Windows boot issue

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Windows boot issue

Post by mRmasteRful on Mon Jul 19, 2010 5:58 pm
([msg=42165]see Windows boot issue[/msg])

Hi guys. I installed windows 7 onto a partition on my hard drive and the computer won't boot at all. I have Windows Vista installed on another partition but I have no way of getting to either of them. I can boot from my cd as normal but each time I reinstall windows 7 I keep getting the same issue. Is this a boot sector issue? Can anyone help me?

ps. Im running Ubuntu from a cd. Thats my only access to the internet at the moment and I have one or two important files on the vista partition so formatting entire drive isnt much of an option for me.
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by msbachman on Mon Jul 19, 2010 7:13 pm
([msg=42170]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

mRmasteRful wrote:ps. Im running Ubuntu from a cd. Thats my only access to the internet at the moment and I have one or two important files on the vista partition so formatting entire drive isnt much of an option for me.


I skipped over all that crap about windows not booting, I know nothing of how to troubleshoot it.

That said, I can combine the typical "Shit...I mean 'Geek' Squad" solution (i.e. wiping the whole thing and reformatting it) with recovering those files.

Here's how you could get your files off, a couple of ways actually. Pop in your Ubuntu cd (per your message, it's already in :lol: ):

Look through the /dev/ entries as follows:

Code: Select all
hexdump -C /dev/sda | less
hexdump -C /dev/sdb | less


Until you find your drive with the Windows installed on it.

First, simply try mounting the drive as you would any other. It should be something like this (strictly from memory, I'm probably off on this):

Code: Select all
sudo mkdir /media/win_folder
sudo mount /dev/sda1 /media/win_folder/   #of course, replace sda1 with whatever one holds the partition you need.


See if that works first. If it does, move around with cd and copy your important files off of there.

If that doesn't work then try to mount a partition on it after looking at the man page of
Code: Select all
ntfs-3g
. You might need to install this, in which case you'd want to do a
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get install ntfs-3g
.

If that doesn't work you could also just use
Code: Select all
foremost
and specify the extension you need. This would definitely be overkill because it would dump everything found matching a given extension (and it doesn't keep the filenames the same!) but it would work without you needing to mount the drive.

Last but not least if you had a unique phrase or something in these files you could use grep to attempt to carve it manually:

Code: Select all
sudo grep -P -A 30 -B 30 "unique.phrase" /dev/sdb


That's unoptimized, you'll want to look into grep options and regular expressions (probably, if it's not a literal phrase that you're after), but you should get the jist of it.

Let me know if this helps at all.
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by mRmasteRful on Mon Jul 19, 2010 8:13 pm
([msg=42178]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

Thanks for the help but I wanted to use backing up and installation as a last resort. Im doing this for my cousin and I think it would be better if I leave him with his vista (in case he gets home sick >.>). I think its just a boot issue but the repair function on the windows 7 cd says its not compatible so Im at a lost
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by msbachman on Mon Jul 19, 2010 9:12 pm
([msg=42180]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

I don't know if this would work but you might want to try to use chkdsk from a recovery console. I've been attempting to find some sort of solution between googling for "vista windows 7 recovery", "chkdsk", etc. to no avail.

Sorry I can't help more there's likely someone out there though that knows a ton more than I do about windows who has yet to chime in.

You might want to take a look at this it vaguely resembles your problem but with several differences: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/919529
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by mRmasteRful on Tue Jul 20, 2010 2:43 am
([msg=42222]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

Thanks guy. I didnt consider using chkdsk (ill give it a try). I was trying out bootrec.exe. It worked sort of. It found the 2 secotors fixed them (so it said but still no boot). I gave in and installed a copy of xp. Actually the first disk I tried didnt work so I resorted to XP service pack 1 that has no driver for my modem so no internet access. What world would we live in without linux?

After almost all my waking time devoted to get this damn pc running my only concern now is getting their copy of windows vista to boot again. Any contribution to the cause is greatly appreciated.
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by acantho on Tue Jul 20, 2010 5:04 am
([msg=42230]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

mRmasteRful wrote:Thanks for the help but I wanted to use backing up and installation as a last resort. Im doing this for my cousin and I think it would be better if I leave him with his vista (in case he gets home sick >.>). I think its just a boot issue but the repair function on the windows 7 cd says its not compatible so Im at a lost



Is it possible that the Windows 7 cd you're putting in is "seeing" the Windows Vista OS hence the not compatible issue ?

So I would imagine if you could change the boot order of the OSs (vista and 7) on the HDD then put in the Windows 7 cd you will be able to boot from the cd ?

Not sure about Win 7 but with Vista there is no option of booting from a cd etc.

Good luck.
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by scoon1329 on Tue Jul 20, 2010 6:10 am
([msg=42232]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

UPDATE: Apparently it's a bit different for windows 7. Found this Microsoft support article that should help.
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/927392

Original text.
Have you tried running the recovery console off the windows 7 CD.

Can't remember how to get to it from the windows 7 cd, but if you find it try executing 'fixboot' and 'fixmbr'

Hope that helps.

/Scoon
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by mRmasteRful on Tue Jul 20, 2010 4:35 pm
([msg=42274]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

@acantho The windows 7 cd is seeing the vista OS but says its not compatible to fix the windows 7 OS. So i can run the tools to fix the vista installation.

@scoon1329 Ive been trying the recovery console to no avail. fixmbr works but when i try to fixboot it searches my 2 partition and returns that it has found 0 windows installation even though I installed windows xp and it loads up fine.

All Im trying to do now is get the windows vista to boot. I installed windows xp over the windows 7 and that boots up fine. Now Im trying to figure out why windows vista wont boot or what to type in the command prompt to fix it. Help please, any suggestions at all is appreciated its been 2 days now battling with this
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by insomaniacal on Tue Jul 20, 2010 8:15 pm
([msg=42311]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

This sounds like a MBR problem (Master Boot Record). You could try downloading Super Grub Disk, and choosing the option of Booting windows and "fixing MBR". This should work fine.

You could also install GRUB, but if you're not dual-booting, there's no need in my opinion.
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Re: Windows boot issue

Post by mRmasteRful on Tue Jul 20, 2010 8:34 pm
([msg=42315]see Re: Windows boot issue[/msg])

Thanks Im gonna attempt this later tonight when Im by that pc. I dont know if this helps but the windows 7 cd is still detecting windows 7 and vista even though i reformatted the the windows 7 partition and put xp on it.

-- Tue Jul 20, 2010 11:31 pm --

Good news guys. I finally got it to boot into windows Vista. It was the MBR as insomiacal said.

I had to rename the old bcd to bcd1.old and use bootsect.exe/nt60/mbr

Apparently the old MBR bcd file wasn't being overwritten properly thats why Windows 7 kept showing up on the list of OS

EDIT: And thanks for the help everyone, I wouldnt have figured it out without you guys :D
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