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Solved Getting data off a corrupt Vista Machine

Microstar / M62
June 20, 2011 at 05:18:21
Specs: Windows Vista, Dual Core/4GB
My son's Toshiba laptop refuses to boot (Vista). It gets as far as the Windows progress bar, then powers itself off. Same in Safe Mode. I got the System Recovery menu up, did the Memory Check, and memory was OK, tried System Restore to a point a month before it went wonky, and that failed too (Windows cannot complete this action), then tried the System Repair, to no avail (Windows cannot repair this machine).

He is now faced with Windows Complete PC Restore (from the hidden partition), but this does a reformat first, and all his data will be lost.

However, the Command Prompt does work. It first comes up as X:\Windows\System Repair\, but from there he can go to C:\ and see all his folders and files. If he inserts a memory stick it comes up as G:\ (although E: and F: are available??).

My question is:

Is there an easy way to get files off a drive when you have Command Prompt access? Can you connect a usb cable to another PC for example, or have a LITE OS on the stick for file manager functions?

How would you get large amounts of data off the C:\ drive, in lots of folders? Ideally he wants to search for all his docs, spreadsheets, pdfs, photos, videos, email history and browser bookmarks.


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June 20, 2011 at 06:45:19
The easiest way is to download and use a live Linux disk - Kaspersky's rescue disk is one option (it has a file manager program as well as the rescue program), also any recent version of Ubuntu lets you try before installing so you would have access to all of your files and you can then just drag & drop them onto your external drive/memory stick.

"I've always been mad, I know I've been mad, like the most of us..." Pink Floyd

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June 20, 2011 at 06:54:43
Thanks for the quick reply John.

A quick follow up, if I may. As the drive has three partitions, C:\, D:\ and a hidden partition in X:\, could he use your solution to move all his files to the D:\ drive, and let the Complete Windows PC Restore do its thing and move the files back when it is done. Or is there a danger that the files in the D:\ drive might get wiped as well?


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June 20, 2011 at 08:38:56
✔ Best Answer
Personally I would still back them up to an external source - then keep the external drive for doing regular backups should the same thing happen again. There's always a chance that the 'd' drive could be messed up when you do the reinstall, undoing all of your hard work.

"I've always been mad, I know I've been mad, like the most of us..." Pink Floyd

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