Avatar of mrmoderate
mrmoderateFlag for United States of America asked on

Must fix corrupted MFT of data disc in WinXP

CHKDSK (WinXP version) tells me that the MFT of my computer's data disc has been corrupted.  HOW DO I GO ABOUT FIXING THIS?

Details about PC structure and problem:

This PC has 2 hard drives, D: (for data files only) and C: (for everything else).  The D: drive is the one with the problem.  I'm running Windows XP Media Center Edition.  There are around 7 Windows user accounts set up on this PC.  I moved the Favorites, My Documents, and Desktop folders from their usual location (on C:) to folders on the D: drive, one folder (in D: root) for each user.  I made these folders "private" for nearly all users.  Everything's been working just fine.

I've been using Outlook 2007 to move a ton of emails and the contacts from Yahoo to my computer.  Outlook's gotten stuck a bunch of times while exporting said data to a file.  I held in the power button on the PC in most of these cases to force a shutdown.  After the last of these, I could barely get Windows to let me into my user account (whose aforementioned folders were among those moved to D:).  I ran Check Disk for Errors (Automatically fix file system errors checked) on C: and D:.  I got a message that the MFT of the D: drive has been corrupted.  My webcam software keeps trying to reinstall itself.

I tried restarting the PC and logging into the user whose folders have NOT been moved to D:.  The Desktop looks fine, but I'm still getting notices that my Logitech webcam is trying to install.  The D: drive appears in My Computer, but when View is set to Details, nothing appears for the D: drive under disk size (if I recall) or under free space (I'm sure).

Before I moved my data files to this PC about a week ago, I took a bunch of images with Acronis True Image 11 Home.  (This is a new computer, and I took images along the way during the process of installing all of my software.)  I have no images created after I moved all of my data to this PC.  I don't have backups of much of my data files.  I just tried booting to the Acronis product disk and backing up my data files off of D:.  The boot into Acronis worked normally, but, although D: appears as a drive, it has no folders or files as far as Acronis can tell.

I thought about using Acronis to restore D:'s MFT (and maybe the zero sector [or whatever that's called]).  However, I have no idea if this will work, and I thought trying this might make restoring the current MFT impossible.  So, I'm asking for help instead.  I do have the Windows installation disc.  It's a Dell XPS 720 computer.

What should I do???
Windows OSStorage HardwareMicrosoft DOSAcronis

Avatar of undefined
Last Comment

8/22/2022 - Mon

run a checkdisk again:
in a command prompt:

chkdsk /f d:

If this doesnt fix the issues, use a file recovery software to get the files back from the drive and reformat. Your master file table is toast.

Thanks for the response so fast.

So I have to boot to DOS?  Or can I do this at the command prompt within Windows?  If the former, how do I boot to DOS?  Both drives are NTFS.

Also, any suggestions about what file recovery software to use?  It doesn't HAVE to be freeware.
Experts Exchange has (a) saved my job multiple times, (b) saved me hours, days, and even weeks of work, and often (c) makes me look like a superhero! This place is MAGIC!
Walt Forbes

Log in or sign up to see answer
Become an EE member today7-DAY FREE TRIAL
Members can start a 7-Day Free trial then enjoy unlimited access to the platform
Sign up - Free for 7 days
Learn why we charge membership fees
We get it - no one likes a content blocker. Take one extra minute and find out why we block content.
See how we're fighting big data
Not exactly the question you had in mind?
Sign up for an EE membership and get your own personalized solution. With an EE membership, you can ask unlimited troubleshooting, research, or opinion questions.
ask a question

Thanks so much.

I'll leave this question open for a couple of days to see if anybody has any other ideas.