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Thread: problems after running chkdsk

  1. #31
    Super Moderator: GMT Zone nihil's Avatar
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    Well,

    If you can't recover the partition then:

    1. You are using the wrong tool, try this:

    http://www.partition-recovery.com/

    or,

    2. Your drive is well screwed, so try this:

    http://www.roadkil.net/

    "Unstoppable copier"............. available in Windows and Linux versions. Just recover what you can and start again with a new drive........... hell they aren't that expensive are they?.............. you can get 1Tb for around $220 (USD)

    The first software is pay for, the second one is free.

    What I cannot understand is why you don't set up RAID arrays for these customers, or at least sell them the kit and expertise to make backups?

    but when you decide to reimage the HDD, the image software keeps rebooting.
    Sorry, you lost me there mate............. why would you want to reimage a HDD when you cannot sort out the MBR, MFT and partitions? All you will do is copy the crap that you already know doesn't work?
    If you cannot do someone any good: don't do them any harm....
    As long as you did this to one of these, the least of my little ones............you did it unto Me.
    What profiteth a man if he gains the entire World at the expense of his immortal soul?

  2. #32
    Dissident 4dm1n brokencrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nihil View Post
    You should never promise that you can do something without being pretty much certain, and discussing the options with the customer.
    How did you deduce, from anything in my posts,
    that I promise to recover data? You're making..
    ..assumptions. I can't promise to recover data,
    nor do I. Same goes for discussing options with
    customer. I always discuss the options with a
    customer.

    Quote Originally Posted by nihil View Post
    chkdsk will do absolutely bugger all to recover the data (but I have plenty of tools that will sort the problem)...........chkdsk won't do that, it will either do nothing or screw up..
    What can I say? You don't like chkdsk? I've met
    with repeated success using it for simpler file recoveries
    certainly. I mean, if it works...

    As for a dead control card, swap them out, eh? If
    a drives far gone, the customer's choice is send it
    out to a professional hdd recovery outfit, like Ontrack.

    You still didn't answer my question what you would
    call what I described in my earlier posts.

    More than one way to skin a cat, yes?
    “Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.” — Will Rogers

  3. #33
    Keeping The Balance CybertecOne's Avatar
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    In the past, i have used a company here down under called CBL - http://www.cbltech.com.au/

    They have excellent service - and there is no reason anyone around the world could not use them, all you pay is the postage. However, im sure there are closer companies specialising in data recovery.

    You get a reference number from CBL, then send the drive off. Once they recieve it, they will provide an obligation free fixed quote. Usually the quote comes in around the $2000-$3000AUD mark. Trust me when i say, this is very cheap when weighed against the data lost.

    If you do not wish to have the data recovered, they will either destroy the drive, or post it back to you. (From memory CBL covered the return postage - but im sure this in no longer the case )

    Anyways, check out the link.


    CTO
    "Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius --- and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction."
    - Albert Einstein

  4. #34
    Super Moderator: GMT Zone nihil's Avatar
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    They have excellent service - and there is no reason anyone around the world could not use them, all you pay is the postage. However, im sure there are closer companies specialising in data recovery.
    Yes there are some top notch outfits over here in Europe as well. I know that it seems terribly expensive but it is actually a costly service to provide.

    Generally anyone approaching such an outfit will already have purchased decent recovery software and failed, or more likely, they realise that they have a dead controller card or head crash on their hands.

    I know a guy who works for a UK data recovery shop and he explained it to me something like this:

    1. If possible you will try to ghost the drive or at least recover what data you can.
    2. Next you try to repair the drive, if that looks feasible.
    3. Finally you need to take the drive apart and recover the data from the individual platters.

    Steps #1 and #2 are relatively inexpensive, but for #3 you need a high quality spin up table, ultra sensitive reading heads, specialist software, expensive technicians and a "clean room".

    I guess you wouldn't get a decent spin up table for less than $250,000 these days.

    What can I say? You don't like chkdsk? I've met
    with repeated success using it for simpler file recoveries
    certainly. I mean, if it works...
    I have no problems with chkdsk, so long as it is used in the right circumstances for its intended purpose. It does not recover data for you, but restores the Windows file system to an operational state in certain circumstances. You then use your OS and applications to perform the recovery, or just access your system as before.

    As for a dead control card, swap them out, eh?
    Yes, I have had some success with that (mostly with "deathstars"), but the main drawback is that there are so many different makes and models that it is hard to find the exact match, and that is what you need, unless you can mess with the firmware.

    You still didn't answer my question what you would
    call what I described in my earlier posts.
    Sorry about that. Basically I would call it a "restoration of file system integrity, such that the operating system and applications have regained most or all of their functionality".

    I know it must sound like I am being pedantic or splitting hairs, but this probably reflects our different working environments and "customer" bases?

    I have no problems with my commercial or business customers, as they pay me to look after "that side of things". Where I do have problems is with private customers who have let their kids, friends, and their pet cat mess with the damn thing first.

    Repeatedly running chkdsk on a drive that is failing is not a very good idea?
    If you cannot do someone any good: don't do them any harm....
    As long as you did this to one of these, the least of my little ones............you did it unto Me.
    What profiteth a man if he gains the entire World at the expense of his immortal soul?

  5. #35
    Keeping The Balance CybertecOne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nihil
    I have no problems with chkdsk, so long as it is used in the right circumstances for its intended purpose. It does not recover data for you, but restores the Windows file system to an operational state in certain circumstances. You then use your OS and applications to perform the recovery, or just access your system as before.
    Quote Originally Posted by nihil
    Repeatedly running chkdsk on a drive that is failing is not a very good idea?
    In my experience, there have been several occassions where i have deliverately avoided chkdsk due to its unfathomed ability to make matters a whole lot worse.

    Using chkdsk, requires an understanding of the problem you are dealing with. Generally i would ask myself a couple of questions before starting.

    1) Is there a physical problem, noises etc that would indicate a failing drive. If Yes, do not use chkdsk unless your feeling very lucky

    2) Do i know of a similar issue that has a simpler resolution? If Yes, try that first - what harm could it do.

    3) Do the problems relate to the file system specifically, or could it be RAM or a Virus? Chkdsk only affects the file system structure/integrity. It does not modify files, it does not understand the data contained within the partition borders. **

    Generally speaking, you do not investigate outside the scope of the drive itself. For instance, i would not start wondering if it was the controller that is causing the problems. That is a bridge you dont cross until your brand spanking new drive does the same thing

    **I find that if i follow my intuition, i almost always get it right - Even in bizarre circumstances. I believe most in the IT field would have an instinct for what the issue is at the time and how to go about it...... I dont think i could survive some of the pressures if i didnt feel like i knew exactly what i was doing and why.


    CTO
    Last edited by CybertecOne; October 26th, 2008 at 05:24 AM.
    "Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius --- and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction."
    - Albert Einstein

  6. #36
    Super Moderator: GMT Zone nihil's Avatar
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    CTO,

    Using chkdsk, requires an understanding of the problem you are dealing with.
    Not only that, It requires an understanding of what the tools you are going to use will actually try to do.

    Chkdsk is an intrusive, or active tool. It will run against your live production system and make irreversible changes to its contents.

    Others, such as unstoppable copier and the HDD manufacturer's diagnostics are passive and non-intrusive. That is, they don't try to make changes to your production environment. The best ones run outside of the target environment and simply try to read its contents.

    My preference is to use the passive, external, tools first to recover the data and attempt to determine if there is a hardware problem with the drive. Then try to repair the production system with other tools like chkdsk, fixmbr, partition recovery and the like, if there does not seem to be a physical HDD problem.

    In a commercial environment you have a different approach, as the data are stored on servers along with many of the applications. You just blitz the drive with a mirror of your standard software build and wait to see if the problem happens again.......... if it does, then you replace the drive.

    If the environment does not justify this approach, you look to RAID arrays and a strict regime of backups.

    In my experience, there have been several occasions where i have deliberately avoided chkdsk due to its unfathomed ability to make matters a whole lot worse.
    Yes, if you suspect a failing drive then grab the data and run a specialist hardware diagnostics application. You don't know how long the drive will continue to function and each time you spin it the situation will probably be getting worse. Chkdsk is of no use to you because it repairs existing environments, and you know you are probably going to have to replace the drive and start afresh anyway.

    I believe most in the IT field would have an instinct for what the issue is at the time and how to go about it......
    Exactly! this is a gut feel that mostly comes with experience
    If you cannot do someone any good: don't do them any harm....
    As long as you did this to one of these, the least of my little ones............you did it unto Me.
    What profiteth a man if he gains the entire World at the expense of his immortal soul?

  7. #37
    Keeping The Balance CybertecOne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nihil
    Not only that, It requires an understanding of what the tools you are going to use will actually try to do.

    Chkdsk is an intrusive, or active tool. It will run against your live production system and make irreversible changes to its contents.

    Others, such as unstoppable copier and the HDD manufacturer's diagnostics are passive and non-intrusive. That is, they don't try to make changes to your production environment. The best ones run outside of the target environment and simply try to read its contents.

    My preference is to use the passive, external, tools first to recover the data and attempt to determine if there is a hardware problem with the drive. Then try to repair the production system with other tools like chkdsk, fixmbr, partition recovery and the like, if there does not seem to be a physical HDD problem
    I meant to say ALL of that nihil... it just slipped my mind at the time


    CTO
    "Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of genius --- and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction."
    - Albert Einstein

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