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Windows 7: Real puzzle here--All recovery methods fail, however...

09 Oct 2013   #11
SandeepP

Winndows 7 32 bit
 
 

Hi SarahThom,

Thanks for your reply. I understand we are sending out the USB recovery key for your system.

You should be able to re-install windows using the recovery USB key. However, please mark the bootable partition as active if you have a bootable disc:

Partition - Mark as Active

If you have an access to a different system you can create a system repair disc to perform the same:

System Repair Disc - Create

Keep us posted with the results so we can advise you further.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
09 Oct 2013   #12
SarahThom

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Hey guys, here's the latest.

The good news: I somehow managed to recovery system to Dell DataSafe original factory image.

The bad news: It did not have all the programs the system had when I first got it. (Yeah, a lot of them are garbage, but some were good and I used them.) Worse, I had no network functionality. All the drivers were missing. So, I decided to just recover to the factory image again and see if it installed everything this time.

The good news: It claimed to successfully recover the factory image again.

The bad news: When it restarted after that, it would not boot into Windows and keeps trying and failing to repair. I even used bootrec to successfully rebuild the BCD. That didn't help.

I was not expecting the USB key to come util Thursday or Friday, but I just looked and it was on my doorstep. So, here's my dilemna--If I could just get the system to boot, I would have all my partitions in tact. I had most of my files backed up, but not all and I have a huge collection of media files. So, even though the USB key recovery process will allow me to save my files to an external HDD, it will take ages and ages again copying them back later.

If I could avoid reformatting the entire HDD and keep my partitions and data in place, I could avoid all that. I'm pretty sure the USB key method does not allow the user to select a partition for the Windows install (annoying--they could have made that an option, no?)

Considering that the Dell Datasafe recovery claims to have restored my computer to the factory settgings and I still can't boot my system, I'm afraid that the same will happen afer using the USB key recovery, only then my partitions will be wiped.

So, any ideas for how I might get the system to boot now?I did already try all of the options suggested here so far. My only question is about marking the bootable partion as active. Apparently I don't know which is the bootable partition. I assume it is either the OS partition or the recovery partition. I have tried marking each as active and neither way allows me to boot into Windows.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Oct 2013   #13
SarahThom

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Update: So, I was able to set the OS partition as active with diskpart and create the boot files there with bootrec in the Dell recovery disk command prompt. Then I run Startup Repair. It runs tests multiple times and reports Startup Repair could not detect a problem. Root cause: "Boot status indicates that the OS booted sucessfully."

Yet, when I try to restart the system, booting from the OS disk, I get the Windows Error Recovery screen. Windows failed to start. Why?! I have done this repeatedly and Startup Repair claims there is no problem and the the OS booted successfully. But when I exit Repair and try to boot the system, it fails every time. This does not make sense, does it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

10 Oct 2013   #14
SandeepP

Winndows 7 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by SarahThom View Post
Update: So, I was able to set the OS partition as active with diskpart and create the boot files there with bootrec in the Dell recovery disk command prompt. Then I run Startup Repair. It runs tests multiple times and reports Startup Repair could not detect a problem. Root cause: "Boot status indicates that the OS booted sucessfully."

Yet, when I try to restart the system, booting from the OS disk, I get the Windows Error Recovery screen. Windows failed to start. Why?! I have done this repeatedly and Startup Repair claims there is no problem and the the OS booted successfully. But when I exit Repair and try to boot the system, it fails every time. This does not make sense, does it?
Hi SarahThom,

Thanks for your reply. It seems to me that something else is wrong rather than only operating system.

Please run a thorough diagnostics on the system using the link below to ensure hardware functionality:

http://dell.to/18xQpRy

Please don't worry about the softwares you can have all the softwares for your system by following the link below:

http://dell.to/18vHplX

Also, if you have two RAM installed on the system then try with one of them individually to check if any of the RAM is causing the issue on the system.

First and foremost please ensure there are no USB devices connected to the system while you are trying to boot from it.

Keep us posted with the results so we can advise you further.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Oct 2013   #15
SarahThom

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Thanks SandeepP, but I have aready run the diagnostics, and shown in my OP, repeatedly and all tests are passed.

As for the RAM idea, unless it's far less tricky than I imagine, I don't want to try opeining this all in one system to remove a ram module.

All I want to do now is get some unsaved photos off of my HDD before letting the USB key destroy my partitions and possibly files. It is a shame that it does not allow me to deselect any of the default files chosen to save. I don't care about my Windows settings or many of the other default-selected ones. ALmost all of the files I do care about are already saved to my external HDD. There are just some recent pix I didn't back up.

I have many, many GBs of files even in the preselected. Dell tech support told me that if my HDD cannot hold all of the selected files, none will be saved.

The Dell USB key does not allow me to have it install to the C drive, but, instead, will wipe my partitions. And it does not allow me to select which files to back up. Dell should add these functions.

When I boot from the recovery CD, and click to search for drivers to install, I can see that all of my drives and partitions are intact. I can even manipulate the files within that limited explorer, but only within one drive at a time. So, there must be a way to move files from one drive to another.

Can anyone here tell me how to do that? If so, I would really appreciate it. Thanks!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Oct 2013   #16
SarahThom

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 
YES!!! Kaspersky Rescue Disk integrated file manager

I knew there had to be a way to save my files! I had an old Kaspersky Rescue Disk. Of course, I can't use the virus scan because it can't update itself because my network adapter can't be found (which I knew from the last time I was able to boot into windows.)

However, the Kaspersky disk has a file manager which is allowing me to copy all my files to my extrenal HDD. Awesome!!




I still can't figure out why I can't boot into Windows. Looking at the C drive with the file manager I can see that all the the boot files are there. There are also boot files on the recovery drive (partition on C drive). And we knew that because of the Start-up repair reports saying the OS had booted successfully. But every time I restart the machine, it goes to the error screen.

I would love to figure this out to avoid having to repartion and reinstall programs, etc. But aside from that, I would just like to know what the heck the problem is. Anyone want to take a stab at it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Oct 2013   #17
SandeepP

Winndows 7 32 bit
 
 

Hi SarahThom,

Its great to hear that you were able to take backup of the important data you had on the system. I believe best would be to do a clean install on the windows wiping all partitions:

Clean Install Windows 7

Once windows is loaded you can check this video to install all the drivers for the system:

Updating Dell Drivers

You can install the supplied software for your system from my dell downloads:

My Dell Downloads

Keep us posted with the results so we can advise you further.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Real puzzle here--All recovery methods fail, however...




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