Updating to XP sp2 caused system crash, No partition info, files have been renamed, notskrnl.exe, ntldr

Posted on 2008-11-13
Last Modified: 2013-12-01
I was upgrading a Windows XP sp1 to sp2 and the sp2 installation failed.  When i rebooted the computer to try again it went to a black screen saying that it could not find <Windows Root>\system32\notskrnl.exe.  I used the XP cd to boot up the disk then i used the fixmbr and fixboot commands to see if that worked.  Then the ntldr message appeared.  I copied the ntldr file on the drive and thats when i noticed that drive is really screwed up.  I hooked up the drive as a slave to access the files, but none of the file names are legible, all files look something like this '‘ æ^Ő,.r' .  None of the directories are accessible or recognized by the windows 2000 system i have it hooked up to.  Any suggestions?  Its a maxtor 160gb ide drive.  I believe that the file system of the XP drive is NTFS.
Thank you in advance for all your help
Question by:ranshuinc
    LVL 15

    Expert Comment

    Sounds like your FAT is all screw up. Dont like your chances of recovering to be honest.

    This is what ive used in the past with some limited success.

    Good luck.
    LVL 1

    Expert Comment

    Do not write anything to your disk. connect your disk to another computer and use some recovery tool. I prefer Stellar phoenix fat&ntfs.
    Maybe there is a physical problem on your hard drive or there is a bad block on your ram you may test with a bootable cd like hirens boot cd  or ultimate boot cd. Test your harddrive first then test your ram.
    Your motherboards BIOS version is important get newer bios.
    Maybe its about your bus speed Did you overclock your computer?
    Maybe your harddrives jumper setting is wrong  "I hooked up the drive as a slave to access the files, but none of the file names are legible" like LIMITED DRIVE CAPACITY jumper. if you set to LDC and then write some files and then  Allocation table screw up.

    XX-if you have only one drive While connecting your IDE-ATA cable, you must use last short socket for a single drive(slave or master)
    XX-0f you have 2 drives last short socket is for MASTER,middle is SLAVE
    ALWAYS use long part of your cable is for Motherboard

    SET JUMPER to MASTER, Connect your disk to another computer(SECONDARY IDE PORT or use usb disk case) and try stellar phoenix to recover.Use your disk read only until your files recovered. save recovered files to another harddrive.

    good luck
    LVL 91

    Accepted Solution

    try a system restore :
    you can do this easier from a bootable cd :      Knoppix                                      BartPe

    Author Comment

    Thanks for the help guys.  So far I haven't had any luck.  look at this:
     Volume in drive D has no label.
     Volume Serial Number is 0000-0000

     Directory of d:\

    01/01/1601  12:00a      <DIR>          á€Z?ET:.d
    08/23/2001  12:00p             222,368 ntldr    <-----(THIS IS THE NTLDR I COPIED WITH THE XP CD)
    01/01/1601  12:00a          29,967,653 `
    05/14/1986  12:02a              65,536 "
    01/01/1601  12:00a          29,548,175 p
    03/20/1980  12:03a           7,733,317
    01/01/1601  12:00a              65,536 t
    01/02/1980  12:00a                   0 `ëI‘§DT:.
    02/07/1980  12:02a              65,536 @es
    07/16/2030  12:00a       4,232,830,607  B
    01/01/1601  12:00a              65,536 e
    01/01/1601  12:00a      <DIR>          ‘ æ^Ő,:.
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    i would start testing the ram: use memtest86+ from

    Author Comment

    WOW!  The computer that I attached the bad disk (as a slave drive) to did the same thing.  I was using a recovery tool to recover files from the bad hard drive and then all of a sudden i got a memory reference error and the computer shut off.  It woudln't boot.  Put in the windows 2000 cd (the 2nd computer is 2000) and used to the recovery console to look at that harddrive.  Same thing as above.  The drive is a disaster.  All the files names are messed up and i can't access anything.  Virus?  What virus would this be?  Any other ideas?  
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    try accessing it from a live cd (posted above), to try to copy your data  

    then you can try to format, or erase the disk, with the manuf's tool  :
    LVL 63

    Expert Comment

    Are you sure that there is no virus or malware involved ?

    I hope this helps !

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