Repairing hard disk when Windows installation disk won't boot

Posted by Echows on Super User See other posts from Super User or by Echows
Published on 2012-12-04T16:26:17Z Indexed on 2012/12/04 17:10 UTC
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I'm trying to recover some data from a faulty hard disk with Windows installed on it (on which Windows won't even boot). I have tried so far:

  • Booting to Ubuntu live USB stick and running ntfsfix (didn't work)

  • Trying to mount the broken partition when running Ubuntu from usb stick (doesn't mount)

  • Running photorec image recovery tool from live Ubuntu (it found some stuff but not the images I was looking for)

Now as a last resort I got myself a Windows installation on a USB stick so that I can try fdisk, but the installer doesn't work. The loading screen shows up and then the installer crashes. The installer works fine on other computers. I suspect that the installer is trying to read the hard drive to see if there's something there but when it can't read one partition, it crashes.

On Ubuntu, I can mount other partitions except the one I'm interested in so at least the hard drive is not completely dead.

So the question is, what options do I have left? To be more specific, my goal is to recover some images from the faulty ntfs-partition on the hard drive. Other than that, I don't care about the contents of the hard disk.

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