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Solved: Two data recovery problems

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by zaleukos, May 5, 2010.

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  1. zaleukos

    zaleukos Thread Starter

    Mar 8, 2010
    I've made a few very stupid mistakes.

    After a GPU failure I retired an older Windows XP PC with two old ATA HDs. It would be desirable to copy much of the data from the old HDs to my new Windows 7 system. I thought I simply could plug in one HD at a time to the DVD-ROMs ATA cable and copy the files through the windows explorer interface. It started out nicely, with windows recognising the Harddisk. I could however only copy about half of the relevant files as I got several file corruption errors, with entire folders being unreadable, and the helpful windows suggested running chkdsk. Just for fun I tried starting chkdsk from the command prompt, and predictably got the message that it cant be run without admin priviliges. I thought nothing much of it.

    Unfortunately Windows started chkdsk on reboot, and the process was uninterruptible. Now I could recover some of the contents from the previously unreadable folders, but most of the files that should have been there seem to be gone.

    Obviously I dont want to make another attempt with the other HD (which contained the OS). Instead I tried to connect it to our second computer, which runs XP (an OS that I am much more familiar with). This PC has a SATA HD so I tried using the ATA connector of the DVD again. No matter the boot priority settings in BIOS XP tries to boot from the old ATA HD first, which fails. Disconnecting the SATA drive (thinking that I at least could try to copy the most important data to USB sticks) didnt help either.

    This leads me to two questions:
    Is there any recovery software or service that will save data lost after a chkdsk?
    How can I access the second HD in a safe manner?
  2. etaf

    etaf Moderator

    Oct 2, 2003
    First Name:
    you can buy cables to connect the device onto the USB
    I would also try using UBUNTU - that way your not under windows control

    boot from another Operating System

    If you have another PC with a cdwriter and spare CD
    goto http://www.ubuntu.com/ and download the ISO

    full details are here http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/wind...backup-files-from-your-dead-windows-computer/

    click on the image "download ubuntu"
    Select a location
    then begin download
    Save the file onto your PC – remember where you saved it – so you can find it again to create the image bootable CD.

    You do NOT copy the ISO file onto a CD - you have to use the ISO to create a bootable CD
    The CD creator software you have on the PC may have an option to create an image from an ISO
    If not - use this free program http://www.imgburn.com/

    When the UBUNTU CD boots - you will see the following options
    1) Try ubunto without any change to your computer
    2) Install ubuntu
    3) Check CD for defects
    4) Test memory
    5) Boot from first hard disk.

    Use OPTION 1 "Try ubunto without any change to your computer" ONLY this option this will run from the CD and not install onto your harddrive - be careful, if you do install onto the PC - you will wipe the data and software OFF your hard drive.., so repeat only use option 1

    Now you should see a UBUNTU desktop
    This at least proves the main parts of the PC are working

    you should see the USB or all the attached drives if you have connected to the PC again
    Now you can copy the files to a new USB drive or onto the system hdd

    recovery software
  3. zaleukos

    zaleukos Thread Starter

    Mar 8, 2010
    Ubuntu worked nicely. Thanks!

    I also eventually managed to get XP to boot from the proper HD. It turned out that I had to change device priority in two places in the BIOS. HD priority was set separately from boot device priority.
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