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HDD problem. Need some answers

By ingeborgdot
Apr 2, 2010
  1. My friends computer just went. Nothing on the screen, won't boot etc. I have checked memory, vid card, etc. I know it must be the hdd because I put one of my hdd in and it started to boot. Different drivers so some things would not work but that showed the vid card worked along with everything else except the hdd. My problem is the hdd works when I attach it to my computer. I can see all the folders etc. I tried to clone and see if that would work but when I put it into their computer it would not boot. When I did a clone one screen came up and said it could not read some sector. What can I do now that the old hdd is cloned? I did keep all info on the old hdd also. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,392   +106

    There you go! You have answered your own question. HDD can go bad and with a bad sector it is a matter of time that the HDD will fail. So you have cloned the HDD to another HDD of the same size or larger? That clone didn't work in the system. Okay what you need to do is put back one of your HDD in there install the OS and get that running. Once that is done, install the either the clone or the original HDD as a slave or secondary HDD. C - OS D old the HDD. E Optical DVD/CD etc.. Try that.
     
  3. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    So, what you are saying is that there is not way to repair this new clone to have a boot without going through all this? A reinstall is the only way?
     
  4. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +183

    ingeborgdot

    I have a suggestion (below) but if i might also steal some bandwidth from your thread to solicit opinion/feedack...

    Admittedly, i'm basically a software guy... My view (right or wrong) has generally been: As disks come with spare sectors and are designed to remap bad sectors to good spare ones, i've always assumed a "couple of" bad sectors don't mean a hard drive is failing vs. a couple can just happen? And one should view the drive's Smart data to see how many have actually failed? (So i'm not trying to be argumentative but wondering of other's experience and opinion. Do a couple of bad sectors typically imply pending disk drive doom?)

    That said, and assuming one doesn't see lots of failed sectors, couldn't one also run chkdsk from Recovery console to fix bad sectors? Then if needed a Windows repair?
     
  5. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    HDDRegenerator can often fix bad sectors and keep the data intact, it might be worth checking out. There is a trial version for free, but for it to do real work you need the pay for version. (Or obtain a boot cd that starts with an H, won't say any more publicly about that)
     
  6. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,392   +106

    No I was referring to the old HDD not the clone. Is the clone are brand new HDD or one that is used. How did you clone it? Ghost or True Image or one of the OEM HDD cloning software.

    Bad sector can be fix only if the HDD is not damaged (anyway) If it is then you can't repair. CHKDSK, some of the other HDD utls on the market.
     
  7. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    The clone won't boot either.
     
  8. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    HDDRegenerator can and does fix bad sectors if they are a magnetic issue and not actual physical (structural) damage to the disk. I've used it with success a long time ago and I think Rick on the boards has also used it with success.
     
  9. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,392   +106

    Sounds good. I'll add it to my collection of tools. Thanks
     
  10. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,392   +106

    Well if the original didn't boot then the clone won't boot. Just MFT could have got corrupted some how? Use the clone as the master re-install the OS with a fresh copy. Then use the old HDD to recover important files. The program reported here to fix the HDD try that see what happens first on the old HDD. Since you have the clone for backup.
     
  11. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    Ok, now another problem. Since the MBR is bad how can I get their key? She lost the install disk and papers that she needed.
     
  12. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,392   +106

    You mean CD key for what OS and version? Still if ever registered the OS then there should be a record of it?
     
  13. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    W XP Pro SP3
    Where is the record of it?
     
  14. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,392   +106

  15. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    But the computer won't boot. The MBR is bad and we need to reinstall. How can I find it without booting into the OS?
     
  16. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 6,979   +362

    Does the PC have a COA sticker on it? If so, the product key is on there.
     
  17. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    No, it is a home built with all retail stuff.
     
  18. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,392   +106

    I thought you had installed another HDD into her system or use the clone.So neither are working now. Sounds like time for 7 upgrade if your client system can support it?
     
  19. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 6,979   +362

    ingeborgdot, that's too bad. Even home built PCs are supposed to have the COA sticker from the Windows CD/DVD package. I always do mine.
     
  20. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    No, I cloned the other one but because the MBR was no good the clone was no good either. It has all the docs etc. but no MBR so no boot.
     
  21. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +183

    I forget all the detail from earlier in the thread.. so sorry if this doesn't otherwise apply but

    > We know you can't boot from the image
    > But can you mount the image as an external drive so a computer can read the files?

    As ProduKey tool provides options to lets you search external Windows installations. And (if you're lucky) the corruption is only on data sectors needed to boot. (not necessarily the sectors with windows data needed by ProduKey)
     
  22. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    Ok, I have produkey installed. I have the bad hdd on my other computer and can see all the files. With produkey where do I search with it to find the key?
     
  23. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Posts: 6,491   +183

    I've used ProduKey before tho never had occasion to try these options myself (so can't speak from experience) but if you look at the options described on the ProduKey page you might try

    windir [Windows Directory]
    Load product key information from another operating system on the same computer. The [Windows Directory] specifies the base folder of Windows installation, for example: c:\windows, c:\winnt

    This feature is only supported on Windows 2000/XP/2003/2008/Vista/7.

    /external
    Load product key information from all external Windows installations of the disks that are currently plugged to your computer.
     
  24. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 434

    It finds mine but no matter where I go it does not show any.
     
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