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Unmountable Boot Volume


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#1
mewgirl

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As the result of the computer being unplugged twice in a row while I was looking for WiFi, the laptop now gives a BSoD with Unmountable Boot Volume error. Google told me this WAS possible to recover from (I wasn't sure), by using recovery console. Using a Gateway CD on a non-Gateway computer, which was the only thing I could find after a month (seems to me they would all be the same except that the manufacturer-specific CD includes drivers and a bunch of programs that one would have to remove if one was actually reformatting the specified computer), the system runs as expected until right before you would expect the screen that says "Press 'R' to run Recovery Console" to show up. "~Instead, another BSoD appears, giving the message that "...has detected an error and Windows has been shut down to protect your computer."~ (no, Windows was never started before this message), unimportant stuff, and then:

STOP: 0x0000007E (0x0000005, 0xF85480BF, 0xF8994208, 0xF8993F08)

pci.sys - Address F85480BF base at F8541000, DateStamp 3b7d855c


When starting "normally", the Windows boot splash screen does appear before the BSoD. And, of course, with an "Unmountable Boot Volume," Safe Mode and LKG will not load either (Safe Mode shows all the drivers loading then goes to the BSoD). Google says the second BSoD is not caused because of the Gateway CD - others have had second BSoDs as well, but nothing I can see a solution out of.
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#2
The Skeptic

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The problem is probably related to a hard disk which could be damaged by the unplugging.

1: Find out the make of the hard disk (pull it out if necessary), download the diagnostic tool of the disk manufacturer, create a bootable CD and run a complete scan of the hard disk. You can use the link in my list, below, to find links to most manufacturers. Please report the results. If the test report erroes which are unrecoverable do not continue to the next step.

2: If, after the test, the computer is still not bootable take the disk out and connect it to another computer either as slave, a second SATA hard disk or through a USB device. Open My Computer > right click C: > properties > tools > error checking > check now > check the two boxes > start. Reboot the computer to allow check disk to run. Do not interrupt it until it finish. Reconnect the hard disk to computer and try to boot.
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#3
mewgirl

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It's a Dell computer, and there are some built-in scan tools accesible without Windows... can we assume this is what's nessecary? There were two errors I believe while this tool was checking, "00040568 of 007004780-whatever files". The tool does not give an option to attempt to fix any of the errors; it seems to be PURELY diagnostic in that it seems to do nothing other then thell you whether or not it finds a problem. I will post back more specifically once I have the chance to do this test and also be around another computer to copy the information to at the same time, but in the meantime if there are any further comments someone can make based on what I have said so far I would appreciate hearing them.

Second, it's a laptop. Is it even possible to connect the HD to another computer (which would, of course, be a desktop)? I'm asking this before I try to do it so that if it isn't possible I don't spend another month attempting to find a screwdriver and whatnot, especially if I get interrupted and therefore lose the screws.

I do apologize if this post sounds antagonisitic in any way; it is not meant to I am simply explaining my problem as best I can without specifics, and asking the other questions to avoid external damage if a laptop HD can't be removed that way.

Thanks for the reply.
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#4
The Skeptic

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I suspect that the hardware was damaged either phsically or logically. In the first case the disk is lost. In the next - the disk can be saved by various commands or, as a last resort, by formatting and reinstalling everything. At the present we cannot be sure if there is any damage done and if yes, of what type.

I am not familiar with the diagnostic tools on Dell. What we want to do are two things: 1)check all the sectors on the disk and repair or mark damaged ones 2)Restore certain Windows files that could be damaged.

All this could be accomplished with one command from recovery console: chkdsk /r. Since you cannot boot to recovery console we look for other alternatives. Since your computer is a laptop it is more difficult to take the disk out and perform the tests.

Let's try this: Download Recovery Console from the link in my list below. Burn the ISO file to a CD to create a bootable CD. Boot with the new disk and see if you can reach recovery console. If you can, run chkdsk /r (note the space before /). Please note that an ISO file should be burnt differently then other files. You can download BurnCDCC (a link below) which is a small program dedicated for ISO files burning only.
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#5
mewgirl

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Okay, the "diagnostics" option is on the 'boot from' menu, and it does a fully-passed "boot test" before automatically pulling up the utility. There are two reasonable options from the utility: Symptom Tree ("Cannot boot the OS") and Test by Device ("Hard Drive"). The "Symptom" test consists of Cache, Clock, Timer, Interrupt, System Memory, abd IDE tests. The random numbers I referred to were "addresses" in OCT) for the memory tests and "blocks" for the IDE tests (testing ########## of 0078140159 blocks").

Ide Read Test:

Error Code 0F00:0244

Msg: Block 31156075: Uncorrectable data error or media is write-protected.


IDE "Verify Test":

Error Code: 0F00:1A44

Msg: Block 31156075: Uncorrectable data error or media is write-protected.


If that message actually means what it says (and since it's from Dell rather then Microsoft I'm thinking there's a chance of that!), it should be worth noting that there actually is a possibility that said "block' is "write-protected", I think, because this is one of those PCs that originally came from an office and gives you all kinds of random, unfixable errors about how you "can't do that" (ex: After using msconfig) because "the nonexistant previous owner of this laptop on some other netowrk said so", but usually makes the change anyway (in the case of msconfig, it does).

The computer I am currently on does not have a CD drive. I will have to wait until I find a computer and a CD to try a burn. I am not optimistic because the Recovery Console was of course on the other CD, but, if this image is somehow 100% free of any Windows OS ideas (other then that of replacing files strictly through DOS, BIOS, or whatever you would call runnning a computer this way), I would only then assume it will work. (Not that I'm not going to try it upon the advice of someone I assume is more knowledgable then me!)
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#6
The Skeptic

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Like I said, I am not familiar with Dell Utilities. I would definitely try the recovery console option, like I said before. It is a Windows utility and may not work but it's worthwhile trying. If that doesn't work then I would get the hard disk utility of the disk manufacturer. Dell do not make hard disk, rather buy them from different duppliers. Some of these tools will only work on the manufacturer's HD but others are more flexible. As far as I remember Hitachi's will also work on Fujitsu, and probably on others. Try to make this one first. If it doesn't work then you have to try others from the link I gave before.

All these utilities are bootable, DOS based, and should work unless there is a BIOS lockup.
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#7
mewgirl

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The recovery console CD alone got the same error as the Windows Install CD... which I kind-of expected, since it is using the same software either way. I assume the next thing anyone would tell me is to reformat, but how can you even reformat if you can't get to the screen that gives you that option?
After that, I got some Linux LiveCDs that all load, and one of them allows me to access the filesystem. I could try dl'ing a new copy of pci.sys, but I don't know what that file does, so I don't know if a default copy would cause more errors do to some incompatibility with current configurations. Also, I don't know where it is located... the Linux system's file search returned no results.
The Linux CD also included a repair option, however, 'chkdsk' was an invalid function. 'cd' was listed under 'help', hoever, typing 'cd' into the command line did absolutely nothing visible, and the 'help' command merely gave a list of other commands. Both 'help xxxxxx' and 'xxxxx help' did nothing visible, and typing cd c: and/or reformat c: (just to see if it would work in case there were no further replies... I am still preferring to recover if possible - especially considering the Linux I've seen hasn't been that great so far and I have no Windows CD) returned "invalid parameter"s or "invalid command"s etc.
So what should I try next?
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#8
The Skeptic

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The next step would be run a complete test with the disk manufacturer utility.

When you ran Linux (which was a clever step), could you see your files and data? Have you tried to backup anything?
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