Primary Disk Drive not found, driving me nuts

By MickMick11 ยท 8 replies
Dec 16, 2008
  1. Hi Folks,

    This is so weird I hardly know where to start. I logged off Saturday night and everything was fine. I logged on Sunday morning and all my files, pictures, music, wallpaper, etc. was just gone. I've since discovered that McAfee may have caused it. For those with similar problem; the McAfee Event Log says, "12-14-2008, 6:19AM- System Guard allowed a change to your computer".
    I logged around 9AM so I'm guessing this has something to do with it. McAfee's tech support was totally useless. So was ATT's and Dell's.

    In the meantime, a cool guy in one of Microsoft's Newsgroups told me about the
    "Run C:\Documents and Settings\Old_Username Folder" utility. It revealed a list of my missing documents so I know they're still on the Drive.
    Now, for the real dirty low down:
    System Restore keeps saying it can't restore my computer to any point before this thing happened. Wouldn't work in either Normal or Safe modes. (by the way, for those having trouble getting XP to go to Safe Mode I'll put something in a different thread about a solution to that)
    When I re-boot I keep getting "Primary Disk Drive not found, Secondary Disk Drive not found".
    I have to hit F1 which takes me back to this empty landscape wallpaper I never saw before this happened.

    Does anyone here know if using the Create New User Account, then Copy Old Data to New User Account utility will solve this?
    I have a Dell Optiplex GX240 running Windows XP Professional. I bought this machine second-hand so I don't have a Setup Disc or anything like that.
    And those clowns at Dell wouldn't send me a User Manual.
    Will really appreciate any help you can offer.
  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523


    Well it's free to download, actually you can find it here:

    As for the Drive not found, and then asking about some utility for user documents, that's a contradiction
    Does it start?
    You may need to be more clear I feel

    Also you may want to purchase a Recovery disc through Dell, they usually sell them quite cheap, just contact them (but don't show them this post, with what you said! ;) )
  3. MickMick11

    MickMick11 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 25

    thanks and let me be clearer

    Hi kimsland,

    First, thanks for the link and for letting me know about the Recovery disc. Dell's tech guy never mentioned it.

    As the other thing, I guess I coud have been clearer. Sunday morning when this problem began, I didn't know about the Primary Disk Drive being not found, I didn't get this message at first. I just knew my files were missing. Some kind folks from one of the Micorsoft Newsgroups told me to Run this Documents and Settings Utility to recover those files. Only thing is, it did list them but I still can't recover them.

    I figure it's all part and parcel of the same problem as it all happened at the same time. I have idea if the files will simply be there when I get the Drive fixed or if I have to run this program once the drive is back where it belongs.

    Anyway, thanks again for the tips.

  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

  5. MickMick11

    MickMick11 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 25

    And more thanks

    Thanks for those links too! Would you happen to know anything about one called PC Inspecter File Recovery and another called Undelete? Someone at Microsoft's XP Newsgroup recommended them, but I never heard of them before.
  6. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Yes I've used them
    Undelete was one of my first ones
    I later spent years working with "PC inspector File Recovery"

    And have now found that "Zero Assumption Recovery" (linked above) is presently my favorite
  7. MickMick11

    MickMick11 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 25

    more thanks and wonder about System Restore

    and I wonder if I should concentrate more on getting System Restore to work.
    I had GoBack on my old computer , but the guys who did the file transfer from the Gateway to the Dell botched the job and it didn't make the jump. I haven't really had the money to do anything about it.
    But it often seemed to me that GoBack worked better than SR.
  8. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Neither are good (with Goback being the worst)
    Best to image your drive, and always create backups of your data
  9. MickMick11

    MickMick11 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 25

    on data back-up products

    Hey, thanks a lot for that list. I'll get that Norton Ghost one as soon as I get the files and the drives back to where they should be. I never knew GoBack was the worse one. It was the first one I ever used and it seemed to do the job well, at least at first.
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