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Thread: Another "recover data from windows" thread

  1. #1
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    Another "recover data from windows" thread

    Hi all, hope your all well.

    Well, i have managed to delete the primary active partition on my pc which had my old OS(XP) on it as i wanted to get rid. I installed a fresh copy of windows onto another partition and now my pc wont boot into windows at all. the second install of windows is fine, the pc just doesn't boot it as its not the active partition.

    i ran my windows repair console, changed the active partition to the new os etc but i still think the mbr is screwed, as when i turn on my pc it doesnt boot anything, no error or anything just sits there after post. Tried fixmbr etc..

    I loaded a knoppix live cd to see what was going on, i opened up qtparted and it shows my windows installation(the new one) as fine under sdb2 and it is set correctly as the active partition, but the computer still doesnt boot. how can i fix my mbr from knoppix?

    Also, i was trying to copy some files to my external hd, and it wouldn't let me write to the external hd even though i right clicked on the icon and changed it to writable. Any way to fix this?

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Re: Another "recover data from windows" thread

    Quote Originally Posted by gam3r
    ... how can i fix my mbr from knoppix?...
    If you're trying to put the Microsoft bootloader onto a hard disk's boot partition, you can do that with a DOS floppy, use fdisk /mbr and it will do it for you. If you have a bad partition table (part of sector 0 track 0 cylinder 0 but not actually part of the MBR) then from Knoppix open a console and run gpart or testdisk. IMHO gpart is better and testdisk is the "for dummies" option, and some versions of Knoppix have problems with testdisk. See the man pages for details of either of these commands.

    Quote Originally Posted by gam3r
    Also, i was trying to copy some files to my external hd, and it wouldn't let me write to the external hd even though i right clicked on the icon and changed it to writable. Any way to fix this?
    Is the external disk formatted NTFS? If so I strongly advise against writing to it with Knoppix. Some people here claim that you can, others report serious problems. Best to recover your files to another system across a network (I like to put a FTP server on another computer and use Knoppix's Konquror as the FTP client), then compeletely wipe the offending computer and install Windows fresh (assuming that you still want Windows).

  3. #3
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    By the way, you can set the active partition with fdisk, maybe that's all you need. If the Windows install is on a primary partition it should be. If you managed to install Windows to an extended partition it may be more of a problem. XP can boot from an extended partition, but Microsoft doesn't like to admit this and goes out of it's way to make it seem like it can't. And if you deleted your main partition and then reinstalled Windows to another partition, then it sounds like you don't really have anything out there that you need. If that is the case I would just do a fresh install and be done with it.
    ---
    Verifying of md5 checksum and burning a CD at slow speed are important.

  4. #4
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    Hey there,

    Your reply is very much appreciated!

    I have tried to fix the mbr with the windows recovery console, tried a plethora of commands to no avail.

    I have also tried to use testdisk to fix it, but that didn't do anything either. Maybe i have installed it on an extended partition, and maybe thats the problem. The active partition is set correctly, gpart says so itself.

    The disk im trying to copy my data to is fat32, i can mount it and everything, but when i try to copy my files onto it it says that i do not have the write permissions even though i changed them!

    About FTP, won't that take ages to send the data over? what other options do i have? I need to extract about 100GB of data.

    Lol, when computers go wrong, they really do don't they

    As always, your help is appreciated

    Thanks

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by gam3r
    I have tried to fix the mbr with the windows recovery console, tried a plethora of commands to no avail.
    Yea, in my experience it's pretty useless. Did you try a simple DOS disk, as suggested?

    Quote Originally Posted by gam3r
    I have also tried to use testdisk to fix it, but that didn't do anything either.
    Testdisk, when it runs, can correct a bad partition table. But it does not replace the boot code in the MBR, so if that's your problem then no surprise that it doesn't fix it. Can you better define the problem, the original post was a mix of potential problems.

    Quote Originally Posted by gam3r
    The active partition is set correctly, gpart says so itself.
    OK, I thought that your original post said that the new windows partition was not the active partition.

    Quote Originally Posted by gam3r
    The disk im trying to copy my data to is fat32, i can mount it and everything, but when i try to copy my files onto it it says that i do not have the write permissions even though i changed them!
    There should be an icon on the Knoppix desktop for the partition icon question. If you're certain that it's FAT and not NTFS, then you can try to right click on it and select an option from the menu that comes up to make it writeable. You can also look at man mount and see how to explicitly mount the partition as read/write, by default Knoppix will mount windows partitions as read only. However, I really think that it's a better approach to transfer the files across a network by FTP.

    Quote Originally Posted by gam3r
    About FTP, won't that take ages to send the data over? what other options do i have? I need to extract about 100GB of data.
    Actually, FTP is much faster than windows networking for transferring the same files on a local network. 100 gig will take some time, but perhaps not as much as you expect. USB drives are notoriously slow also, so FTP still seems wise to me, even now knowing how much that you want to move. And I consider the approach much more reliable, I've seen too many problems moving large FAT partitioned drives between operating systems.

  6. #6
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    Right, thanks again, i will look into FTP(is there a guide for this?).

    I've got some corrupt partitions which won't mount, is there any way i can salvage the data from them? Knoppix says there is no filesystem in place or something along does lines when i try to view the contents of the partition.

    Thanks

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by gam3r
    I've got some corrupt partitions which won't mount, is there any way i can salvage the data from them?
    I have several hard drives that Windows has corrupted so badly that Knoppix can't read them either. If you come up with a good way to recover the data please let me know.
    ---
    Verifying of md5 checksum and burning a CD at slow speed are important.

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