So last night, in attempts to dual-boot Vista alongside Windows 7 RC, I used EASUS Partition Master to attempt to shrink my full-disk partition in order to make room for a Windows 7 partition. After about an hour in the EASUS boot-up application (that was supposed to perform the actual data moving and repartitioning) the process failed at some point while I was not at the computer. I walked into the room to be greeted with a No Operating System Found message during boot.

My disk is now, apparently, 500GB of an unknown/broken file system format. The Vista/Windows7 boot disk cannot identify any windows installations on the hard disk and GParted Live just identifies the partition as unknown.

Do I have any options available to me for partition recovery, besides the typical OMG I Formatted my Drive data recovery tools.

Is there a way to could tell if the broken partition still has a valid NTFS master file table or something similar that could help me recover?


For the life of me, I couldn't forcefully mount the broken partition in Knoppix, so I used the bundled tool TestDisk and muddled around enough to the point where I could run CHKDSK /R in the recovery console of a Vista Boot disk. CHKDSK is fixing lots of stuff. Not sure what will happen once this process completes.

Update 2

After CHKDSK, I simply force mounted the partition within Knoppix with the command

mount -t ntfs dev/sda1 disk -o force

This put the drive in a state where I could identify and backup data from the device.

1 Answer 1


My recommendation is to use the Knoppix Live CD Once you have the live CD, boot to it and then see if you can mount the partition manually. If there is still any data remaining, you should be able to see it.

  • This answer gave me enough bread crumbs to solve the problem! Commented Aug 7, 2009 at 21:08

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