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Hard Drive problem


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#1
Tenchi

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Hello everyone,

My worst fear has happened, my hard drive failed and I have not backed up in 2 weeks. I was wondering if there is a possibility to recover the files I have on it. Here is what happend....

Thursday of last week as I was getting ready to go home from work, I started closing all of my programs to shut down. As I was shutting down, I received a "Dr. Watson fatal error" message. I hit ok on the window and my computer shut down normally.

Friday morning I come in to work and turned on my computer. Everything seemed normal until after it did it's memory test. After that test, the screen went blank. I thought it was just thinking, so I went to get my coffee and when I returned, nothing. I restarted and got the same thing.

Now, I am able to get into my Bios, boot from menu, but I cannot get to the safe mode as it does not go to the Windows 2000 splash. I tried booting using the Windows 2000 disk and it gets stuck when it checks the file system. So we narrowed everything down to the hard drive. I removed the old hard drive and installed another one from a spare computer, and the computer booted up fine. I then tested my hard drive on that spare computer and on that computer I was able to get to the safe mode menu when the Windows 2000 splash comes up. But when I do safe mode, the computer just restarts itself, does it's memory test, goes to the splash and then restarts again. It does this over and over again.

My questions are, what happened? Did that dr watson error damage my hard drive? Is there a possilbility to recover my work from the old hard drive? Please, PLEASE help! Thanks in advance. Sorry so long.
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#2
-=jonnyrotten=-

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I don't recommend trying to recover data by booting to that drive, and you will most likely totally kill it if you keep trying. Either connect this drive to your same computer, or another computer as a slave drive and then you can boot with the good drive and go to "My Computer" and the dying drive should show up in there as another drive then double click on it and browse through the drive to find what you need. I suggest getting the most important stuff first. At this point you have no idea how long this drive is going to last. The other thing I sometimes use is an external usb enclosure. It cost's about $35 at CompUsa and what you do is place the hard drive inside it and plug it into your computer via USB and when you do this it will show up as another drive in My Computer and you can then browse through it to find what you need. If you get to windows and neither way works then I would say the drive is toast. You can send it away to companies who can take it apart and recover data off the disk, but it's very expensive. It sounds to me that since you can almost get to windows in Safe Mode that you should be able to recover the data yourself.

-=jonnyrotten=- :tazz:
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#3
Tenchi

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Well, I did the slave drive method, and it worked. Thank you!! I got the most important stuff out first and going in for the rest later. If I reformat that hard drive (when I finish taking stuff out), will it be a fresh start or is it that the hardware itself is malfunctioning?
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#4
-=jonnyrotten=-

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Well, I did the slave drive method, and it worked. Thank you!!


You're very welcome, I'm glad to hear it, nice work! :tazz:

If I reformat that hard drive (when I finish taking stuff out), will it be a fresh start or is it that the hardware itself is malfunctioning?


It depends I guess, sometimes the drive is not really bad, the OS files just became corrupted and you can format and reinstall on a good drive. Sometimes it is actually a hardware problem and the drive is actually breaking. Do you know what brand of drive it is? There are a bunch of diagnostic utilities here:

http://tacktech.com/...ay.cfm?ttid=287

The only one that I have actually used is the Maxtor utility (Power Max). The one that creates a bootable floppy disk and you boot the computer to the disk and then you get a list of the hard drives connected. You would obviously choose the slave drive and then choose the full test. After awhile (depending on the size of the drive) it will say whether the drive is in good condition or whether you need to backup data if possible and replace it. I know it works on Maxtor, Western Digital, and Seagate drives because I have used it on them. It may or may not work on all drives though.

-=jonnyrotten=- ;)
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#5
jman4001

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I am a veteran of the slave drive method. It worked for my twice actually. However, I am in the same situation again and for some reason when I try to access my Documents and Settings folder, I get "Access is Denied." This is really strange because I can access any other file on the drive. I am thinking it might be because my account was password protected. Any suggestions?
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#6
-=jonnyrotten=-

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I am a veteran of the slave drive method.  It worked for my twice actually.  However, I am in the same situation again and for some reason when I try to access my Documents and Settings folder, I get "Access is Denied."  This is really strange because I can access any other file on the drive.  I am thinking it might be because my account was password protected.  Any suggestions?

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Hello jman4001,

We can help you and I believe that your situation is you will have to take ownership of the folder's in question. Please start your own topic in this same forum so we can better help each of you. Thank You. ;)

-=jonnyrotten=- :tazz:
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