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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Additional Software (PETs, n' stuff) » Utilities
lupu-520 can't find Hard Drive
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Thu 19 Apr 2012, 17:30    Post subject:  lupu-520 can't find Hard Drive
Subject description: Using Linux to rescue Windows message :error loading operating system
 

I am not a fan of Windows so have used mainly Apple products for the last 15 years. I inherited a Windows PC running xp pro Service Pack 3 and yesterday after running a file management utility the PC failed to boot up and I got the message " error loading operating system".

Someone trying to help me suggested I turn to Linux full time and make a start by using Puppy Linux to rescue data and files from the Hard Drive. I downloaded lupu-520 saved to disk, set the BIOS to boot from the CD drive and got what I presume is the standard GUI screen .

I hit the Mount icon but the scan only turned up with the floppy and one of the CD\DVD drives. I ran the deeper scan offered and it then found the second optical drive but again no sign of the internal HD.

Can anyone suggest why the HD is not showing up and what I can do to make some progress. I am a complete beginner with Linux and although I know my way round Windows I have no expertise at all with Hard Drive partitions and Registry problems etc.

I have a lot of valuable data on the PC hard Disk only some of which has been backed up and I can't afford to lose the rest so recovering the data is my current concern - if I manage to do that getting the PC to boot up into the OS and be operational again is the secondary aim.

Can anyone help ?
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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 9119
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Thu 19 Apr 2012, 18:00    Post subject:  

If the hard drive was in decent shape, you should be seeing a drive icon for it at the bottom of the screen.

If you are not, the drive has serious problems.

Click the console icon on the desktop and type: fdisk -l (with a lower-case L)

Does that command show your drive? It would probably be sda1.
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 07:56    Post subject: lupu-520 can't find hard drive  

Thanks rcrsn51

did as you said and the HD was found here is the listing from the screen
Device Boots start end blocks Id system
/dev/sda1 * 1 15257 122551821 7 HPFS/NTFS
/dev/sda2 15258 30515 122559885 f W95 Ext'd (LBA)
/dev/sda5 15258 30515 122559853 7 HPFS/NTFS

other than knowing that sda1 is the Linux equivalent of Windows C drive ( I think) the rest doesn't mean alot to me in terms of is the drive working and mountable etc.

Can you or anyone else help me take this further ?
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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 9119
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 08:06    Post subject:  

Run Gparted from the System menu. What does it say about the Windows partition? If there is a big exclamation mark beside it, you have trouble.
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 09:17    Post subject:  

did as you suggested. The radio button against the Maxtor hard drive ewas correctly higlighted so I hit "OK" A white box flashed on the screen for a millisecond but nothing appeared and the Gparted menu closed - what does that mean nothing new is on my Puppy desktop screen
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rcrsn51


Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 9119
Location: Stratford, Ontario

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 09:30    Post subject:  

It could mean two things.

1. Your hard drive is toast.

2. There is a problem with hard drive detection in Lupu 520. This is an old version. I would get a newer Puppy, like Lupu 528 or Slacko 531.
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Sylvander

Joined: 15 Dec 2008
Posts: 3444
Location: West Lothian, Scotland, UK

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 10:22    Post subject: Re: lupu-520 can't find Hard Drive
Subject description: Using Linux to rescue Windows message :error loading operating system
 

1.
ettu wrote:
recovering the data is my current concern

(a) My son once gave me his 750GB HDD that had faulty regions on it.
He couldn't get any Windows programs to work with it.

(b) I tried various programs in Puppy, and again, most would not work with it, including GParted methinks.

(c) However...
Despite all of that...
Xfe was able to [slowly and laboriously, with lots of troublesome reboots] copy all good items [folders & files] on good regions of the faulty HDD to my own 1TB HDD.
[I must have been able to mount both (source and destination) partitions]
But whenever it hit a bad region...
The attempt to copy would fail, and the Puppy FROZE.
Had to go through a tedious sequence of actions to get back to a functioning Puppy and again use Xfe to take up where it last froze, but skip the faulty item.
So...

(d) I decided to try using ddrescue [as explained in detail here], which I'd NEVER used before...
To clone his faulty HDD to a new 1TB HDD I bought for him and fitted into a new external enclosure.
With ddrescue, you don't mount the partitions, and the program accesses the hardware directly without using Puppy whatevers.
Hence a problem doesn't freeze the Puppy, only the ddrescue prog needs to be restarted, which is easy to do.
ddrescue was MUCH easier/quicker, and less troublesome to use than the Xfe method.
The net result of this process = a 750GB partition was created on the new 1TB HDD, with partition contents identical to the original, except there were no faulty regions in the copy.
There may have been 1 file that ddrescue failed to copy; not sure.
Very Happy At a certain point in the process, the partition newly created on the destination HDD appeared on the Puppy desktop as if by magic. Very Happy
It had been copied/created, you see, so Puppy was then able to display it.
Both the drives happened to be in external [USB-2.0 connected] enclosures.

2.
ettu wrote:
if I manage to do that getting the PC to boot up into the OS and be operational again is the secondary aim

I guess...
If you used ddrescue to clone your faulty HDD to a new HDD [identical size and type?]
The new HDD would probably function normally, with no sign of the problem. Very Happy Cool
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 10:39    Post subject:  

I downloaded Lupu 528 and ran it.

Again no HD icon appeared but when I ran Gparted I did this time get an answer.

The box which came up showed in the top right /dev/sda 233.76GiB

Below that were two boxes side by side the first on the left said /dev/sda1 116.87 GiB and the one on the right dev/sda5 116.88 GiB

Below that was a single large box with a table set out as below

Partition File System Size Used Unused Flags

/dev/sda1 Unknown 116.87 GiB - - boot

/dev/sda2 Extended 116.88 GiB - - lba

/dev/sda5 Unknown 116.88 GiB - -

Unallocated Unallocated 5.51 GiB - -

The information in the Partition column had a yellow triangle next to it with an exclamation mark . When I clicked on Device Information it said " Status: not mounted " Unable to detect file system . Possible reasons are :
1 The file system is damaged.
2.The file system is unknown to Gparted.
3.There is no file system available (unformatted)
4.the device entry /dev/sda1 is missing

There was in front of the word "Unknown" in the File System column a black box.

On the next line ie for /dev/sda2 it had a blue box and next to sda2 a drop down arrow which showed sda 5 and unallocated ie the last two line s as set out in the table above .

When I clicked on the Device information for /dev/sda2 it said " Status: not busy." ( there are no logical partitions)

The Partition Table for /dev/sda5 had the yellow triangle with the black exclamation mark inside and a black box in the File System column next to "unknown"

Finally on the last line of the table ie "Unallocated" there was a grey box in the File System column.

Hope that sheds some more light on things - have I lost all my data or is there still hope. ?
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 10:58    Post subject:  

@sylvander

that's very interesting. Given that I have never used Linux before do you think I could run that same programme without any real problems ie is it fairly intuitive?

As I mentioned above I just purchased ITB Seagate GFlex portable HD with the idea of copying any info I could get out of the problem HD in the PC on to it are you suggesting that rather than go through the copying process you did first I jump straight to cloning the current HD with the possibility that having done that the new HD would just in effect then replace the faulty existing one.

If so is there any reason I could not use the new portable HD for that or is there a reason, other than keeping things tidy, why I should buy another 250 -500GB HD and strap into the case ?

PS nice to see another Scotsman on here - my son works in Livingston but I am in central belt.

Will go off and read the link you gave me to dd

From now on I promise to back up religiously !
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 11:43    Post subject:  

@sylvander

just had a thought re your suggestion. When I attached the new portable HD to the PC via the USB port it doesnt show up on the lupu desk top so how do I know it is being recognised and I can copy to it . should it not show as an icon or come up on a gpart scan ?

Have a lot to learn about Linux but looking forward to the challenge.
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Sylvander

Joined: 15 Dec 2008
Posts: 3444
Location: West Lothian, Scotland, UK

PostPosted: Fri 20 Apr 2012, 16:24    Post subject:  

1. "do you think I could run that same programme without any real problems ie is it fairly intuitive?"
(a) Yes, I think you could and should try running ddrescue.
All you need to do is copy the 2 needed commands...
Alter them slightly [in a text file] to suit your own [source & destination] drive names...
Then copy and paste the 1st command into a terminal window command prompt.
And...
(b) If/when [each time] ddrescue crashes due to some problem [faulty regions?] on the source drive...
Just re-copy and paste the command into the terminal, and hit <Enter> yet again.
And...
(c) ddrescue will use the logfile that it auto-creates to resume where it left off.
(d) You keep doing this until the process has completed.
i.e. Either all of the source drive has been copied/cloned...
Or all of the GOOD regions have been copied.
Only/any bad regions are auto-skipped.
ddrescue is designed/manufactured to skip faulty regions when you use the 1st command.
Then...
(e) IF there were any faulty regions [if I remember, you would see the command window report the faulty regions]....
Only then would it be necessary to use the 2nd command to deal with [recover/copy] the items [folders/files] on the faulty regions.
In my case, most of the partition/drive contents were tested/discovered/reported faulty->[strange because I think this was being caused by a relatively small proportion of the totality of the drive]...
So this 2nd command portion was a BIG job.
Took a long time to complete.
I just left the process running, and checked on it now and then.
And restarted it when I found it had crashed.

2. "are you suggesting that rather than go through the copying process you did first I jump straight to cloning the current HD with the possibility that having done that the new HD would just in effect then replace the faulty existing one"
(a) YES.
(b) ddrescue is REALLY GOOD, and easy to use...
Although figuring out the command to use COULD be tricky, [except I've been there and done the work for you]...
Because, like most command utilities, the how and what are not blindingly obvious.

3. "If so is there any reason I could not use the new portable HD for that or is there a reason, other than keeping things tidy, why I should buy another 250 -500GB HD and strap into the case ?"
(a) My natural inclination would be to take no risks, by fitting a HDD identical [in size and type] to the original/source/faulty HDD.
This is only because I'd be afraid that there may be significant factors [of which I may be ignorant], that might have a nasty/negative effect.
I bet those who know would say that it makes no difference.
(b) I'd be inclined to fit it into the case...
But again, I bet it makes no difference.
Certainly made no difference in my own example...
But then my source drive was not bootable [no boot flag set], and neither was the destination drive.

4. "When I attached the new portable HD to the PC via the USB port it doesnt show up on the lupu desk top"
(a) You can only reasonably expect it to show on the desktop if it has been partitioned, and each partition then formatted with a filesystem that Puppy can read.
It is formatted partitions [or rather their file systems] that show on the desktop.
However...
(b) Even if not partitioned&formatted, it aught to show as a PHYSICAL HDD when you run GParted.
If it does show...
You should click the radio button for that physical HDD, and click "OK" to scan it, and see whether it's "unallocated" or what.
This will tell you that Puppy can see it.

5. "how do I know it is being recognised and I can copy to it"
4(b) above [GParted seeing/displaying the physical HDD] lets you know it is being recognised [can be seen]...
And this will tell you its "name" [sdb?] to use in the ddrescue commands.
ddrescue will be able to work with it just so long as it can be seen [e.g. by GParted].
Also...
Remember, ddrescue can work with HDD's even when other programs cannot, because it DIRECTLY accesses the HDD hardware using its own internal program code.
SUPER PROGRAM! Cool
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Wed 25 Apr 2012, 13:23    Post subject:  

@sylvander

I want to follow your suggestion but because I am a beginner with Linux need to ask a few basic questions so I hope you will forgive me if it seems I am completely tech illiterate.

It seems to me that in order to connect the failed drive currently in my desktop PC to a new HD to which I want to clone I am best to use a SATA to USB docking station. In other words take the HD from the PC and drop it into the docking station and then attach the docking station to my laptop via one of the USB ports. In the laptop's other USB port I will plug in a blank portable HD with more than enough space to handle any data transfered. Hope you think that makes sense.

The utility program you suggest ie ddrescue I will I presume have to download onto my laptop which runs on Windows Vista. I went to http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/ddrescue to get the latest version and perhaps in my ignorance selected the last one listed ie ddrescue-1.15 tar.lz.siq and downloaded.

As I kind of expected Windows told me it couldn't open the file - do I have to first of all download a version of Linux to my laptop and run it , if so where do you suggest I get it from as I understand there are slightly different versions ?

I presume once I have done that and opened Linux on my laptop it will then open ddrescue and I can hopefully find the console icon and type in the command you suggest ie ddrescue -f -n/dev/sdc/dev/sdd.logfile

As far as your second step is concerned I see your command " attempts to recover from the regions marked as problem areas and recorded in the log file "does this mean the command I should use at that point will have to be varied to suit what I see in my log file ?

Once the recovery is completed how do I correctly exit ddrescue and having done that do I simply leave the SATA drive in the docking station, look for the drive on my laptop and try and get Windows to open it ?

Apologies again for such basic questions I guess the whole process is a bit like learning to ridE a bike or swim for the first time , if you can do it and its almost second nature you find it difficult to understand why anyone can find learning so difficult until you remember you've been there once and done that.

It might seem far fetched but hopefully one day I will be able to help someone else equally clueless. Embarassed

Thanks for all your help
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Sylvander

Joined: 15 Dec 2008
Posts: 3444
Location: West Lothian, Scotland, UK

PostPosted: Wed 25 Apr 2012, 17:18    Post subject:  

1. "It seems to me that in order to connect the failed drive currently in my desktop PC to a new HD to which I want to clone I am best to use a SATA to USB docking station. In other words take the HD from the PC and drop it into the docking station and then attach the docking station to my laptop via one of the USB ports. In the laptop's other USB port I will plug in a blank portable HD with more than enough space to handle any data transfered. Hope you think that makes sense."
Sounds good to me. Very Happy

2. "The utility program you suggest ie ddrescue I will I presume have to download onto my laptop which runs on Windows Vista."
(a) I've only used ddrescue within Puppy Linux.
Could you do that?
You can run Puppy from an optical disk, and make a pupsave file on any storage device, e.g. a Flash Drive, and install ddrescue using either the "Puppy Package Manager", or a PET file got at some thread on the Puppy forums.
(b) Once ddrescue is installed within the Puppy [and that change saved in the pupsave file for continued future use], you copy and paste the command from the text file in which you've saved it, to the terminal window command prompt.

3. "where do you suggest I get it from as I understand there are slightly different versions ?"
(a) I come across various PET files on my travels in the Puppy forums...
And save any I think may be of use, in a 1GB Flash Drive dedicated to that.
(b) I have 2 copies = ddrescue-1.13.pet & ddrescue-1.14-d.pet...
Don't know where I got them, but....
A quick search HERE [bookmark this] found:
This thread...
Offering ddrescue-1.13.pet

4. "once I have done that and opened Linux on my laptop it will then open ddrescue and I can hopefully find the console icon and type in the command you suggest"
(a) When you have a Puppy running, that has ddrescue installed...
(b) Open a termainal window and type the 1st few characters of the ddrescue command/program...
e.g. ddres
And hit the "Tab" key once only...
And all of the commands beginning with those characters will be displayed.
Here in Wary, only the command = ddrescue is displayed.
That shows that the ddrescue program is installed.
And...
(c) If I then hit <Enter>, an error is displayed [quite right too, more than just the name of the program is needed, and the error explains this].
And the error display shows that the program is functioning.
(d) DO NOT TYPE THE COMMAND; better to copy and paste it, thus less likely to get it wrong.
Type the command within a text file, make sure it is right, and only then copy and paste.

5. "does this mean the command I should use at that point will have to be varied to suit what I see in my log file ?"
NO.
(a) The log file is made [and updated at each resumption] automatically by ddrescue; no need for you to do anything with it.
ddrescue auto-makes it as it works...
Then ddrescue auto-reads it when you repeat the very same command-number-2 ...
[The very same command is used every time until the whole drive is recovered]...
This is done so as to resume the same activity as before.
It therefore knows where it left off, and where to continue.

6. "Once the recovery is completed how do I correctly exit ddrescue"
(a) If I remember right, I guess I just closed the terminal window. [This makes the ddrescue window close also]
Do you know how to do that?
i.e. Either click the "X" at top right, or right-click on the icon in the taskbar and click "Close".

7. "having done that do I simply leave the SATA drive in the docking station"
Yes, it doesn't matter much what you then do with it, if it's a faulty/useless HDD.
e.g. I eventually gave up trying to fix my sons' HDD, and destroyed it with a sledgehammer.

8. "look for the drive on my laptop and try and get Windows to open it ?"
(a) If it were me, once I'd closed ddrescue at the finalization of the recovery...
I'd click on the icon [newly appearing] on the Puppy desktop, for the partition that has been cloned on the new/replacement/destination HDD...
And use a file explorer [Xfe is what I use] to take a look at the contents, and check that it seems OK.
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Thu 26 Apr 2012, 11:42    Post subject:  

I think I have after many hours managed to get ddrescue "installed".

However as I was about to type the command suggested into the console it occurred to me that I haven't done anything to identify the source ie troublesome drive and the target drive . How do I do this bearing in mind that the troublesome drive doesn't show up anywhere at all on gparted but it does when the fdisk command suggested ie fdisk -l is used.

At what stage and how do I identify the drives is this automatically asked for once I type in the command on the Console or do I have as I would anticipate to do this first and if so how do I do it ?

Have completely ground to a halt so any help here greatly appreciated to get me over this hopefully last hurdle.
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ettu

Joined: 19 Apr 2012
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Thu 26 Apr 2012, 12:13    Post subject:  

Since the post above I have looked at the command suggested by Sylvander and take it "sdc" and "sdd" were the drive names of the two being used for that particular transfer.

If that is correct then can I assume that if GParted shows my empty destination drive as sdd1 I substitute that for sdd in the command line. ?

As far as the problem drive is concerned as I explained in an earlier post while the troublesome HD isn't shown on the desktop with an icon GParted identifies it and shows it as having ,sdb1,sdb2,sdb5 and a partition listed as " unallocated" with a size of only 5.51 MiB.

In the command line do I substitute sdb1 first of all for "sdc" as used by Sylvander and if so do I then have to repeat the process for each partition name ie keeping "sdd1" constant as the destination drive but each time ddrescue finishes then substituting "sdb2" and "sdb5" for Sylvamder's "sdc" each time ?
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