Question about XP mounting external drives...

By Vigilante
Nov 20, 2006
  1. Does anybody know, if you plug a NTFS drive into another XP machine via a USB adapter, will XP "use" any files "on" the external drive when mounting it?

    Specifically I want to know, when you plug in the external drive, will XP find the ntfs.sys file and try to use THAT to mount it with? Assuming the drive has XP installed on it?

    Even more specifically, I have a hard drive which will not boot into Windows, will not boot to recovery console, will crash any computer I plug it in to. And I can't access the drive in any way without getting a BSOD or just freezing up the computer.
    It is THIS problem exactly:

    Even the techniques in there can't work. Can't use floppy setup files, can't use Knoppix. I just get the ntfs.sys BSOD.

    I thought this was a physical problem, but I've ran 3 or 4 different HDD diagnostics and all pass. The build-in Dell diag passes. The Maxtor boot CD diagnostics (quick and full tests) pass. And I have the program Partition Table Doctor, and their surface test passed as well.

    So assume the drive is physically ok. What could be wrong? If ntfs.sys is indeed corrupt, is XP trying to USE that corrupt version on the drive when trying to mount it?
    If not, then why would a physically ok drive crash my Windows when plugged in? Since it should be using my good ntfs.sys driver. Does that make sense?

    So I'm wondering what else could be wrong, if not ntfs.sys, and not physical problem. Partition Table Doctor has helped a little, but I don't think it has any more helpful options.

  2. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,572   +65

    I suggested Knoppix, but I just noticed you already tried and failed. :(

    Memory is a common cause of ntfs.sys failures, but obviously if you've used two computers - that almost certainly cannot be the case.
  3. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    You can use any external drive on any XP machine, however if it has a bootable OS on it, it will crash the other machine. Of course viri are also transferrable also.
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