Can't boot into windows, can't run chkdsk

By interploy
Nov 17, 2005
  1. Last night I was helping a friend replace a fan in his computer, but to get to it we had to remove the hard drive (the drive is encased in a Cooler Master CoolDrive4 fan controller). Luck was not with us however because one of the screws actually broke off and it took a hell of a time getting the drive out. Then, after installing the fan, we ended up having to file down the broken screw (used a fingernail file and fine-grain sandpaper) until it was flush with the drive mount to put the drive back in.

    Now when we turn the computer back on, it doesn't recognize the drive and when we tried to run check disk, it said there were unrecoverable errors. Now, I'm fairly sure it was the filing that screwed up the drive (even though I was grounded and did my best to minimize vibrations and keep the filings away from the hard drive itself), BUT he's also had long standing issues with his motherboard (an ASUS A8V Delux) randomly not recognizing his hard drive (though it had always recognized it after a reboot before), so I'm not entirely convinced.

    What I'd like to know is (1): Is it more likely I damaged the drive somehow while filing down the broken screw (it was encased in the Cooler Master, remember) or that the mobo is defective and refusing to recognize the drive? (2): If it comes to it (and if it'd even help), is there any way to reinstall windows without formatting the drive? There are a few files on his computer he really needs for school, but had forgotten to back up.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!
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