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Thread: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

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    "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    Hi all, I apologise in advance for the length of this thread, but I would be immensely grateful for any assistance that can be provided and will be truly indepted to any individual who can help me resolve this situation.

    I have been using the computer in my sig in it's current rendition with the last change being to install a 150gig raptor as the boot drive approximately 18 months ago. This has been smooth sailing through from then and I installed Vista back in March and again it's run fine since then.

    I left my computer on last night, but woke up to find it had blue screened. So naturally I shut it down via the switch and pressed it back on again. It posted, and then the next screen where it would usually display the Windows logo with a progress bar it said:

    A Disk Error Occured
    Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart

    Now obviously my heart sank, and I immediately went through a few cycles of this in the hope it would go away but to no avail. I have since tried using my Vista boot disk to recover it, but it finds no drive, I have installed XP on another drive and plugged this one in both directly and through a USB caddy, in both cases it know's there's a drive there but windows locks if you try to browse it in Explorer and in Computer Management it displays it as 100% empty.

    Basically it's got problems, BUT my unbelievable dilemma is how badly timed this is. About 2 weeks ago I deleted my backup of My Documents because I ran out of space on my other drives and had ordered an extra drive to move a backup onto, which happened to arrive today but that's no good because the important one has bonked. There are about 30,000 photos from the last 10 years, many many important study files, so much stuff I can't risk to lose and basically I am desperate to try to get it back.

    I am feeling that I'm happy to pay if I can sort it out, but basically I need a solution and would be delighted if anybody has any ideas for me.

    Thank you for your time,

    Tim
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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    It sounds as if the drive has failed (rather than the mobo/controller). If the data is critical, don't risk more damage/data loss by doing anything yourself, get in touch with a data recovery company. The good ones in worst case scenarios can dismantle the platters and get the raw data from them (using a clean room) or replace the electronics (depends on the nature of the failure) These facilities aren't cheap though - it could cost hundreds to get something, depending on the work involved. In the best case scenario it is 'only' the file allocation table or partition table that is corrupt, and again a specialist firm can help. There are tools that you can use yourself (and others on this board can point you in the right direction - or do some googling), but if you get it wrong, you run the risk of making a bad situation worse. It all boils down to what sort of failure has occurred (electronics, mechanical, or data corruption), and that is difficult to diagnose at a distance.
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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    Thank you for your response. I am thinking that I will take it somewhere, trying to put a value in my head on how much I want what's on it back it far exceeds anything I'd imagine being charged for work to be carried out.

    In an ideal world I'd like to take it somewhere, do you or anybody else have any particular recommendations of data recovery services available in London, or particularly recommend any further afield?

    Thanks,

    Tim
    Current: Shuttle SX58J3, i7 950, Corsair 16GB, 2x 1.5TB, XFX 6850 1GB, 3x Samsung 23" 1920x1080, 5760x1080 = AWESOME!

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    I've got an idea for you...

    You say you deleted your backup of My Documents, right? And that was on a working drive?

    Couldn't you use some data recovery app to scan the "blank" space of your backup drive, and try and recover your backup of My Documents? That might well work quite nicely, presuming you haven't overwritten that area of the disk with more data after deleting the files.

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    the whole 100gigs has been completely overwritten That's why I deleted it. Gratned there's about 5 that isn't, the majority is.

    God I'm such an idiot
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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    D'OH!

    (Not very helpful, but needed to be said...)

    So the drive is still spinning ok, and not making any funny noises? If so, I guess it's a data corruption issue, rather than a mechanical problem... but I'm no expert.

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    Get in the van. Fraz's Avatar
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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    Take a look at this page:

    http://support.wdc.com/download/index.asp?cxml=n

    Maybe you could try that Data Lifeguard shizzle and see what it does?

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    As you say, it sounds normal, no weird noises at all.

    The way it went down with a BSOD suggests to me that it's corruption. In that case is there any chance of ever getting anything back even if it's done professionally?

    I fell so bad and stupid right now, I don't think I'll ever feel happy again, there are so many photos that I could never replace and it's everything I've ever done since I was 10, that would literally kill me to lose
    Current: Shuttle SX58J3, i7 950, Corsair 16GB, 2x 1.5TB, XFX 6850 1GB, 3x Samsung 23" 1920x1080, 5760x1080 = AWESOME!

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    Quote Originally Posted by Fraz View Post
    Take a look at this page:

    http://support.wdc.com/download/index.asp?cxml=n

    Maybe you could try that Data Lifeguard shizzle and see what it does?

    I'm now too worried to fiddle with it. What exactly does that do?
    Current: Shuttle SX58J3, i7 950, Corsair 16GB, 2x 1.5TB, XFX 6850 1GB, 3x Samsung 23" 1920x1080, 5760x1080 = AWESOME!

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    Get in the van. Fraz's Avatar
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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    No idea. Just coming up with ideas...

    Here's some more info from the WD site about data recovery:

    http://wdc.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/wdc....i=&p_topview=1

    Whatever you decide to do, your drive will still be under warranty, so at least you can get that replaced, even if you do lose the data.


    God I'm bored. Must. Stop. Reading. Hexus.

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    no it's good, your advice is much appreciated.

    I've seen these people: http://www.dataemergency.co.uk/

    They are fairly near me so I will give them a call tomorrow and maybe take my drive to them. I'm sure they'll know pretty quickly whether it's possible to do anything or not.

    And if it's not, well I'll go jump off a cliff somewhere.
    Current: Shuttle SX58J3, i7 950, Corsair 16GB, 2x 1.5TB, XFX 6850 1GB, 3x Samsung 23" 1920x1080, 5760x1080 = AWESOME!

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    if the drive is running consider Steve Gibson's Spinrite

    http://www.grc.com/sr/faq.htm

    It'll be cheaper than a recovery service...

    I've used his Jaz drive and other utilities successfully. He's a very clever programmer.

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    Quote Originally Posted by speardane View Post
    if the drive is running consider Steve Gibson's Spinrite

    http://www.grc.com/sr/faq.htm

    It'll be cheaper than a recovery service...

    I've used his Jaz drive and other utilities successfully. He's a very clever programmer.
    Cheers again for the help, I've decided to take the plunge and at lunch am going to take my drive somewhere professional to do it. It sucks horrendously how much money it is going to cost me, but if they can fix it then it's worth it. Lesson to myself is keep regular backups of everything that matters, and my new 500GB drive just became my music/photos/docs backup drive to be kept externally and unplugged, just in case.
    Current: Shuttle SX58J3, i7 950, Corsair 16GB, 2x 1.5TB, XFX 6850 1GB, 3x Samsung 23" 1920x1080, 5760x1080 = AWESOME!

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    Youchy, just rang a company, £300+VAT and need to provide something to copy the 100gigs onto (not a problem but...), that's gonna hurt
    Current: Shuttle SX58J3, i7 950, Corsair 16GB, 2x 1.5TB, XFX 6850 1GB, 3x Samsung 23" 1920x1080, 5760x1080 = AWESOME!

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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    Quote Originally Posted by Shmee150 View Post
    Youchy, just rang a company, £300+VAT and need to provide something to copy the 100gigs onto (not a problem but...), that's gonna hurt
    Glad you have found somewhere - that is actually not a bad quote really (say 6 hours work at £50/hr!) Hope it works out for you.

    (Exits left to check that own system back-ups are current! )
    Last edited by peterb; 12-09-2007 at 10:24 AM.
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    Re: "A Disk Error Occured Press Ctrl+Alt+Del to Restart"

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    Glad you have found somewhere - that is actually not a bad quote really (say 6 hours work at £50/hr!) Hope it works out for you. (Exits left to check that my back-ups are current!)
    I know, I was expecting something up to £500 thinking it may take up to 10 hours at the same rate, as horrible as it is being faced with this situation, pay up and get it all, or don't pay and feel miserable that I've lost all of this stuff for the rest of my life probably then it boils down as not much of a hard choice. Just have to starve myself for a month! lol or maybe find some more appropriate way to make back said money.
    Current: Shuttle SX58J3, i7 950, Corsair 16GB, 2x 1.5TB, XFX 6850 1GB, 3x Samsung 23" 1920x1080, 5760x1080 = AWESOME!

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