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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, I got a big problem this time around. I use my laptop for school and work and really need to get it fixed. I am not sure how this happened but I was using Partition Magic to partition my external HD and it told me to restart the computer.

Next thing I know It is telling me windows failed to start and to enter startup repair. So I enter startup repair and it has no OS to repair..and since I have never been to this screen it didn't seem weird. So I end up at System Recovery Options, startup repair restarts but just loops me back here.

I then try System Restore. Which gives me a message "To perform an offline System Restore you must specify which Windows installation you would like to restore." So I enter the dos command and it tells me I have no restore points, which is weird because I have used the feature before.

I then try Complete PC Restore. I get the error "A device attached to the system is not functioning. (0x8007001F)

I try messing around at the command prompt and that is where I think I found the problem. My command prompt is X:\. It doesn't recognize any other drives, so something happened to my C: and my windows installation. This X: drive has a couple folds on it such as dell, Program files, soures, Tools, Users, and Windows. But I can't use it at all to launch windows or restore anything.

The last thing on the list which I really didn't wanna try was Dell Factory Image Restore. But I needed the comp so I went ahead and tried it. It gets about halfway through the first "Reformatting hard drive" bar when it gives me "Error" Its blank except for a big red circle with a white x in the middle. The only option is OK, which loops me back to the system recovery screen.

I tried booting with Vista and XP cd and neither did anything. I figure I have to do something with my hard drive but I don't know what. Someone please help me. I really need this computer up and running tonight.
 

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Ouch! Something went wrong with the partitioning software and did MAJOR damage to your pc. Do this:

1) run an ubuntu live cd and see if it works. If it does, you'll know that it's not hardware failure. Format the drive. If ubuntu won't work, proceed to the next step.

2) Take the hard drive out and place it as a slave drive in another pc. Completely erase the drive and put it back in the dell. Then try the restore.

3) If the restore works, you're good. You'd have learned your lesson about partitioning software. If not.....

...You have a serious problem and must buy a new hard drive. Considering that they're only $75 for a 320gb 7200rpm 2.5" drive, you won't be in deep debt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Ok a couple things

1) I don't have ubuntu but wouldn't my XP and Vista cd work just the same?

2) Can't I just format the drive and install a OS on it? If so how do I go about it?

3)What do I do with the X:?

4) Its a laptop so its not very easy to take apart.
 

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Ok a couple things

1) I don't have ubuntu but wouldn't my XP and Vista cd work just the same?

2) Can't I just format the drive and install a OS on it? If so how do I go about it?

3)What do I do with the X:?

4) Its a laptop so its not very easy to take apart.
There should be a compartment on your laptop for the harddrive and should not require more than a screw or two to access. Read your manual for directions on removal. Buy a 2.5 to 3.5 inch cable converter to connect the hdd to another computer and format it there.

OR

If you have a broadband connection or know someone who does, use their pc to download the ubuntu iso and burn it to disk. Why would you want to do this??

Well, whenever windows won't boot, an ubuntu disc will let you know if the problem is hardware or software.

Don't worry about the X:\ drive, windows does weird stuff like that. A format should take care of all your problems :)
 
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