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 Post subject: Unable to read vista disk on XP, 7, 8.
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 1:02 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2012 6:52 am
Posts: 32
Hey, attempting to fix a friends computer. it's an old Vista laptop (urgh!) and it will not boot, or boot into safe mode. I decided to reformat it but before I do, I want to grab the data off of the drive. Attempting to boot the laptop with the drive, all that pops up is "initializing boot drive", followed by "cannot initialize", and reboots, only to follow the last two steps, and it keeps going.

Not sure if the OS is 32bit or 64bit, but it's Vista Home Premium OEM

I have a 2.5' USB enclosure, so i plugged the drive into it, but none of the computers in my house can properly read it (tried using XP, 7 and 8)

In disk Management, it keeps telling me to initialize the disk, but doing so would wipe it clean.

The disk is working, as every computer can see it in disk management, or is the data too corrupt to even make an attempt at recovery? If it is recoverable, is there a free program out there that would allow me to access the files on the drive?

Update: On all three OS's, tried safe mode and "run as administrator" options. Attempt at google search of my issue brings up absolutely nothing. I understand that win8 uses a different file format than earlier versions, but 7 and XP still can't read it either.

Will update further after supper.


Last edited by Akutalji on Tue Jan 14, 2014 1:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Unable to read vista disk on XP, 7, 8.
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 1:48 pm 
Smithfield
Smithfield

Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:37 pm
Posts: 5525
You could try running TestDisk to rebuild the partition.


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 Post subject: Re: Unable to read vista disk on XP, 7, 8.
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 2:21 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2012 6:52 am
Posts: 32
LatiosXT wrote:
You could try running TestDisk to rebuild the partition.


I'll give it a shot and see what happens.


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 Post subject: Re: Unable to read vista disk on XP, 7, 8.
PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 2:56 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2012 6:52 am
Posts: 32
TestDisk is working magic. backing up the drive before I attempt to rebuild the boot sector. Also reading the online manuals so I actually know what I'm doing once I get to that point.

Thank you! :D


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 Post subject: Re: Unable to read vista disk on XP, 7, 8.
PostPosted: Wed Jan 15, 2014 7:46 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2012 6:52 am
Posts: 32
TestDisk did what I wanted it to do, which was save most of the data on the drive, but there is no backup to the main boot partition. Does that mean I'll need to do a clean wipe?


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 Post subject: Re: Unable to read vista disk on XP, 7, 8.
PostPosted: Wed Jan 15, 2014 7:59 am 
Smithfield
Smithfield

Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:37 pm
Posts: 5525
Have you tried rebuilding the partition? If that didn't work then you probably have to wipe and reinstall everything.


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 Post subject: Re: Unable to read vista disk on XP, 7, 8.
PostPosted: Wed Jan 15, 2014 9:07 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2012 6:52 am
Posts: 32
Tried rebuilding the partition. The rebuild said ok, but when I put the drive back into the laptop, same error.

Also, attempting to get the files off the drive, it came to a dead stop, but incomplete.


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 Post subject: Re: Unable to read vista disk on XP, 7, 8.
PostPosted: Wed Jan 15, 2014 2:52 pm 
Thunderbird
Thunderbird
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Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2007 6:17 pm
Posts: 944
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Akutalji wrote:
....there is no backup to the main boot partition. ....

You mean that 10Gb or so recovery partition? Otherwise I see no impediment to backing up a partition.

If you are going to use the recovery partition, I would instead use a Vista OS with SP2 and use the product key on the laptop case to activate.

Here is a time saving bonus.

Be sure to have the latest drivers ready...especially a laptop as the there are usually a lot of them.

BTW, run the HDD maker's diag app on the drive first.

If the drive passes, try sector by sector recovery with Linux:
ddrescue (Linux)

On SystemRescueCD (sudo or ./ not needed, just the command)

ddrescue [-options] bad disk good disk (should be equal or greater size) log file

logfile should be used as it checks log file for already recovered files and goes from there.

example:

fdisk -l [list hard drives detected and names... sd_ for SATA drives, hd_ for IDE drives]

ddrescue -n -f /dev/sdb /dev/sdc resq.log

This will retrieve all non-damaged files and file structures first from sdb and transfer to sdc and note them in the log file. I recommend trying to transfer (backup) all files rescued at this point to another drive. Then,

ddrescue -r3 -f /dev/sdb /dev/sdc resq.log

This will attempt to recover the damaged files three times before moving on and use the resq.log to find their location and not waste time looking.


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