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This is a discussion on My Documents files gone?? within the Windows XP Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. I went to back up my laptop last night and suddenly noticed that all my files in My Documents have


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Old 06-04-2008, 12:26 PM   #1
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EEK!

I went to back up my laptop last night and suddenly noticed that all my files in My Documents have vanished. Any files that were in seperate folders are still there, but all 'loose' files have gone, including .doc, .jpg, .pdf, .tif files.

This is a huge problem as I have all of my latest academic work, admin letters etc etc that were stored there, and I REALLY need these things, but when I click on My Documents, all I can see are the folders.

I've already tried folder options settings, no luck there. And I definitely didn't 'accidentally' delete them all or anything.

My brother suggested something about restoring an old MBR (boot record or something?), in case windows has just 'lost' their location or something? (I don't really understand that).

I did download a utility called PC INSPECTOR which said it found 850+ lost files on my partition, but every file was exactly the same size, there were no file names, and when I tried to open some with Word it couldn't open them.

The only thing I can think that might have caused this was installing some software over the weekend. I tried to do a system-restore to a date before then, but the restore said it was unsuccessful.

So now I'm lost. Should I continue trying to recover the data using something like PC Inspector, or is there another way to access the files. Surely they must still be there somewhere on the partition??

Thanks!!

Simon.

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Old 06-04-2008, 01:30 PM   #2
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Welcome to TSF....

Have you looked in the recycle bin?

Use My Computer and browse to the My Documents folder to see if they are still listed there?

If running a system restore did not bring them back they may be gone...

I do not know how this works but it might work:

Restoration is an easy to use and straight forward tool to undelete files that were removed from the recycle bin or directly deleted from within Windows Put this on a thumb drive it is a stand alone program that does not get installed on the hard drive.

http://www.snapfiles.com/get/restoration.html

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Old 06-04-2008, 01:37 PM   #3
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Thanks for the welcome

Yes I tried things like the recycle bin, even though I didn't delete any of them. But I could find none of them there.

I will try that programme you suggest there and see if it does better than PCInspector.

I think system restore might restore everything. But every time I try to do a system restore, Windows tells me it has failed to complete the system-restore and reverts everything back.

Why do you think the system restore is not working properly? Is that related to the missing files perhaps?
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Old 06-04-2008, 02:25 PM   #4
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See if the program I gave you works then we will work on restoring the system restore function but that will wipe out any restore points.
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Old 06-04-2008, 04:00 PM   #5
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Thank you so much!! I'd already managed to find a few of the files in the hidden system files RECYCLER bins, but the utility has found all the files, and it's confirmed exactly when they were deleted - the same time I deleted a piece of software to make way for a new one, so maybe it was a badly written uninstaller (the previous software had installed part of itself into mydocuments originally)?

Regarding the System restore, I saw lots of those with the utility as well. I read on another website that sometimes the Anti-virus can interfere with the restore? I'm using Kaspersky and it seems to interfere in everything I do.
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Old 06-04-2008, 06:04 PM   #6
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Here you go get rid of Kaspersky and use this, download this before removing Kaspersky

AVG Anti-Virus Free Edition 8.0

http://free.grisoft.com/ww.download?prd=afe
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Old 06-04-2008, 06:06 PM   #7
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Here is how to re-install system restore

You will need to be able to view hidden files, so go to Start>> Control Panel>> Folder Options>> View tab.
Under Advanced settings, place a check mark in: "Show hidden files and folders".
Then uncheck: "Hide extensions for known file types".
Click Apply, then OK to exit.
Open Windows Explorer, then go to Windows>> inf folder.
Open the inf folder and find a file named:
sr.inf
Right click this file and select "Install" from the resulting menu.
Note: This procedure will delete all restore points from your old installation and recreate a fresh installation of System Restore.
When finished with this reboot the system and try going back into system restore and see if it works.

Clearing Restore Points in Windows ME and XP

One of the best features of Windows ME or XP is the System Restore option, however if a virus infects a computer with this operating system the virus can be backed up in the System Restore folder. Therefore, clearing the restore points is necessary after a virus removal.
To reset your restore points, please note that you will need to log into your computer with an account which has full administrator access. You will know if the account has administrator access because you will be able to see the System Restore tab. If the tab is missing, you are logged in under a limited account.

(winXP)

1. Turn off System Restore.
On the Desktop, right-click My Computer.
Click Properties.
Click the System Restore tab.
Check Turn off System Restore.
Click Apply, and then click OK.
2. Reboot.
3. Turn ON System Restore.
On the Desktop, right-click My Computer.
Click Properties.
Click the System Restore tab.
UN-Check *Turn off System Restore*.
Click Apply, and then click OK.
How to Turn On and Turn Off System Restore in Windows XP
http://support.microsoft.com/default...b;en-us;310405

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