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Cant read files on hard drive. but there there.

Posted on 1997-08-10
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Last Modified: 2013-12-29
I purchased a ditto tape backup and I tryed to use it to make backup copies of my software files and it worked on it for 5 minutes and said it couldnt do it for some reason. Then on the next boot up the Cmos and all kids of stuff was screwed up but I restored eveything and now the drive I tryed to back up is in code or somthing and scandisk want to do all kinds of stuff to it. I still have the same amount of data still on the drive but its in folders that look like this:"  __me__BK.w¢__   " now I figure there must be some way to get them back so I can acess them.
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Question by:DavidGade
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10 Comments
 
LVL 12

Expert Comment

by:j2
ID: 1692736
I hate to be the one to tell you this, but if scandisk cant fix the problems, you will have to repartition / reformat / reinstall becasue this is a MAJOR crash in the FAT / directory information areas of the disk.
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Author Comment

by:DavidGade
ID: 1692737
Well thanks for the answer but there must be some way to get the info readable again who knows how to get it readable again.????  I was using this drive as A backup drive all my programs are on there.
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Accepted Solution

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nebworth earned 100 total points
ID: 1692738

   Tell you what...  How long have you had this drive.  If you originally set it up on an older system, it may originally have had different parameters than how your system autodetects it.  Get a disk editor like Norton's Diskedit and look at the partition (first physical sector of the drive) to see what the entry looks like.  It should be intelligible (view it as partition in VIEW menu) and should say something like  DOS16 or DOSHUGE  and that it is active, where the partition starts, and where it ends.  Press enter to see if it goes to a valid boot sector (logical sector zero).  That should say MSDOS or WIN40 or something along those lines on the top line.  Go back to CMOS and set the drive as a user type, entering for the number of heads the number of the last side listen the the partition, for cylinders the last cylinder listed in the partition table, and for sectors, the last sector listed in the partition table, and see if that works.  Your information MAY actually be all intact, but the drive doesn't remember how to look at it.  Don't change anything, don't let scandisk do any modifications.
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Expert Comment

by:cymbolic
ID: 1692739
Geez...I hate to tell you this, but you're essentially hosed.  Your File Allocation Table has been damaged, and the chances of you actually recovering the data is slim to none.  Yes, they are probably still on the hard drive, but the "map" that shows where all the peices of each file are located has been stepped on.  You can try programs like DiskFix from PCTools, and others like this, but my experience in this are is that you usually can't clean up everything, you'll probably be left with directories and files you can't easily delete, and you'll be finding bad files and data for months after you recover, plus you'll spend hours of your time figuring this out.  If you have the originals, reformat the HD and reload.

Running Scandisk and/or ChkDsk in a situation like this usually makes it worse.  If you're desparate to fix it, try something like DiskFix first.
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Author Comment

by:DavidGade
ID: 1692740
Thanx nebWorth I think your right I am hosed And i will reformat Thanx for your help. :o(    I hate computers.
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:nebworth
ID: 1692741
  Not always, cymbolic.  It could be a simple case of the partition pointing to the wrong sector or incorrect logical drive parameters.  In either of these cases, the computer will miss the directory sector and display garbage.  Still, the drive could be completely intact.

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Author Comment

by:DavidGade
ID: 1692742
Well I reformated. But I have win-95 osr2 and I might as well take this opertunity to put fat 32 on this second hard drive. but when I try to use Fdisk it wants to fat32 my Master drive how can I do this on my Secondary drive ?
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Expert Comment

by:nebworth
ID: 1692743
   
      FDisk asks if you want to use FAT32, say Y.  Then switch drives by using 5, then drive 2 (as the slave should be 2) then partition the drive.
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Author Comment

by:DavidGade
ID: 1692744
ok got it and its all up and running again thanks for the help you give good answers nebworth.  David
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Expert Comment

by:nebworth
ID: 1692745
   Cool.  I love being right.  (Head swelling)
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