John Walker's Electronic House

Partition Magic

by on Oct.03, 2005, under The Rest

Once again, it’s that time of year where a hard drive dies, and I lose all my music, video and comedy.

Yes, yes, you’d imagine someone who experiences this so frequently would learn to back things up, but that’s what they want you to do. The Man isn’t going to get me that easy.

It all began with installing Linux, and whether the two are possibly connected is still up for debate, but either way, at least I have it to access the internet and be able to work. The drive that’s gone bonkers had Windows on it, as well as my media.

Someone out there might know something about this: one of the partitions on the broken drive still seems to exist, the other two gone. One of those two held Windows. If one bit’s working, it makes me wonder if it all really is, but something’s gone very wrong with the labels. It’s beyond the minds of those around me. If anyone knows anything about fixing such stuff, please let me know.

The short of it is, for the moment, Brian is on holiday until I’ve figured out the software to create him from here, or got Windows back.

5 Comments for this entry

  • antichaos

    Sounds very much like Linux has overwritten the Master Boot Record. I’m sure the same thing happened to me a few years ago. I think I was able to get everything back without completely reinstalling. ……

    ok. the gist is you can use your winXP cd to get to the recovery console and then do fixmbr to restore the windows boot record. This should let you back into windows, but not linux. You can then use your linux install cds to re-install a bootloader (which will give you access to both), taking a little more care than you did the first time.

    Before you do anything though you need to confirm the diagnosis, which means details on what linux you installed and what partition/bootloading options you selected.

  • admin

    It’s Kubuntu, and the booter is Grub.

  • KM

    No Brian?! NOOOOOO!!

  • Defragged

    If it was the MBR that got nuked, you should be able to use the recovery console thing on the windows CD to write it back). I’ve never been able to get the console to detect my hard-drives though. Try burning with a different PC and running either MBR tool or MBR fix. Last time I did this, I think just sticking a default “Boot from first sector of first partition” got windows back.

    I then used system recovery CD ( and qt_parted on that disk to put my partitions back to normal and forget about this silly linux thing :p

  • rodti

    Go into XP Recovery Console. If you can actually access the C: drive (assuming your XP parition is C:) then do ‘fixmbr’ and ‘fixboot’ in there. This should fix everything. If the C: drive appears to be missing download Active Partition Recovery. It’s a beauty.

    Email me if you need more help.