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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

TestDisk: saving a lost disk

A friend of mine lost access to his laptop disk. Here’s the tool that saved his day, restoring the partitions table: TestDisk. It’s an open source simple command line utility available on a bunch of OS, and included on LiveCDs distros like GParted LiveCD, Knoppix and Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix.


TestDisk assured access to the partitions, but on this case Windows didn’t bootstrap. Here’s what really saved the day: this was a Windows Server 2008 installation, so no repair is directly available. He had to execute the repair shell from the Windows 2008 DVD:

bootrec.exe /FixMbr
bootrec.exe /FixBoot
bootrec.exe /RebuildBcd

The solution came from http://support.microsoft.com/kb/927392 and http://forums11.itrc.hp.com/service/forums/questionanswer.do?admit=109447626+1242927835089+28353475&threadId=1255163


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