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Setup unable to access disk - XP

By kyla92
Feb 8, 2009
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  1. I am in need of urgent help!

    My machine dual boots to WinXP & Vista. I decided to delete an unused logical partition (reserved for Win2K which did not work since my new mobo does not support Win2K), using XP's disk management, which somehow inadvertently deleted a system partition (Vista). Needless to say, I am now unable to boot to Vista.

    Logged back in to XP, and decided to use Partition Magic to fix the partition tables. I, instead, got an error saying that the partition's drive letter cannot be identified. Decided to reinstall Vista, but when asked where to install, I now see only 2 partitions (originally I had 4 partitions). My "Data" partition has somehow vanished as well. Then, I heard a strange noise from my HDD, and it suddenly reboots.

    Once it reached the boot manager's screen, I selected Windows XP. I am unable to boot to XP; tried last known config and safe mode, no go. It hangs @ "....drivers/mup.sys" and simply reboots. I also got a BSOD but it went by real quick.. something about a non_page_default.

    Whipped out my XP setup disk, and this time, XP setup only recognizes one big partition (250gb), and below the partition, a note saying "Setup unable to access disk." So, I can't even format even if I try, it won't allow me too. Tried the recovery console, and on the C:\ prompt, typed in "chkdsk," but it gave me an error saying something about an invalid file path or can't find the path. So what happened? Is my HDD dead??

    Finally, thought I'd try to install a non-Windows O/S instead. I decided on using Ubuntu and chose it's "non-install, preview" option. Lo and behold, I saw my "Data" and "WinXP" drives! Everything is accessible and all my files were intact.

    So, what now? How can I boot back to Windows XP? Is there a way? Can someone explain what had happened? Is my HDD faulty or is it something else?

    Thanks in advance, and really sorry for the long post^^;

    Kyla
  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 18,353

    Although a Windows Repair (using your Windows setup CD) should fix Windows not booting properly
    It sounds most likely like a HardDrive being physically faulty
    You can test your Harddrive with this BootCd Drive Diagnostics Or just replace the HardDrive and be done with it

    I quoted the above, because I assume you have now backed up any important data using Ubuntu live BootCD
  3. TheConqueror

    TheConqueror TS Rookie Posts: 27

    it sounds as though you unintentionaly deleted more than one partition. there is a very specific way to customize and remove partitions and if done incorrectly especially when booting multiple op systems will mess up the entire configuration even on a 250 gb hard drive it is a good idea to not have more than two partitions and any reserved partitions beside that should be small enough to hold a recovery console but that is all. I suggest using Norton disk doctor to check what and if any partitions are still intact and use something such as (ubcd) ultimate boot disk to run diagnostics on the hdd the (ubcd) aslo has partition and repair tools to recover data from the hard drive.
    let me know how it goes
  4. kyla92

    kyla92 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for the responses, guys!!

    Yes, kimsland.. I have indeed backed up using Ubuntu Live CD via "shared network" properties =D

    TheConqueror, as suggested, I used UBCD, and it did repair the partition tables and I was able to have WinXP back up and running =]

    This issue is now resolved, thanks again everyone!!
  5. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 18,353

    Thanks for the update :grinthumb
  6. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    We are betting that your optical drive is bad. Can you try another borrowed from another machine?.. or get new. At $20, they are the lowest cost part of the repair.
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