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Thread: Can't boot after defrag

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    Senior Member kalniel's Avatar
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    Can't boot after defrag

    So I tried to defrag a slow booting win7 computer yesterday using the old but reliable My Defrag program. I was not at the computer to see it's progress, but apparently it was still running some unusual length of time later, and I don't know if the process was interrupted or the computer was used for something else while it was running.

    Today, the windows logo takes an absolute age then blue-screens, unfortunately I didn't take note of the error - possible corrupt system volume?

    Anyway it reboots and off into startup repair it takes me.. after again an exceedingly long load time (about an hour just to bring up the system repair menu). I don't run startup repair yet, since the time it's taking has me worried about mechanical failure, so I go to command prompt to see if I can access any files to recover them.. and the hard drive speed is suddenly fine for everything apart from the (system) partition that was defragged, so I'm guessing mechanical is actually fine.

    But anything to do with this affected partition takes an age - and rather than a constant access noise I just get short reads and long pauses.

    Currently running a chkdsk /R, but I'm guessing the defrag tried to defrag the MFT and failed, though I don't know if chkdsk can run with a broken MFT? The file records all verified OK so maybe it's not MFT?

    Any recommendations to recover it?

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    Re: Can't boot after defrag

    Recover from backup.

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    Senior Member kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: Can't boot after defrag

    They don't think they have one. My bad for not checking before defragging, but didn't know it would be an issue.

    Any guess which is likely to be more effective, chkdsk /r or startup repair?

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    Re: Can't boot after defrag

    There's no point doing a chkdsk if the drive itself is buggered.

    http://www.almico.com/sfdownload.php
    Plug the drive into another PC. In the app, press the button for an online report which explains any problems it sees.

    Make a copy of the data before attempting repairs. If the HDD itself is fine, then how to proceed depends on what the chkdsk report shows, and whether any important OS files are missing or corrupt. Sometimes boot files can be obtained from any PC of the same bitness.

    F8 at startup. There's an option for either "last known good config" or disabling reboot-after-BSOD.

    Also check whether you accidentally coincidentally left a USB drive plugged in (it happens...).
    Last edited by smargh; 17-01-2016 at 03:05 PM.

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    Senior Member kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: Can't boot after defrag

    Thanks. The drive is mechanically fine - other partitions that weren't defragged are reading fine. Will wait for the chkdsk report then.

    EDIT: No file errors or bad sectors, but some errors in volume bitmap. Now corrected the partition seems to be at full speed again so I'm just backing up vitals before rebooting and seeing if need to repair.

    EDIT 2: All working fine since correction, but there's current pending sector warnings via SMART so I guess drive is on it's way out after all. Wee. I'm going to have to take the motherboard out again :/
    Last edited by kalniel; 17-01-2016 at 06:02 PM.

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    Re: Can't boot after defrag

    Still all working, still current pending sector warning on SMART (though not increasing number).

    And she's noticed a large increase in performance So presumably the drive had been struggling with some errors for a while, and the defrag just kind of exposed them/moved something vital to a bit with an error.

    But anyway, shiny new hard drive ordered, along with this bracket:
    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/silve...plus-2x-25-hdd

    So I don't have to remove the damn motherboard just to take hard drives out again and we can add an SDD or two in there in the future.

    As for backup routine, I still can't win the battle I need to win a NAS from a Hexus competition or something

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    Re: Can't boot after defrag

    Get an SSD as the boot drive. The performance increase is huuuuge. Also more reliable, as long as you choose a reputable model. The down side is that if an SSD dies, they generally die instantly, completely and permanently, as opposed to the gradual failure like your HDD. But overall, there's no spinning rust, so they are usually significantly more reliable.

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    Re: Can't boot after defrag

    In much the same situation here. Wife's PC was doing odd things, being very slow and unstable. Ethernet cable turned out to be faulty which helped some symptoms, replacing the motherboard seems to have gotten the machine stable but now it won't reliably go in and out of sleep and sometimes just sits there completely locked up having failed at power saving.

    £170 spent on a Chromebook has taken a lot of the edge off as the basics like email and web are always easily available with really fast booting. She only really needs the main PC for gaming now. At about a lockup per week it is going to take a while for me to diagnose the power problem so some breathing space was very welcome here.

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    Senior Member kalniel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smargh View Post
    Get an SSD as the boot drive. The performance increase is huuuuge. Also more reliable, as long as you choose a reputable model. The down side is that if an SSD dies, they generally die instantly, completely and permanently, as opposed to the gradual failure like your HDD. But overall, there's no spinning rust, so they are usually significantly more reliable.
    Yeah that's on the cards, and would have been done had we not needed to get a new monitor, GPU and now HDD in recent weeks! Makes me worried about my machine as it's older

    Quote Originally Posted by DanceswithUnix View Post
    In much the same situation here. Wife's PC was doing odd things, being very slow and unstable. Ethernet cable turned out to be faulty which helped some symptoms, replacing the motherboard seems to have gotten the machine stable but now it won't reliably go in and out of sleep and sometimes just sits there completely locked up having failed at power saving.
    Drivers, particularly display/graphics related, often cause power saving issues. Since you have the chromebook for light stuff it might be easier to just disable most of the power saving for the desktop - let the CPU save power with idle modes but stop the computer from sleeping/turning off display.
    Last edited by peterb; 18-01-2016 at 04:46 PM. Reason: Merge Consecutive posts

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