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Thread: Lost XP Parition on Resize in Knoppix 4.0.2: What happened?

  1. #1
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    Lost XP Parition on Resize in Knoppix 4.0.2: What happened?

    Hey. I just wanted to ask for your guys thoughts about a mistake I made. Ok here's what happened. I wanted to make space for a linux distribution on a system with one big NTFS partition, and so I booting my Knoppix Live CD. I had planned to use ntfsresize from www.ntfs-tools.org (I think). When I got into Knoppix (v4.0.2), I tried to use QTParted, which didn't seem to work (I would resize the Ntfs partition and after a while get a blank message box with only an ok button, and after I pressed Ok it returned to the original screen, having done nothing. I'm only guessing that this was an issue of needing to be root.

    But then, I went to the command line (as root) to use ntfsresize manually. Everything seemed to go fine, but I was surprised when the utility told me I had to "delete" the original partition and "re-create" the partition with the new parameters. I decided, rather than use the "expert" fdisk, to use Qtparted to do this. I deleted the original partition in qtparted and recreated it with the new size...but it didn't work!!! All I got was a blank new partition! I messed around more than once with the cylinder, thinking that maybe I didn't have the correct starting cylinder, but I never got it. In the end, I had to take it into the shop in order to recover the data (my bad, that I didn't backup the data).

    What went wrong? Was it that I used Qtparted, because it "automatically" formatted the partition when all I really wanted to do was to "update" the partition table to have the new end cylinder??? Should've I just used fdisk?? Any thoughts on what happened here? Was there an easier way to solve thiS than to take it into the shop???

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajwreinhardt
    What went wrong?
    Usually when you "DELETE" a partition, you also "DELETE" the data! I have absolutely no idea why people have this absolute need to use Linux to mess with their NTFS partitions. They then complain that something went wrong, etc. The best advice is to first back up all of your data before doing ANYTHING! Then use a commercial partitioning tool that is intended to resize NTFS partitions. Linux sometimes has serious issues with NTFS and sometimes an inexperienced user can do more damage than good.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckamin
    Usually when you "DELETE" a partition, you also "DELETE" the data!
    Actually, that's not true. Deleting (i.e. overwriting) the data would take a lot of time, and deleting a partition is really fast, because that only removes the partition from the partition-table. All data is still intact after partition is deleted.

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    malaire:

    The data may still be on the drive, but it's lost to the user unless it's recovered. It depends on your definition of DELETE. Overwritten data is still on the drive and may be recoverable also. That does not mean it's not lost to the user. I will stand by the statement. When the partition is removed, the partition then is reformatted or redefined, the data is not accessible, then so defined it's deleted. It then requires extraordinary means to recover the data.

    Does it also mean that when the partition was deleted, it's still there? Since the area on the drive still exists, then it's NOT deleted? When you remove the information that defines or makes a partition available or data available, that process is called deletion. To wipe a drive clean is another process.

    See here for the definition of Delete: http://www.sharpened.net/glossary/definition.php?delete

    Now if I had said "ERASE", then it might be correct to question the terminology.

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    Ckamin, honestly the reason that I turned to Linux to do partitioning is because I am just unwiulling to buy a copy of a commerical parititioning program that in the EULA will tell me that if I'm going to comply with their terms (which are legal and, as a Christian, sinful to violate) I can use that program on only one PC in my house. I am speaking primarilly of PartitionMagic, but I suspect that nearly all commerical programs will be like this...but I would be open to find out about something else.

    I guess, malaire, that is what I'm counting on. The whole procedure did not take but 2 minutes. I know my data was not "deleted", but something did not work. But I guess, I'm curious as to why this didn't work. Is it that I needed to use fdisk to do the "deleting" and "recreating"? Is there anyone who knows/has used ntfsresize that could enlighten me???

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    I made a statement about NOT using Linux tools to resize NTFS partitions, or to write to an NTFS partition for a reason. The chances of corrupting what is there is too great a risk. Many people have used Linux tools to do so and have not suffered for it, or at least not until later. NTFS is a proprietary format that belongs to Micro$oft. They have not licensed their drivers, nor do they share the information for the system with the general public or the Linux communities. Therefore, ANY Linux tool would have to be reverse engineered or developed by alternative methods. The capabilities of Linux have greatly improved, but are still not as reliable as Windows itself. Maybe one day Linux will handle these partitions better than Windows, but we can only hope.

    I strongly recommend that you try using a tool that is Windows compatible, and if it means breaking down and paying for something like a partitioning program, it's worth not having to pay for the recovery of your data. Partition Magic is one that has worked for me well enough. There are OEM versions of it available from time to time. I have seen them at the Computer shows. They are not unreasonably expensive either. You could reformat the entire drive using Windows, leave part of the drive unused, and then partition and format the additional space using Linux. I would just not use Linux to do ANYTHING to an NTFS partition. All you need to do is search through this forum to find examples of people in misery to support my claim. If you still insist on going ahead with using Linux to potentially damage your NTFS partitions, then be my guest. You have been forewarned! Just make a good backup of your data, if it's still recoverable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ckamin
    I made a statement about NOT using Linux tools to resize NTFS partitions, or to write to an NTFS partition for a reason. The chances of corrupting what is there is too great a risk.
    Maybe you should check out The Ntfsresize Frequently Asked Questions

    Is it reliable? link
    Yes, it is reliable. ... No destroyed filesystem was reported who followed the instructions correctly. ...

    But isn't NTFS write experimental and dangerous? link
    Not the usage of ntfsresize. There are many totally different NTFS implementations for Linux and people tend to confuse them. ... The changes needed to resize an NTFS are well understood furthermore ntfsresize has rigid safety checks, including a basic NTFS consistency check, and refuses to do the resize operation if it meets an inconsistent state, unsupported or suspicious condition.

    Quote Originally Posted by ckamin
    All you need to do is search through this forum to find examples of people in misery to support my claim.
    Did they read that FAQ above, and use recommended method? (i.e. an easy-to-use front-end and not command-line)

    Quote Originally Posted by ajwreinhardt
    I guess, malaire, that is what I'm counting on. The whole procedure did not take but 2 minutes. I know my data was not "deleted", but something did not work. But I guess, I'm curious as to why this didn't work. Is it that I needed to use fdisk to do the "deleting" and "recreating"? Is there anyone who knows/has used ntfsresize that could enlighten me???
    That link above also includes exact step-by-step instructions on how ntfsresize should be used from command-line:
    How to use ntfsresize from the command line?
    But they recommend using e.g. GParted LiveCD instead:
    How to resize NTFS without data loss?

    That page also includes this warning about cfdisk:
    We choose fdisk as the partitioning tool because it's very mature. If you choose cfdisk, be extremely careful! Cfdisk may round down enough the partition size you specified to be in the middle of NTFS and you won't be able to boot.

    Personally, I don't have NTFS partitions and havn't used ntfsresize.

    Quote Originally Posted by ajwreinhardt
    Ckamin, honestly the reason that I turned to Linux to do partitioning is because I am just unwiulling to buy a copy of a commerical parititioning program that in the EULA will tell me that if I'm going to comply with their terms (which are legal and, as a Christian, sinful to violate) I can use that program on only one PC in my house.
    Nice to know that there are still people who take this seriously.
    Still, IMHO, EULAs usually say that you can only use the program on a single computer at any one time. So if you remove if from one computer, you can then use it on another computer. (But to be sure, you should still read the EULA carefully.)

  8. #8
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    There is a NTFS file recovery for about $60 that will recover lost NTFS partitions and files. I have purchased and used it. I had to bit copy the partition in question over to another machine, to recover my files and directories. I had a lot of family photos on the drive in question. They were worth it.

    GPartEd is a free downloadable iso that will provide the functionality of Partition Magic. I have used it to resize NTFS partitions. It will force NT to do a check on the partition when it next boots to ensure the validity of the partition.

    You could try to patch the partition table to its original values with fdisk, but . . .

    like ckadmin, I recommend extreme caution, paranoia, when messing with NTFS partitions in Linux. Backup first, etc. etc.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by malaire
    Yes, it is reliable. ... No destroyed filesystem was reported who followed the instructions correctly. ...
    There are many totally different NTFS implementations for Linux and people tend to confuse them. ...
    Did they read that FAQ above, and use recommended method? (i.e. an easy-to-use front-end and not command-line)
    That link above also includes exact step-by-step instructions on how ntfsresize should be used from command-line:
    The keys here are:

    Following Directions

    Using the correct tool correctly

    Doing reaserch before doing damage

    Finding good information BEFORE doing anything AND following exact instructions, exactly.

    Quote Originally Posted by malaire
    Maybe you should check out The Ntfsresize Frequently Asked Questions
    I simply do not believe everything I read on the net. Anyone can make claims as to the safety of a procedure or program. I have seen otherwise. The most important part of any prodedure is the backup. If it was so simple to do, why did the original poster have issues with it? An advanced user might have better luck with it, but I'm sure an inexperienced user will have difficulty. This post is evidence of such. It is far wiser to purchase the right tool for the job, or learn how to use something in it's place. The Key is learn! That much the original poster did. What did he learn? Backup what it is you do not wish to lose AND to get it back, it would have been more cost effective to purchase the proper tool in the first place. I have seen many stories such as this one and will NOT recommend using a Linux tool to do ANYTHING to an NTFS partition. That is my personal opinion, AND I have had very few issues working with NTFS partitions. When it comes to free tools, you sometimes get what you pay for. Documentation and support are sometimes absent and you are left to your own resources to work it out. Most of the tools you mention are still a work in progress and would be considered unfinished.

    I have read that FAQ and countless others. I am rather well informed on the issue. I am also cautious and not foolhardy when it comes to preserving data and the integrity of a storage device. I have worked with computers since the dark ages and have learned one thing. You will eventually lose data at some point and that you need to back up what you don't wish to lose and then back it up again. I don't see the need to make the data loss self-inflicted. The simple fact is that two people have posted in this thread claiming that they have lost data. One using Linux tools and the other did not explain.

    You are entitled to your opinion on the subject, and likewise, I am entitled to mine. We can then agree to disagree, since this can be discussed to eternity with no resolution.

  10. #10
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    Rcook, would you give me a link to that recovery tool for $60? Thanks.

    Ckamin, in response to your last post, I do agree much with what you are saying. For example, anyone indeed CAN claim that their product is reliable. Also, the issue of backing up is the one that I have never done and really, have gotten burned on here. Hopefully I have learned my lesson. Additionally, I did not read anything like a FAQ. I, when I ran ntfsresize, did not know that I was going to have to edit the parition table, either. So now, hopefully I have learned my lesson

    I do also understand what you're sayingabout Linux and NTFS and that Microsoft's refusal to release info on NTFS makes any Linux NTFS tool sketchy anyway.

    So, i do appreciate you all for responding at all, and for all your thoughts (varied as they may be).

    Jake

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