Found 25th Oct 2007
Righto. If I try and open my Documents folder, an error message shoots up declaring that -

V:Documents is not accessible

The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable.

Now, the plan here is to use Drive Image to take a full backup of the drive (I'm assuming it can do it on a block-by-block basis, so's to back-up the corrupt version of the directory), and then run Chkdsk on it, hoping that Chkdsk can fix it. My experience of chkdsk leads me to suspect that I am completey screwed here, so, does anyone have any better suggestions for utilities that can un-corrupt folders?

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Boot to a Linux live CD (]knoppix should do nicely) and see what that makes of it, often Linux will read what Windows can't and may let you copy the offending directory elsewhere, if not there's plenty of info around the forums (]http//ww…um/) and via a quick Google on using it to recover Windows file systems. :thumbsup:

EDIT: obviously only attempt recovery after backing up everything you can somewhere.....oh and Chkdsk will likely screw up more than it fixes, it's handy for minor errors but may have a fit if you throw something big at it.

Also worth scanning the disk properly to check for errors once you're done, could be your HDD's on it's way out.

Original Poster

You know, I sometimes think that Chkdsk was added to Windows as part of some blackmail deal on the part of some gangsters acting on behalf of Ontrack. I can think of no other reason for Microsoft to randomly let chkdsk loose on a system without any prior warning (unless you count that measly 10 second countdown, which only gets seen by people who sit watching their computer boot up), and that will shamelessly 'fix' files that were working perfectly well before by completely obliterating them.

It's four years now since Windows let its little pitbull loose on my system one day during startup. I returned to my screen just in time to miss the countdown, and watch it tear through my entire MP3 collection. I think I lost about 8GB that night.


So, yeah - drive's backed up now, and I'll see what Linux (well, Ubuntu - I've already got the disc in the drive) can do for me. Cheers.

Banned

Make sure its the Gutsy Gibbon Ubuntu disto.
A BartPE LiveCD might work too, but I've not tried it on corrupt info.

Original Poster

This is odd - I tried the drive under Ubuntu and it didn't pick it up (whether this is because Ubuntu doesn't like USB harddrives or because the drive is half-dead , I'm not sure), so tried it under Windows again and, deciding that the data was either gone forever or backed up anyway, ran chkdsk on it. It actually fixed it. How very odd.

dxx

This is odd - I tried the drive under Ubuntu and it didn't pick it up … This is odd - I tried the drive under Ubuntu and it didn't pick it up (whether this is because Ubuntu doesn't like USB harddrives or because the drive is half-dead , I'm not sure), so tried it under Windows again and, deciding that the data was either gone forever or backed up anyway, ran chkdsk on it. It actually fixed it. How very odd.



Yeah you'd have been better with Knoppix than Ubuntu tbh, tools for the job and all that. It's a pure Live CD and many of it's features specifically designed with system recovery in mind you see, whereas Ubuntu's Live CDness is just designed to give you a flavor of what it's like when installed.

Good news on the Chkdsk front though :thumbsup: . I'd still keep regular backups of that drive and see how it goes, corrupted files can often be a sign of a deeper hardware problem.

EDIT: Good general advice for anyone whatever OS they use is to have a Knoppix CD in a draw somewhere ready for when disaster strikes (which it often does on PC's :giggle: ), I've used it a many times for recovering ******ed partition tables and boot sectors among other things.
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