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Windows 7: Mysteriously All my files are Missing after Windows Update

25 May 2015   #1
burakace

Windows 7 64bit
 
 
Mysteriously All my files are Missing after Windows Update

Experienced but first time experiencing this kind of a problem.

Last Actions before Problem
1- Automatic windows updates are usually turned off, I did quite a few windows updates
2- I then uninstalled google chrome including registry entries using an uninstaller software
3- I then put the laptop to sleep
4- Laptop runs on ac power (no battery), the plug was unplugged causing the laptop to restart windows
5- When the laptop came on, my desktop was empty including the desktop background, all documents, pictures, music, start menu programmes are gone..

Problem - There is now empty space in my drive and all files are gone, they are not hidden either. Have tried software like combofix incase it was malware causing the problem but no luck..

Additional Info - Running windows repair disc at boot finds the windows 8 installed rather than windows 7 and the drive letter is D: rather than C: I wanted to try the 're-install windows files and keep user data' using my laptop's recovery media but that option is inactive!?

Background Info - 1 year ago laptop was upgraded to windows 8 and then downgraded again to windows 7 using windows own upgrade application.

The question is, can it be malware, previous win 8 upgrade or sudden ac power loss which caused the problem?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
25 May 2015   #2
richc46

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 10, Home Clean Install
 
 

Whenever files are deleted, they are just hidden until overwritten. You can get them back with shadow explorer.
Do not use the computer too much until they are restored. The hidden files will be overwritten when the sector is used.
Give this a try
ShadowExplorer.com - About
I do not think that it was malware.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 May 2015   #3
paul1149

Linux Lite 2.8 x64 (full-featured, fast, rock-solid)
 
 

First of all, it's always best - by far - to have a backup of user data. If you can, go in with a Linux boot disk and see what's there and copy it over to an external drive.

I think what happened is all those updates wanted to set the BCD to fire the multi-stage update sequence. But when the computer was unplugged it lost its state because it was stored only in volatile memory. So now something is hosed because the updates are broken.

I would go to the Advanced Boot Options menu (F8 just as windows starts booting) and try "Last Known Good Config" and then System Restore.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

26 May 2015   #4
GokAy

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Nothing in C:/Users ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 May 2015   #5
acooldozen

Windows 7 Ultimate
 
 

Can you boot into SafeMode and restore to a time prior to last Windows updates?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 May 2015   #6
Sir George

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by burakace View Post
Experienced but first time experiencing this kind of a problem.

Last Actions before Problem
1- Automatic windows updates are usually turned off, I did quite a few windows updates
2- I then uninstalled google chrome including registry entries using an uninstaller software
3- I then put the laptop to sleep
4- Laptop runs on ac power (no battery), the plug was unplugged causing the laptop to restart windows
5- When the laptop came on, my desktop was empty including the desktop background, all documents, pictures, music, start menu programmes are gone..

Problem - There is now empty space in my drive and all files are gone, they are not hidden either. Have tried software like combofix incase it was malware causing the problem but no luck..

Additional Info - Running windows repair disc at boot finds the windows 8 installed rather than windows 7 and the drive letter is D: rather than C: I wanted to try the 're-install windows files and keep user data' using my laptop's recovery media but that option is inactive!?

Background Info - 1 year ago laptop was upgraded to windows 8 and then downgraded again to windows 7 using windows own upgrade application.

The question is, can it be malware, previous win 8 upgrade or sudden ac power loss which caused the problem?
See in-line questions:

1- Automatic windows updates are usually turned off, I did quite a few windows updates
(Did you restart the computer after completing the updates?)
2- I then uninstalled google chrome including registry entries using an uninstaller software
(What uninstaller software?)
3- I then put the laptop to sleep
4- Laptop runs on ac power (no battery), the plug was unplugged causing the laptop to restart windows
5- When the laptop came on, my desktop was empty including the desktop background, all documents, pictures, music, start menu programmes are gone.
(Did you monitor the boot process when it was reconnected to AC power?)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 May 2015   #7
gregrocker

 

How did you roll back Windows 8 Upgrade previously?

Browse into your files and search closely for those that are missing using Copy & Paste - in Windows Recovery Console.

If somehow rolled back to 8 as indicated then they may be in a Windows.old folder in C root.

If you can get camera snaps of your C and D root contents it may give us a clue.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Jun 2015   #8
burakace

Windows 7 64bit
 
 

I tried to run shadow explorer but it wont run, even the portable version from a usb will not run!? When I restarted computer and tried to run it again, this time it says files are missing, as if install files were deleted....

So I ran Z-VSSCopy instead which supposed to do the same job, however there are no shadow copies other than ones dated today....is there is a chance shadow explorer would bring up additional copies?



Also please see attached screenshot, it seems like windows is booting into previous win8 install, even though when it boots it is windows 7...


Attached Thumbnails
Mysteriously All my files are Missing after Windows Update-img_6227.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Jun 2015   #9
gregrocker

 

Let us see a screenshot of Disk Management - Post a Screen Capture Image
and the explorer windows for each OS partition.

It may be that the Windows 8 boot files are still booting the Win7 install. We should check if the Win8 install is even still onboard via the screenshot.

Files do not simply disappear except in the rare case of infection hiding them. Unhide.exe - A introduction as to what this program does

Did you check for a windows.old folder?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Jun 2015   #10
burakace

Windows 7 64bit
 
 

I was not able to open disk management by right clicking my computer>manage as it says the directory c:\programdata\.... does not exist so I opened it from \system32

I dont have a windows.old folder

Also as you can see my os is installed in c: but when using a windows repair disk it shows the os installed on d:


Attached Thumbnails
Mysteriously All my files are Missing after Windows Update-img_6229.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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