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FR withdrawal!
8/24/02 | me

Posted on 08/24/2002 6:35:13 PM PDT by Former Fetus

HELP!

My PC is giving me an "error reading drive C" message and it won't boot. I have been told that the hard drive has kicked the bucket and all I can do is replace it. Fine, but I have oodles of my children's pictures in that hard drive!

I know, I know, I should have burned disks with those pictures, and from now on I will, but I'm devastated at the loss. Anytime I have asked a question in Free Republic I have got invaluable advice, so is there anything I can do before tossing the hard drive, and some very dear pictures, away?

I am sorry, I know this is not the kind of stuff you post in FR. Please, Jim, don't pull this thread. I'm just a mother who doesn't know where to turn for help. Thanks.


TOPICS: Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: frwithdrawal; helpneeded; pc

1 posted on 08/24/2002 6:35:13 PM PDT by Former Fetus
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To: Former Fetus
Is it a gateway?
2 posted on 08/24/2002 6:36:14 PM PDT by Radix
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To: Former Fetus
Please. I'll only tell you this once. Log in!!
3 posted on 08/24/2002 6:36:41 PM PDT by johniegrad
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To: Former Fetus
do a web search on ["data recovery" + "hard drive"] and you should have no shortage on info about recovering data from a dead hard drive.

I don't expect that it will be cheap.

4 posted on 08/24/2002 6:38:54 PM PDT by longshadow
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To: Former Fetus
Replace it, put the old one in as drive D - try running Drive Rescue on it or check with the manufacturer's web site for disk recovery software. If it is getting the error during booting it may have some bad spots related to those areas of the disk only - if you hear a bad grating noise though...
5 posted on 08/24/2002 6:39:09 PM PDT by chance33_98
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To: Former Fetus
If your hard drive is truly shot, there are data recovery services that can get the info off of it for you.

A quick Google search reveals:

http://www.iomega.com/data_recovery/
http://www.datarecovery.net/
http://www.datarec.com/af501red.asp

Be advised that these services can be VERY expensive. A few years ago, I had a friend who had a regular IDE drive recovered for about $300.

I'm sure there are others here with better ideas.
6 posted on 08/24/2002 6:40:08 PM PDT by July 4th
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To: Former Fetus
PS - I have recovered several drives that have seemed dead by hitting them in the center gently with a hammer as a last resort. Got them running long enough to get the data off. Have managed to get this work in several dire cases for clients (mechanical parts can stick - but only do this in certain cases and if everything else has failed).
7 posted on 08/24/2002 6:41:42 PM PDT by chance33_98
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To: Former Fetus
I have been told that the hard drive has kicked the bucket and all I can do is replace it.

Did you give Norton Utilities a shot?

If that failed, you might give Drivesavers a call. They're not cheap, but can often recover data from badly messed-up hard disks.

8 posted on 08/24/2002 6:42:46 PM PDT by dighton
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To: Former Fetus
I have had this happen before and I fixed it by using my boot disk to get started and reinstalling windows.
9 posted on 08/24/2002 6:45:03 PM PDT by Khepera
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To: Former Fetus
What has probably happened is that your cooling fan stopped working. That results eventually in the hardrive overheating. It is a common problem with Gateways as I have since learned. It is a design flaw, and I suspect an intentional one.
The plastic fan blades on my Gateway actually melted. I lost 20 gigs of precious Data (that is a lot). My computer was 14 months old. I replaced my hard drive, and I had to reinstall an Operating System (Windows). Due to the fact that my warrantee had expired I received little help from Gateway.
It wouldn`t have mattered if the warantee was still in effect. The warantees do not cover lost data. I also came to the conclusion that the Tech Support at gateway is abominable. I actually lost my cool with them via e-mail. I actually swore at them in my e-mail.
I do not know if that is what happened to your computer. I do know that there are services which provde data recovery. It can be very expensive. For me it will be quite a bit. I do not have the dough right now, but eventually I will get my data back.
I hope that it is less serious for you.
10 posted on 08/24/2002 6:47:36 PM PDT by Radix
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To: chance33_98
Percussive maintenance sometimes works but with disk drives I would first remove it and twist it quickly a few times to cause inertia to move the disk platter. That twist has worked for me in some cases.
11 posted on 08/24/2002 6:49:54 PM PDT by Reeses
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To: Reeses
Good point.
12 posted on 08/24/2002 6:50:46 PM PDT by chance33_98
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To: Former Fetus
First of all, DO NOT TRASH YOUR HARD DISK. If need be take is out of your case and replace it for now since they are reasonably cheap.

Your fats may be corrupted, but as long as the disk itself has not been physically damaged, it may be possible to recover your data, regardless of what file type.

Recovery of your pics depends upon what value you place on them, sentimental and financial.

Much like the recovery of the data on "black boxes" of crashed planes, there are public commercial outlets that may be able to recover your data.

You will need to do the research on who, what, when and where's in S. Carolina, but it is possible.

If nothing else for now, put the disk in a dust free non-metalic bag and save it for later technology, since it is a gold nugget for you...
13 posted on 08/24/2002 6:50:52 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: chance33_98
I have recovered several drives that have seemed dead by hitting them in the center gently with a hammer as a last resort.

Well, uh, in that case it damn sure would be the last resort.

I smell a bit of horse jest, if not, maybe that's what your mom did to get you to make your first sound?
14 posted on 08/24/2002 6:57:48 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: Former Fetus
Boot up from a floppy. Then see if your system recognizes C drive. If so, then the FAT (File Allocation Table) may be corrupt, but you can still access much of the data.

You might have to try several times and even let the system sit (cool) overnite.

It could be a sector problem (a blimp on the disk platter) or a mechanical problem with the disk mechanism. Either way, the data itself may be recoverable. You might have to get someone experienced with such problems to recover your files/pics.
15 posted on 08/24/2002 6:57:53 PM PDT by TomGuy
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To: Former Fetus
By the way, anything resembling F-O-R-M-A-T, FORMAT, or format is the dirtiest word found in the computer galaxy.

DO NOT FORMAT...
16 posted on 08/24/2002 7:00:16 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: Former Fetus
You might also get into the BIOS (if you don't know how, don't try this) and let it detect the hard drive again. See what the BIOS says about it. If that checks out okay, boot with a floppy and run scandisk or chkdisk on the hard drive. If none of this makes sense to you, get a kid to help you.
17 posted on 08/24/2002 7:01:18 PM PDT by Abcdefg
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To: Vidalia
I smell a bit of horse jest, if

No, it actually works. Last time I did this it was for an engineer who had a $45k program running on his system with ton's of data he needed. The program had to be installed by the manufacturer so he was looking at being down a few days and the thing was dead as a doornail. I took it out after testing, tapped it on the floor several times and put it back in. Worked - we got everything transferred and got rid of the drive.

I read about the technique in a book on hardware many years ago and have used as I mentioned in some cases. Have only had it not work once - but I only try when I can recognize the sounds made by the hard drive.

18 posted on 08/24/2002 7:04:05 PM PDT by chance33_98
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To: chance33_98
Thanks for the advice! I have a dead HD I will try it on. It's making a clicking sound and the bios will not detect it.
19 posted on 08/24/2002 7:04:19 PM PDT by dennisw
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To: Radix
Your problem is not a Gateway planned obsolescence, but a blame everyone in sight-thought. Your hard drive probably was recoverable, but you quickly blamed someone else...
20 posted on 08/24/2002 7:06:31 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: Former Fetus
Install your hard drive as a slave on another computer. See if you can find your photos this way and transfer them to a sound hard drive.
21 posted on 08/24/2002 7:06:41 PM PDT by dennisw
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To: Former Fetus
If you or a friend are comfortable going into the case:
Unplug the power cord and then unplug the cables at the drive and then plug them right back in exactly as they were,
unplug the data cable at the motherboard and plug it right back in.
You could replace the cable and try the drive in another machine too.

Good luck! ( Try the advice about booting from a floppy first!)

22 posted on 08/24/2002 7:10:01 PM PDT by mrsmith
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To: chance33_98
OK, jesting aside and I bet your mom was a wonderful lady.

I completely understand the "shake the soda machine" and the "kick the candy machine".

The mind's eye conjures up a construction framer's hammer and a "not so delicate" touch.

Rubber/plastic (not plastique) I would think, but not for the faint of heart...
23 posted on 08/24/2002 7:15:36 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: Former Fetus
I had a similar problem several days ago. Try reinstalling what ever operating system you have from the CD, BUT don't do a clean or new install. There is a good chance you will get your drive working again with all the files intact. If and when you do get it working again do a virus check. (I had every .exe file on my HD infected with a virus called CIH. I think that was the cause for my drive messing up. They say that a version of CIH will try to rewrite the BIOS in a computer on the 26th of any given month rendering it useless untill another another BIOS chip is installed.)
24 posted on 08/24/2002 7:36:13 PM PDT by freedom9
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To: Vidalia
I concede that.
I insist though, The Tech Support at Gateway is seriously lacking. That is why I swore. I was so frustrated.
I have read a number of things about recovering data. You can stick the hard drive in the freezer and later quickly get your data back. It is almost comical (if it didn`t hurt so much) all of the things that I have been advised on. I haven`t done anything yet though. I have been too busy learning my way around FR!
25 posted on 08/24/2002 7:36:23 PM PDT by Radix
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To: Vidalia
Oh yes, and another thing, The design of the particular system that I purchased is flawed. It is junk. The plastic fan blades did indeed melt. Gateways are crap.
26 posted on 08/24/2002 7:39:04 PM PDT by Radix
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To: Former Fetus
Had a similar thing happen to us recently. Our "second" hard drive in our primary "family" system has a problem. The system sees that the drive is there.......but that's it. That's the bloody limit. Can't "explore" it; won't even show how large the drive is, etc., etc. So, the system knows it's there, but can't get a lick of additional information on the drive......let alone access it.

Think I'll try the "gentle rap" method described here. Nothing to lose...........except, like you, some irreplaceable pictures..............sigh................

27 posted on 08/24/2002 7:47:44 PM PDT by RightOnline
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To: Radix
You'll get over it whether it is gateway or another brand later on like everybody else.

At least you are on the Learning Curve and not just damning the technology a la one of the mutant "AlGorites".

I have lost mucho data in the past, not due to a malfunction of a small (fixable)component, but because I threw the noted CPU case out of a second story to the driveway below.

It is not recommended...
28 posted on 08/24/2002 7:49:11 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: Former Fetus
It might not be the "C" disk drive at fault. If you replace the disk drive with a new one [not expensive anymore], keep the old one handy. If you still have the problem after installing the OS on the new disk, then the problem is farther down toward the motherboard. In any case, it is possible to read a disk that won't boot so long as the new disk is working right and the bad, old disk has been installed as drive "D". Unless the old "C" disk really is completely trashed, which could be a mechanical problem like physical head crash or bad bearings, or electronic, which is tougher to deal with.
29 posted on 08/24/2002 7:58:51 PM PDT by RightWhale
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To: Vidalia
Ha,
I used to get very worked up when my mouse would stop behaving properly. The last time it happened which was probably the 10 th time for me. I took the Mouse and smashed it with all the muscle that I had. It was terribly frustrating.
The next day I went to the nearest tech store and I purchased a laser mouse. That thing is awesome. It works great.
By the way I am not a violent person. LoL, It is just that it was so frustrating after all those cleanings. I have had probably a dozen mouses of the old kind. The new laser mouse has lived longer than anything else.
I do not know who invented the wheel but it has worked well. I do not know (remember) who invented the Mouse .I do know this, The laser mouse is awesome!
30 posted on 08/24/2002 7:59:52 PM PDT by Radix
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To: Former Fetus
The firstist and bestest of all (if you know the contents of your motherboard and are not afraid of the components) is to UNPLUG YOUR COMPUTER.

Take your case off.

One by one (just like the spark plugs on a car) take the bus and power connections off and check them for corrosion or dirt, remedy the problem if necessary and gently but firmly replace into the original position.

After that there are a million things that will be proposed.

Don't depend upon the various "diagnostic" programs out there unless you were an originator of the program...
31 posted on 08/24/2002 8:03:02 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: nutmeg
bump
32 posted on 08/24/2002 8:04:20 PM PDT by nutmeg
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To: Radix
The live and learn curve...
33 posted on 08/24/2002 8:05:38 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: dennisw
Install your hard drive as a slave on another computer. See if you can find your photos this way and transfer them to a sound hard drive.
Best advice. Saved a lot of data for people that way.
34 posted on 08/24/2002 8:16:33 PM PDT by chnsmok
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To: chance33_98
I took it out after testing, tapped it on the floor several times and put it back in.

called the "connor (conner?) manuever" (named after now defunct hd manufacturer). balance the hd on edge (the long side) then tip it over, kerplop. attach it as a slave to a working machine, and post haste copy data to another disk.

35 posted on 08/24/2002 8:24:46 PM PDT by johnboy
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To: Vidalia
I smell a bit of horse jest, if not, maybe that's what your mom did to get you to make your first sound?

Actually, it's not... Many years ago, there was a company that made what was called a "Hard Card," which was a hard drive and conroller on a bracket that was installed in a computer's expansion slot. The manufacturer (I can't recall the name) actually sent out a technical bulletin referring to a known problem of "stiction," where the drive would refuse to spin up... Their answer was in three steps:

1) Remove Hardcard from system

2) Hold with both hands at chest level, at a 45 degree angle

3) Shake like a ketchup bottle

I'm serious here. Also, certain hard drives, like the Seagate ST-4096 were known to have similar problems. I've given many a hard drive a sharp "whack" with the handle of a screwdriver to get them to spin-up, but if that happens, it's just a matter of time before the drive fails permanantly!

Mark

36 posted on 08/24/2002 8:44:54 PM PDT by MarkL
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To: Reeses
Percussive Maintenance....Heh heh.

Wally Shirra, on Apollo 7, used the more common terminology. His control panel lights were "actin' funny". He told mission control that every thing was honky dory when he applied some brogan maintenance!

37 posted on 08/24/2002 9:02:53 PM PDT by Young Werther
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To: MarkL
OH YEAHHHHHH!
38 posted on 08/24/2002 9:03:06 PM PDT by Vidalia
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To: Former Fetus
Tell the FBI you are an active pro-lifer. They'll recover everything on your hard drive for you, and you may be able to get the data through a FOIA request.
39 posted on 08/24/2002 9:32:08 PM PDT by Arthur McGowan
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Is there a bump list for this? bump
40 posted on 08/25/2002 1:18:43 PM PDT by mrsmith
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To: chance33_98
I am going to have to show this thread to my daughter.

When I first got a computer, and it had a glitch in it, I tapped it a few times with my hand.

My daughter said, "Daaad, it's not a television!"

LOL

41 posted on 08/25/2002 1:26:02 PM PDT by Syncro
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To: Radix
After Gateway lied to me about shipping a new machine, I switched from Gateway to Dell, and purchased their extended warranty (3 years). Well worth it. I had a floppy die, my video card die, and the main speaker amplifier/woofer die. All replaced promptly.

For my latest machine, I just went ahead and built my own, since I wanted some features that I wasn't going to find off-the-shelf at Dell. For most people, however, I'd say buying Dell would be the smart move.
42 posted on 08/25/2002 1:35:10 PM PDT by John Jorsett
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To: John Jorsett
By the way, I recommend a program called "Second Copy". I installed a second hard drive and have it copy all of my changed data to that drive each night. With that plus my nightly tape backup and periodic backups to CDROM, I'm pretty confident that I won't lose data to anything short of a fire that consumes my entire house.
43 posted on 08/25/2002 1:38:45 PM PDT by John Jorsett
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To: Vidalia
The old 'Unplug the computer first' advice. Excellent advice and so obvious that it's frequently overlooked. As is, unfortunately, TURN ON THE POWER.

I transfer important data from my main computers to my laptop. I do have back-up CD-ROM's, but I took some to a conference and the extras 'walked' during my presentation. Unlike the State Department, I know where my laptop is at all times.

44 posted on 08/25/2002 4:54:45 PM PDT by Fracas
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