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#396191 - 20th Mar 2010 1:55pm hard drive broken?
milie Offline
Newbeee

Registered: 25th Jan 2010
Posts: 43
Loc: leasowe
I have a computer tower which when switched on says some like 'operating system not found ' or 'error loading operating system' I was wondering if there is anyway to get the data off as it has a lot of photos and vids of my son when he was younger and music?

any help would be great.

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#396196 - 20th Mar 2010 2:04pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: milie]
RevTurtle Offline
Newbeee

Registered: 20th Mar 2010
Posts: 21
Loc: Prenton
Yes there's always a way. Do you have another computer you can use?
You can take the hard drive out and connect it up as a slave drive or external drive and take data off that way.
If you need more help, or don't feel comfortable taking it apart, I'm more than willing to help if I can. Do you know if it's an IDE or SATA drive?

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#396217 - 20th Mar 2010 2:48pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: RevTurtle]
derekdwc Offline


Forum Veteran

Registered: 13th Oct 2008
Posts: 5024
Loc: Birkenhead
try going into the bios as it boots and selecting 'auto' for the drive this may do it
One of the computer peeps on here may explain it better

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#396225 - 20th Mar 2010 2:58pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: derekdwc]
RevTurtle Offline
Newbeee

Registered: 20th Mar 2010
Posts: 21
Loc: Prenton
Good call. Depends on the make of PC and what bios it has. Usually pressing F8 or Delete on boot will get into the BIOS to do this, but sounds to me like either an inexperienced user deleted a windows file, or someone clicked on a bad link, or opened a bad email and got virused.

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#396270 - 20th Mar 2010 5:38pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: RevTurtle]
SilentReader Offline
Addict

Registered: 27th Nov 2008
Posts: 238
Loc: Wallasey
I can't see you needing to entre the bios, if the hard drive was missing from there then you most likely see a message displayed such as disk boot failure, insert system disk and press enter, what is really happening is the system found a boot device either a floppy disk or a hard disk and tried to boot it, but could not start the operating system because the operating system files are not on the booted volume, sound to me like the drive has become corrupted somehow. if you have a second machine then I have a Ontrack Easy Recovery which could help save them important files.

one last thing I would say is check there is no cd in the rom and no floppy disk in the floppy drive either.

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#396373 - 20th Mar 2010 9:29pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: SilentReader]
MattLFC Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 14th Aug 2004
Posts: 22315
Loc: Moreton/Beirut/Mobile
Whats the OS?

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#396489 - 21st Mar 2010 2:28pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: MattLFC]
milie Offline
Newbeee

Registered: 25th Jan 2010
Posts: 43
Loc: leasowe
I don't really understand the working of computers so I don't know what drive it has. Yes I laptop I can use. The OS is XP. Its a dell tower. RevTurtle if you could help me that would be great.

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#396561 - 21st Mar 2010 8:04pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: milie]
MattLFC Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 14th Aug 2004
Posts: 22315
Loc: Moreton/Beirut/Mobile
Personally, id use the XP recovery console to try and fix the installation of Windows before even considering wiping it. Attempting to fix the MBR is the first and easiest thing to try, and then on the rest.

If the drive is failing, just do a raw backup from the hard drive on another system using Total Commander for fast transfers etc. Then try a chkdsk to see if it can fix any broken sectors etc.

It's unusual for a modern (last 7 years or so) system not to have SMART monitoring, so if your machine is relatively modern and you have not had any SMART messages at bootup warning you of imminent disk failiure, this is a good sign, though SMART cannot detect all problems or predict all failiures so it does not mean there isnt a hardware problem.

If you can get the system up and running to a useable state, you should download and use the free trial of a program called HDDLife which will monitor the drive using SMART and let you know if it is failing.

I realise you say you dont have much knowledge of computers, but if you know anyone who understands what they are doing, you should not lose much, if any, data and id hazard a wild guess its more likely to be a software issue rather than a drive failiure. Its at times like this when you realise how important regular backups are - i can't stress enough how important they are.

Apologies for not being able to offer any more advice or the steps to take etc, im posting on my phone atm. I hope you get it sorted and all is okay.

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#396562 - 21st Mar 2010 8:19pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: MattLFC]
Wheels Offline
Wiki Veteran

Registered: 4th Jan 2005
Posts: 8795
Loc: Tranmere
Also don't overlook the fact that somehow the wire might of come loose!

I had the same problem once and it turned out the sata wire had come loose. doh

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#397032 - 23rd Mar 2010 5:19pm Re: hard drive broken? [Re: Wheels]
AX_125 Offline

Forum Guardian

Registered: 10th Nov 2003
Posts: 3793
Loc: Home
I agree with Matt, windows CD repair-install is most likely to sort this problem.
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