause of DISM error 87 is to use /Image switch from within Windows.

Here is a sample command:

 DISM /Image:c:\ /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

The command returned error: 87:

“The /Image option that is specified points to a running Windows installation. To service the running operating system, use the /Online option.”

The fix? Modify the command as shown below:

 DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
To see how you can run DISM /Image:c:\ /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth command read How to Fix DISM Error 50 in Windows 10 and Windows Server 2016.

4
If None of the Above Worked, Run SFC /Scannow Before DISM

If none of the above is the reason for DISM error 87 in Windows Server 2016, try the following:

  • Type this command and press enter
SFC /Scannow

Wait for the command to complete. If it returns errors, restart your server then run your DISM command.

Conclusion

One of the fixes discussed in this guide should resolve DISM error 87.

Have a question or comment? Use the “Leave a Reply” form at the end of this page.

Want more Widows Server fixes? Visit our Windows Server Fix page.

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