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I'm pretty sure that the drive is toast, except for the fact that this error is only showing up on one partition (it's out of a Dell computer, and has a couple of Dell partitions, which boot and work fine.)

I've already purchased another hard drive, and re-installed WinXP, but when I re-connect this drive and reboot, I'm getting thousands of these errors.

Is there any chance of recovering any files off this? Should I prevent XP from trying to resolve the problems?

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Get as much off as you can before using anything to try and fix it.

Before running chkdsk, I'd avise running SpinRite to try and recover the lost sectors (chkdsk will just mark them bad).

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After it finished, when I try to access the disk, it informs me that it needs to be formatted. – chris Mar 20 '11 at 0:28
Apparently you had dead sectors in the file system itself, which doesn't surprise me if you were gettign 1000's of that error. :( That's why I suggested getting as much off before running it. – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Mar 20 '11 at 14:20
up vote 2 down vote accepted

OK, so after about 6 hours of grinding away at the disk, when I finally was able to log into the machine, I had an E: drive (the D: drive is the DVD).

Except that I got a warning that windows had detected a new piece of hardware, and needed to reboot.

I let it, and when it came back I still had an E: drive, but when I tried to access it, I was asked if I wanted to format it.

At this point, I booted with the system rescue disk, and was able to mount both the new and the old disk. Note: you can use the mount command to mount an NTFS partion read-only, but have to use ntfs-3g to mount one R/W. I mounted the bad partion R/O, and the new disk R/W.

I was then able to copy over most of the contents of the bad disk to the new disk with cp -r

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