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Issues with a laptop running Vista

Frank Williams
Posts: n/a
On Fri, 11 Jan 2013 12:33:14 +1300, Dave Doe <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>In article <(E-Mail Removed)>,
>(E-Mail Removed),
>(E-Mail Removed) says...
>> Gentlefolk,
>> Some help please, for someone whose not really had to much to do with
>> gutting/configuring machines since Windows 3.1.
>> I've aquired a laptop running a genuine version of Visa Business, and
>> the laptop has sentimental photos the former owner would like to get
>> back.
>> The problem is that the laptop wont boot up past the blue 'Welcome'
>> screen: it sits on this screen for a good 30 seconds, and then goes
>> black with an active working cursor but nothing else. I can hear the
>> hard drive working/searching.
>> The machine has one hard drive and memory tests seem OK. It boots in
>> safe mode OK, and I've run AVGs standalone antivirus whcih found
>> nothing amiss. Naturally I have no window-based write-access to the
>> RW-CD or the USBs so that makes recovery of the photos difficult. I
>> have copied the photos out of the 'personal photo' folder of the user
>> profile and into a directory on the hard drive.
>> As part of getting around the lost password for the profile, I ran
>> Ophcrack, which seems to run/set-up a unix-esque OS that seemed to
>> work OK and allow me to navigate around the place.
>> It came with a couple of copied disks marked 'Vista 1/2' and 'Vista
>> 2/2', which I'm relctuant to try and reinstall at this stage for fear
>> of losing the photos: If I have to reinstall an operating system I'd
>> rather try something other than Vista.
>> So, any hints/guides/suggestions for me. Anyting to check? As I said
>> its been 20-mumble years since I was doing this sort of thing for a
>> living, and I'm quite rusty!

>I wouldn't be going down the "pull the hard drive and run photorec" path
>before trying a few other things first. And, photorec, IIRC, will not
>recover original filenames - although perhaps it will, if the filesystem
>is intact, which it sounds like it is.
>I'd boot up again in Safe Mode and run msconfig (Start, Run, 'msconfig'
>(no quotes), Enter).
>In msconfig, click the Services tab and then the hide all MS services.
>Clear all of them, and then carefully re-check the ones you think will
>be safe and will need re USB, CD/DVD support.
>Then on the Startup tab, clear all of them. Again, you may want to
>check some of the ones you know to be good and safe but most
>importantly, necessary.
>While in Safe Mode, set the disk to check itself on re-boot. Go Start,
>Run and type cmd - press <Ctrl><Shift> <Enter> - and you should be
>prompted to run the command prompt window in elevated privilege mode.
>The window should have "Administrator:" ... in the title bar. In the
>command prompt window type 'chkdsk c: /f' <Enter>. You'll be prompted
>to enable a checkdisk on the next boot, as it won't be able to run on
>the system disk currently in use.
>A checkdisk will run and any filesystem errors will be fixed. Then it
>will auto-reboot again and since you've disabled nearly all the startup
>services and programs, one would hope it will boot through normally, and
>then you'll be able to copy the files you need.

What a Total waist of time and effort, to me not good advice at all.

Just do this Tool Nice GUI and its simple to use, no stuffing around
and you don't have to lean any ting about Lunix or how to speak Spanish.

Keaspersky Rescue CD 10 is ten times better Full GUI and simple to use,
fully supports USB and no drivers required.

Never ever run checkdisk until you backup the hard drive

Would it be far better to boot into Safe mode and used the Vista
restore/repair features or the CD if it has one.
Reply With Quote
John Little
Posts: n/a
      01-11-2013 Removed) wrote:

> Naturally I have no window-based write-access to the RW-CD or the USBs so
> that makes recovery of the photos difficult

I don't understand that. Safe mode should let you copy stuff to USB, or
plug in an external hard disc and copy the lot.

If not, then a Live CD like the one I presume you ran ophcrack from should
be able to copy the data. I like systemrescuecd, from, for these purposes. It has a variety of tools some
of which might appeal to you.

In principle, you should be able to at least try a "Repair Install", which
would not lose the data, but I would copy the data first.

HTH, John Little

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