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I try to recover data from a windows laptop.

The windows vista would not boot anymore "missing bootmgr" and my attempts on the pc failed. So I removed the drive and plugged it via sata/usb adapter on my linux ubuntu.

My attempts were:

  • with vista ultima repair feature: could not recognize OS
  • common ubuntu live disk - initramfs no live system... ?
  • knoppix live DVD (64bit system) - ended on busybox and could not see the disc.

fdisk -l says

Disk /dev/sdb: 250.1 GB, 250059350016 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 30401 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0x42b82f03

   Device Boot      Start         End      Blocks   Id  System
/dev/sdb1               1        1530    12288000    7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sdb2   *        1530       20863   155289600    7  HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sdb4           20863       30402    76618752    7  HPFS/NTFS
Partition 4 does not end on cylinder boundary.

The data is supposed to be in windows home resp. User dir.

I mounted the partitions sdb1, 2 and 4 and the partition sdb2 seems to be drive C, here a partial list

Program Files

but all in all it'S 300K ! I have one error, that's all.

du: cannot access `Users/Default/Videos': Input/output error

But the data missing is mostly fotos.

Is there a hidden sdb3 ? or just logical partition?

Any idea what to try? To get this recovered is very very important for me.

share|improve this question

Assuming your Windows and Linux systems are different computers, then that harddrive is failing (I/O error is hardware, and you've tried in a known good system). You want to disconnect it until you have a new harddrive which can hold an exact image of the original (or more), and then clone it with GNU ddrescue or Clonezilla or another tool which is capable of handling disks with bad blocks. Once cloned, you can then begin proper recovery of information.

share|improve this answer
hm okay good idea to clone it asap. thx, will do tomorrow. – groovehunter Oct 4 '12 at 14:36
I've had a lot of success using dd rescue in that situation but be prepared for a long process if it's a large disk with significant damage. – Col Oct 4 '12 at 16:03

Just to add on to darth androids answer, gparted can also be used to clone the partition(s) you want.

share|improve this answer
How well does gparted handle bad sectors? Gparted is great when you don't have failing hardware, but I know Clonezilla (in rescue mode) and ddrescue are designed to handle bad sectors properly. – Darth Android Oct 4 '12 at 16:08
This does not provide an answer to the question. To critique or request clarification from an author, leave a comment below their post. – MaQleod Oct 4 '12 at 16:34

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