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I'm trying to repair my Windows XP and it fails to reboot (bad sector or something).

I'm using my dell recovery disk and then select the "Repair" option which takes me to the command line application when I can browse my files and folders (like with cmd.exe).

however, when I'm trying to access the "Documents and settings" folder, it gives me access denied. is there any way to override it? is there any other way to access my documents and settings through other method?

I'm just trying to recover some files and copy them to another drive on my computer and then reinstall my Windows XP.

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We can not recover data from the bad sectors but there are some windows recovery software which provides the feature of Imaging and Cloning and with the help of these features you can recover your rest of the data easily. –  user82711 May 13 '11 at 10:21

3 Answers 3

You could pop it out and connect it to another machine via an external USB connector and run chkdsk from there...

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You may need to retake ownership of the files.

From http://support.microsoft.com/kb/308421:

To take ownership of a file, follow these steps:

  1. Right-click the file that you want to take ownership of, and then click Properties.
  2. Click the Security tab, and then click OK on the Security message (if one appears).
  3. Click Advanced, and then click the Owner tab.
  4. In the Name list, click Administrator, or click the Administrators group, and then click OK.

^ Alternatively, use the name of the account you're using.

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