Definitive readings of Hard Drives

October 6, 2011 at 09:23:00
Specs: windows xp sp3, Pent4/2ghz 1gb
I swapped a hd that was being used as storage for pics , data and etc. to install OS again on it. The main hd was corrupted with the boot.ini file. After making the swap, i used the command prompt to see what was on each of them. The drive letters show up, but the data's are not. without windows how can i actually see what are on those hd's, before i install the OS XP. I know they are not empty as the prompt says. I want to be able to move files from one to the other so i can feel safe to format it.

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October 6, 2011 at 09:55:32
Get a live Linux disk, for example Ubuntu, or the Kaspersky Rescue disk (they are available as iso files that you just burn to a CD to create them) - boot from the created disk & you will be able to see/access all of the files graphically - then just move them around as you wish. Attach an external harddrive & you can also then save everything to that.

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

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October 6, 2011 at 13:42:26
not familiar with any of those programs ...would i have to install them on my desktop? If so, how can i do so without affecting those hd's that i have...i do not want to lose anything on them until i am able to sort them out; there are no microsoft utilities that can do the same thing?

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October 6, 2011 at 14:12:33
" i used the command prompt to see what was on each of them."

You mean you booted from a boot diskette? Since you say you have no OS I suspect this is what you did. Most likely what you are booting can't read the ntfs file system which is why you don't see anything.

No there are no MS utilities like knoppix or other third party utilities that can read the ntfs file system via a cd/dvd bootup.

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October 6, 2011 at 16:44:34
i came across another idea but need someone who may be knowledgable with partition magic 8. On disk one it used to be my primary drive for XP, and according to PM it is still a primary state. Could i install my OS back into that partition drive which is shown as the C drive? The only problem that i can see is that i have other partitions on this drive, which i would like to save the data's and pics I had on them.... so would windows allow me to just use C partition just for that and retain the others as they are? I know by formatting the drive, wipes out the entire drive, but forgot if windows allows installing xp without formatting, or at the least format just that C partition?

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