Windows won't boot after Macrium restore

Using Windows 7 Pro on a domain. The hard drive was an OCZ Vertex 3 (which I never use anymore) 120GB. When I started using the computer, I noticed the mouse point was at the top of the screen. And, it was sort of shaking and moving by itself. Never had an issue with cross compatability with other mice or USB connectors. I rebooted the computer, which didn't help. I added a battery and rebooted again, and it then showed there was no hard drive.

I took out the OCZ and should have tried it in other computer (still can) to insure it wasn't the drive. But, I have some Samsung EVO SSDs 250GBs, so I traded that out. I could reinstall Win 7 Pro, but I really don't want to start all over.

So, I restored an image from Macrium which had been made two days prior using the Macrium boot DVD. I verified the image which said it was fine. I then restored, which also worked fine. I rebooted, and it could not find the hard drive. It would not boot into Windows. The only thing I can think of is that the boot sector of the older SSD was corrupted, and it was the one that was imaged.  Thanks.

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TemodyPickalbatros, IT ManagerCommented:
OCZ SSD nice SSD by the way

did your image backup including boot partition if it is please follow
Please follow this steps it's working with me
a)       Boot from your Windows 7  DVD
b)       On the first screen of Setup choose Next
c)       In the lower left of the screen choose "repair your computer"
d)       On the System Recovery Options screen choose your installation of Windows and then click next
e)       Click "Command prompt"
f)        Go to X:\sources\recovery> startrep.exe
g)       This will take a while but will address any registry related issues.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
What did it restore? Only one partition or two partitions? Note, the MSR partition which contains the bootMGR file and Boot folder along with bcd file are important for Windows 7. Are they restored? If yes then is the MSR partition set active?
You can check this again from boot cd of Macrium.
Bert2005Author Commented:
Thanks Temody and noxcho,

Still working on the first. Working still.


There were three partitions. One, of course, was the system partition which was around 110GBs. There was an MBR disk and another small one. The scary thing for me is right now I am looking at the restore (I have four form my computer -- should have been four for that one as well -- but only one). The two partitions on this one say 1 - Data (None) and it says NTFS Active. Plus the System Drive. This is using the program on the computer.

On the bad computer, using the DVD to restore, the two smaller partitions, after being restored, said unformatted. Actually, I think that is what it said before the restore even though it did verify.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Is there a 100MB partition on a bad one or a restored one? Can you mount the macrium backup image and see if it has MSR 100MB partition backup?
It can be also that your system has a custom configuration. To check this look on each restored partition if you see thete a file BootMGR, a folder Boot.
If these are on a partition then this partition must be active.
Bert2005Author Commented:
Looking on one of the good images on my computer, there is a drive which contains a boot folder with a lot of folders that correspond to different languages. In most, there are files bootmgr.exe.mui and memtest.exe.mui. In the same directory there is a bootmgr file. This was on the Data drive, which is a 100 MB drive.

On the "bad" image, there is a C: drive which is the OS. I can open and browse this. This is partition 3. There is a partition 2 drive but it shows it to be 128 MBs and 128 MBs unused. This is shown as unformatted. I think it is just an empty drive. When you to try to browse it, it says, this partition needs to be formatted to be used.

Then there is what appears to be the boot folder. It is 100 MB partition with 28 MB of space used. It does not say if it is active, but when you try to browse it, a window pops up that says it recommends scanning and fixing it. I haven't done that yet, because I am copying file to another folder in case it screws it up.

So, my question is since there is a MBR on the disk now given the install of Win 7 Pro, could I leave that intact and just restore the C: drive from the image to the C: drive on the new hard drive?

I did try the X:\Sources\recovery>startrep.exe and it said that recovery was recognized. The other two times I booted from the DVD, it just said the OS wasn't compatible when I selected repair computer. On the one where it did work, but the command above didn't, I chose Startup Repair. That did not help.
Bert2005Author Commented:
So I did try the old drive in another computer just as an unnecessary troubleshooting step, and it wouldn't boot.

I now have the Samsung SSD with Win 7 Pro loaded installed in the computer. I have browsed to the image backup. Again, the boot folder appears to be inactive. The system drive is fine. When, I go through the steps to restore (without going to the final step), I have the three partitions of the source image backup (the 2nd partition is just an empty partition. I also have my destination drive which is the SSD with Win 7 Pro on it. Now this is a good drive and has a good boot sector or boot drive. And, it has the system drive. Now, as my question went, in the last comment, it seems that I already have a good boot partition, and I could restore just the system drive. But, at first I thought it will just restore over both. But, you are actually able to drag and drop it, so I am able to drag and drop the good image C: drive to the C: drive of the destination drive. The other two source partitions can be unchecked.

So, it does seem possible that I can restore the C: drive to the C: partition without touching the boot partition. Now, what I am asking you is can a boot folder work with a different system drive as it was installed along with Win 7 Pro.

Also, the source drive is GPT while the destination is MBR. I have had some issues with that in the past.

Bert2005Author Commented:
So, I have used Macrium in the past with good success. I use Windows Server Backup on the server along with Backup Assist. I guess I should have just used Windows Backup and Restore. Just didn't like it.

But, if I go to three or four computers, the backups have the C: drive and a boot drive partition or whatever you would refer to it as, and they are NTFS and Active.

On the computer in question and one other the same partion says FAT32 and LGA and I don't believe it is activated.  

My experiment of only restoring the C: drive was a complete flop.

Also, I can browse some of the drives (honestly I am too tired right now to think) and find some boot files, but I am not sure if they are helpful.

I am about resigned to reinstalling Win 7 Pro from scratch. I guess I could grab an image backup from a similar computer that does similar work in the office, restore it, then tweak it a bit.

There do seem to be some issues at times with GPT and MBR.
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
your disk geommetry for an MBR disk (standard installation) is as follows
System Reserved 100MB no drive letter set as active FS: NTFS
OS -> remainder of disk drive C:  FS:NTFS
Recovery 300 MB (Hidden Partition FS:NTFS
System    100 MB FS: FAT32
Reserved 400MB FS:NTFS
OS -> remainder of disk drive letter C: FS:NTFS

FS = File System

I am not familiar with Macrium Reflect but you should image the DRIVE and then Restore the DRIVE.

The drive you image should be <= the drive you want to restore to.
It should not matter what the disk format (MBR/GPT) is of the image source and destination drive as it will OVERWRITE the entire destination disk.
Bert2005Author Commented:
Thanks. Yes I have been imaging the drives I want to restore on none computers.for some reason the image didn't back up the drive correctly. I.e. The system reserved drive backed up as FAT32 on a couple.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
If you install Windows 7 on a MBR drive and it creates the 100MB partition then yes you can restore the C: drive only over C drive (the best is when you delete the C: from the drive and restore to free space the C: from your backup).
Sure it will fail to boot but booting from Windows installation DVD to a recovery mode - command line and performing bootrec.exe /rebuildbcd command - it must be able to boot then.

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Bert2005Author Commented:
Hi noxcho. OK, I will do that. I will need your help on the last part please. Sorry so long. Was out sick.

Thanks everyone. Thanks noxcho.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Ok, no problem. Make sure that restore does not make the MBR drive GPT.
Bert2005Author Commented:
I will try. I don't know how to keep it from doing that. This is from Win 7 Pro (hopefully temporary) install. This is what comes out.

Computer management
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
You cannot prevent it or keep it MBR if Macrium converts it. I did not express myself clearly. Check after restore is done that the drive is still MBR.
BTW, you can take another backup of this fresh installation before overwriting it. But this time take backup of entire drive.
If Macrium is not clear in this have a look on a free Backup & Recovery tool:
Bert2005Author Commented:
Thanks noxcho.

Just so we are all on the same page, all of my backups of all of my computers (nine) are complete backups. Just this one didn't seem to do the backup correctly, i.e. the first partition was FAT32 non-active. I think this was because the last backup on June 27th backed up the OCZ which then didn't work after. So, maybe it's boot sector or partition was corrupted.

Haven't said this yet, but my staff tells me there was this brief outage which knocked out the Internet and computers which is weird because all of my computers are on UPS and AVR and so is my Internet modem, router and switch.

Thanks again. I will try this later.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Hardware tends to fail, so there is no wonder that SSD drive got problems. This is the reason we take daily or weekly backups.
Try what you planned and let us know if you have questions.
Bert2005Author Commented:
OK, when performing the instructions on ID# 1151 (last four digits), I used only the image of the C: drive to the drive which was empty. Upon viewing it, it was GPT for both. So, now I had only the C: drive, which was C:\Windows

I booted from a WIN 7 Pro DVD and went to the command prompt. I typed in >bootrec.exe /buildbcd

It said, OS found or something to that effect. Then it said do you wish to install files here? I chose Y. It then said it couldn't find the path.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Ok, lets do it a little bit different way. Now, when you did a restore of C: drive - and try to boot - what kind of error do you get? Does automatic repair do anything?
Bert2005Author Commented:
Thanks noxcho

Took a day off. Sorry. Now 4th of July here. I did what you said. Rebooted after restore. It comes to the black screen with a blinking horizontal cursor at top left.
Bert2005Author Commented:
Just wanted to throw something out to you.

It would be easy to grab the SSD and clone another good SSD on another machine. All machines are virtually identical. With a little tweaking everything would be set up.

Now, the issue would be licensing. Office, Win 7, all 3rd party programs. Now, I would have all those licenses and activation codes somewhere on the saved C: partion which I can browse easily.
Bert2005Author Commented:
Macrium is pretty cool in that when you boot to it, it has the command prompt. The path, though is not correct as far as what you see on the DVD.

In other words, it ends up with X:\Windows\....

there is no \sources> at the end. The DVD does have all the drivers and stuff on it. You can browse to it.
Bert2005Author Commented:
I must say that Automatic Repair has never done anything to repair. It is the equivalent of trying to automatically repair a print driver where it just suggests to make it the default driver. lol

It is frustrating, because I am able to boot to a command prompt from Win 7 Pro, and it gives me several options such as FixMBR and others.

They all work, but then they fail and show the error message: Cannot find the correct path. I do not know if they are looking for the path on the Windows CD or the restored drive.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Download Paragon Rescue Kit and create a boot CD with it. Boot from it and get to Boot Corrector. Update with it the partition boot record. Should work after that.
When you boot with Macrium and start the command line - diskpart.exe and do list command - does it show your internal drive at all?
Bert2005Author Commented:
One the latter, yes. I have also moved the drive to another computer where it does not show a boot partition, then cloned the boot partition from a backup, and it didn't work. I will try the above.
Bert2005Author Commented:
I have Paragon's Hard Disk 15 Suite. I don't recall when I got it or what for. I also downloaded the Rescue Kit. I will play with it tomorrow. Thanks.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
If you have the Suite then it is enough, no need in Rescue Kit.
Create the recovery CD with HDM15 and boot the machine from it. Select in tools - Boot Corrector - search Windows to correct. Does it find the OS? Once found use update booot records for all partitions. Try to boot after it.
Bert2005Author Commented:
Hi noxcho,

First we need to dispel the myth that computers only do what we program them to do. That they are not possessed. They are. From their perspective, their only mission is to warp the minds of computer users and leave them dumbfounded. Case in point.

First, also know that your recommendation of Paragon must have been something I heeded months ago as when I checked my hundreds of CD/DVDs, it was sitting there on top.

With 12 hours of sleep under my belt and the Paragon DVD in tow, I sat down at the computer ready to do eight hours of battle. I started up the computer and IT BOOTED INTO WINDOWS! Yes, it just decided to boot into Windows. I restarted three times and, each time, it booted into Windows in 15 seconds.

Don't ask me how. Don't ask me why. The only new knowledge I had is that some of the Lenovo computers were EFI and some were MBR. All of the good EFI computers showed the exact same drive with the FAT32, etc. Even the unformatted 128MB partition after and before the system drive.

So, last night before leaving I decided to once again restore the last known good copy from the 27th of June. I don't think there was anything wrong with the backup. I don't know if rebuilding the boot partition prior did anything (we did it 10 different ways) made a difference. It seems as though the boot partition from the restore would have written over it.

I am running an A/V scanner now. MBAM Enterprise Edition. Now A/V program. First complete endpoint solution from Malwarebytes.

The only other thing is that the computer saw the Paragon disk, and figured it had better boot or be subject to the tools of Paragon. Maybe there should be a new movie called such or a series. Tools of Paragon.

There is only one thing worse than spending three days fixing a computer and understanding the problem and how you fixed it. And, that is spending three days and having no idea what fixed it.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Cool. So now the system is booting from MBR drive, right?
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
As long as it is functioning take the full HDD/SSD backup with HDM15.
Bert2005Author Commented:
Yes. I suppose it always has to boot from a boot partition. And, I guess that will always be called MBR. Except, disk management shows it is an EFI system using GPT drives.

Also, for some reason, Macrium Reflect shows the four partitions. One of my friends (who is definitely a computer expert), has Lenovos with UEFI, and they look similar on Macrium.

I am attaching Disk Mgmt of the computer as well as how the drive looks to Macrium. FYI: The unformatted partition is now a simple volume. Still can't extend the system drive to it. Maybe it needs to be formatted. But, I suppose that it is another question.

Disk management
Macrium Reflect
Funny you should mention backing it up. I was thinking the same thing. I would still keep the 6/27 backup as it is what I restored from to get this. I was thinking back up with Macrium and maybe even the native Windows Backup. Should I use Paragon also. I don't mean every time.

I have read some of your stuff on here. You seem to like Paragon.
noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
No need to use Windows Backup in this case. Use combination of Macrium and Paragon. They are doing the same work. Windows Backup is more complicated when compared to Macrium or Paragon.
This 128MB partition is actually no partition, it is reserved slot of partition in MBR structure of the drive. What is the reason of it - knows only Microsoft. But I did delete it and had no issues. Also, it is only 128MB so let it be there.
You need in any way to format that 125GB partition which is marked as RAW. I don't know if you partitioned it so or it was so already - but to use it for data storing just format it as NTFS and assign a drive letter.
Then it is done. Yes I like Paragon for its simple and reliable feature. Especially its boot CD which provides a number of necessary tools for bad system maintenance.
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