Jump to content

Welcome to Geeks to Go - Register now for FREE

Geeks To Go is a helpful hub, where thousands of volunteer geeks quickly serve friendly answers and support. Check out the forums and get free advice from the experts. Register now to gain access to all of our features, it's FREE and only takes one minute. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more.

Create Account How it Works
Photo

Interesting problem finally


  • Please log in to reply

#1
Vaillant

Vaillant

    Member

  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 495 posts
Hey everyone, it's me again, Vaillant.

Allright so I'll get down to it. If you've been watching my two topics "Very Irritated!" and "Yet another annoyance! :tazz:" , you'll know that for little over two weeks now, I've been having a paradoxal situation with my computer.

Seeing how I'm almost 100 percent sure that one problem is caused by the other, I've decided to combine your efforts to a single topic, with updated information.

Here's briefly what is going on.

Pentium 4 2.6 ghz with 1 gig pc3200 RAM ( 200 mhz )
Primary IDE ( Paralell ATA ) 80 gig MAXTOR, with 9 partitions :

C: (primary) Windows XP
(no letter) (primary) dual booted windows, hidden in main OS
D: - J: (logical partition, with sub-partitions) All the rest, including all installed programs, data, etc.

Drives C: to I: are NTFS, while J: is FAT32

High speed internet, 384up, 96down, connected via Linksys ethernet card, at PCI3

PCI2 : broadcom voice modem
PCI1 : secondary graphics card, for my dual-monitor setup
AGP : Primary graphics card

***

Ok, so the problem is : my drive letters are resetting to windows cascading default. I've set my three optical drives as drive letters X: Y: and Z:
Drive X: is my primary burner, on IDE2 MASTER
Drive Y: is my secondary burner, and a dvd burner, on IDE2 SLAVE
Drive Z: is a virtual disk tray, one of the features of the program Alcohol 120%

All my drive informations, including any removable drives, drive letters of my external harddrive
( WD Caviar 7200 80GB USB2-IDE caddy 2 partitions usually recognized as L: and M: )

any removable devices get listed as K:, which is why I put the external to L: and M:, as to avoid complications.

All my drive letter informations get lost, after a reboot, and this, i have learned just today, specifically after I reboot because my system seems to have no connectivity. My connection apprears to be fine, but doesnt connect to anything, even after repair. The only way to get a connection is to reboot, at which point all my letters are back to a default windows order, so my opticals show up as K L and M, the external when turned on gives me N and O, and any other device will obviously be given P:

***

The second issue is that my windows built-in CD burning, usually on, which I turned off, gets re-activated after the drives re-letter themselves... Probably exactly part of the re-lettering process itself.

I determined that I had missed a spot when disabling the recording initially : there is a RECORDING tab in the drive's properties, that has to be disabled before the registry fix.

***

So, as a whole, I require the following information.

1- Is my optical drives causing the problem.
See as you all know, network drives usually assume the last letters of the alphabet, and work their way down. My theory is that by placing drives at the end of the alphabet, I'm confusing windows.

2- If that IS the problem, is there any way to fix it?
The only logical thing I can assume right now is that upon a random reboot, windows checks for network drives, sees none, but sees my opticals, and tries to set them as network, but cant, obviously... And that in turn causes my connection to be useless untill the next reboot.



Thank you very much for the long read, and hopefully, the good answers :)
  • 0

Advertisements


#2
gerryf

gerryf

    Retired Staff

  • Retired Staff
  • 11,365 posts
how are you assigning drive letters, exactly? And, have you done anything like excluding certain letters from being used, like hiding them in tweakui?
  • 0

#3
Vaillant

Vaillant

    Member

  • Topic Starter
  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 495 posts
Negative, no drive hiding whatsoever.
I just assign the letters through windows management.
Did this the moment i got into windows after my format, so I need these letters to stay this way too
  • 0

#4
gerryf

gerryf

    Retired Staff

  • Retired Staff
  • 11,365 posts
hmmm, xp pro or home?
  • 0

#5
Vaillant

Vaillant

    Member

  • Topic Starter
  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 495 posts
Home
  • 0

#6
gerryf

gerryf

    Retired Staff

  • Retired Staff
  • 11,365 posts
of course, nothing gonna be easy here....let me think on it.

You need to do this for a reason, I assume, but does this need to occur at logon, or can it occur just after the system logs on (a second or two later--in other words, you don't have a startup program relying on the drives to be a certain way, do you?)

XP pro will allow us to assign a script to the machine at startup, before the user logs on, which would be fairly straight forward...Home allows scripts to run at user logon...

I've got to believe we can do this with a script.....for example diskpart might work for this

do this for me while i ponder

start > run
diskpart
<enter>

at the
diskpart>
prompt

type
list volume
<enter>

Report the information

This should be done AFTER you set things up the way you want them
  • 0

#7
Vaillant

Vaillant

    Member

  • Topic Starter
  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 495 posts
Here you go.

And, I dont have any startup programs relying on the drive lettering itself, but I installed everything according to having my optical drives on X Y Z... So if I let this go, some programs will cease to function correctly. ( And I like it this way :tazz: )

Attached Thumbnails

  • diskpart.png

Edited by Vaillant, 14 February 2006 - 06:43 PM.

  • 0

#8
gerryf

gerryf

    Retired Staff

  • Retired Staff
  • 11,365 posts
ok, now this is interesting.....

Windows XP Pro, at least, does maintain these settings after reboots...so....hmmm

I can still probably write a script to do all this, but I am very curious as to why this is not working.

Thoughts...the one fat32 volume....could be causing an issue? Does this account have a password?

I am trying to isolate the registry settings that create these drive mappings....
  • 0

#9
Vaillant

Vaillant

    Member

  • Topic Starter
  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 495 posts
Yeah, I've been working at it scince this initially happened 2 weeks ago, and I've done a bit of progress...

No passwords anywhere on the system. This account is the only account, administrator no password.

And I need that FAT32 partition for a few reasons, one of the main being that my bootloader needs FAT32 to run.

As for the registry setting that does this, I've isolated the main area that assigns this, under

HKEY Local Machine / System / MountedDevices

( actually I exported this specific key and when the drives get bothered, I use the reg file ( with my correct settings ), then reboot, and it gets back into working order )

One solution I thought about was having that REG file run before anything else, but I have no idea how I'd do that...

--> Forgot to mention a lil detail that will surely interest you.

When the drives re-letter themselves, the label for J:, that I set as Swap gets re-written to SWAP

Edited by Vaillant, 14 February 2006 - 09:28 PM.

  • 0

#10
gerryf

gerryf

    Retired Staff

  • Retired Staff
  • 11,365 posts
odd, I know I left a post last night

create a batch file and add this line:

REGEDIT /S c:\driveFix.REG

Where driveFix.reg is the name of the registry key you exported above

Place that reg file in the root of C, place the batch file in the STARTUP directory

Does that realign your drives as desired?

This does not solve the mystery of why your drive are not staying the way they are set, but it ought to at least workaround until we can figure it out....
  • 0

Advertisements


#11
Vaillant

Vaillant

    Member

  • Topic Starter
  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 495 posts
Well there are two issues at hand, before trying to even fix this... The problem is intermittant --> this isn't happening at EVERY startup, but just at seemingly random times... And like I said, usually happens after I reboot because I have seemingly no connectivity.

Secondly, The reg fix only works after a reboot... I'd need it to run before explorer.exe runs, becasue once it's accessed those informations, even if I restart explorer.exe, it doesnt change untill reboot.
  • 0

#12
gerryf

gerryf

    Retired Staff

  • Retired Staff
  • 11,365 posts
Hmm, that is why I was hoping for XP pro...which would have loaded with the machine, I think.

OK, we will do this hard way (I hope...the
diskpart screencapture is the way you desire this to work, correct?)
  • 0

#13
gerryf

gerryf

    Retired Staff

  • Retired Staff
  • 11,365 posts
btw, it seems I missed the part where this was intermittent.....was that in here anywhere or is it in the other two threads?

OK, the follow batchfile and text script are in the attached zip.

I want you to unzip the files and place them both in your user profile startup folder for the moment, reboot, and tell me what happens

You should see a dos box flash for a second or two while the script does its work and then you should check Explorer for the proper drive alignment

These are all fixed drives, right? Not removable USB drives?

Attached Files


  • 0

#14
Vaillant

Vaillant

    Member

  • Topic Starter
  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 495 posts
Yeah I may have forgotten to say it in this topic, sorry about that. I didn't even notice I didnt write that lol

And yes, the diskpart screen capture was with the correct alignment . I'll run the file and tell you what happens.
  • 0

#15
Vaillant

Vaillant

    Member

  • Topic Starter
  • Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 495 posts
Yeah, that works .

I would love to find out why it's happening , but since it's this intermittent , it's almost impossible to pinpoint .

Thanks for the help . It's greatly appreciated .

Sincerely, Vaillant
  • 0






Similar Topics

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

As Featured On:

Microsoft Yahoo BBC MSN PC Magazine Washington Post HP