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Windows 7: Grub boot error 15, file not found

23 Jul 2012   #1
orion64

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 
Grub boot error 15, file not found

I just recently returned from a trip out of town and found when I tried to boot my computer I had a Grub boot error 15, file not found. I've never heard of grub4dos before I began trying to figure out what was wrong with my computer and found that it is used for dual booting. I run windows 7 ultimate x64 and have never dual booted my machine. While my laptop itself is not password protected, I do require a password to get into windows.

My question is can someone get around the required password to install grub4dos, install linux, then copy my hard-drive, leaving it useless when they're done? If not, is there some other way, a virus or trojan, that could cause windows to fail and revert to grub? I did remove my hard-drive, put it into an external case and try to look at it on another computer. In the disk manager it shows that it's healthy, has 465gb avail and the format is RAW.

I really hope that someone out there can tell me how to recover my data and that the problem is something other than some individual hacking my computer.

Thanks.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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23 Jul 2012   #2
kegobeer

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

If someone accessed your computer and installed Grub, then you can bet they poked around and accessed your files. Windows doesn't use Grub, so there's no way it just showed up unless someone installed it. Installing a Linux distro doesn't require your Windows password - they just boot from a CD and install the distro, which includes the Grub bootloader. They can also use a Linux LiveCD to access the entire Windows partition and get pretty much whatever they want from it.

Do you have your Windows 7 installation DVD?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2012   #3
AddRAM

Windows 7 Professional x64 Service Pack 1
 
 

You mention you were away, was the computer with you or not.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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23 Jul 2012   #4
Thorsen

Win7 Home Premium 64x
 
 

Is your computer physically accessible by other people? (i.e in a living room or with roommates). If it is physically accessible, then it can be compromised.

I am a computer tech, but don't know everything. Getting a second opinion is advised.
There are steps to get this fixed below.

You can reset the OS to Win7. How to Fix GRUB Loader Error and Retrieve Your Windows Loader

This can be done from the Advanced boot options: Advanced Boot Options

And repair your computer (option2): System Recovery Options


and the C Prompt commands:

bootrec.exe /fixmbr
bootrec.exe /fixboot

How to use the Bootrec.exe tool in the Windows Recovery Environment to troubleshoot and repair startup issues in Windows

That should fix the boot order

What happens to cause this is that Ubuntu/linux is installed with Grub and then uninstalled. The reason could be malicious to look at data on a partition or purely just wanting to try out Ubuntu and not knowing how to install/uninstall.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2012   #5
Thorsen

Win7 Home Premium 64x
 
 

The only way to lock down a computer so it is not usable by anyone except you is to:

1. Install an encryption program that requires a password on boot like truecrypt:

2. Disable the booting from CD or USB in the BIOS

3. Requiring a password on the BIOS so no one can change the settings for the Drives

This will make it impossible to boot from a liveCD like Ubuntu and if anyone tries to mount your HDD in another computer, it will be encrypted and not accessible. This will also make it very hard to recover your computer if you have problems. You will need to have the BIOS password to re-enable booting from CD's without that, you won't be able to run a repair CD or a new Boot CD to reinstall windows. Now.... you can still reset the BIOS too, but someone who doesn't know much about computers wouldn't know this as readily. The only way to prevent that is to put a physical lock on your computer case.....
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2012   #6
kegobeer

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Thorsen, I don't think there's anything left to recover. There's one single partition, in RAW format, with a grub bootloader. Perhaps it's possible to recover, but I've never been able to get data back from that kind of situation.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2012   #7
Thorsen

Win7 Home Premium 64x
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kegobeer View Post
Thorsen, I don't think there's anything left to recover. There's one single partition, in RAW format, with a grub bootloader. Perhaps it's possible to recover, but I've never been able to get data back from that kind of situation.
oh dam. I didn't see that the first time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2012   #8
Thorsen

Win7 Home Premium 64x
 
 

In this case then, I would give recuva a shot if you can mount the HDD in another computer:

Recuva - Recovery from damaged or formatted disks

Not sure if it can help, but worth mentioning.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2012   #9
kegobeer

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Even if the data can't be recovered, I suggest the OP find the person who did it and have a little come to Jesus meeting with him/her.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2012   #10
Thorsen

Win7 Home Premium 64x
 
 

Time to dust for fingerprints....

How to Dust for Fingerprints | eHow.com
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Grub boot error 15, file not found




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