6.) If FDISK detected the partition, you may have a damaged file structure. Boot the PC with
your diskette and then do something simple like a DIR. You are not ready to even think about
writing anything to the suspect drive at this time! If you can not do a DIR, you may be able to
recover the drive with Norton or your own favorite program. Keep and label recovery diskettes
(don't reuse them), you might need to backtrack.
7.) If you can do a DIR, try booting up your machine normally. It may be possible to copy
directories and files across to your new drive. Give priority to the user's data such as mail files,
data files, settings, and similar. You probably want to try copying the registry files as well.
8.) After you have copied the user's data, try SCANDISK with the thorough option. Always save
the files and always make recovery diskettes. The saved files may just need to be examined
9.) If there are any bad spots on the suspect disk, try repairing them with the vendor's
10.) After you are satisfied you have recovered all of the data from the suspect drive, do a low
level format with the vendor's diagnostic program. Do an FDISK and an operating system
format and then reuse the drive as you wish. A second hard drive in a system makes a
reasonable place to do quick backups as well as for swap files, temporary files, temporary
internet files, and the like.
From: Tom Hayes
Recently we had a user with a Tecra 520 CDT lose his hard drive. It could have been a surge or
some other problem but the electronics of the drive wouldn't work. We simply ordered a new
identical drive and exchanged the electronics board connected to the drive, and we were able
to access the drive to recover the 250-MB mail file the user had to have recovered.
From: Raymond S Cross
Not all hard drive problems are hard drive problems. I had a situation like this just recently.
Computer booted with a 'fixed disk 0 failure'. Turns out the drive itself was okayI—it was a
motherboard problem, possibly a bad IDE connector. I had recently put in a new motherboard,
so I swapped the old one back in and the hard disk worked fine!
I would have a spare fdisked and formatted hard drive running whatever O/S was needed,
install it into the down computer as the new master drive, change the jumper on down drive to
slave, reboot, run CMOS, setup auto hard drive detect, and setup drives, reboot, and retrieve
info on the bad hard drive using new temp drive. Once new hard drive comes in, fdisk, format,
install O/S and software.
From: Coy Thorp
First thing I would do is eliminate possible problem areas.
• I'd switch the drive to the secondary IDE chain and see if it auto configs. If not, I'd try it in
another machine if that is possible (it is possible in my lab).
• Hopefully, I'd be able to get a drive letter and boot up to recover data.