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I was trying to write a RAMDisk image to my SD card but unfortunately I wrote the image to my hard disk instead. The size of the RAMDisk image is about 7 MB (approximately 16000+ sectors) and it was written to the first sections of my hard disk drive.

After that, my laptop won't boot any more. The first N sectors of my harddrive are corrupted. Looks like the MBR (master boot record) is corrupted.

How can I recover my hard disk? The OS is Windows XP SP3 and the size of the hard disk is 120G. I only need data on D:\ back.

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possible duplicate of MBR is corrupted, how can I recovery my logical patitions – Nifle Aug 5 '11 at 11:53
up vote 3 down vote accepted

There is a tool called Test-disk that would very likely work for you. It is a linux tool, but is available on several rescue boot disks, including SystemRescueCD; just burn the disc, pop it into the borked computer, boot up, and follow the instructions on screen or visit the Wiki for more info.

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thanks, I will try it – shi kui Aug 5 '11 at 9:37
By the way, My CDROM is not working. Can I burn it to a Flash Disk instead? Booting from a USB device is supported. – shi kui Aug 5 '11 at 9:42
It's possible, but you need to either be familiar with syslinux, or have a flash-iso boot imaging tool – Bryan Agee Aug 5 '11 at 9:43
Well, thanks for your advice:) – shi kui Aug 5 '11 at 9:45
If it's helpful, please upvote--and if it works, don't forget to accept the answer. Thanks! – Bryan Agee Aug 5 '11 at 9:48

Data that has been overwritten is unrecoverable. Get a repair disk, and try to fix it from there.

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Is it possible that patition D is intact? – shi kui Aug 5 '11 at 8:13
I don't know the order that the partitions were written in. It may be that just your MBR is toast. – soandos Aug 5 '11 at 8:14
P.S. I have no idea what you were doing writing to the first addresses anyway. If this was memory, you would have hit many errors also. – soandos Aug 5 '11 at 8:22
D:\ is a logical patition on my Win XP SP3. I think it is allocated to sectors other than those which are overwritten. – shi kui Aug 5 '11 at 8:22
I was trying to clone an *.001 image to my sdcard to make it a bootable device using WinHex. But I wrote it to the hard drive~ – shi kui Aug 5 '11 at 8:27

try something like testdisk on linux to recreate the partition table (using the backup records on the disk if needed). That should get the partition mounted. From there you should be able to recover the files that haven't been overwritten.

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Thanks a lot, trying disk genius – shi kui Aug 8 '11 at 6:54

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