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No bootable device


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#1 poorcomputerboy

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Posted 31 March 2014 - 11:00 PM

I'm having problems with my laptop. It froze up so I reboot it and not as it loads from the bios it states "no bootable device" I've tried a windows 7 disk to do a repair but it doesn't see the O/S.  I took the drive out and plugged it in my other windows 7 box and it stated it was there but there were no drive letters that popped up or were in Mycomputer.  Once I went into disk management it stated the three partitions on the drive were all healthy but there was no volume letter for any of them. I then accessed the drive using Hirens boot disk in mini windows xp mode and under properties and tools did error checking and all was file. I was able to click on the partitions and open the drive to see my files in Hirens and access them but I still can't get this drive to boot and load windows 7.  On sure if the boot partition is damaged or what I should do next. Any help would be great.  Thanks



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#2 OldPhil

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 07:36 AM

An idea that may work in manage while hooked to the other computer make sure it shows as active then try assigning it a drive letter, It will have to be other than C: put it back in the computer.  It may boot but if not find it in the boot menu during start up if it boots you can then change its letter in manage.


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#3 poorcomputerboy

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 01:07 PM

If I assign it a drive letter am I going to loose all the data that is on the disk.



#4 poorcomputerboy

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 01:25 PM

When I Windows repair again and go into diagnosis and repair details it comes up Root cause found: Bad hard disk.  Is there a way I can clone this disk over to a new drive and able to get it to boot so all the data isn't lost.



#5 OldPhil

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 01:40 PM

No you will not lose any data assigning it a drive letter, it will have to be done sooner or later.  If you buy another drive and install a new system you can then pull the files off the old drive by making it a slave you cannot pull programs just data.


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#6 zingo156

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 02:04 PM

You can try to clone the disk, I have had bad luck cloning disks with bad blocks or disks that were/are failing. I use clonezilla, there are many cloning programs out there. Cloning if successful is great. Unfortunately if you have a lot of bad blocks on that old hard drive, it may fail or the OS may not load correctly. I recommend backing up important data first before proceeding with anything else. Sometimes failing hard drives will suddenly fail completely. Grab your files from the drive in the order of most important > least important etc.

 

Because the computer will not boot to the OS currently on the old hard drive it seems unlikely that just cloning the drive will fix the problem. Likely the clone would have the same corrupted OS. Sometimes you can "remap" bad blocks but even then not always is the data in the bad block succesfully saved before remap happens.

 

I will post below instructions on the hard drive surface scan utility that I personally use and recommend for scanning/remapping hard drives called: MHDD.


Edited by zingo156, 01 April 2014 - 02:08 PM.

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#7 zingo156

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 02:07 PM

If a hard drive has a smart status warning or the drive is questionable this test may be of use NOTE this test does not work with AHCI or Raid sata operation. It must be done with IDE, ATA, or compatibility mode:

 

Before running this test it would be a good idea to backup any data that you cannot afford to lose. This test uses the hard drive at 100%. If the drive is failing or has problems it is possible for the drive to fail suddenly especially during heavy use as this test will do. It is unlikely but still I recommend backing files up to be safe. Here are the instructions to run the test:

 

The first step will be to burn MHDD to a disc as an image (cd preferably). MHDD Can be found here: http://hddguru.com/software/2005.10.02-MHDD/  Click the Last version of MHDD, CDROM iso-image download and burn this file directly to a disc.

 

TO CHANGE SATA OPERATION: (You may need to use your keyboard arrow keys and enter key if you can not click to change settings).

After burning the disc, restart the laptop and start tapping f2 or f1 or delete right away to get into the bios. There you should see System Configuration, expand that by clicking the + button (or using your arrow keys and enter key). In that list there should be something called Sata operation. (Sata Operation may also be by itself in that first screen list)

Click on sata operation and take note of the current setting to the right it will probably be set to AHCI it will need to be switched back to this after MHDD is done running. Select ATA, compatibility or ide mode and then click apply. Save and exit the bios, or if apply was the only option you can use Ctrl+Alt+Delete to restart.

COMMON BOOT MENU/BIOS keys: https://support.fixmestick.com/hc/en-us/articles/201577043-How-to-get-to-your-Boot-Menu-or-your-BIOS-settings

 

Now with the burned disc in the drive after a restart, start tapping (F12 Dell, Toshiba, Lenovo), (F9 HP), or (Esc HP, Samsung, Sony) on the keyboard (or change your boot options to boot to cd/dvd first). This will bring up the boot options menu. Select cd/dvd/cd-rw drive and hit enter.

If this worked correctly and booted to mhdd you should see a screen that says Microsoft windows 98 startup menu. You can let the timer run out or just hit enter on option (2 . Start computer without SCSI support).

 

Now you should see a screen with numbers, most of these will not have any device listed behind them but one number should for example on my dell computer number 6 has WDC WD1600BEVT-75A23T0… and at the end a number in white which is the size of the drive.

Example: If your drive is a 500gb I would expect that number in white to be somewhere around 500,107,862,016 or close to. Find the correct drive to test then on the keyboard type the number in front of the drive (in my case it was 6) and then hit enter.

 

Now you should have a screen with MHDD> and a blinking cursor.

Now hit F4 on the keyboard 2 times and this will start scanning the hard drive.

You should be able to see the computer start scanning, each block represents 255 sectors (130560 bytes) on the hard drive. What we are looking for will show up on the right side of the screen.

There is a list on the right which shows numbers:

<3

<10

<50

<150ms

Etc…

 

Anything below the <150ms is a slow sector or a problem sector. Slow sectors <500 or >500 will slow down the computer. If there are a lot of these one after another (several 1000 or more) the drive should probably be replaced. Also if you have any at the end that were marked as UNC this means the drive has uncorrectable errors and the hard drive should probably be replaced.

Basically if you have any sectors that are below <150 (green) let me know and if possible the total number of them.

 

If all of the sectors were ok and fell within the range of:

<3

<10

<50

<150ms

Then the hard drive is ok, if there are only a few that are slow <500 or >500 the hard drive should be ok to use.

 

NOTE: that if there are many slow sectors one after another or you start having error after error the drive is in bad shape and I recommend ending the test. To end the test hit the Esc key.

 

After you are done testing you will need to go back into the bios by restarting the computer and tapping F2, F1, Delete (or whatever key gets you into bios). Go back to Sata Operation and change it back to the default which probably was AHCI.

Then restart and the computer should boot again.

(If you are getting a blue screen and the computer restarts go back into the bios and confirm that Sata Operation is set to what it was before changing it to IDE, ATA, or compatibility).

 

ADVANCED USERS: (USE AT YOUR OWN RISK)

There are options for fixing drives: erase delays and re-map bad blocks, enabling re-map is ok to do for most drives, no data should be lost. DO NOT erase delays if you have not backed up all of your data! These options are available from the F4 menu (only pushing F4 one time from the MHDD> blinking cursor screen.) Use your arrow keys to move up and down to highlight the option and hit enter to open and change the setting. Another useful key to hit at the MHDD blinking cursor screen is F8, this will bring up a drives S.M.A.R.T information.

 

What re-map does: This option if enabled moves available data from a bad block to a good block and disables the bad block by telling the controller to add it to a black list (list of blocks that the drive will not write to). This is a good option for drives that have available free space that have many bad blocks that can cause many problems including: BSOD bug check 0X7A etc. During a scan with re-map enabled a BLUE block after a bad block indicates succesful re-map.

 

 

What erase delays does: This option if enabled will erase blocks (and add them to the black list) that are slower than <500ms, if you have a lot of slow sectors greater than 20% of the total blocks, this is not recommended. If you erase delays on an OS drive or drive with any data, your OS may no longer load, your data may become corrupted. I only recommend this option on a drive that you intend to format and then re-use. Erasing delays can speed up a drive. The logic: 500ms = half a second. Each time windows tries to write or read from that block it takes half a second. Having a file written in 1000 slow blocks at 500ms (each block) would cause that file to take 8.7 minutes to read. 1000 blocks = 124.5 Megabytes. During a scan with erase delays enabled a white W indicates an erased slow sector. Slow sectors >500ms can significantly slow down write/reads depending on the actual read/write time for the block.

 

Frequently asked questions MHDD> http://forum.hddguru.com/viewtopic.php?t=5


Edited by zingo156, 01 April 2014 - 02:23 PM.

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