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Windows 7: I need a little help with this forum

18 May 2012   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 
Unable to repair MBR/BCD/BOOTMGR - Bootrec reports FS not found

((Edit: This thread was in a different section of the forum boards but since it developed further with new data and feedback, most of the accurate information is past the first post. Don't mind the FP :P I will not change anything in it however but this header. Can any mod/admin change the original name of the thread to the one I placed as title for the first post? Thanks in advance.))

Greetings. It might be a silly question to ask here in Offtopic, but since it would be even sillier to ask elsewhere of these well arranged forums (I don't want to tarnish it with my newbie questions), I'll ask here to try to avoid asking on the wrong place

So my question is as follows:

-I have a problem about a corrupted MBR/BCD and missing OS (floating partitions and other strange fauna), on which section of the forums I shall address my questions about these issues?

Forgive me for my bad spelling, I'm not English speaker Thanks for reading.

PS: I love Windows 7 a lot, but I want to understand it better, hence I registered here because this place is awesome


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

18 May 2012   #2

Win7 Home Premium 64x
 
 

You seem to have quite a few problems there. I will notify a mod to move this thread to the appropriate board. I am not sure if this is should be crashes/debugging or Hardware/drivers.

Are you getting BSoD's (blue screen of death) or is your computer completely dead?

Any error messages on startup?

Can you get to BIOS?

Also thank you for filling in Specs.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 May 2012   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Thorsen View Post
You seem to have quite a few problems there. I will notify a mod to move this thread to the appropriate board. I am not sure if this is should be crashes/debugging or Hardware/drivers.

Are you getting BSoD's (blue screen of death) or is your computer completely dead?

Any error messages on startup?

Can you get to BIOS?

Also thank you for filling in Specs.
Err... I would fill you up with information about my problem after knowing where to toss my thread about the issue that is breaking a few heads over here. But since you asked, I'll do a small summary of events (ok it didn't turn out into a small summary ) here until I create a proper thread. Here is how it goes:

-The patient in question is a laptop, a SONY Vaio of those, with less than a few months out of the box, and being used as one of the main systems of invoicing and turnover for the small business ran by my associates. It was working fine and dandy up until this morning...

-When I was having my morning coffee at home I suddenly received a call from one of the "employees" asking me to run to the building because the laptop stopped recognizing the OS (error was "Unable to find Operating System" and pressing any key would make that message to echo over and over and over...).

-Went there, he vaguely explained me the story before this event error (apparently related to connecting and moving the cable while the laptop was running, and an alleged strange message he saw at the screen that made him to blindly press the Power Button plenty of times until it rebooted <<< I don't expect anyone to understand this explanation, I myself couldn't when I was listening to him).


At first I thought it was a typical MBR issue. That was fine since I am used to fix those thanks to the original Windows 7 CDs that I constantly ask the people to keep in a safe with a lock because, you will never know when you will need to use them The problem started after I asked him for the CD of it and he had no idea of where it was. He asked me to fix the problem before the owner (namely the boss of him) returns from a meeting with some customers on the other side of the island. I told him I could use my Windows 7 DVD but that I didn't know if it would work because I didn't know which kind of Windows 7 was installed in that certain laptop (boss' laptop by the way).


I went to BIOS (in a SONY Vaio is F2), flipped boot orders inside it, save it, ran the DVD and I proceeded to enter the WinRE tools
Thing is despite the BIOS recognizes the HDD and even DISKPART says all the partitions are healthy, the OS wasn't recognized at the list that appears after you set up your language before entering WinRE. Puzzled I followed steps here:
Startup Repair - Run 3 Separate Times
DISKPART : At PC Startup
Repair Install
All the links listed here too:
INF file needed for Windows 7 System Recovery Options to see HDD.

The list goes on as I checked other sites while I was with the laptop at the building, and now I'm checking again at home to see if I can repair it at least before Monday.

And, I'm stuck there. Despite I try to rebuild the BCD and MBR it goes to no avail. Currently I'm trying to apply all the options in all partitions:
Part 1 = Vol 3 E: Recovery Hidden NTFS
Part 2 = Vol 1 D: System Rese NTFS
Part 3 = Vol 2 C: ???? Raw

Thrice because one of the topics here says so. There is only one Disk 0 to choose.
Still unlucky to make the OS to pop at the menu, and on reboot it says something as uninformative as "A disk read error occurred, Press Ctrl+Alt+Delete to restart", and that's all I get before returning to run the Windows 7 DVD (the original of this laptop this time).

No BSODs at all (at least the employee didn't mention anything like a splash of blue and white letters before - he never experienced a BSOD in his life! ). My fairly guess is that at the morning the little niece appeared, messed with the laptop of his dad (the boss) and the employee is covering the kid, but be it as it may, the problem persists. It is a very hard nut to crack

Edit: I am believing that despite DISKPART says that C: is healthy, it is not accessible (it even lacks a label when I try to list partitions). On CMD.exe I tried to enter to C: by changing the letter from X: to C: and it says this:
"The volume does not contain a recognized file system.
Please make sure that all required file system drivers are loaded and that the volume is not corrupted."

If the partition is not corrupted, can the volume be corrupted instead and that's why I'm not seeing the OS at the WinRE Options?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


18 May 2012   #4

Win7 Home Premium 64x
 
 

Do you have an external enclosure you could mount the HDD in? or another computer you could put it in?

It might be a failing HDD as you said it was only months into use, it could be a burn-in failure.

or corrupted partition or MBR as you stated. You seem to have done all the troubleshooting issues I would have tried as well.

You could also try to run Ubuntu from a disk to make sure all other computer components are working properly.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 May 2012   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Thorsen View Post
Do you have an external enclosure you could mount the HDD in? or another computer you could put it in?

It might be a failing HDD as you said it was only months into use, it could be a burn-in failure.

or corrupted partition or MBR as you stated. You seem to have done all the troubleshooting issues I would have tried as well.

You could also try to run Ubuntu from a disk to make sure all other computer components are working properly.
Hmm, that's tricky, I would gladly dissect this laptop to check out the HDD in one of my sATA coffers but I can't do that without permission, and that will void the warranty of the Vaio (and the boss will behead me afterwards).

If apparently the HDD got damaged, I would expect BIOS to be unable to detect the device but it still does. I can check all its partitions and enter in all them but C: (which remains unlabelled, I suppose due to that corruption).
I used sfc /scannow but says:
"There is a system repair pending which requires reboot to complete. Restart Windows and run sfc again."
If I follow that and run sfc again it echoes the same. That's a dead end.

I must say that I currently switched the active partition to D: which contains the label System Reserve, all the rest are inactive (DISKPART).

Startup Repair drops these errors:
Quote:
Startup Repair cannot repair this computer automatically.
Sending more information can help Microsoft create solutions.
-> Send information about this problem (will click this since the laptop has online access)
-> Don't send

V Show problem details
Problem signature:
Problem Event Name: StartupRepairOffline
Problem Signature 01: 6.1.7600.16385
""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""
Problem Signature 03: Unknown
Problem Signature 04: -1
Problem Signature 05: ExternalMedia
Problem Signature 06: 1
Problem Signature 07: MissingBootManager
OS Version: 6.1.7601.2.1.0.256.1
Locale ID: 1033
Privacy statement blah blah blah
Quote:
View diagnostic and repair details log
Number of repair attempts: 1
Session details:
System Disk = \Device\Harddisk0
Windows directory =
AutoChk Run = 0
Number of root causes = 1

Test Performed:
Check Updates (passed)
System Disk test (passed)
Disk Failure Diagnosis (passed)
Disk Metadata Test (passed)
Root cause found:
Boot manager is missing or corrupt.
Repair action: File Repair
Result: Failed. Error code = 0x15
Time taken = 0
I notice that last test lasted for 0 ms... This I think would mean it never ran that test, or tried to attempt to do it but it never loaded. I don't know what it means so far, apparently the HDD is healthy but that volume is not. Puzzling.

I'm still with System Reserve set as active. A full reinstall, despite being the easy way is out of question because the boss have sensible programs installed there that (I wish he would listen to me) cannot reinstall again unless he pays again a hefty amount of money to a person that installed that program a couple of weeks ago...

We need to work around trying to make that volume readeable and cooperative to make Windows 7 to take flight. It will be hard but I don't think it is impossible to do

Edit: OH, I forgot to mention, I already ran Hiren's Tool Mini-XP and my Slax (both USB boot). What should I check from there?
Edit 2: I retrieved the DVD from this laptop, is a Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 too. The POST says:
BOOTMGR is missing
Press CTRL + ALT + Del to restart

(that's an improvement from the message:
"The volume does not contain a recognized file system.
Please make sure that all required file system drivers are loaded and that the volume is not corrupted."
)
EDIT 3: **censored** he gave me the WRONG DVD! This one is from the server desktop from the other office. BRB, need to call him and ask this guy to give me the friggen DVD of this laptop (IF he asked the shop for it; all vendors must give those CDs/DVDs for free bundled with the new laptops, right? *facepalm and strange urge to strangle certain person rising*)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 May 2012   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Hmm... I talked to the owner about the ordeal and he searched thoroughly from bow to aft to only find a plastic bag with user manuals for the Sony Vaio. Apparently Sony doesn't include any recovery CDs/DVDs but a partition called "Recovery", which my DISKPART research found on E: and in hidden mode.

I followed the instructions of those manuals, they say to open Vaio Care Rescue by pressing F10, I did and the same error prompt like this one image appears:


I follow the other instructions saying to press Assist Button while the laptop is powered off and the same error appears.


I don't think I will have any access to the "Recovery" partition any time soon (at least not by following what it is written on the user manual). I suppose I will need to access to cmd.exe from anything, maybe from my Slax or my Hiren's to fix all this.

I have one question though, does it matter if I use a different Windows 7 DVD to access to the WinRE Tools? Since this laptop lacks its own, I thought I could use mine again to fix things, but I'm not sure since I don't know which Windows 7 is on this laptop and I don't know if using a different Windows 7 DVD will be advisable

PS: At this rate I wish I asked my FP question in a different section of these forums. Please move this one or address me to the proper section before I break something by accident
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 May 2012   #7

Microsoft Windows 8.1 Pro 64-bit
 
 

You can use the same Win dvd for repair or recovery, ie Windows 7 32bit ultimate for same installed OS; it won't work if you try a different DVD.

Why don't you just send it back and get it repaired/brand new?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 May 2012   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Hmm I see the thread hasn't moved to a different section yet.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DustSailor View Post
You can use the same Win dvd for repair or recovery, ie Windows 7 32bit ultimate for same installed OS; it won't work if you try a different DVD.

Why don't you just send it back and get it repaired/brand new?
Thanks for answering my question. I am afraid that since I used 2 different DVDs to access the WinRE several times, probably both might have corrupted already something (if that's the effect of using a different DVD installation of Windows 7 - if not, I want to know the effects of it to see if part of the blame is derived from using those DVDs for fixing the MBR and such :P ).

On the other hand, I would gladly send the Vaio to Sony but they will just wipe the HDD clean and reinstall Windows 7, a thing I can do perfectly at home with my Windows 7 Enterprise DVD. The thing is to fix the current Windows 7 installation so that it can boot, and apparently I must also need to fix the volume C: if the thing is corrupted (if that part has a fix; if not, I can reinstall Windows from scratch since I can't virtually access any of the data stored inside that C: if it is corrupted and I will not be able to backup everything from it ).

Anyway, 2nd day of repair. I'll look around trying to fix the corrupted volume C: and fix the MBR by forcing the code into it from command prompt. I like challenges If I manage to fix everything that way, I'll make you know because I'm sure it will help other people in the future with the same problem

PS: Move thread please, I'm a little in shame here

Edit: Thanks for moving the thread to a better location Right now I'm making use of Partition Wizard to fix the volume C: that morphed from NTFS to RAW by an unlucky series of unknown events. I managed to turn it into a NTFS one now, but I'm doing some surface analysis first to spot inconsistencies just in case it will not work if I reboot straight away I can access the old data in C: by the way, don't think I formatted it from RAW to NTFS. Partition Wizard fixed the error for me.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 May 2012   #9

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Now it says:
"BOOTMGR is missing. Press CTRL + ALT + DEL to restart."

I'm prying further little by little as the hours passes

One question. I managed to know that this Vaio uses Windows 7 Home Premium, but it doesn't states if it is 32bits or 64bits. I have my original DVD of my own for Windows 7 HP but it is 64bits. My question is, will it matter if I use this DVD to access the Windows Recovery tools even if it is for a 64bits version? (chances are 50%~50% that the Vaio is either 32bits or 64bits).


Edit: Accessed DISKPART from F10 before language selection. I gave a look at the current partitions that WinRE observes:
Part 1 - Vol 1 - C: - System Reserve - NTFS - 100 MB Active (Principal type)
Part 2 - Vol 2 - D: - ??????????????? - NTFS - 582 GB Inactive (Logical type)
Part 0 - No Volume - 582 GB Inactive (Extended type)

Tried by switching the active partitions from C: to D: It gave me the following error at trying to activate D:
"Virtual Disk Service Error: the specified partition type is not valid for this operation."

Beating blindly with the cane to see if I reach the solution to the problem. Further research ensues.

Edit2: A bootrec /scanOS says that D:\Windows is a verified windows installation If so, why all this BOOTMGR missing issue?

Edit3 Third question. I was wondering if I should try to change the logical partition in Vol 2 to a primary one. I don't know if that will fix anything, just thinking that because it is a logical drive I am not able to mark that one as active. Will that change wipe all the data inside D: ?

Edit4: Nevermind, I found myself the answer to question 3. I used Partition Wizard once more from my Hiren's Boot USB, it was a safe bet and now my Logical turned into Primary with no data loss. Now my partitions in DISKPART looks as follows:
Part 1 - Vol 1 - C: - System Reserve - NTFS - 100 MB Active (Principal type)
Part 2 - Vol 2 - D: - ??????????????? - NTFS - 582 GB Unactive (Principal type)

I switched D: to active... What I don't know if I should switch off C: too but since it is a System Reserve, I think I will leave it active for now. Now rebooting to see if it works or if different error messages appear.

Edit 5: (and hopefully the last one) BOOTMGR is still marked as missing, with or without C: active or not. My guess is to fix it with a proper Windows 7 build... but I don't know if it is 32bits or 64bits... Will try with both after I get my hands at a 32bits one. Fins tomorrow I guess.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 May 2012   #10
Microsoft MVP

 

Work through these steps for Troubleshooting Windows 7 Failure to Boot.

Note that the 100mb System Reserved boot partition or Windows 7 partition must be marked Active for WinRe to know where to repair or rewrite the System boot files. The tutorial shows how to try both, disinfect first, test System Files, try System Restore, or if necessary copy out your files to clean reinstall or run Recovery.

If your OS HD went RAW then the data is unrecoverable and you should test the HD as given, possibly replace it. Your laptop is covered by a one year parts and support warranty.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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