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Recover files from non-booting Vista install/HDD

post #1 of 7
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I have a friends PC that I needed to replaced the HDD on. Thats all done and working fine. Initially he said that he didn't need anything off the original drive but now he does. I need to get into the user folders but when I go into the Users folder I only see the Default, Public and Administrator folders. There should be three more in there.

Now the drive does not boot anymore. I have run a scandisk on it and it did find some bad sectors and I think it was able to either move the files or repair them. I have taken ownership of the whole drive so I dont think its a permissions thing. Is there anything else that I can try? If I cant get the data off then I cant get it off but id like to try everything I can.
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post #2 of 7
Try reading the drive under Linux. Ubuntu live CD would probably be the easiest way to go about that. Then copy them off to another drive or whatever.

Also did you mean chkdsk? I didn't think scandisk was used anymore lol
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post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dopamin3 View Post

Try reading the drive under Linux. Ubuntu live CD would probably be the easiest way to go about that. Then copy them off to another drive or whatever.

Also did you mean chkdsk? I didn't think scandisk was used anymore lol

Thanks for the suggestion, any recommendation where to get said CD?

Yep I meant chkdsk. It ran for almost 24 hours and never finished scanning free space. The drive has some big issues, like it shows as empty in My Computer haha!
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post #4 of 7
    The disk is now empty in Explorer?  Either the disk was corrupted by chkdsk, or the HDD is failing.  If the disk was corrupted, just scan and recover the files with Recuva (a free Windows program).  Make sure to tick "Restore file structure" option in Recuva's options before scanning the drive.  If it doesn't find the files, turn on "Deep scan" in the options and scan the disk again.

    If the HDD is failing, you should probably image it first (so that it doesn't fail totally during Recuva's scan), and certainly don't run chkdsk on it anymore.
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post #5 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pheatton View Post

Thanks for the suggestion, any recommendation where to get said CD?

Yep I meant chkdsk. It ran for almost 24 hours and never finished scanning free space. The drive has some big issues, like it shows as empty in My Computer haha!

Just download Ubuntu from here and you can just boot to it and try it without having to install it.
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post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Techie007 View Post

    The disk is now empty in Explorer?  Either the disk was corrupted by chkdsk, or the HDD is failing.  If the disk was corrupted, just scan and recover the files with Recuva (a free Windows program).  Make sure to tick "Restore file structure" option in Recuva's options before scanning the drive.  If it doesn't find the files, turn on "Deep scan" in the options and scan the disk again.

    If the HDD is failing, you should probably image it first (so that it doesn't fail totally during Recuva's scan), and certainly don't run chkdsk on it anymore.

This disk displays as empty in Explorer/My Computer but when you go into it all the files are there except the user folders I need access to.
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post #7 of 7
    Recuva can recover deleted files too, so you're still welcome to try it. thumb.gif
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