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62 posts

Master Geek


# 251709 8-Jul-2019 09:33
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OK, so my venerable PC (8 1/2 years, on it's 2nd HDD) is on it's last legs.


After intermittent BSOD for the last few months, I fear it is finally kaput. Coaxed it back to life yesterday, as far as running CHKDSK, where it is stuck in an endless loop of 'correcting errors in the volume bitmap'. This has now been going on for over 24 hours. After a quick online search yesterday, I opted to let it keep running.


Being aware that I was going to need a new PC in the none-too-distant, most essential stuff is already backed up. But, if at all possible, I'd want to bring it back one last time to see if there is anything else I want to retrieve before I consign it to PC heaven


So my question is this: how long should I leave it running before I pull the plug? Is it likely to ever reach the end of this loop?


I'm by no means a PC expert, so highly technical replies are likely to go over my head


Thanks in advance!


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787 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2271612 8-Jul-2019 09:40
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I'd pull the disk and run repairs on another computer. The hardware could be contributing to the problem, and worse, potentially corrupting data being repaired.

 

As for the PC, it's well past its useby date. I'm now replacing important systems on a soft three year cycle. Once the system is three years old, I buy the next generation of hardware released after that time (3.5 - 4 years).


260 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2271658 8-Jul-2019 10:03
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Boot it from a WinPE USB flash drive with pre-installed repair tools. The effort of finding, downloading & burning to USB flash drive is well rewarded whenever you're faced with PC fixit tasks like this one.

 

There's an obvious clash when you're attempting to repair the drive you're booting from, a WinPE-based tool removes that problem immediately. Hirens Boot CD is a well-proven product holding the tools you need, 1.2GB download from https://www.hirensbootcd.org/download/





Megabyte - so geek it megahertz


 
 
 
 




62 posts

Master Geek


  # 2271756 8-Jul-2019 11:15
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1024kb:

 

Boot it from a WinPE USB flash drive with pre-installed repair tools. The effort of finding, downloading & burning to USB flash drive is well rewarded whenever you're faced with PC fixit tasks like this one.

 

There's an obvious clash when you're attempting to repair the drive you're booting from, a WinPE-based tool removes that problem immediately. Hirens Boot CD is a well-proven product holding the tools you need, 1.2GB download from https://www.hirensbootcd.org/download/

 

 

 

 

That sounds like a good suggestion.

 

May be a little bit beyond my personal level of ability, but my local PC geek should be able to sort this on my behalf

 

Excuse me if this is a dumb question, but is it realistic that this approach can create a copy of retrievable user data to something like an external HDD?


124 posts

Master Geek
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  # 2271778 8-Jul-2019 11:54
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Spinrite can work well on these types of errors.

 

https://www.grc.com/sr/spinrite.htm


260 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2271801 8-Jul-2019 12:18
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Absolutely it can, that's one of the ideal purposes for a WinPE tool. Straight up, this is not a high-level tech job, I fully encourage you to give it a go.  Rufus is the freeware that'll burn the Hirens .iso that you download.

 

Microsoft describe WinPE as "Windows PE (WinPE) for Windows 10 is a small operating system used to install, deploy, and repair Windows 10 for desktop" - so you'll select boot from USB, then it'll boot into the familiar Windows environment, from where the tools are readily available by, as usual, clicking the Start button. If you ever want to get a bit more confidence with PC software repair, this is the way to go. 





Megabyte - so geek it megahertz




62 posts

Master Geek


  # 2271806 8-Jul-2019 12:25
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1024kb:

 

Absolutely it can, that's one of the ideal purposes for a WinPE tool. Straight up, this is not a high-level tech job, I fully encourage you to give it a go.  Rufus is the freeware that'll burn the Hirens .iso that you download.

 

Microsoft describe WinPE as "Windows PE (WinPE) for Windows 10 is a small operating system used to install, deploy, and repair Windows 10 for desktop" - so you'll select boot from USB, then it'll boot into the familiar Windows environment, from where the tools are readily available by, as usual, clicking the Start button. If you ever want to get a bit more confidence with PC software repair, this is the way to go. 

 

 

Don't laugh....my PC was still running Windows 7!

 

Is there a good step-by-step idiot-proof guide online somewhere for this process?

 

Given that I've got more-or-less everything I need already backed up, I'm not keen to throw too much money or time at this.  


260 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2271809 8-Jul-2019 12:36
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Money is not needed - 8GB Flash drive excepted.

 

Try it this way - Download Lazesoft Recovery Suite Home Edition - free for all private use. Select the Recovery Suite Media Builder, that gives you the option of creating WinPE in every flavour from 32-bit XP to 64-bit 10, including your beloved Win 7. It'll download the required iso & build it with Lazesoft's excellent repair & recovery tools pre-installed. Burn that (there's no smoke so not really burning) to USB & boot your old PC from your new, very easy to use but also very capable WinPE Rescue tool.

 

Lazesoft is an apt name, their software is so simple to operate yet performs high quality repairs.





Megabyte - so geek it megahertz


 
 
 
 




62 posts

Master Geek


  # 2271812 8-Jul-2019 12:42
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1024kb:

 

Money is not needed - 8GB Flash drive excepted.

 

Try it this way - Download Lazesoft Recovery Suite Home Edition - free for all private use. Select the Recovery Suite Media Builder, that gives you the option of creating WinPE in every flavour from 32-bit XP to 64-bit 10, including your beloved Win 7. It'll download the required iso & build it with Lazesoft's excellent repair & recovery tools pre-installed. Burn that (there's no smoke so not really burning) to USB & boot your old PC from your new, very easy to use but also very capable WinPE Rescue tool.

 

Lazesoft is an apt name, their software is so simple to operate yet performs high quality repairs.

 

 

 

 

I'll give it a go!

 

Thanks for the advice, greatly appreciated. I'll unplug the old-boy when I get home from work.(assuming it's still running the message)


960 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2271955 8-Jul-2019 17:56
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✏️

1024kb: Boot it from a WinPE USB flash drive with pre-installed repair tools. The effort of finding, downloading & burning to USB flash drive is well rewarded whenever you're faced with PC fixit tasks like this one.

 

There's an obvious clash when you're attempting to repair the drive you're booting from, a WinPE-based tool removes that problem immediately. Hirens Boot CD is a well-proven product holding the tools you need, 1.2GB download from https://www.hirensbootcd.org/download/ 

 

✏️

1024kb: ... Try it this way - Download Lazesoft Recovery Suite Home Edition - free for all private use. Select the Recovery Suite Media Builder, that gives you the option of creating WinPE in every flavour from 32-bit XP to 64-bit 10, including your beloved Win 7. It'll download the required iso & build it with Lazesoft's excellent repair & recovery tools pre-installed. Burn that (there's no smoke so not really burning) to USB & … 

 

Just to be clear, ideally you would want to perform the preparation of the USB drive on a PC other than the faulty unit. Downloading gigabytes of data onto an already defective HDD is simply looking for more trouble.

 

 

 

🕵 Another option is yo take your HDD out of your machine to your PC geek. He can insert it into a UDB drive caddy or directly into his machine. Then you have a normal Windows environment to access your drive in a familiar way (you still want to be careful with this method).

 

 

 

👩‍🎓 And remember, trying to copy potentially corrupted data means that you can end up with garbage saved onto the external backup HDD.





Please keep this GZ community vibrant by contributing in a constructive & respectful manner.


260 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2272056 8-Jul-2019 20:30
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Uh, yeah, considering that the original PC is stuck running CHKDSK, I didn't think it necessary to mention that you'll need access to a working PC to create the tool to fix it with. OP may be "by no means a PC expert" but I'm sure that he'd have worked that one out. 





Megabyte - so geek it megahertz




62 posts

Master Geek


  # 2272065 8-Jul-2019 21:00
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1024kb:

Uh, yeah, considering that the original PC is stuck running CHKDSK, I didn't think it necessary to mention that you'll need access to a working PC to create the tool to fix it with. OP may be "by no means a PC expert" but I'm sure that he'd have worked that one out. 



It's all good!

I had just about figured that one out ;-)

In all seriousness, though, advice from here has been really helpful today.

1782 posts

Uber Geek
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  # 2272285 9-Jul-2019 11:07
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**** DONT TRY TO REPAIR IT ****
not a checkdisk or repair utilities . You can make a failing HD worse .

 

 

 

sounds like the hard drive is stuffed. Dont attempt any repair , unless no other options work & you have nothing to loose

 

You want to access the drive the least amount possible, it needs a data recovery via another PC (even if thats just a straight copy).
If lucky, you might be able to just copy the files off.


260 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2272290 9-Jul-2019 11:15
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By using a WinPE repair kit & booting off USB, you are effectively using another computer. The Windows PE installed on flash drive becomes the operating system, the flash drive is separated into C: (system drive) & D: - existing hard drives are added as E: etc.

The advantage for drive repair is that the faulty drive is attached via a full power & cable connection, removing any slowdown or power variation that might happen via an external USB dock.




Megabyte - so geek it megahertz


787 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 386


  # 2272319 9-Jul-2019 11:47
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1024kb: By using a WinPE repair kit & booting off USB, you are effectively using another computer.

 

No, you're using the same suspect hardware that may well have contributed to the data corruption in the first place. There is insufficient information available to be sure the cause is related to software. Assuming the hardware is bad is the safest option.


260 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2272723 10-Jul-2019 04:12
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Ever tried a WinPE rescue flash drive? You should.

Why do I say this? From experience. I started building these tools on CD for XP way back in the early part of this century, transitioned to DVD & now USB flash drive. I doubt the total hours I've invested would be less than 500, but really have no idea.

I sell a custom pre-built WinPE on USB from my website, full of class-leading freeware PC repair tools. It's been purchased on 5 continents & I've never had a complaint. (I don't charge for the software, the cost involved is for the hardware & effort creating it.)

This is Geekzone, I didn't push my own compilation - although I did consider offering a freebie download for GZ members. Hirens is a well-proven product, it'll do the job.





Megabyte - so geek it megahertz


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