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how to recover data from a formatted disk

Posted on 2002-04-02
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26

our pc is having 2 hard disks and os is win95.
1. 20 Gb hard disk.

     20 Gb into 2 10 gb partitions labled c and e drives.

2. 4.3  Gb hard disk.

     4.3 gb into 2 partitions d and f drives.

so totally 4 partitions.

we wanted to install linux 7.1 o.s in our system and to remove the 4.3 g.b hard disk from our pc.

so first we moved (cut and paste)  all the files in 4.3 gb hdisk to c drive(1o gb).

in the next step we partitioned drive d(10gb) into 7 and 3 gb partitions.

7 gb for windows and formatted it.
3-gb non-dos partition for linux o.s installation which is unformatted

then we romoved 4.3 gb hard disk from the system.

now we tried to install linux .

as it is 32 mb it cannot load gui mode of installation.

so it opted for  text mode.

actually we are new with text mode of installation, we know only gui mode of installation only.

any way we commenced a mistake(selected disk selection mode  auto)  and linux os was installed in the entire 20 gb hard disk. it it obvious that entire data in disk was lost and some important files are missing. we want to getback that data in c drive.

1.can u please suggest any simple and  cheapest  solutions to this problem.?

2.it it possible to recover data from 4.3  gb h-disk.?

3.it is possible to restore Master Boot Record (MBR) for windows 95.?



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Question by:venugopal1976
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by:jhance
ID: 6915304
From the sounds of things (BTW, your description of this scenario is quite confusing...) your 20GB drive has been completely lost.  But if I understand you, all the important data was copied to the 4.3GB drive and removed from the system.  So it should be safe.

I'd suggest you install a fresh copy of Windows on the 20GB or some OTHER disk drive and then install the 4.3GB drive as a 2nd (i.e. D:) drive and recover your data.
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magarity earned 100 total points
ID: 6915534
The Linux boot loader, called "LILO" is unable to boot from a partition larger than 2GB, depending on what version your distribution is using.  If you could please be a little more specific?  There are many companies making Linux distributions, so simply "linux 7.1" does not identify it.  Is this Mandrake, Red Hat, Debian, or Slackware?  I suspect Red Hat or Mandrake because those have automatic partition options.

1.  There are no simple and cheap solutions to recovering this information.  Because: 1.  You proceeded to install Linux overtop of where the files were copied.  If the disks were still blank from being repartitioned but not yet formatted and copied, you would have stood a chance with some software recovery tools.  Having been formatted and copied over, the NSA or NRO could get the info, but you won't.

2.  Yes, I think the 4.3 is the best choice.  All you need is a file finding utility.  Norton System Utilities makes the most common one.  Install this on another computer and make the file recovery boot floppy because if you install the program on the 4.3GB, the act of installation will probably over-write some of your missing files.

3.  Win95 uses the active partition flag to decide where to boot, not the MBR.  If there is something in the boot record preventing Win95 from starting from the active partition you can erase the MBR with the DOS command, "fdisk /mbr"
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by:public
ID: 6933571
You still have your data on the 4.3G disk.
To restore win MBR, use fdisk /MBR.
Configure your system as you like, and then install the 4.3G drive as a slave, and copy the data off of it.
By the way most recent linux distros use GRUB, not LILO.
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by:gonzal13
ID: 6939081
When you do a cut and paste, hidden files will not be copied. The best way is use xcopy /e/h/k C:*.* D: for example.
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by:akboss
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