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A delicate issue


Best Answer mindgame , 14 March 2013 - 02:18 PM

Yes, once you have like in the image, selected the Extended partition, what happens if you press the "<-" (left arrow key) on your keyboard?

At least here, even if the (tiny when compared to the overall size of the disk) first partition on a disk is represented as an "almost invisible" vertical line I can select it alright this way.

 

Try another thing. :idea:

Cick on the menu:

view->Settings

choose the "Scaling" tab.

Set BOTH the radio buttons to "All the same size".

You should now be able to see the first non-allocated space before the Extended partition. :unsure:

 

Well, you can save/backup the current MBR, nothing will prevent you to restore it if anything goes wrong, as a matter of fact you should already have a backup of it, made with:

 

 

MbrFix /drive <num> savembr <file> <-- make a backup of current MBR "as is".

 

If you prefer, you can send/post to me the copy of the saved MBR, and I will edit it.

 

All you will have to do is to replace it.

Actually, independently from whether you prefer to edit yourself the MBR or simply replace the edited one, it would be advisable that I have a look at it. (just to make double sure that what we have seen with testdisk is correct and to verify that there is not some other issue, like, as an example partition entry in "wrong" order).

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 

I tried all the view configurations to no avail HOWEVER the diskpart that is available in the Windows RC identified those initial ~8 mb of free storage and let me create the new partition, after that I just booted into UBCD4Win, did the formatting and the stuff you described and voila my system is now bootable again :cheers:

 

Mission accomplished for now! :worship:

 

Thanks a bunch!

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#1 mindgame

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 04:23 PM

Hello,

 

I have spent the better part of the entire weekend trying to recover from the mess up that occured last week.

During the latest format of my laptop I managed to mess up the partitions. The original backup/recovery partition that came with my HP notebook became the active/1 partition when I installed Windows XP, thus my system was put on a logical/non-active partition instead. I remember having initial problems with this but after configuring boot.ini properly I managed to get it running anyhow.

Then last week after getting my hands of Paragon Partition Manager I checked out their "Boot Wizard" just to see what it offered. Apparently that changed my configuration. The next time I rebooted a certain Paragon Boot GUI showed up instead of the usual Microsoft menu where you select your OS. However the only thing that the Paragon loader allowed me to select was the active partition; that is the HP recovery drive so it was stuck in a loop.

Given my current environment I have/had no immediate option of getting my hands on a physical Windows XP CD so I opted for trying to resolve things through USB.

I had very little success getting anything to boot from there but eventually I managed to boot the "Ultimate Boot CD" that offers a bunch of utilities. I went through the various partition utilities to see if there was anything that I would be confident using being a fairly novice PC user. Somehow I must have changed a thing or two though as the Paragon boot selection had vanished, leaving me with the dreaded "Non-system disk or disk error, replace and strike any key when ready..." message.

 

Since then my goal has been to try and get the Windows XP Recovery Console, cmdcons, running to try and resolve the issue without losing any data. However with the few utilities Ive tried (WinToFlash, the HP drive format utility, ?) the only thing I managed to get from them was the "NTLDR missing" message.

 

I have only managed to run UBCD and UBCD4Win so far and while the second one allows a lot of things to be done Im still not confident in using "foreign" tools such as TestDisk to change the configuration of the partitions due to the risk of data loss as Im in an environment where I cannot do a backup of my whole system and Im not confident that changing the active partition would actually solve the issue.

I tried using diskpart to change the active partition to my system drive but has no effect as my system is still on a non-primary/not the first partition.

From the utilities offered in UBCD4Win I dont see anything wrong with my partitions other than the fact that my system partition (D:) isnt bootable but I will try to get a log from Testdisk if necessary.

 

Is there an easy way to get cmdcons/Windows XP Recovery Console running through UBCD4Win or a similar fairly novice-friendly environment? Or is there a different yet still cautious procedure?

 

I only have a single 16 GB USB Flash drive at my disposal right now.

I am/was running Windows XP Professional with SP3

 

Thank you Wizards.


Edited by mindgame, 11 March 2013 - 04:25 PM.


#2 mindgame

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 05:32 PM

One thing just came to mind - I have been creating all the USB setups/configurations on a different computer running Windows 7. Is that why the cmdcons/Windows Recovery Console configs come up with NTLDR missing? Or is there something scrambled about my bootloader/mbr?



#3 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 05:35 PM

Well, there are two kinds of issues. 
First one is the actual issue :ph34r:
The other one is the idea that a Recovery Console could be of *any* use to repair that "botched" system. :w00t:
 
Really, short of torture, you seemingly applied to that poor disk *anything* (and the contrary of it) :unsure:, the Recovery Console is a very limited environment (when compared to UBCD4WIN or any "featured" PE 1.xx), maybe you need only some help/assistance in using the tools withing UBCD4win, instead? :dubbio:
 
Anyway, do you have a CD burner or you need/want the Recovery console on the USB stick?
 
This should be latest "verified/reproducible" approach/method for USB stick:
http://www.911cd.net...showtopic=24880
 
For CD, this remains valid:
http://reboot.pro/?showtopic=2254

One thing just came to mind - I have been creating all the USB setups/configurations on a different computer running Windows 7. Is that why the cmdcons/Windows Recovery Console configs come up with NTLDR missing? Or is there something scrambled about my bootloader/mbr?

Sure :), for a "flat" recovery console, you need to run



bootsect /NT52 E:

 

(or whatever drive letter the partition on the stick has instead of E:), see:
http://technet.micro...7(v=ws.10).aspx
 
 
:cheers:
Wonko



#4 steve6375

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 07:14 PM

This may be of some help?



#5 dummkopf007

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 08:22 AM

:idea:  you could try ModeConverter, if the usb device drive letter is seen the program should boot from an iso :good:

http://reboot.pro/to...e-2#entry165555

 

hope this helps!


Edited by dummkopf007, 12 March 2013 - 08:23 AM.


#6 mindgame

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 03:43 PM

Thanks!

 

I managed to get into Windows Recovery Console...

 

I did a bootcfg /scan which didn't locate any windows installations, which doesnt surprise me as my system is on a logical partition.

I did a fixboot on my primary partition C: (useless HP backup partition) and logical partition D: (system) which didn't help matters.

I'm hesitant to do a fixmbr as I dont know the full extent of what it could cause. Perhaps if I can do a backup of the current mbr through a utility preferably available in UBCD4Win...

 

Anyway I booted up again through ubcd and went to diskpart, marked D: as active - nothing then marked C: active - I got the Paragon Boot manager back, now showing the primary partition C: (useless HP backup partition) and an unnamed logical partition of some sort which wasn't booting either.

 

So I've run testdisk again and made a couple of logs which I'm hoping you could help enlighten me on what's going on - whether I should try a fixmbr or try to fix things manually through testdisk or another utility.

 

Disk:

#1363100652 Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19457 255 63
 1 : start=    16065, size=291579750, Id=0F, E
 5 : start=    16128, size= 45817317, Id=07, L
 6 : start= 45833508, size=245762307, Id=07, L
 2 : start=293703344, size= 18878464, Id=07, P

 



Tue Mar 12 15:02:48 2013
Command line: TestDisk

TestDisk 6.11.3, Data Recovery Utility, May 2009
Christophe GRENIER <grenier@cgsecurity.org>
http://www.cgsecurity.org
OS: Windows XP SP2
Compiler: GCC 4.3, Cygwin 1005.25 - May  6 2009 20:35:43
ext2fs lib: 1.41.4, ntfs lib: 10:0:0, reiserfs lib: 0.3.1-rc8, ewf lib: 20080501
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(/dev/sda)=160041885696
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(/dev/sdb)=15623782400
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\PhysicalDrive0)=160041885696
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\PhysicalDrive1)=15623782400
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\C:)=9665773568
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\D:)=23458466304
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\E:)=125830301184
filewin32_getfilesize(\\.\F:) GetFileSize err Incorrect function.

filewin32_setfilepointer(\\.\F:) SetFilePointer err Incorrect function.

Warning: can't get size for \\.\F:
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\X:)=15619774464
file_pread(4,1,buffer,312592769(19457/254/63)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(5,1,buffer,30516947(2221/217/63)) lseek err Invalid argument
Hard disk list
Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19457 255 63, sector size=512 - Hitachi HTS543216L9A300
Disk /dev/sdb - 15 GB / 14 GiB - CHS 2221 218 63, sector size=512 - USB DISK 2.0

Partition table type (auto): Intel
Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - Hitachi HTS543216L9A300
Partition table type: Intel

Interface Advanced
Geometry from i386 MBR: head=255 sector=63
NTFS at 18282/47/54
NTFS at 1/1/1
NTFS at 2853/1/1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=8
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=8 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=16 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=32 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=64 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=128 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=8
 1 E extended LBA             1   0  1 18150 254 63  291579750
 5 L HPFS - NTFS              1   1  1  2852 254 63   45817317
     NTFS, 23 GB / 21 GiB
   X extended              2853   0  1 18150 254 63  245762370
 6 L HPFS - NTFS           2853   1  1 18150 254 63  245762307
     NTFS, 125 GB / 117 GiB
 2 P HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
     NTFS, 9665 MB / 9218 MiB

Analyse Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19457 255 63
Geometry from i386 MBR: head=255 sector=63
NTFS at 18282/47/54
NTFS at 1/1/1
NTFS at 2853/1/1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=8
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=8 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=16 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=32 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=64 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=128 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=8
Current partition structure:
 1 E extended LBA             1   0  1 18150 254 63  291579750
 2 P HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
No partition is bootable
Logical partition must not be bootable
 5 L HPFS - NTFS              1   1  1  2852 254 63   45817317
   X extended              2853   0  1 18150 254 63  245762370
 6 L HPFS - NTFS           2853   1  1 18150 254 63  245762307
Backup partition structure
partition_save
Ask the user for vista mode
Allow partial last cylinder : No
search_vista_part: 0

search_part()
Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19457 255 63
NTFS at 0/1/1
filesystem size           291604417
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   10
mftmirr_lcn               1007033
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS              0   1  1 18151 137 34  291604417
     NTFS, 149 GB / 139 GiB
FAT32 at 18151/137/35
FAT1 : 4110-6150
FAT2 : 6151-8191
start_rootdir : 8192 root cluster : 2
Data : 8192-2097151
sectors : 2097152
cluster_size : 8
no_of_cluster : 261120 (2 - 261121)
fat_length 2041 calculated 2041

FAT32 at 18151/137/35
     FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
     FAT32, 1073 MB / 1024 MiB
NTFS at 18282/47/54
filesystem size           18878464
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   786432
mftmirr_lcn               1179903
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
     NTFS, 9665 MB / 9218 MiB
file_pread(4,2,buffer,312581810(19457/81/3)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,1,buffer,312581810(19457/81/3)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,8,buffer,312581816(19457/81/9)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,3,buffer,312581824(19457/81/17)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,3,buffer,312581871(19457/82/1)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,8,buffer,312581887(19457/82/17)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,11,buffer,312581934(19457/83/1)) lseek err Invalid argument
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=8 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=16 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=32 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=64 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=128 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=240 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=1

Results
   * HPFS - NTFS              0   1  1 18151 137 34  291604417
     NTFS, 149 GB / 139 GiB
   P FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
     FAT32, 1073 MB / 1024 MiB
   P HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
     NTFS, 9665 MB / 9218 MiB

interface_write()
 1 * HPFS - NTFS              0   1  1 18151 137 34  291604417
 2 P FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
 3 P HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]

search_part()
Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19457 255 63
NTFS at 0/1/1
filesystem size           291604417
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   10
mftmirr_lcn               1007033
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS              0   1  1 18151 137 34  291604417
     NTFS, 149 GB / 139 GiB
NTFS at 1/1/1
filesystem size           45817317
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   786432
mftmirr_lcn               2863582
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS              1   1  1  2852 254 63   45817317
     NTFS, 23 GB / 21 GiB
NTFS at 2852/254/63
filesystem size           45817317
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   786432
mftmirr_lcn               2863582
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS              1   1  1  2852 254 63   45817317
     NTFS found using backup sector!, 23 GB / 21 GiB
NTFS at 2853/1/1
filesystem size           245762307
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   786432
mftmirr_lcn               15360144
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS           2853   1  1 18150 254 63  245762307
     NTFS, 125 GB / 117 GiB
NTFS at 18150/254/63
filesystem size           245762307
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   786432
mftmirr_lcn               15360144
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS           2853   1  1 18150 254 63  245762307
     NTFS found using backup sector!, 125 GB / 117 GiB
FAT32 at 18151/137/35
FAT1 : 4110-6150
FAT2 : 6151-8191
start_rootdir : 8192 root cluster : 2
Data : 8192-2097151
sectors : 2097152
cluster_size : 8
no_of_cluster : 261120 (2 - 261121)
fat_length 2041 calculated 2041

FAT32 at 18151/137/35
     FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
     FAT32, 1073 MB / 1024 MiB
NTFS at 18282/47/54
filesystem size           18878464
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   786432
mftmirr_lcn               1179903
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
     NTFS, 9665 MB / 9218 MiB
file_pread(4,2,buffer,312581810(19457/81/3)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,1,buffer,312581810(19457/81/3)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,8,buffer,312581816(19457/81/9)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,3,buffer,312581824(19457/81/17)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,3,buffer,312581871(19457/82/1)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,8,buffer,312581887(19457/82/17)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,11,buffer,312581934(19457/83/1)) lseek err Invalid argument
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=5
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=8 nbr=2
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=16 nbr=2
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=32 nbr=2
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=64 nbr=2
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=128 nbr=2
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=240 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=5

Results
     HPFS - NTFS              0   1  1 18151 137 34  291604417
     NTFS, 149 GB / 139 GiB
     HPFS - NTFS              1   1  1  2852 254 63   45817317
     NTFS, 23 GB / 21 GiB
     HPFS - NTFS           2853   1  1 18150 254 63  245762307
     NTFS, 125 GB / 117 GiB
   * FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
     FAT32, 1073 MB / 1024 MiB
   P HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
     NTFS, 9665 MB / 9218 MiB

interface_write()
 1 * FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
 2 P HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
simulate write!

write_mbr_i386: starting...
write_all_log_i386: starting...
No extended partition

TestDisk exited normally.

 

 

Thank you!



#7 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 07:52 PM

Well, you have a "messed enough" disk.
But I need some of the history.
By any chance was there a Vista :ph34r: or 7 installed to that PC before you installed (or attempted to) install XP to it?

How do you remember it was partitioned originally (or when last it worked)?
Please do understand that drive letters are meaningless, or essentialy so, you need to describe the partitions by their size (and optionally label).

From this:

 

#1363100652 Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19457 255 63
1 : start= 16065, size=291579750, Id=0F, E
5 : start= 16128, size= 45817317, Id=07, L
6 : start= 45833508, size=245762307, Id=07, L
2 : start=293703344, size= 18878464, Id=07, P

 

You can see how there are TWO "holes" in the partitioning AND that the partitioning is VERY unusual.
HOLE! up to 16065
start=16065,size=291579750 => END=291595815
start=16128,size=45817317 => END=45833445 + 63=45833508 <-size is around 23 Gb
start=45833508,size=245762307 => END=291595815 <-size is around 125 Gb
HOLE! 293703344-291595815=2107529
start=293703344,size=18878464=> END=312581808 <-size is around 10 Gb

 

Normally a disk is setup with either just one primary partition or, in the case of the stupid laptops with two or three primary partitions (the second and/or third being recovery/tools).

The main partition is normally first one, i.e. it starts at either CHS 0/1/1 (LBA 63) (up to XP) or at CHS 0/32/33 (LBA 2048) Vista :ph34r: or later.

You have instead an Extended partition starting at LBA 16065 (which is CHS 1/0/1) :w00t:

This Extended partition contains two Logical volumes (which combined size are correct).

Then you have another "hole" of around 1 Gb.

Finally you have a partition starting at LBA 293703344 (which corresponds to a "queer" 18282/47/54).

All the partitioning, exception made for the last (primary) partition are "compatible" with the "old" XP standard, whilst the last one is "random".

 

Something really "queer" happened to that hard disk partitioning, as the last one is not compatible with XP partitioning tools (which do respect cylinder boundaries) and it may be either:

  1. an "original" [HP_RECOVERY] partition created with a Vista :ph34r: or later partitioning scheme
  2. a partition moved/resized through the use of a third party tool compatible with Vista :ph34r: partitioning scheme

I do suspect that one way or the other, you fell in this very dangerous trap:

http://reboot.pro/to...itioning-issue/

 

Please try recalling as much as you can how the disk was originally partitioned and as much as you can the sequence of partitioning/resizing/installing that you can remember.

 

Additionally, please do re-run test disk (and post the log) changing this setting:

Allow partial last cylinder : No -> YES

(you want to check also the possibility that the old partitions were fallung outside cylinder boundaries)

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 



#8 mindgame

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 08:09 PM

Well, you have a "messed enough" disk.
But I need some of the history.
By any chance was there a Vista :ph34r: or 7 installed to that PC before you installed (or attempted to) install XP to it?

How do you remember it was partitioned originally (or when last it worked)?
Please do understand that drive letters are meaningless, or essentialy so, you need to describe the partitions by their size (and optionally label).

From this:

 

 

You can see how there are TWO "holes" in the partitioning AND that the partitioning is VERY unusual.
HOLE! up to 16065
start=16065,size=291579750 => END=291595815
start=16128,size=45817317 => END=45833445 + 63=45833508 <-size is around 23 Gb
start=45833508,size=245762307 => END=291595815 <-size is around 125 Gb
HOLE! 293703344-291595815=2107529
start=293703344,size=18878464=> END=312581808 <-size is around 10 Gb

 

Normally a disk is setup with either just one primary partition or, in the case of the stupid laptops with two or three primary partitions (the second and/or third being recovery/tools).

The main partition is normally first one, i.e. it starts at either CHS 0/1/1 (LBA 63) (up to XP) or at CHS 0/32/33 (LBA 2048) Vista :ph34r: or later.

You have instead an Extended partition starting at LBA 16065 (which is CHS 1/0/1) :w00t:

This Extended partition contains two Logical volumes (which combined size are correct).

Then you have another "hole" of around 1 Gb.

Finally you have a partition starting at LBA 293703344 (which corresponds to a "queer" 18282/47/54).

All the partitioning, exception made for the last (primary) partition are "compatible" with the "old" XP standard, whilst the last one is "random".

 

Something really "queer" happened to that hard disk partitioning, as the last one is not compatible with XP partitioning tools (which do respect cylinder boundaries) and it may be either:

  1. an "original" [HP_RECOVERY] partition created with a Vista :ph34r: or later partitioning scheme
  2. a partition moved/resized through the use of a third party tool compatible with Vista :ph34r: partitioning scheme

I do suspect that one way or the other, you fell in this very dangerous trap:

http://reboot.pro/to...itioning-issue/

 

Please try recalling as much as you can how the disk was originally partitioned and as much as you can the sequence of partitioning/resizing/installing that you can remember.

 

Additionally, please do re-run test disk (and post the log) changing this setting:

Allow partial last cylinder : No -> YES

(you want to check also the possibility that the old partitions were fallung outside cylinder boundaries)

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 

Thank you Wonko.

You are right, the HP laptop originally came with some version of Vista pre-installed. I did one "format" (windows xp setup) and perhaps one more later on where I deleted the previous partitions except the HP recovery one and created the current configuration. Due to me deleting the previous partitions it seemed that the windows xp setup "bumped" the [HP_RECOVERY] partition to be the primary/active one. The 22 GB is my system partition while the 120ish GB one is my storage partition, both logical partitions.

I think 1 GB makes up a hidden [HP_TOOLS] partition as well that I would guess is the test utilities I have available from HP in the BIOS menu...

 

The HP_RECOVERY and my extended/logical partitions seem perfectly accessible.

 

I backed up MBR with MBRWiz and did the fixmbr through cmdcons but it didnt help. Rather when I booted back into UBCD4Win and used diskpart to select my primary partition as active again I still got the Paragon boot manager when I restarted which I thought a "fixmbr" would have gotten rid of... hmm



#9 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 08:39 PM

Good. :)

 

On which partition are currenty the files:

NTLDR

BOOT.INI

NTDETECT.COM

 

? (two possibilities, the Primary [HP_RECOVERY] one or the 22 GB one)

 

What is the scope?

Like booting from the system "as is" (in the sense of managing to boot it without touching current partitioning) or "fixing it's partitioning"?

 

 

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 

 



#10 mindgame

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 08:47 PM

Good. :)

 

On which partition are currenty the files:

NTLDR

BOOT.INI

NTDETECT.COM

 

? (two possibilities, the Primary [HP_RECOVERY] one or the 22 GB one)

 

What is the scope?

Like booting from the system "as is" (in the sense of managing to boot it without touching current partitioning) or "fixing it's partitioning"?

 

 

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 

Allow partial last cylinder is/was already set to 'Yes'

 

They are on the primary [HP_RECOVERY]

 

The initial reason that I ran Paragon Partition Manager was to check if I could maybe do something about the partitioning as I knew it wasn't ideal although my system was running and stable.

Now I'm satisfied to get it running again with current partitioning until I get an environment where I can backup/copy everything before attempting to correct the partitions. A running system with no loss of data is really my #1 concern now...

 

Thanks!


Edited by mindgame, 12 March 2013 - 08:53 PM.


#11 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 09:38 AM

The simplest approach would be IMHO to:

  1. create a (very small, around 8 Mb) primary partition in the "first hole"
  2. set it as active
  3. format it as FAT 
  4. copy to it the three files NTLDR, NTDETECT.COM and BOOT.INI
  5. add to it a grub4dos grldr (just in case)

You have a working UBCD4WIN, cannot say if it has Disk Management working, can you check? 

 

In the worst case we can create one such partition entry in the MBR directly with Tiny Hexer.

In ubcd4win you also have mbrfix (and mbrwiz) that should provide a handy way to backup the MBR before fiddling with it and restore the "standard" Windows XP MBR.

 

Get the grldr file from here:

http://code.google.c.../downloads/list

http://code.google.c...-03.7z&can=2&q=

 

Make a copy of the BOOT.INI you have and edit it so that it contains:

 

 

 





[boot loader]
Timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 1" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 2" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(3)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 3" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(4)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 4" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(5)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 5" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
C:\grldr="Grub4dos"

 

Boot from the UBCD4WIn and run mbrfix:

http://www.sysint.no...ting/mbrfix.htm

MbrFix /drive <num> driveinfo  <-- num will be 0 if you booted from CD and most probably 1 if you booted form the USB stick, in any case make sure that the <num> that you are using reports about the "right" (internal) disk drive.

Then:

MbrFix /drive <num> savembr <file> <-- make a backup of current MBR "as is".

MbrFix /drive <num> fixmbr <-- restore the "standard" 2K/XP MBR CODE

 

Now reboot, run Disk Manager (if you have it) and create the small initial partition.

Format it as FAT.

Make sure that it is Active.

Copy to it the mentioned files.

Reboot, and hopefully you should see the 5 options to boot XP and the grub4dos option.

 

Post if you have any issue BEFORE doing something you are not confident in doing.

 

:cheers:

Wonko



#12 mindgame

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:16 PM

The simplest approach would be IMHO to:
  1. create a (very small, around 8 Mb) primary partition in the "first hole"
  2. set it as active
  3. format it as FAT 
  4. copy to it the three files NTLDR, NTDETECT.COM and BOOT.INI
  5. add to it a grub4dos grldr (just in case)

You have a working UBCD4WIN, cannot say if it has Disk Management working, can you check? 

 

In the worst case we can create one such partition entry in the MBR directly with Tiny Hexer.

In ubcd4win you also have mbrfix (and mbrwiz) that should provide a handy way to backup the MBR before fiddling with it and restore the "standard" Windows XP MBR.

 

Get the grldr file from here:

http://code.google.c.../downloads/list

http://code.google.c...-03.7z&can=2&q=

 

Make a copy of the BOOT.INI you have and edit it so that it contains:

 

 

 




[boot loader]
Timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 1" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 2" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(3)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 3" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(4)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 4" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(5)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional 5" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
C:\grldr="Grub4dos"

 

Boot from the UBCD4WIn and run mbrfix:

http://www.sysint.no...ting/mbrfix.htm

MbrFix /drive <num> driveinfo  <-- num will be 0 if you booted from CD and most probably 1 if you booted form the USB stick, in any case make sure that the <num> that you are using reports about the "right" (internal) disk drive.

Then:

MbrFix /drive <num> savembr <file> <-- make a backup of current MBR "as is".

MbrFix /drive <num> fixmbr <-- restore the "standard" 2K/XP MBR CODE

 

Now reboot, run Disk Manager (if you have it) and create the small initial partition.

Format it as FAT.

Make sure that it is Active.

Copy to it the mentioned files.

Reboot, and hopefully you should see the 5 options to boot XP and the grub4dos option.

 

Post if you have any issue BEFORE doing something you are not confident in doing.

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 

By Disk Management/manager you mean the "windows" one? If so yes that is accessible in UBCD4Win. The problem I have is that the only unallocated space that shows up in it is exactly 1.00 GB which I believe contains the [HP_TOOLS] I have available in the bios menu...

I did a backup of the mbr again and tried fixmbr again with Mbrfix. Instead of the HP message "non-system disk or disk error, replace and strike any key when ready" I now got a blank screen with blinking cursor... This leads me to believe that the windows recovery console was only operating on the USB when I issued fixboot and fixmbr even though the RC prompted me to logon onto my actual windows installation.


It seemed like APLC was disabled after all when glancing over the last log so here is a new one with APLC set to 'Yes'

 

Thanks.

Wed Mar 13 14:48:03 2013
Command line: TestDisk

TestDisk 6.11.3, Data Recovery Utility, May 2009
Christophe GRENIER <grenier@cgsecurity.org>
http://www.cgsecurity.org
OS: Windows XP SP2
Compiler: GCC 4.3, Cygwin 1005.25 - May  6 2009 20:35:43
ext2fs lib: 1.41.4, ntfs lib: 10:0:0, reiserfs lib: 0.3.1-rc8, ewf lib: 20080501
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(/dev/sda)=160041885696
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(/dev/sdb)=15623782400
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\PhysicalDrive0)=160041885696
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\PhysicalDrive1)=15623782400
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\C:)=9665773568
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\D:)=23458466304
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\E:)=125830301184
filewin32_getfilesize(\\.\F:) GetFileSize err Incorrect function.

filewin32_setfilepointer(\\.\F:) SetFilePointer err Incorrect function.

Warning: can't get size for \\.\F:
disk_get_size_win32 IOCTL_DISK_GET_LENGTH_INFO(\\.\X:)=15619774464
file_pread(4,1,buffer,312592769(19457/254/63)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(5,1,buffer,30516947(2221/217/63)) lseek err Invalid argument
Hard disk list
Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19457 255 63, sector size=512 - Hitachi HTS543216L9A300
Disk /dev/sdb - 15 GB / 14 GiB - CHS 2221 218 63, sector size=512 - USB DISK 2.0

Partition table type (auto): Intel
Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - Hitachi HTS543216L9A300
Partition table type: Intel
New options :
 Dump : No
 Cylinder boundary : Yes
 Allow partial last cylinder : Yes
 Expert mode : No
Computes LBA from CHS for Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19458 255 63

Analyse Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19458 255 63
Geometry from i386 MBR: head=255 sector=63
NTFS at 18282/47/54
NTFS at 1/1/1
NTFS at 2853/1/1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=8
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=8 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=16 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=32 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=64 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=128 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=8
Current partition structure:
 1 E extended LBA             1   0  1 18150 254 63  291579750
 2 * HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
 5 L HPFS - NTFS              1   1  1  2852 254 63   45817317
   X extended              2853   0  1 18150 254 63  245762370
 6 L HPFS - NTFS           2853   1  1 18150 254 63  245762307
Ask the user for vista mode
Allow partial last cylinder : Yes
search_vista_part: 1

search_part()
Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19458 255 63
NTFS at 0/1/1
filesystem size           291604417
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   10
mftmirr_lcn               1007033
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS              0   1  1 18151 137 34  291604417
     NTFS, 149 GB / 139 GiB
FAT32 at 18151/137/35
FAT1 : 4110-6150
FAT2 : 6151-8191
start_rootdir : 8192 root cluster : 2
Data : 8192-2097151
sectors : 2097152
cluster_size : 8
no_of_cluster : 261120 (2 - 261121)
fat_length 2041 calculated 2041

FAT32 at 18151/137/35
     FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
     FAT32, 1073 MB / 1024 MiB
NTFS at 18282/47/54
filesystem size           18878464
sectors_per_cluster       8
mft_lcn                   786432
mftmirr_lcn               1179903
clusters_per_mft_record   -10
clusters_per_index_record 1
     HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
     NTFS, 9665 MB / 9218 MiB
file_pread(4,2,buffer,312581810(19457/81/3)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,1,buffer,312581810(19457/81/3)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,8,buffer,312581816(19457/81/9)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,3,buffer,312581824(19457/81/17)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,3,buffer,312581871(19457/82/1)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,8,buffer,312581887(19457/82/17)) lseek err Invalid argument
file_pread(4,11,buffer,312581934(19457/83/1)) lseek err Invalid argument
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=8 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=16 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=32 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=64 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=128 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=240 nbr=1
get_geometry_from_list_part_aux head=255 nbr=1

Results
   * HPFS - NTFS              0   1  1 18151 137 34  291604417
     NTFS, 149 GB / 139 GiB
   P FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
     FAT32, 1073 MB / 1024 MiB
   P HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
     NTFS, 9665 MB / 9218 MiB

interface_write()
 1 * HPFS - NTFS              0   1  1 18151 137 34  291604417
 2 P FAT32 LBA            18151 137 35 18282  20 42    2097152 [HP_TOOLS]
 3 P HPFS - NTFS          18282  47 54 19457  80 63   18878464 [HP_RECOVERY]
simulate write!

write_mbr_i386: starting...
write_all_log_i386: starting...
No extended partition

TestDisk exited normally.

Edited by mindgame, 13 March 2013 - 04:20 PM.


#13 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:44 PM

There is a (very small) "hole" before the large Extended partition, usable from 0/1/1 to 0/254/63 or from LBA 63 with length 16002 sectors, as the extended partition starts on 1/0/1 or LBA 16065.

 

 

If you get to Disk Management (yes, the "XP" one) in UBCD4win and select the Extended partition, you might be able to use the "left arrow" on keyboard to select this little space (and then create a partition in it). :unsure:

 

The size of it is so small that you will probably need to maximize the Disk Manager window to just see a "vertical line" selected...

 

If you cannot do the above, try if Tiny Hexer works from UBCD4win (it should) and if it can open \\.\Physicaldrive0 or \\.\Physicaldrive1 (FIle->Disk->Open Drive), (it also should work alright) then I will give you the Hex codes to be manually typed in the partition table.

You haven't yet cleared if you are running the UBCD4win from CD\DVD or from USB stick, as said, be VERY careful about choosing the right disk (or \\.\Physicaldriven), this:

 

 

I did a backup of the mbr again and tried fixmbr again with Mbrfix. Instead of the HP message "non-system disk or disk error, replace and strike any key when ready" I now got a blank screen with blinking cursor... This leads me to believe that the windows recovery console was only operating on the USB when I issued fixboot and fixmbr even though the RC prompted me to logon onto my actual windows installation.

may also mean that you had disks "swapped", testdisk:

 

 

Hard disk list
Disk /dev/sda - 160 GB / 149 GiB - CHS 19457 255 63, sector size=512 - Hitachi HTS543216L9A300
Disk /dev/sdb - 15 GB / 14 GiB - CHS 2221 218 63, sector size=512 - USB DISK 2.0

sees the 160 Gb disk as sda, which corresponds to \\.\Physicaldrive0, but the recovery console (or other tools) may see it with a different order.

 

:cheers:

Wonko



#14 mindgame

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 11:43 AM

I am running everything from USB. I am careful about selecting the right drive.

 

This is the best "view" I can get with disk manager; I'm not able to select any "hole"

 

MzZKITI.png

 

I'm hesitant about hex editing stuff, something could go wrong even if I type in the exact things you provide me? :dubbio:  

 

Thanks



#15 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 12:54 PM

I am running everything from USB. I am careful about selecting the right drive.

 

This is the best "view" I can get with disk manager; I'm not able to select any "hole"

Yes, once you have like in the image, selected the Extended partition, what happens if you press the "<-" (left arrow key) on your keyboard?

At least here, even if the (tiny when compared to the overall size of the disk) first partition on a disk is represented as an "almost invisible" vertical line I can select it alright this way.

 

Try another thing. :idea:

Cick on the menu:

view->Settings

choose the "Scaling" tab.

Set BOTH the radio buttons to "All the same size".

You should now be able to see the first non-allocated space before the Extended partition. :unsure:

 

I'm hesitant about hex editing stuff, something could go wrong even if I type in the exact things you provide me? :dubbio:  

 

Thanks

Well, you can save/backup the current MBR, nothing will prevent you to restore it if anything goes wrong, as a matter of fact you should already have a backup of it, made with:

 

 

MbrFix /drive <num> savembr <file> <-- make a backup of current MBR "as is".

 

If you prefer, you can send/post to me the copy of the saved MBR, and I will edit it.

 

All you will have to do is to replace it.

Actually, independently from whether you prefer to edit yourself the MBR or simply replace the edited one, it would be advisable that I have a look at it. (just to make double sure that what we have seen with testdisk is correct and to verify that there is not some other issue, like, as an example partition entry in "wrong" order).

 

:cheers:

Wonko



#16 mindgame

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 02:18 PM   Best Answer

Yes, once you have like in the image, selected the Extended partition, what happens if you press the "<-" (left arrow key) on your keyboard?

At least here, even if the (tiny when compared to the overall size of the disk) first partition on a disk is represented as an "almost invisible" vertical line I can select it alright this way.

 

Try another thing. :idea:

Cick on the menu:

view->Settings

choose the "Scaling" tab.

Set BOTH the radio buttons to "All the same size".

You should now be able to see the first non-allocated space before the Extended partition. :unsure:

 

Well, you can save/backup the current MBR, nothing will prevent you to restore it if anything goes wrong, as a matter of fact you should already have a backup of it, made with:

 

 

MbrFix /drive <num> savembr <file> <-- make a backup of current MBR "as is".

 

If you prefer, you can send/post to me the copy of the saved MBR, and I will edit it.

 

All you will have to do is to replace it.

Actually, independently from whether you prefer to edit yourself the MBR or simply replace the edited one, it would be advisable that I have a look at it. (just to make double sure that what we have seen with testdisk is correct and to verify that there is not some other issue, like, as an example partition entry in "wrong" order).

 

:cheers:

Wonko

 

I tried all the view configurations to no avail HOWEVER the diskpart that is available in the Windows RC identified those initial ~8 mb of free storage and let me create the new partition, after that I just booted into UBCD4Win, did the formatting and the stuff you described and voila my system is now bootable again :cheers:

 

Mission accomplished for now! :worship:

 

Thanks a bunch!



#17 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 03:18 PM

I tried all the view configurations to no avail HOWEVER the diskpart that is available in the Windows RC identified those initial ~8 mb of free storage and let me create the new partition, after that I just booted into UBCD4Win, did the formatting and the stuff you described and voila my system is now bootable again :cheers:

 

Mission accomplished for now! :worship:

 

Thanks a bunch!

Good :).

 

:cheers:

Wonko






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