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inaccesible drive


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#1
Metallica

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OK. I have a strange problem.

My 2 drives are divided in four partitions.
Drive 0: C:\ (DATA) is where I keep my downlaods and install my programs to, if I get the choice.
Drive 1:
  • F:\ is where Windows XP is installed
  • G:\ is where Windows Vista is installed
  • H:\ is where I keep my backups and "research" files
In Vista these drives are respectively called E:\ (DATA), D:\, C:\ and F:\
The problem is that from XP I can not access C:\ which is very annoying since most of my software is installed to folders on that drive.
From Vista the drive perfectably visible and accessible although it has a strange symbol:

data.png

No matter if I boot to XP or Vista CHKDSK Is started (and finds no problems).
First of all I'm going to make a backup of the important files on that drive.
Can you post some suggestions for recovering it, so I can "see" it from XP again?
Let me know if you need more information.

Thanks for your time.
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#2
The Skeptic

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It looks like that there is something wrong either with C drive or with the partition table in MBR. I am not sure what it is but it seems to be crucial to XP while of marginal importance to Vista.

1: When the computer starts chkdsk, what disk is it trying to check. Is it the DATA disk?

When you boot with XP, can you see DATA disk in Control Panel > Admimistrative tools > Disk manager? If yes, what does it tell you regarding it's "health".

If you have the instellation files for the programs installed on DATA then I think that the simplest way would be to backup DATA and reformat by using the format option in Disk Manager. If you do so, boot to XP and let it find the formatted disk. This would be an important step in locating the problem.
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#3
Metallica

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Hi The Skeptic,

Thanks for your time.

CHDISK does indeed check the DATA drive (both when I start XP and Vista)
I'm not sure if you fully understood my predicament or that maybe I'm not seeing the solution.
The most annoying problem is that my Program Files folder is on C: for both XP and Vista, meaning that every program I install, that is not essential (like AV and firewall) I always choose C:\Program Files
Unfortunately I did the same for my mailprogram (TheBat) and I'm not sure how I can recover my mails.
I have already copied this Program Files folder and some other important files to F: from Vista.
But formatting C: will be one of my last options, because that will cripple most programs running under Vista as well.

If you're right about the partition table, could it be useful to try FIXMBR ?
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#4
dsenette

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if the partition table is jacked up you could try using TestDisk it's designed to rebuild partition tables and such without harming the info on the drive.
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#5
The Skeptic

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Whatever you decide to do regarding fixing MBR, either by applying FIXMBR in recovery console or by running TestDisk, do yourself a big favour and backup your data first. I use these tools only as absolutely last resort and always after backing up because I have seen a number of cases in which the operation succeeded but there was no patient left. The operating system worked beautifully but all else vanished.

Since the MBR is most probably in drive no.1 I suggest that you physically disconnect disk no. 0 before running any repair. This will save you time on backuping and will eliminate the risk for your data disk.
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#6
Metallica

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OK I made a complete backup of the C: drive to my external drive and I managed to recover my mail from an automatic update made 4 days ago, so the most important things have been saved.

Now I'm going to make a backup of the Vista partition and then ... wish me luck.
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#7
Metallica

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Formatted C:
Did a Repair of Vista to get winload back in action
Restored Acronis backup of C:

And all is peachy again. Only lost 3 days of mail, so I can't complain.

Thanks for the help :)
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#8
dsenette

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i was planning on blaming it all on the crazy dutch language pack...guess i can't do that now
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#9
Metallica

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Be my guest, dsenette, but Vista did not have the problem and my XP install is genuine US-english :)
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