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Windows XP not booting from safe mode

By Gus4778
Nov 2, 2008
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  1. Hi there. Noob with first post so please be gentle...:wave:

    When closing down my computer, the power lead became accidently disconnected. Since then the computer has not booted - it goes as far as the safe mode screen, but then whichever option I choose it either restarts or you get a list of drivers loading then it hangs.... I get no error messages at all.

    I've put the recovery disc from the manufacturer in but it doesn't give me the option of fixing XP (it's XP Home BTW) but gives me the option to reinstall which presumably will format the drive and lose all my data.

    The computer finds the hard drive when it initially boots, although I've used a utility to check the hard drive which says it can't find a drive!!!

    I'm really worried that I am going to lose my data (it's been a while since I backed up everything), and am not sure where to go from here.

    The machine is an Athlon64 with 2.5GB RAM. I'd be grateful for any advice anyone can give....
  2. CCT

    CCT TS Evangelist Posts: 3,556

    Reset your Bios first thing to do.
  3. almcneil

    almcneil TS Guru Posts: 1,554

    Very likely your file system is corrupted. This may or not be recoverable. Which route you take depends on how valuable your personal files versus how much you want to spend. If they are extremely valuable and you are willing to spend $500+, you can take your HDD to a data recovery specialist who can probably save your data. if you can't afford it or the files are that valuable, then you can run the Windows CHKDSK utility. The downside is that if you run the Windows CHDK utility and it can't recover your file system, the data recovery specialist can't help you either. CHKDSK erases certain entries the specialist needs to reconstruct the file system.

    If you decide to go with the Windows CHKDSK, here's how you do it.

    1) Boot from Windows installation CD

    2) At Windows Setup, select 'r' for Recovery Console

    3) Once loaded, Recovery Console asks you to log into the isntallation you want to work on (usually it's '1' for c:\windows)

    4) It will ask for an administraotr password. Just hit <enter> for no password but if it prompts again then there is is one. If you don't know it, you need to use a password remover tool. We can recommend one if you get to this point.

    5) At the DOS prompt, enter the following:
    c:\windows>chdsk /r

    It shouldl take 20 to 40 minutes to complete.

    Repost with results.

    Best,
    -- Andy
  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 18,353

    Please note there are many free data recovery tools; you do not need to spend money!
    Anyway, this is presently not a data recovery issue. If it were I'd recommend removing your HardDrive and plugging it into another computer as a secondary drive, then back up your data from there.

    The checkdisk from command prompt in the Recovery Console, is the best option
    Note: the command is chkdsk c:/f But, you may just type chkdsk /? to see a list of options available
  5. almcneil

    almcneil TS Guru Posts: 1,554

    The freeware data recovery tools are useless. I looked into it for my customers and none of them were any good. Only the paid ones work (and very well I may add!)

    Yes, it may be possible to mount the hard drive on anothe computer as a slave or external drive and then attempt to backup your valuable. But if this is file system corruption, that may not work either. If you can try, then I guess you have nothing to lose but some time and frustration.

    -- Andy
  6. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 18,353

    Note the free recovery programs are excellent

    Here is an excellent list of many provided across the web: http://www.majorgeeks.com/downloads38.html

    I have used many of these on occassions in the past, I have never needed to purchase one
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