Windows XP Corrupted Partitions

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QUESTION :

I have a Windows XP desktop system that has two partitions. The first one has all the windows related files and my documents and the second one has some big files that i use on my work.

After a power failure, the system cannot boot. When the system powers up, it goes to the Windows loading screen, but after that the system reboots. If I try to boot from safe mode, I get an error related to spdt.sys, and if I press esc not to load, the system reboots. If I don’t press esc, the system also reboots. I have my Windows CD and I can get into the repair console, but it didn’t ask for a password and I cannot even make a simple directory – it returns nothing.

If I boot to repair my installation, I get a screen saying that the partition is completely empty and that I must format it and install Windows again. If I try again to boot to Windows, I get to the loading screen and the system reboots. I installed the disk on a second xp machine and I could backup all my data from the second partition but the first one is not visible in my second Windows install, and I cannot run a check disk on it. I think that mft is corrupted or the registry.

Any recommendations on how to repair the partitions and get my documents back would be appreciated.

Best regards.

ANSWER :

If you can not boot from the original disk then either:

  • Boot from something else (e.g. MDMarra WinPE on a DVD or pen drive)
  • Or put the corrupt drive in an other computer. (Keep the original drive in the original computer. Just add the second drive to it).

I prefer the last because it allow me to backup the drive (e.g. using dd) before I try to repair it.

Regardless of the chosen method, running checkdisk has helped me in 2 out of 4 similar problems. If that fails, reinstall windows and restore the documents from your backups.

Run chkdsk /r on the misbehaving volume from the recovery console or a WinPE environment.

WinPE is different from a Windows XP machine because as I wrote on my first post, I have installed the disk on a second XP machine, I have all my files from the second partition but I cannot access the first one as it seems that is empty. I don’t think I can run checkdisk on a “empty” partition.

—- Edit —-

I used TestDisk, repaired the partition table and now everything is fine. All my files are in place.

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