Hard Drive recovery - partitions from WXP not recognized by W2K

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by Andrew, Nov 13, 2003.

  1. Andrew

    Andrew Guest

    Hi All, please forgive any potential breach in netiquette as I do not
    normally post to forums. I'm having a bit of a nervous breakdown.
    I'll try to present
    everything logically.

    It was time to reformat and reinstall the operating system; too much
    accumulation, you know how it is.

    1. Initial state of computer:

    -Homebuilt. 120 GB HD partitioned into 3 x 40 GB drives, C;E;F.

    C = operating system.
    E / F = various data.

    -I moved all the important stuff to F.

    I booted from a windows 98 boot disk.


    2. Ran fdisk; saw 3 partitions; NTFS 2x, Prim Dos 1x. Deleted
    dos. Reboot. fdisk, construct prim dos. reboot. format c: /s.

    3. boot from WinXP Pro CD made from directory you dumped in F weeks
    ago. Was going fine until I received a manifest parse error.
    Researching this problem told me I needed a new CD. Fine.

    4. Reattempted 1-3 several times; then attempted to install win98
    using disks I had. That went wrong when the GUI first started; some
    error I didn't understand. Reboot, reformat.

    5. I still had 2x NTFS disks that looked exactly the same as they
    were supposed to; the 3rd partition was an extended dos; fdisk said i
    had no space to create a primary, and it wouldn't let me delete the

    6. I restarted fdisk and answered "n" to the second question. Then i
    able to create a primary dos, so at this point I had 4. I can't
    remember the exact size of this partition, but I do remember the % of
    fullness of others looked different.

    7. After rebooting, I was able to delete the ext dos partition.
    delete primary. reboot. create primary. reboot. reformat C: /s.
    this was using the win98 disk.

    8. At this point I decided to install windows 2000 because I had the
    tools in hand, an official copy from school (completely legit too).
    Reboot using w2k startup disks i brought from work (4 of them). Got
    through 4 just fine.

    9. Got to screen saying where I wanted to install. This is where I

    It listed 4 partitions i think (my memory is already cloudy, sorry).
    One was FAT32 (presumably the one I formated with win98, I know, I
    shouldn't have), one was NTFS, and one was "corrupted or not
    formated". !!!!!!
    I flipped. I didn't install it. Instead I went back and repeated
    above steps up to the point of reformating the partition. Instead of
    reformating using the win98 disk I booted up with the w2k disks.

    I hoped things would look normal, but instead it gave me 3 partitions
    one NTFS which looked fine and intact, and two corrupted /
    nonformatted. One was a crazy size, like 100 GB; the other looked
    familiar. So I went ahead and formated the huge one... (gulp).

    Went through w2k installation without a hitch, but my whole body is
    feeling numb like i did something horribly wrong still. my worse
    were conveyed when w2k came up, and i looked at my computer -

    A: - floppy
    C: - local disk, asks if i want to format it (NO!)
    D: - zip
    E: - local disk, says total size is 37.2 GB, free is 36.7 GB
    -HOWEVER. There is a folder called "System volume information" that
    is not accessible and claims to be hidded. "Access denied" when I
    attempt to open it. I assume some of my stuff is in here
    F: Local disk. total size = 103 GB, free space 101 GB
    G: - CDR1
    H: - CDR2

    Windows installed itself on E, but program files are on F.

    i know one mistake i made was not setting the 'active' partition
    during the win98 fdisk.

    Okay so I got the internet running but I'm trying not to put anything
    on the computer in fear or overwriting crucial things.

    I have detached my hard drive and brought it to an XP home machine,
    and connected it as a slave, hoping the XP OS would at least recognize
    something. Instead, it currently looks exactly like it did on my home
    computer; an unformatted drive, a huge 100+GB partition and a 30+GB
    partition. However, the "System Volume Information" folder is no
    longer there.

    Here's the kicker. If I boot my home computer with a win98 disk and
    run fdisk, there are 3 partitions of roughly the correct size.

    I KNOW my data is lurking on this damn drive. There are things very
    precious to me. Poems and writings I had no yet backed up.

    I also am fully aware this email is a doozy; I hope I broke it up
    reasonably such that you can all attack this problem.

    I'm open to anything. I am not going to touch my drive until I know I
    can't salvage it. But I'm going to fight as long as possible.

    Thank you all for your attention.
    Andrew, Nov 13, 2003
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  2. Andrew

    °Mike° Guest


    <Essay snipped>
    °Mike°, Nov 13, 2003
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