Posted 28 September 2005 - 12:55 AM
A virus got hold of my hardrive and rendered the thing unreadable. The computer states that the drive is empty and does not even have a file system onboard. I am guessing the MBR is damaged. I ran the shareware version of Active Partition Recovery and it found the names of the files I so desperately need.
I plan to try Testdisk to repair the partitions and restore the MBR. Here is my problem:
The computer is an older Dell. With the hard drive installed in the original computer it was formatted on, I cannot boot from the floppy drive. If I pull out the hard drive and put it in a similar Dell, it still won't boot from the floppy drive. All I get on both computers is "Press F1 to reboot, Press F2 to Setup". If I try to run Active Partition Recovery on either machine's floppy drive, it says, "Error loading Free Dos Kernel." I would assume it is a faulty floppy diskette,
But... If I put the hard drive in a completely different computer with a different floppy drive and the same Active Partition Recovery diskette, I can load Active Partition Recovery. Any ideas? Do you think the diskette is still the problem? What could possibly be keeping both Dells from loading the program when the third machine had no problem?
I could try running Testdisk with the damaged hard drive installed in the third computer, but I am afraid to rewrite or restore the MBR on the drive using a computer that is different from the one which the drive came from. I have read warnings that using a different machine which might have a different BIOS could possibly make it even harder to access lost data.
Any thoughts on how I could make those Dells read software from the floppy drive again? (so as not to run the risk of incorrectly rewriting the MBR using a different computer)- Is this really that big of a risk?
Thanks a million, I can't believe what a resource you have been thus far!