Originally posted by ShawnC
I tried to use the HP recovery CD because it said it would back up my data files and reinstall winXP, but it went along for a while but then would never finish because the computer would only boot to GRUB or to the CD.
You got CD's?
You got several hundred hard disk devices? I bet your XP partition is still accessable. I made the mistake of resizing mine after the initial crash and I still could read mine all day. Also, try reinstalling your Linux if you got nothing to lose. When you partition your disk, you should see it. ...but first, see how many hda's you have (IE cd /dev/hda*). Try to mount each one if there aren't a million of them (mount /dev/hda1, mount /dev/hda2, etc.). ...of course, if it's already mounted, no use mounting it again, it'll say it's already mounted.
If it could boot to Grub, try the Windows entry in Grub. If it fixed it but didn't f*** with your MBR, Grub will still come up. Now, the Windows entry in Grub may work. Try it.
I think your files are just fine, but you just gotta mount a way to them.
Let's assume they're fine until we mount a way to them and recognize them but are not able to use them. My experiences so far has proven that a tore up NTFS partition still has its files intact. Mounting a way to them is the only stressful part right now.
I suggest you leave XP alone for now. It's just too dam much trouble.
You'll also have to call M$ to unlock it. In my book, XP is now legally gone.