Posted on 2011-04-30
Last Modified: 2012-08-14
Hello All....I am in need of immediate assistance...if possible.  Here's my problem:

I have a Dell Dim 8300 - 80 GB HD, 27 GB free, running XP Home XP2.  
I connect a Western Digital Cav Blue EIDE 500 GB on a second position on the cable (both jumper drives are cable select) I had a NVidia GeForce 8400 GS video card and a BIOS of A05

I started the WD Data Lifeguard CD - which copied to my hard drive. I also attached an external floppy drive an made a recovery disk (this I put aside and no longer used).  I booted into Windows, started the WD Data Lifeguard software from the C drive and proceeded to "Set up my new disk".  

As it started yesterday evening, it was "coping" all files to the new disk.  This was a VERY SLOW process.  At midnight, I decided to let it run all night.  At 5 this morning, I went to check on it and it was about 40%.  I decided there was a problem so I cancelled the process.

I took out the new WD hard drive and tried to boot original drive.  It would not boot - saying it was missing the hal.dll file.   I placed my copy of WinXP Home XP2 in the drive and proceeded with a Repair....however, I ended up doing a Win XP replace install.  

Now the boot is hung on Windows Welcome screen.    I changed out the video card to a basic AGP.  It booted very slowly but did come up.  I looked to Dell and found an improved BIOS A07 and flashed it.  It booted even faster and better.  

When I booted desktop background was blue (instead of the "Diving/Fish" background).  I looked onto the C drive and it was called Local Disk F.  There was no C drive.  I tried System Restore, all dates were "available" in April, but no date would let me click on it.

I placed my new WD hard drive in the secondary connection of ribbon.  My Original hard drive boots up as F drive, but now I have my Diving/Fish background.  I look and the WD drive is Drv2_Vol2 C:   However, this drive will not boot up by itself.  It seems the computer is looking at both drives??  

Now my problem.  
My F: drive (the old one) has 68 items-5.76 MB
My New WB Drv2_Vol2 C drive (the new one) : has 53 items-1.54 MB

Is there anyway to fix this mess without re-installing fresh?  Really needed to DISKCOPY this old disk!

Help....I don't want to remove the new HD data because my old HD has an unActivated copy of WinXP (which I do not want to activate) and my new HD seems to have some good data (including my "Diving/Fish" background) but it is missing the Windows folder and about 4.22 MB of data.

WD - Level 2 - doesn't work on Saturday.  
Any immediate help is GREATLY appreciated!!!!!!!
Question by:SuperCPlus
    LVL 46

    Accepted Solution

    This is classic indication of a large number of bad blocks, meaning data loss & corruption.  If data is important, i.e, $1000++, then immediately cut power (Don't shut down, turn it off to prevent further damage), and take it to a recovery specialist.

    You lost a lot of data.  That disk drive is toast.  Buy a replacement, load a fresh copy of the O/S.   Purchase  something like spinrite,and it will copy what it can onto your replacement drive.  It may take days or well over a week.  But understand your disk MUST not be used for any new data.  You probably had a chunk of ferromagnetic material break off a platter and it is flying around inside the drive making things worse.

    A professional recovery may be able to get 99% of it back, and that runs around $500.  Every moment the disk is powered up you risk losing data ... forever, so decide what you are going to do quickly.  Even power cycling is stressful, so better to leave it on with no I/O activity then turning it off.  The next power cycle may be the last one.

    LVL 91

    Assisted Solution

    it looks like one or both disks have problems
    i would :
    - buy a nother disk -  and test it first with the proper diag (find all on UBCD)
    - connect this disk - and  - 1 of the previous "old" disks
    - Boot from the live Knoppix cd, and try to copy the data you want to the TESTED disk
    - then repeat this for the other disk

    when you have the data, you can decide on further steps
    if you can't access the data - ask for an estimate cost of recovery here :

    UBCD :      
    Knoppix :
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment


    Author Closing Comment

    Both disks tested positive.  (No defrag "needed" either)

    I believe there were two problems that contributed to this:

    1 - I needed a BIOS upgrade

    2 - I attached the new disk to the 2ndary slot on the ribbon, maybe it would have been better on the primary CD ribbon?  

    3 - When I created the new disk, I partitioned it from the WinXP Disk Manager, I made the new disk "active"...I don't know why, just a mistake, I think.  So when I eventually booted with both drives in cable select...I seemed to have both drives "active".

    Anyway....thanks so much for your help and replies...I did end up reformating the new drive and installing everything fresh....always the better way, really.  The old disk does boot up, so I made it as a slave drive.  I did change my jumper cables for both drives to make them master and slave.
    LVL 91

    Expert Comment

    >>   I attached the new disk to the 2ndary slot on the ribbon,  << if you respected the M/S jumper setting, it should be ok, but using the cd cable is always easier
    making both disks active is wrong, as you guessed

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