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How can I fix cross linked files in xp


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04-Sep-2007, 06:48 PM #1
How can I fix cross linked files in xp
For a long time I have had these cross linked files which cause my partition manager and de-fraggers issues. The advice I have so far follows:

"C: partition really has cross linked files and if you apply CHKDSK one more time to them you would get the same problems you've gone from recently. I mean the disappearance of start menu, problems with printer etc. Here could be the only workaround re installation of Windows, but as it works right now you can keep it. Later when you have free time for this I would strongly recommend either to roll back to Windows installed by Dell (from dell recovery partition) or reinstall Windows manually (reformat the C: drive first). Only these steps could solve the cross link files problem in an absolutely harmless way. Or contact Microsoft support team and ask for safe way to fix this cross link files. "


Is there a safe procedure or tool that will find and repair this issue?
The Hound's Avatar
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04-Sep-2007, 07:01 PM #2
I think chkdsk /r is still Microsoft's tool of choice for repairing cross linked files.

Microsoft Technet article on Troubleshooting Disk and File System Errors

For a fee, the Micro$oft $upport Team would probably be happy to offer assistance (which would probably start with instructions to run chkdsk /r and report the results). If chkdsk doesn't clear things up, you can weigh the cost against the pooled expertise available there--I've used MS support twice, and rather enjoyed the experience, though I prefer the TSG approach--and the more diverse pool of thinking here at TSG.
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04-Sep-2007, 08:39 PM #3
Your C: partition is FAT32 or NTFS??

And, how do you know you have cross links, and do you know the files involved?
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05-Sep-2007, 02:52 PM #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhitPhil
Your C: partition is FAT32 or NTFS??

And, how do you know you have cross links, and do you know the files involved?
Hello and thanks to you both.

At this point I'm gathering information on this issue.

Thanks for replying. There are 4 primary partitions on this HDD, *,C, F and D.

1) My 2 main are the C partition is NTFS, and a small 7GB F partition also NTFS
2) At the front and at the end of HD (Dell) there are 2 small FAT32 partitions, the 1st or front for Dell Utilities and the end one for Dell Restore. These I can't access directly
3) The 1st partition * seems to have lost it's label!

I know I have cross links since the techi people at Paragon have told me that during my work with them on partitioning my C drive. During the attempt to resize C to use the free GB's there the program cannot complete the work and gives me the Cross link messages.

Paragon had originally advised me to run CHKDSK/f and that command nearly blew up my PC only the DVD backups saved me from a total rebuild so you can understand my reluctance to follow their advice I showed in my OP about CHKDSK /f

Has anybody run CHKdsk /r on a dell hd under sp sp2 lately? Do I do this in safe mode under dos only?

I don't know the files involved, wish I did since one piece of MS KB says the only real way to fix the MFT is to delete both files?

That's all I can say so far other than I will read the article you pointed me too Hound, thanks.

Last edited by escalader; 05-Sep-2007 at 03:16 PM..
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05-Sep-2007, 04:58 PM #5
What happens if you try to defrag C:? Does defrag complain and refuse?

I've never seen a post about cross links on a NTFS system. It used to happen on a FAT32 system though. NTFS with it's jounaling system is meant to protect the file system from this type of issue.

If you really have crosslinks, my "guess" would be that the could be in one of the following. I would suggest using CCCleaner and deleting all files/folders.
1. History
2. Cookies
3. Temporary Internet Files
4. Temp folder
and after empty your recycle bin.

I would also disable and reenable system restore. I don't think the problem would be there, but you may as well keep housecleaning.

As well, if there are programs that you no longer use or "could" reinstall with little effort, uninstall them.
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05-Sep-2007, 07:04 PM #6
Cross Linked files, in xp
Hi my replies are embedded in your post so as not to miss any points:

Quote:
Originally Posted by WhitPhil
What happens if you try to defrag C:? Does defrag complain and refuse?

When I use the perfect disk defragger it fails if I try to defrag the whole drive, in the past that would work. I have run the ms defrag on c alone and it works!

I've never seen a post about cross links on a NTFS system. It used to happen on a FAT32 system though. NTFS with it's jounaling system is meant to protect the file system from this type of issue.

Yes, that is what I thought. TY

If you really have crosslinks, my "guess" would be that the could be in one of the following. I would suggest using CCCleaner and deleting all files/folders.
1. History
2. Cookies
3. Temporary Internet Files
4. Temp folder
and after empty your recycle bin.

Yes, I use CCleaner and the new Webroot Window washer so that avenue is covered okay.

I would also disable and reenable system restore. I don't think the problem would be there, but you may as well keep housecleaning.

Worth a shot, TY

As well, if there are programs that you no longer use or "could" reinstall with little effort, uninstall them.
There are a few I could remove easily enough!
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05-Sep-2007, 07:36 PM #7
If a defrag program runs on a partition, then it would be a safe bet that you do not have cross linked files or any other issues with the file system there.
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05-Sep-2007, 09:14 PM #8
Update
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhitPhil
If a defrag program runs on a partition, then it would be a safe bet that you do not have cross linked files or any other issues with the file system there.
While I was away I examined the second F partition and decided to delete it using Paragon Disk Manager. I also removed a few programs and files, sort of shrinking things down. I took your advice and disabled restore then reenabled it and took 2 restores before and after my deletes.

I re-ran windows defrag and it ran ok and the report it gave me after all this was

1 fragmented file
1 pagefile fragment
1 fragmented folder
2 MFT fragments

Unfortunately it doesn't identify these fragments.

I will try again tomorrow to resize my C partition to make room for a user data partition.

I have to admit I'm not optimistic any of this will make a difference.

Thanks for all your support so far!
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06-Sep-2007, 07:56 AM #9
Chkdsk/r
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Hound
I think chkdsk /r is still Microsoft's tool of choice for repairing cross linked files.

Microsoft Technet article on Troubleshooting Disk and File System Errors

For a fee, the Micro$oft $upport Team would probably be happy to offer assistance (which would probably start with instructions to run chkdsk /r and report the results). If chkdsk doesn't clear things up, you can weigh the cost against the pooled expertise available there--I've used MS support twice, and rather enjoyed the experience, though I prefer the TSG approach--and the more diverse pool of thinking here at TSG.
Hi Hound:

I read the MS technet article. It did relate to xp professional but it was very interesting. Laying out the options for Chkdsk.
I'm thinking back to when Paragon advised /f when they should have said /r which if you look at the keyboard is the immediate key above f! Whole thing may have been due to a typo!

Anyway, I'm thinking to run a /r do you guy's have a sense of how I run that? in safe mode or from the run command? I'm thinking safe mode!

What do you think? I'll backup entire PC on image before doing it!
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06-Sep-2007, 08:06 AM #10
A current image is always a good idea. You can give the command in any mode, but it will not scan a volume that's in use.

Click start, run, type cmd and click ok.
Type chkdsk /r and press enter, and you'll get a message like in the attached photo.
Yes is the right answer, and it will run on reboot.

You can also run it from the recovery console.
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How can I fix cross linked files in xp-checkdisk-cmd-prompt.jpg  
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06-Sep-2007, 09:37 AM #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Hound
A current image is always a good idea. You can give the command in any mode, but it will not scan a volume that's in use.

Click start, run, type cmd and click ok.
Type chkdsk /r and press enter, and you'll get a message like in the attached photo.
Yes is the right answer, and it will run on reboot.

You can also run it from the recovery console.

TY! I'll run in safe mode after the image!

I like your signature message, I'm at the asking for help stage but don't claim wisdom on this one til done!
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06-Sep-2007, 07:09 PM #12
Finally Some Progress
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Hound
A current image is always a good idea. You can give the command in any mode, but it will not scan a volume that's in use.

Click start, run, type cmd and click ok.
Type chkdsk /r and press enter, and you'll get a message like in the attached photo.
Yes is the right answer, and it will run on reboot.

You can also run it from the recovery console.

TY!
Ran chkdsk /r on C partition from safe mode, it ran ok, took about 45 minutes elapased
Ran MS defrag analysis and it showed the same number of fragged files in MFT as before
No messages appeared on cross linked files

Reinstalled Peferfect Disk defrag and it gave a major stop error and the following driver message, so this is a "new" issue, no idea which driver it is objecting too.


Help and Support | Security | Microsoft Update

Follow these steps to solve the problem with a device driver

You received this message because a device driver installed on your computer caused the Windows operating system to stop unexpectedly. This type of error is referred to as a "stop error." A stop error requires you to restart your computer.

Troubleshooting is available that might help you solve the problem

Troubleshooting

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Depending on which situation is applicable to you, do one of the following:

If this problem occurred after you installed a new hardware device on your computer, the problem might be caused by the device driver. Use the Dell Driver Reset Tool or uninstall the driver.

How do I disable or uninstall a device driver?

Note: This may cause hardware devices to stop functioning.

Click Start, and then click Control Panel. If you are using Classic View, click Switch to Category View.
Click Performance and Maintenance, and then click System.
Click the Hardware tab, and then click Device Manager.
Click the plus sign (+) next to the faulting device. You should now see the device listed.
Right-click the device, and then click Disable or Uninstall.
Alternate Steps

Click Start, and then click Search.
Choose All files and folders, and then type the driver name in the All or part of the file name field.
Click Search.
When the file appears in the results, right-click the file and click Rename.
Rename the file (for example, filename.old). Remember the file name so you can enable it later if you need to.
If this problem occurred after you installed new software, the software might have installed a driver that caused the problem. Try uninstalling the software.

How do I uninstall a program in Windows XP?

Click Start, click Control Panel, and then click Add or Remove Programs.
Click Change or Remove Programs, and then click the program you want to change or remove.
Click the appropriate button:
To change a program, click Change/Remove or Change.
To remove a program, click Change/Remove or Remove.

Warning

When you click Change or Remove, some programs may be removed without prompting you further.

Note: Add or Remove Programs will only remove programs that were written for Windows operating systems. For other programs, check the documentation that came with the program to see if other files (such as .ini files) should be removed.

If you don't know the specific driver or software, try performing a System Restore.
Go online and check for updated drivers on the Microsoft Update website.
For information about your support options, go online to the Support.Dell.Com website.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2006 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. Terms of use | Accessibility | Privacy Statement | Trademarks

I then un-installed Perfect disk and ran the PM Paragon Manager Defrag function on C partition it ran on boot up successfully no driver errors.

I then finally resized down the C partition using PM again! So this is a major breakthrough for me anyway.

I'll wait a bit now to decide next steps.
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06-Sep-2007, 09:06 PM #13
I'll assume you understand the risks to the stability of the O/S and the integrity of the data inherent in resizing an active boot partition. It seems like you image often...so...

Your issue seems to center on Perfect Disk Defrag. We can check the dump file created by the stop error, and point fingers at a driver...You can check C:\windows\minidump for .dmp files--zip up the most recent and attach them to your next reply.

The alternative is to uninstall--for good---perfect Disk Defrag, and see how stable you remain over time.

You could also do both...
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09-Sep-2007, 09:49 AM #14
dmp files washed away by webroot window washer?
As per my posting answers imbeeded in red with your post to stay OT

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Hound
I'll assume you understand the risks to the stability of the O/S and the integrity of the data inherent in resizing an active boot partition. It seems like you image often...so...

TY, Yes, understood, resizing done system seems stable which speaks well of Paragon Partition Manager ir seems. Next step on that front is creating a partiotion in the new unallocated space for ALL my data files then copy/move my user data to that new partition.

Your issue seems to center on Perfect Disk Defrag. We can check the dump file created by the stop error, and point fingers at a driver...You can check C:\windows\minidump for .dmp files--zip up the most recent and attach them to your next reply.

At the moment minidump is empty! So I suspect my paranoid window washing got rid of the evidence.! Sorry! I have uninstall ed Perfect Disk but would like to use product. So HOW to proceed to fix an unknown driver issue?

The alternative is to uninstall--for good---perfect Disk Defrag, and see how stable you remain over time.

You could also do both...
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09-Sep-2007, 11:02 AM #15
Quote:
If this problem occurred after you installed a new hardware device on your computer, the problem might be caused by the device driver. Use the Dell Driver Reset Tool or uninstall the driver.
I don't recall you mentioning any new hardware installed recently, so even with the myriad driver issues we see here, that may not be the case at all.

Quote:
If this problem occurred after you installed new software, the software might have installed a driver that caused the problem. Try uninstalling the software.
Let's see if the conflict is resolved by removing the defrag tool. If you reinstall it and the issue resurfaces, then you can be quite sure that the application is causing the conflict.

Click start, right click My Computer, left click properties.
Advanced tab, under Startup and Recovery click the Settings button.
Put a check in Write an event to the System Log.
Uncheck Automatically Restart.
Check the type (small memory dump 64k) and the path ( %systemroot%\minidump).
If those variables are different, check the indicated path for a dump file.
I don't know if your WindowWasher wipes the event logs, but you can:
Click start, run, type eventvwr.msc and click ok.
See if any system or application events correspond to the times of the issues.

We do get attached to those custom apps, don't we?
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