Okay Fellow Techies I need help and desparately

I am on a sabatical (sp) from the SD but if there is any place I can rely on to get help from my fellow techs, the SD is the place.

Currently I am using my old 233 to access the net…bad, bad, bad, but thankful I have this puppy to get me up and running at less than half of what I am used to.

Anyhow, I am in dire straights, a lot of data at stake, mainly emails that I need to salvage.

Here’s the scoop.

Rather than fdisking my hard drive I used PartionMagic to partition my hard drive into three partitions. It all worked well I was able to install Windows 2000 on one of the partitions no problem.

My stupid tech thinking is, if there is a problem I can work through it so I didn’t make any boot up disks through PartionMagic. Okay cool, I have some data that will be sorely missed if I loose it but I am willing to take the risk.

Well you know what? I really f**ked this up as I can’t access any of the partions except for the most non-crucial partion that only has Windows 2000 drivers on it. The problem stems from BootMagic and it’s not finding a particular file (can’t remember at this time which file it is) so it will boot even into Win 2000. I forgot to add Win98 as a boot option.

I tried the two Win 95 start up disks, they only recognize my “E” drive which is recognizing as my “C” Drive. It only has Win 2000 drivers on it, nothing else. It is not recgonizing the main C drive, my Win 98 drive or the G drive which is my Win2000 drive.

In short order, I can’t even get Win2000 (with a boot to my CD ROM drive) to come up. Nothing is working.

I started this machine with Win98…but it’s an upgrade of Win95 in that I didn’t load Win95 first, I just used the Win95 CD I have to acknowledge it’s existance.

I know I messed up with not going about the stupid requirements of PartionMagic’s creating a boot disk but I have never, ever had a problem with a utilities software fking me up this bad. Now I am really fcked up and need some guidance.

I can tolerate loosing my data, that’s not the end of the world but I will not tolerate not being able to even load an OS via a floppy drive. Oh wait, I forgot state what the error was. With the Win95 disks I have it comes up with an “I/O error, insert disk and hit enter”.

I 'spose I could download the Windows NT 4.0 driver for my hard disks and see if that will get me to the point of an operational computer…but if there is an easier solution I would love to hear it.

Your help in this matter is appreciated. I would rather not loose my data but if you can’t even boot your system up it’s a pretty dire situation when you run your business out of your home, you are a network consultant and feel as though all your options are lost.

I assume I can’t find a resolve because it’s my computer and been dealing with major bullshit OS problems all day…I should have waited till I was more in tuned to my instincts.

Please, your help or experience in this matter is appreciated.

Option #1: I would install win 2000 to the partion that you are able to access. Win 2000 will probably allow you to see the other partitions. (NT can read NTFS partitions and fat partitions.)

Option #2: (Try this first) Use fdisk to change the boot partition. This may work but I’m not sure what partion magic does to the MBR. You may then be able to boot to that partition. After you recover your files, format and rebuild your computer.

Advice: Buy a zip drive / cdr / tape drive and store important data off of your computer. Always have the attitude that your computer will die after you turn it off. The back up blues really suck. I suggest you avoid them in the future.

“The problem stems from BootMagic and it’s not finding a particular file (can’t remember at this time which file it is) so it will boot even into Win 2000.”

I assume you mean that it will not boot? I’m confused.

I haven’t run into this one before, but have you tried booting to the Win2K Recovery Console and copying the file that BootMagic can’t find from the installation media to the proper directory? If you haven’t already installed the Recovery Console, then you can start it by beginning to reinstall Win2K and choosing to repair the current installation. Type help to get a list of available commands; copy and expand functions are both supported.

:biting tongue to keep from advising performing backups or creating repair disks in future:

Good luck. This kind of thing really bites.

[ransacking the staffs of the FBI, the CIA, the Pentagon, Special Services, the Gray Men, the Moon Men, the Illuminati, and Bill Gates’ private tech team for talent, bundling them all into a bigass RV (at gunpoint if necessary) and driving them all over to where you are, stopping off at Kroger for their entire inventory of Chee-tohs and Dr. Pepper…]

Is there no option on W2K to repair a boot sector? Then you could use the W2K boot loader instead of BootMagic, and should be able to see everything.

Is there a reason you can’t do this?

Assuming your crucial data was stored in a FAT volume, just remove the entire hard drive, cart it over to your trusty Macintosh, swap out the Mac HD for the PC HD, boot from CD. Copy the files you want to keep to Zip cartridge or other removable media. Shut down, return hard drives to original location, start over with the formatting and partitioning of PC hard drive.

here’s what I would do… make a 98 startup disk from another system if possible. find smartdrv.exe and put it on this disk. boot to it, run smartdrv, then switch to the cdrom /i386 dir on your win2000 cd. run ‘winnt.exe’. that way you don’t have to make the ultra-slow 2000 startup disks, you can install 2000 on the partition that you can see, and hopefully 2000 will let you see what’s on the others, and if not you can repartition them from the disk manager in 2000.

Hope the mods don’t mind, but I help out on a site here, and if you have specific problems someone there can probably answer the question.

If you have partition magic installed on another machine, then remove the troublesome hard drive and put it on the working machine as a secondary drive. You can then use partition magic to repair/undo the damage to the troublesome drive and bring it back to life.

Well, first I would get into CMOS & I would select to ‘load defaults’ as you might not have reset the NVRAM. This lets it boot from floppy again. I might get a boot disk from, kinda cute, bootdisk.com just in case & try those.

I wrote:

Uh…somehow or other I got the idea that you had computers of both species. Then later on (after I had posted) I started to doubt my memory. I just did a search for “Macintosh” and “techchick” and don’t see any confirmation of that in the threads of the search results. I was not intending to start another “Why didnja get a Mac, silly PC person” hijack or anything, my apologies.

Would reinstalling/rerunning Partition Magic help? It sounds like you PM’d OK, but installing Win2k nuked something. This is a typical Microsoft problem - assume you are the only OS in the universe and nuke all others.

I used to have this problem with System Commander - not quite as intensive ans Partition Magic, but the same idea - windows would nuke SC’s boot data, but SC was used to this - the solution was to run a simple installer that would unnuke itself. It was called ‘scin’ or something like that, and I copied it to every partition I had in case something went wrong.

If PM has something similar, like ‘reinstall boot magic’ or something it may be able to find all the partitions and redecipher it all.

Good luck…

I’m surprised nobody’s mentioned DOS…
I still love going into DOS, there’s so much that you can work around Windows in DOS, especially being able to see every volume, every file.
Do you know DOS well enough techchick68? If you do, you can reinstall any drivers you need to in DOS, and set up your BIOS like handy suggests…

Hope some of us helped :wink:

Thanks for all the suggestions all.

What happened is this:

Installed Partition Magic rather than fdisking and starting from scratch (BIG MISTAKE).

Mr Win98 partition is not being recognized as a DOS partition. I don’t understand how a program could do that but when I launched fdisk to see what the partitions are listed as, that’s what was happening.

In Boot Magic, it couldn’t find the NT loader file. So, I reinstalled Win2K and am working off it as I speak.

Through Partition Magic I was able to get the Win98 partition in view and transferred all my data over to the data partition I created last night.

I am praying that I don’t have to recreate my Win98 stuff and I am not sure if all my programs will work within Win2K.

What a DAY!

Moral to remember,

“Never use a third party program to partition”

Partion Magic is a utility I couldn’t do with out anymore. Version 5.1 and below doesn’t work correct on Win Me or on hard drives with the 66 IDE interface. Boot Magic with this version doesn’t work right with 66 IDE hard drives.

Partition Magic 6.0 and it’s accompaning Boot Magic work great.

“fdisk/ mbr” will work with drives where the first primary partion is Win 98 or 95. It will remove the boot magic from the master boot record. The first primary partition should now boot.

Does anyone know how I can recover the partition to be a DOS recognized partition?

I have searched their site, blech nothing clicks with me.

Like I said earlier my particular concern is my email. If I can get my new install to recognize my pst files I will be happy but then again Outlook is funky sometimes. I forget how I got my old Oulook files to be recognized in my new system.

Well poo, this leaves me very discouraged and frustrated. I will call their tech support dept. tomorrow but if they put a software product on the market, they better damn well ensure that the partitions are DOS when installing it on a Win9x and Win2000 system, that’s a load of crapola.