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Old 01-02-2006, 06:16 PM   #1
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Raleigh, NC
Distribution: Debian Etch, Slackware 10.2, Ubuntu 6.10, OpenWRT
Posts: 66

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NTFS partition/file table spontaneously corrupted

All I did was boot the machine and leave it on overnight!

I have a WD 200GB hard disk with 3 ntfs partitions. I was running Windows 2K NT when this happened. Two have them disappeared on their own. I know it sounds crazy but I swear it did. All I did is turn the machine on leave it on overnight. The C (30 G)and D (80G) drives dissappeared, while the E: (90 G) partition is still there. All are NTFS. I know the data is still there because I can see it in od the hex editor.

I can not mount the file system with mount, QTParted, or ntfsmount. fdisk and QTparted say the system type is unknown. The ntfsfix command also does nothing because it can not be mounted. It looks like the partition table or whatever file table ntfs uses has been trashed on C and D.

What are my options? How can I recover the data? I mainly have about 5G of MP3s and some pics I'd like to recover. I just never got around to copying them to my Linux box.

How do I fix this? Are there any other Linux toools or techniques I can try?

This windows machine seems to have gotten depressed from not being useful anymore and just decided to do itself in.

Old 01-02-2006, 06:33 PM   #2
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Registered: Dec 2005
Location: Massachusetts, USA
Distribution: Ubuntu 10.04 and CentOS 5.5
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I would use the W2K install disk to fix this. You should be able to boot the W2K installation disk and get to the recovery console. That will allow you to look at the partition table and run chkdsk.

There are already a bunch of q/a posts on this site about recovering disk partitions using Linux and open source software. You could do a search on this site for "partition" or something like that.

I have had nothing but problems with Western Digital disks. All of the WD disks that I have purchased (3) died prematurely. I'll never purchase another one. I like Maxtor and Seagate. Unfortunately Seagate is buying Maxtor so I will soon have only one disk manufacturer that I like.

Last edited by stress_junkie; 01-02-2006 at 06:36 PM.
Old 01-02-2006, 06:57 PM   #3
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Boot your Knoppix disk, and try testdisk - handles NTFS I think.
Old 01-05-2006, 09:11 AM   #4
Registered: Jan 2005
Location: Raleigh, NC
Distribution: Debian Etch, Slackware 10.2, Ubuntu 6.10, OpenWRT
Posts: 66

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I am assuming that since NTFS is a proprietary format, that what Linux tools are available are the result of reverse engineering. I didn't realize this when posted my question.

I tried testdisk in Knoppix, it complained, like all the other tools that there was no partition present.

"chkdisk /r" was able to recover the data (from the W2k Disk). Thanks to both of you for the tips! I didn't even know such a tool existed.

That was the last of my Windows desktops, I'll be putting Slackware on it now. And the WD200 gets put in the trash. I can't wait for either!

Last edited by lm317t; 01-05-2006 at 09:14 AM.


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