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My HP Laptop does not restart

Posted on 2010-01-11
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I have an HP laptop running windows XP.

Whenever I try to restart it, I get a message: GRUB Loading stage2 ..

In this laptop I also have Linux installed, but I rarely use it.

I would appreciate if you can help me find a way to recover.

My backup is six months old
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Question by:markov123
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49 Comments
 
LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:Tiras25
ID: 26281304
I don't want to repeat what already been done.  Here is the previos posts regarding this:

http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Linux/Q_21211540.html

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LVL 3

Accepted Solution

by:
uldis earned 300 total points
ID: 26281323
If you do not want multiboot (just Windows XP) - go into windows XP repair console by:
*) Inserting your Windows XP CD
*) Booting from it;
*) Selecting "Repair" option, then geting into console.

Then write commands:
fixmbr (that will rewrite your Master Boot Record);
fixboot (that will rewrite your boot record).

That should do the trick.
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LVL 92

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 26281772
>>  help me find a way to recover.   <<   recover what ?

if you want to get rid of linux, uninstall it, or delete the entry from the boot.ini file :

  http://support.microsoft.com/kb/303661
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26281789
As far as I understand - Hi wants to boot again in Windows XP. When Linux is installed - it overwrites Master Boot Record (with a GRUB's MBR) in hard drive - so Computer does not see Windows XP anymore, and editing of boot.ini will not allow him to boot again.

There is no way to "uninstall" Linux. You can delete partition when booted from other OS (Windows XP).
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26290092
"As far as I understand - Hi wants to boot again in Windows "

Yes, this is exactly what I want.

Linux has been there for sometime, I rarely used it, but I used to get dual boot screen, then all of a sudden this happened
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26290735
"If you do not want multiboot (just Windows XP) - go into windows XP repair console by:
*) Inserting your Windows XP CD
*) Booting from it;
*) Selecting "Repair" option, then geting into console.

Then write commands:
fixmbr (that will rewrite your Master Boot Record);
fixboot (that will rewrite your boot record)."

I tried this, but the laptop wont boot from the CD/DVD Drive, so the problem still stands
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26290745
Tiras25,

I am not sure if following the link would work, bec I cannot boot from the CD.
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26290881
You should get into your laptop BIOS Settings (Usually by pressing Del or F1, F2, F10 shortly after powering on). And select in your BIOS settings in boot devices - CD-ROM before the Hard Drive.

Alternative - usually there are hotkey that pressed after the power on brings you to the "Select Boot Device Screen".
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26290909
Uldis,

Yes I did that already, there are seven options in my laptop.

First:  Optical Disk Drive
Second: USB CD-ROM
Third: USB Floppy
Fourth: USB Superdisk
Fifth: Notebook Hard Drive
Sixth: USB Hard Disk
Seventh: Network Controller

I tried changing and made USB CD-ROM is the first, but no success
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26290922
Just for clarification - is this bootable Windows XP CD-ROM? Can you start it in another computer?
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26290980
Yes, it is a bootable XP CD ROM, I tried it on a different computer, and it worked.
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26291279
What I would do next to pinpoint problem - Insert another bootable CD (Except Windows. Ex. Linux, Knoppix) - and see - does they boot, if not - then I'd try to attach USB CD drive and boot from it.

If these options is not available, then I'd suggest to take out hard drive, attach it to the desk computer (connector 2.5IDE<=>3.5IDE are quite cheap).
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26329325
Uldis,

Can you pls show me the steps on how to create an XP  bootable USB drive
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LVL 92

Assisted Solution

by:nobus
nobus earned 300 total points
ID: 26329909
look here :  http://articles.techrepublic.com.com/5100-10878_11-5490289.html

or google bootable usb drive..
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26330296
I'm usually using a normal CD customised with nLite + External USB CD drive, so please - look at nobus's answwer.
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LVL 92

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 26330556
personally, i use a live knoppix cd for that.
it does not only support USB, but LAN, internet, sound etc...as well
very handy to copy data from not bootable PC's -  and test them !
ftp://ftp.kernel.org/pub/dist/knoppix/KNOPPIX_V6.0.1CD-2009-02-08-EN.iso
0
 
LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26415225
I gave my laptop to a friend, he tried to recover the hard disk but so far unsuccessful.

Please note the email he sent me below:

-------------------------------------------------------   snip    ------------------------------------------------------
Well, here are the steps we took:
 

   * Put the hard disk in an enclosure and connected it through USB to a Win Vista machine. We could only see one partition, but it wasn't acessible. Connecting it to a WinXP machine, we managed to see 2 partitions but still both were unaccessable.
    * We then booted the laptop with a WinXP CD and ran FixBoot. It didn't fix it. So we then ran FixMBR. Same result.
    * We booted from UBCD4Win (Ultimate Boot CD For Windows) and ran most of the hard disk, cloning & recovery tools to try and read the partitions. No luck.
    * We booted using [Admin Edit] and ran most of the hard disk, cloning & recovery tools to try and read the partitions. Still no luck.
    * We then booted using 2 Linux Live CDs (Ubuntu & Knoppix). We couldn't read the partition(s).

 
General Observations:
 

    * Most of the tools could only see one partition.
    * Since FixBoot & FixMBR ran successfully, I'd assume the hard disk is physically OK.
    * One of the tools suggested formatting the partition for it saw it as a foreign unformatted disk.
    * You might want to try and reinstall one of the Linux Boot Loaders (GRUB or LILO). We lack the know-how to do so.
    * I strongly believe that with Forensic Recovery Tools, you might be able to get somewhere. You need to take a Forensic Image and analyse it, keeping the original hard disk intact. If the cloning process fails, you might have to analyze the disk itself by reading the blocks at a lower lever.

---------------------------------------    snip    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

I would appreciate any feedback on this, any tools that I can use. I still feel the hard disk can be revived.

Thanks in advance
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26415373
About One or Two partitions - Partition Can be hidde by setting a flag for it. So - WinMe is not showing it up. WinXP and Linux - shows actual partitions in their tools - so you can see Hidden Notebook Recovery partition.

For mee it looks like NTFS system has been ruined on your partition.
There are several tools that tries to recover data by looking at the partition itself, but as far as I've used them - the recovered data is quite fragmentar.
One of the tools I'would recommmend to try is:
GetDataBack for NTFS http://www.runtime.org/data-recovery-software.htm.

But - all operations (including those you've already made) - might be quite destroing. So it would be wise to backup that partition before modifieng it with such a tools.
0
 
LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26415414
I will read about data-recovery-software.

As for your last comment: "it would be wise to backup that partition before modifieng it with such a tools.."

Unfortunately I cannot do any backup bec files are not accessible
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26415626
Partiton Magic or Ghost can copy partitons as a whole.
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26447137
Partition magic has been tried. But it does not seem to work in this case. The partitions can be seen but no operation can be performed on them.

Any other tips will be highly appreciated
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26447626
Old Northon Ghost (Now called Symantec Ghost) -allows you to copy whole disc -> or whole disc to image. In this way you can backup your data. And than start trying file system recovery tools.
0
 
LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26447627
I meant whole disc to disc or whole disc to image.
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26447745
I spoke to the guy who took care of my laptop, he said he tried my tools and there is no way he could recover it.

Is there any alternative method/tools, like forensic tools that I cud use?
0
 
LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26447781
I agree with you, by using regular recovery tools, the chances are low. I need a way to physically get into the HD
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26447871
If you can see partition table - why do you think the hard drive is so damaged that you can't access everything else?
Run some of hard drive checking tools from bootable cd and check hard drive itself - if it runs normally - you don't need anything special.
If the drive is not detected in BIOS - you may try to find the same manufacturers hard drive and swap controller cards. If you hear ticking noise - drive heads are banging - in this case you have to find specialised company's that will do that for a $$$$$$ money.
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LVL 92

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 26448283
that is illegal - should not be used on EE !
did you try knoppix ?

you can also use erd - not free - http://www.geekstogo.com/2009/01/17/erd-commander-free-trial-from-microsoft/
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LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:uldis
ID: 26448813
I did not tell - use this software, but look at the list of available software.
0
 
LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26577608
Tried so many options nothing worked so far. Most of the ppl who looked at the laptop conclude that the hard disk has crashed. I have arranged to send the laptop to the recovery company to physically recover my data. I know it will cost me, but the data I have will be worth it.

A note to the administrators: While EE boasts a huge number of members, I am surprised to note that only two dedicated members responded to my question. I suggest with challenging questions you increase the span of experts who can access such queries.
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LVL 88

Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 300 total points
ID: 26588591
If you haven't sent the disk to a recovery agency yet, connect it as a 2nd HD to another PC again and use getdataback to scan it. It is probably the best recovery tool available. Then, if it finds the data you want recovered, you need to buy and register the tool, and you will be able to copy that data to some other place.

Then boot that PC with the bad disk attached from a UBCD and run the HD manufacturer's HD diagnostic utility on it. This tool will tell you if the disk is bad or not, and it can probably also repair some simple faults. If it tells you to replace the disk, well, get a new one and reinstall your system. If it can repair the disk allow it to do that and then run the test again. If after that it doesn't find any faults, put the disk back into your laptop and try booting, chances are that it'll boot...

http://ultimatootcd.com

If it still won't boot, and if you still can't boot to any CD from that laptop, put it back in the other PC (disconnect it's original HD) and boot it with your ubuntu CD. Depending on your ubuntu version there should be an option with which you can repair the installation, or you could get the newest version of Ubuntu and install that. This should recreate the boot-locader GRUB. After having reinstalled or repaired Ubuntu, you should put the disk back into the laptop, and now you should be able to start both, Ubuntu and XP (XP will probably run a chkdsk at bootup, but that is OK if your are using an ntfs partition).
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LVL 47

Assisted Solution

by:noxcho
noxcho earned 300 total points
ID: 26588664
Download trial from here: www.drive-backup.com 
You need Drive Backup 10 Pro trial version. Install it and run. There in Tools menu find Recovery Media Builder and create boot CD with it.
Boot the HP machine from it - Normal Mode - Drive Backup. See if your system drive is detected.
Then quit from Drive Backup - use Log Saver to collect and save all log files you find there to USB flash drive.
Upload the log data here.
I will see what is wrong with your drive.
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LVL 30

Expert Comment

by:IanTh
ID: 26589623
the fila allocation table looks knackered
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LVL 92

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 26589916
i never got a feedback regarding ERD...
0
 
LVL 32

Assisted Solution

by:DrDamnit
DrDamnit earned 300 total points
ID: 26590316
The only thing you haven't tried it to run a Linux live CD. I would suggest and recommend Knoppix. (www.knoppix.de).

Just download and burn the ISO from the website, and boot with that. Hopefully, it will see the partitions. Although, it PartitionMagic cannot see them, you might have a real problem on your hands.

Boot with Knoppix and see if you can see it.

If not, you'll need to go in the shell and try to manually mount the drive. This is done with a command like this:

sudo mount -t ntfs -o ro,users /dev/hda1 /mnt/hda1

However, you first have to find the hard drives and the partitions. To do that, run this command:

dmesg | grep hd

and

dmesg | grep sd

Post the output of those here, and I'll help you further.
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 26609707
Thanks guys for your inputs.

I gave my laptop to a company and see if they can recover. So far I have not heard from them, I will give them a call. I will surely update you if I hear anything from them.
0
 
LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 27647863
My laptop has not come back yet from the data recovery company. I would like to keep this question open so when I get the laptop I can post the results
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:DrDamnit
ID: 27651531
@angelIII

Recommended course of action: delete this question, and do not give anyone points. Sending the laptop to the data recovery company is not the answer to the question, even though it is a valid means of getting the data back.

This would not make a valuable PAQ.
0
 
LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 27651677
DrDamnit:

Thanks for your comments. As a member of EE, I am the one who decides whether the question should be deleted.

I am still waiting for the data recovery company to get back to me, I am not sure what the results will be, if they still could not recover, I will post their results and might ask for more help from the esteemed experts. So until then, the question remains open
0
 
LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:DrDamnit
ID: 27651994
@markov123:

Read AngelIII's post. He asked for the experts' recommendations. I gave them.

Either you can assign the points as you've pointed out, or it will get cleaned up if you abandon the question at which point the CV (angelIII) will need recommendations of the experts who participated in the question.

As long as you don't abandon the question, you'll get to assign the points.
0
 
LVL 47

Expert Comment

by:noxcho
ID: 27652501
markov123, you can post updates here to prevent automatic question closing. As long as you support activity in question thread it will remain open.
The closing procedure is started as posted by Angelll if no comment has been provided in 21 days.
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 29050189
I got a call from the company, they think most of the data is lost, this is quite disappointing
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LVL 92

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 29061542
people tend to forget to make a regular backup...then this happens.
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:markov123
ID: 30793282
The data recovery company has contacted me, unfortunately they were not able to recover data.


I would like to thank those who contributed positively to the question.

I suggest the question stays because this will serve as a future reference
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LVL 1

Author Closing Comment

by:markov123
ID: 31675382
The data could not be recovered
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