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Solved: Desperate need for assistance for error message: "A disk read error occurred.

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Rain1290, Jun 28, 2011.

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  1. Rain1290

    Rain1290 Thread Starter

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    Greetings,

    I am in desperate need for some assistance. My laptop recently has been giving this message before reaching the desktop: "A disk read error occurred. Press ctrl+alt+del to restart. I have tried restarting multiple times (including manually restarting), but I ended up receiving the same error. My operating system is Windows XP.

    What can I do to approach this problem? I would be very grateful for any assistance.

    ~Trav.~
     
  2. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    Chances are high that the hard drive is failing or has failed. You may need to replace it and restore your backup.

    You can run chkdsk /r on the drive from the Recovery Console to see the extent of the damage. It could be other things, but the drive is most likely. See what chkdsk says about bad clusters on the drive.

     
  3. Rain1290

    Rain1290 Thread Starter

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    Hi Elvandil,

    How do I run the chkdsk /r using the recovery console?

    Also, is it still possible to recover my data (music, documents, videos, etc.) from the hard drive?

    Thanks for your help.

    ~Trav.~
     
  4. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    Do you have an XP CD? If not, what make and model of computer?

    Yes. I would recover files first before doing anything else.

    This may seem hard, but it really isn't. All you need is a blank CD or a USB key. It would be good if you could keep this afterward because it may prove useful later to you and yours, but that is not absolutely necessary.

    *******************************************
    Parted Magic disk partitoning tool (Bootable CD image)
    If you prefer a bootable USB key, download and run Linux Live USB Creator. Choose the Parted Magic distro, and it will download it and automatically create a bootable USB key.

    This CD (or key) contains many useful tools. You can partition, recover files, recover lost partitions, make disk images (by several different methods), transfer files between media, scan for viruses (It can serve as an Alternative Trusted Platform for search and elimination of rootkits and bootkits), examine and benchmark hardware, access the internet, and much more.
    *******************************************

    Make the CD or USB key (which the Creator will make automatically for you). Then, try to boot your machine from it. If that doesn't work, come back. Otherwise, transfer your files to somewhere else, like a DVD, USB drive, or even the network if you have other locations to store files. Parted Magic can do them all.

    After you get your files, we can try other things. But since even testing a bad drive can kill it, getting your files needs to be first even if it later turns out that the drive is usable.
     
  5. Rain1290

    Rain1290 Thread Starter

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    Hi Elvandil,

    Yes, I do have the Windows XP CD, but what do I need to do to run chkdsk /r once I have inserted the CD?

    Also, as I did run into computer problems in the recent past that involved recovering data before proceeding, I was able to use "Puppy Linux" to get the job done. May I use this again to recover data for my laptop?

    Thanks again for your help!

    ~Trav.~
     
  6. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    Yes, go ahead and use Puppy if you have it already. Insert any USB keys or other devices you plan to use before booting Puppy because I think it will only detect hardware on boot so you can't plug things in later.

    I don't know Puppy in detail, but while it is up, take a look in the menus for any possible drive tests that may be there. You can't test the file system, but there may be a test of the disk's surface that is available.

    To run chkdsk, boot from the XP CD. When you get to the second prompt to press "R", do it and enter the recovery console. It will ask for your administrator password and then give you a command prompt. From there:

    chkdsk /r

    Note the results and see if bad sections appear on the drive. If the file system and drive are damaged a lot, chkdsk may take a very long time to finish, so do that when you can leave it for a while, like all night, in case it needs it. If the console can't find your drive, it is because it is a SATA drive and XP has no drivers, so don't panic.
     
  7. Rain1290

    Rain1290 Thread Starter

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    Hi Elvandil,

    I very much appreciate all of your good assistance. I will use Puppy Linux to retrieve all of my necessary files, and then I will attempt the "chkdsk /r", using the XP CD. :)

    Once done, I will contact you once again on this thread, but will you be notified of my newest postings?

    Thanks again, Elvandil, for all of your time and good help,

    ~Trav.~
     
  8. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    See what you can do and come back. If I can't be here, someone else will be. That's the advantage of the forum team approach. I'll be back at some point.

    We have a lot of knowledgeable people here. You should easily be able to tell the wheat from the chaff. But I would not listen too deeply to persons with only a 10 post count, if you know what I mean. :D Post count doesn't mean a great deal, but I can assure you that no one has been here long enough to get 10000 posts by giving crackpot advice. Those people have been eliminated.

    Good luck.
     
  9. Rain1290

    Rain1290 Thread Starter

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    Hi Elvandil, or anyone else addressing the problem,

    After I went to Puppy Linux to extract the files from the C drive, using the Puppy Drive Mounter, I was unable to access it. I tried to access the USB stick, and I was successful, but when it came to accessing the C drive (to drag the files from there to the USB), no window appears - the red icon for the C drive stays red and does not turn green like it should.

    EDIT: This error pops up:

    "Failure! In the case of removable media, the most common reason is the media is not currently inserted. Or, you forgot to unmount the previously inserted media. Is so, please remedy."

    Is there something that I can do?

    Thanks,

    ~Trav.~
     
  10. SUEOHIO

    SUEOHIO

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    SUE
    What you can try to do to get the important info off the drive before it fails completely is if you are knowledgeable or can have someone do it for you is take out the hard drive(on laptops they are easy to remove) and buy a usb sata/ide connector which then you plug into another working computer and you hopefully can salvage whats important to you before the drive goes completely.
     
  11. Rain1290

    Rain1290 Thread Starter

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    Hi SUEOHIO,

    Is there any other method that I can attempt using Puppy Linux, or any other related program to access the files on the C drive?

    Thanks,

    ~Trav.~
     
  12. Macboatmaster

    Macboatmaster Trusted Advisor Spam Fighter

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    If the drive has failed, insofar as the read/write head or the platters are damaged NO.
    That may be the reason it does not mount in Puppy.
    Proceed with the chkdsk on recovery console
     
  13. Rain1290

    Rain1290 Thread Starter

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    Hi Macboatmaster,

    If I do a scan on recovery console, do I risk losing any data?

    Also, is it possible that the hard drive may still be used, given the nature of the error?

    Thanks again for your help, Macboatmaster! Did you receive my private message from earlier?

    ~Trav.~
     
  14. Rain1290

    Rain1290 Thread Starter

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    Hi Macboatmaster and Elvandil,

    I just went ahead with the recovery console, but it did not ask for an administrator password, so I just went ahead and typed "chkdsk /r" in the command prompt following "C:\>"

    At first, it said, "CHKDSK is checking the volume...", but after a few minutes elapsed, this was the result:

    "The volume appears to contain one or more unrecoverable problems."

    That was it. What does this mean? Note that chkdsk never went passed "0% completed".

    Thanks,

    ~Trav.~
     
  15. SUEOHIO

    SUEOHIO

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    It sounds to me like its telling you the drive has so many problems that its toast.
     
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