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Need to change the drive letters without entering into Windows...


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#1 HTiger

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 02:44 AM

I encountered a pretty bad error, but I feel like it's only because when transferring over my system image it did so by going from C --> to D. I've spent hours Google searching and burning bootable discs to no avail. What I've found out is that Partition Magic seems to be the only software in the universe that can change your drive letters around. I tried changing the drive letters through something in Windows DOS in Windows Recovery but that didn't work on the reboot. Supposedly, the Partition Magic CD itself is bootable, but to create a bootable CD from scratch it's a downright nightmare.

I am so utterly lost. As it stands I have my computer harddrive completely ready to go, just sitting there, but the drive letters are all messed up, and I have no way of accessing Windows as my Windows installation is on this HD, and the HD won't boot up (presumably because the letters are all funky).

Edited by HTiger, 08 August 2011 - 02:45 AM.


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#2 Kevin384

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 02:55 AM

Hi HTiger,
I suggest that you restart your rig, and use the appropriate key, or key sequence (depending on your Mobo manufacturer's requirements) to access your BIOS settings. Look for the advanced settings and change the first boot device settings to boot from the drive containing your OS. Whwn you have your system running, please post back and we can dicuss the changing of the drive letters.
Good Luck
Kevin

#3 Allan

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 07:10 AM

First, Partition Magic doesn't work with any OS newer than Windows 98. Second, you will not be able to change the designation of your system partition without a GREAT deal of trouble - and even then you may run into major issues. I suggest you format and start again.

#4 MarkGS

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 08:49 AM

Windows DOS in Windows Recovery


Get back there and use these commands.

"bootrec /rebuildbcd" <- this should find the Windows installation
"bootrec /fixmbr"
"bootrec /fixboot"

If that does't work, Achronis is a good software to use when manipulating disk drives.

#5 Allan

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 08:57 AM

Windows DOS in Windows Recovery


Get back there and use these commands.

"bootrec /rebuildbcd" <- this should find the Windows installation
"bootrec /fixmbr"
"bootrec /fixboot"

If that does't work, Achronis is a good software to use when manipulating disk drives.

None of that will change the drive letter of the system partition, but it may indeed help you to boot up. And Acronis WHAT is good at manipulating drives (and what kind of manipulation did you have in mind)?

#6 MarkGS

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 10:38 AM

None of that will change the drive letter of the system partition, but it may indeed help you to boot up. And Acronis WHAT is good at manipulating drives (and what kind of manipulation did you have in mind)?


It will get him to a bootable state, and if the drive letters are incorrect, it will set the default value of the system reserved partition as well as the follow up OS partition. Acronis disk director, for changing drive letters, set active partitions, collapsing partitions, running disk checks, lots of useful features. http://www.acronis.com/homecomputing/products/diskdirector/

#7 Allan

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 10:39 AM

Okay, you need to be clear about the product you are recommending. Acronis is the name of a company - Disk Director is only one of their products (which I happen to use, by the way :) ).

#8 HTiger

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 12:15 PM

For the record, the error I get when booting up is "A Disk Read Error Occurred -- press cntrl+ alt + delete to restart"

Hi HTiger,
I suggest that you restart your rig, and use the appropriate key, or key sequence (depending on your Mobo manufacturer's requirements) to access your BIOS settings. Look for the advanced settings and change the first boot device settings to boot from the drive containing your OS. Whwn you have your system running, please post back and we can dicuss the changing of the drive letters.
Good Luck
Kevin


I did this but the boot order only showed three things. The first was the CD, the second was my HD with Windows OS on it, and the third was a Realtek Boot Manager, or something like that. I didn't change anything. Should I have? I didn't think it would be a good idea to take priority away from the CD.

Windows DOS in Windows Recovery


Get back there and use these commands.

"bootrec /rebuildbcd" <- this should find the Windows installation
"bootrec /fixmbr"
"bootrec /fixboot"

If that does't work, Achronis is a good software to use when manipulating disk drives.


I tried this and while all the command prompts went successfully, upon restart I got the same error again.

I'm going to try loading up the Acronis Boot Disc and perhaps try to re-back-up from my original system image.

Edit: Okay so I'm in Recovery Wizard. I have the option to recover the following:

NTFS (System Reserved) (C:) Pri, Act. 100MB
NTFS (Unlabeled) (D:) Pri 689.5GB
MBR and Track 0

The first time around I only selected both NTFS, and skipped MBR. It seems when I select only Unlabeled, the disk drive changes from D to C, which maybe might solve everything? However, this happens only through SKIPPING that "System Reserved" bit -- what's the point of that? Also, what's the point of MBR and Track 0?

Edited by HTiger, 08 August 2011 - 12:23 PM.


#9 Allan

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 12:24 PM

That's probably the easiest thing to do - re-restore the image - make sure you restore it to c: drive (needless to say that will overwrite EVERYTHING currently on C: drive)

#10 HTiger

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 12:28 PM

Yeah that's what it's doing, but there doesn't seem to be a way to edit the drive letter to what you want it to be in Acronis. I would love to have restored that 100 MB that Windows saves, but every time I did, it made that 100MB partition the C drive and my actual HD the D. Only through completely not restoring the 100MB could I allow my HD to be restored to the default C drive.

Hopefully this solves everything, but what does MBR and Track 0 do? And what does the 100MB thing do, because after all this it feels like boot discs can solve quite a lot -- what is that 100MB doing that a boot disc couldn't do?

Edited by HTiger, 08 August 2011 - 12:28 PM.


#11 HTiger

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 02:14 PM

Okay so it's installed as the new C drive and now it says "BOOTMGR is missing / Control + Alt + Delete to restart." I tried that dos box thing posted a bit back, and that didn't do anything. I also tried just letting the Windows Recovery repair it, and that didn't do anything either.

#12 HTiger

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 02:21 PM

OMG ITS FIXED -- I restarted it a second time after going into System Recovery and it's WORKING thanks for all your help guys

#13 Allan

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 02:22 PM

I've restored Acronis images literally dozens and dozens of times and have never had any problems. This one is tough without knowing exactly what you've done - it would be easier if I saw the image created and restored. I'm simply not sure what's going on - sorry.




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