Hard Drive Basics and Beyond Part3
Have your Windows CD handy as it will
ask you to place it in the tray.
driver saver tool to avoid all that cruising the internet for the
motherboard drivers your computer came with. This will save you from
hours of frustration and fix any lost drivers that windows or malware
have destroyed or corrupted. I use (Driver Backup 22.214.171.124) Which is
available at Cnet's download.com. Copy the files you save to a
flash drive or CD and you will never regret it!
The DEAD Hard
Drive! Or is it?
If all else has failed and Windows no longer
starts up as it should, you will have ended up here in the Uh Oh
By now your local PC shop has told you that you have a
virus and you need to format your hard drive because they are too
incompetent and lack the skill and education to remove the virus with
a standard Antivirus that any moron can buy at the local Costco,
Walmart Target store or mall.
You didn't think they actually
used anything you can't buy yourself did you?
The sad fact
here is, that most people can do everything most every PC repair shop
does on a daily basis in their own home with very little effort. Most
PC shops simply Start your PC and if it won't start Windows properly,
they will tell you that a hard drive wipe or (Format) is the only
way to save your computer.
Nothing could be further from
Using the basic methods I have described above you
can solve most of these problems yourself.
If you have a virus,
just refer to my Article titled (Virus Facts and FYI).
that almost no PC shop will care one iota about your personal data,
or how long it took you to scan those family photos you use as a
screensaver, or the Long reports you wrote for the Boss, or that
novel you have been working on for the past 3 years.
some exceptions of course, and there are some genuine Computer Techs
who will go that extra mile just to see you smile. But most of these
guys have messy hair, work at home or smell like last nights Pizza.
These guys are the ones you want. Not all of them are as wise as they
should be, and some have Ego's the size of Dallas, while others will
unscrupulously swap parts with your PC to upgrade their own PC hoping
you will never find out. I know of a large computer firm near me that
does this routinely and they have the whole town fooled.
they DO exist, and have a head full of knowledge that will benefit
you tremendously should you find the right one. So if you feel
inadequate to use the steps provided so far, find a guy that has no
shop, but everybody knows and trusts with their PC,
the dead drive, (sorry I wandered)
So here you are with a hard
drive that no longer boots or runs windows.
What about your data?
You can save that with a USB to IDE/SATA connector.
device usually sells for under $20 and can be attached to any hard
drive you care to place on it except for the SCSI variety.
this device, you will need to:
1. Remove your hard drive from
2. Find a PC with enough free hard drive space to store
your data on.
3. Scan the drive for viruses and malware with this
4. Scandisk and Defrag it to speed up data transfer and
How do I know where to find the files I want
Here is what you need to do first:
1, In XP go to
(Tools), then (Folder Options) then (View) and uncheck anything that
2. Then go to (My Computer) and open your main drive,
3. Open a folder called (Documents and Settings)
Look for a folder with your Login name and open it.
5. Do not drag
these folders to your computer (Application Data, Cookies, My Recent
Documents, NetHood, PrintHood, SendTo, Start Menu,
Windows) as these will be useless on your newly formatted drive. If
you have to format! and we really DON'T want to do that!
a new folder on the desktop of this other PC and call it anything you
want and drag the rest of the folders there.
Take care to not
delete or move any of these folders since we will be trying to
restore your computer to as close to the pre-crash state as we can
without losing data. If all goes well, your desktop will look the
same, your (My Documents) folder will be intact, and most, if not all
of your original programs will run as they did before your PC
Now you have a backup copy of your crucial files and
can safely try to revover your hard drive and windows
What if I use Outlook or Outlook Express!
will only work if you can still access windows)
This is usually
only a problem on PC's where the email client is based on the ISP's
settings and local mail delivery system. Saving your Emails is as
easy as clicking one email item, going to the Edit tab and selecting
all, then copy and past the selected Emails to the folder of your
Choice, Obviously you should name it My Email or some such thing. Do
the same for any Folders you created with your email client by
opening them, select all, then copy and paste. When your new windows
installation finishes (if you end up reinstalling) Simply drag and
drop them right into the email clients inbox window and you'll be
good as new.
Now you can reinstall your hard drive to your
original computer and begin the data recovery, or reinstallation
process. This will require you to use your original Windows CD and
On To The Real Fun Now !!
# Boot the
computer using the XP CD. You may need to change the boot order in
the system BIOS so the CD boots before the hard drive. Check your
system documentation for steps to access the BIOS and change the boot
on Mar 16, 2010 | PC Desktops