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Saving an HDD from Win 10's clutches...

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#1
Okay so I'm looking for ideas. The last week has been hell. Switched my FX over to Ryzen and Windows 10 decided to go nuts. Critical errors at startup. Nothing would fix it. Part of this was likely due to the wonky system I've had. My Windows 10 was a permissions mess due to it originally dating back to a Vista install. Needed to fresh install but just never had the time. Till now.

So, trying to cut this all short...about $250 later, it's working. Had to actually buy a copy of 10. The one from the free transition was going to be a pain in trying to get M$ to transfer it. Part due to the fact I reinstalled on another HDD. Then lacking an original 7 key that was lost.

But...a 3TB drive with some files I don't really want to lose, which I reinstalled 10 on to start, is now refusing to be accessed. How this happened was I did the reinstall with my SSD cache drive in. Now I had turned off the caching for the hardware update, but on the reinstall, Windows decided to install part of itself onto the cache drive and part onto the 3TB. So the SSD didn't want to be wiped, nothing would work other than putting it into an external and wiping it from another computer.

Unfortunately I didn't realize at the time that the SSD was necessary for the 3TB to boot. So it effectively put me back to square one, only this time, the 3TB couldn't be accessed. Now my original boot drive still can be accessed, just refuses to boot with that error.

So I popped in a new drive to try and sort this all out. The original pops up fine, I transferred stuff over no problem. The 3TB however, doesn't want to do anything. Admin tools sees it, sees there is an OS on it and all the works, but it won't mount it.

At this point I'm thinking, buy an external for a 3.5 drive and see if I can pull the same trick like I did with the SSD. Maybe starting from a USB will resolve it/etc. But if it doesn't work, I don't even know where to go next. Never seen Windows fight me so hard.

I'd like to tell it's Windows installation to switch off and I came across this during the last two days trying out stuff in the command prompt. Surprised I could actually re-enable an old Win 7 installation. But I forgot the commands it took to get there.

So yeah, file scans don't work, rebuilding mbr doesn't work. Just about every prompt trick or check disk doesn't work. The drive is otherwise fine and healthy. Just Windows is preventing it from being accessed. Ideas? I've messed a little with Aomei's disk partition thing but everything that might work, requires the paid version. Hate to spend money on something that will likely be one time use. Although I might because it has something that can turn a GPT drive to MBR without data loss. I'd get my SSD Cache drive back if it works.
 

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#2
Plug your HDD in and boot with a Live Boot CD - Parted Magic. You can then access any content off any drive. Copy the data somewhere else, then wipe the drive and rebuild.

Also a word of advice when installing Windows from fresh:
Unplug any drive you don't intend to install Windows directly on. Otherwise you end up with a mess of boot flags and an OS that won't boot if you replace your data drives.
 
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#3
Unplug any drive you don't intend to install Windows directly on. Otherwise you end up with a mess of boot flags and an OS that won't boot if you replace your data drives.
i can personally attest to this crappy "feature" of win10.... I had a dual boot machine, i removed the Non primary Drive (the second OS) aka, win 7, and then the main OS wouldnt work...I then installed win 7 on a drive by itself, then had to remove my "local storgae" aka, D drive for "reasons", and the OS became un-bootable again....Damn M$.
 
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#4
Yeah I found that out the hard way.

I'll look into that Parted Magic. Thanks!

If that works I'll avoid some hassles. Still gotta look into converting this so my SSD cache can access it.
 
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#5
Alright, used Aomei to get the SSD back and running and Parted allowed me to get off some of my files. However, it's rather unstable software the longer it gets used. Actually had to reset out as it locked up. Then it wouldn't boot again till I started it without the drive attached. No clearing of CMOS would do anything.

Did give me some hope the external enclosure trick will work with it. Probably drop by Fry's tomorrow and grab one meant for big drives. Don't think my 2.5 enclosure has the power. It's an older USB 2.0 model.
 
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#6
That's just first gear!
 
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#7
Surprisingly I got the drive to finally mount with Aomei. Just gives access denied message.
 
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#8
Drive was back to not mounting again today. After getting an external dock for one last hope chance at it, the drive still wouldn't mount. Tried Parted again and it actually worked. Last time I had to load failsafes. Guess why it was so unstable. Today, just loaded regular. Got everything transferred and then wiped the drive. Gonna probably now take me weeks to download my Steam files again but, at last the nightmare is over. So much money wasted thanks to M$. Oh well, the dock thing I got seems a lot handier than the little laptop external I had around, so, should come in handy again on another build. Not a total loss.

Thanks for the help!
 
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#9
Okay so I'm looking for ideas. The last week has been hell. Switched my FX over to Ryzen and Windows 10 decided to go nuts. Critical errors at startup. Nothing would fix it. Part of this was likely due to the wonky system I've had. My Windows 10 was a permissions mess due to it originally dating back to a Vista install. Needed to fresh install but just never had the time. Till now.

So, trying to cut this all short...about $250 later, it's working. Had to actually buy a copy of 10. The one from the free transition was going to be a pain in trying to get M$ to transfer it. Part due to the fact I reinstalled on another HDD. Then lacking an original 7 key that was lost.

But...a 3TB drive with some files I don't really want to lose, which I reinstalled 10 on to start, is now refusing to be accessed. How this happened was I did the reinstall with my SSD cache drive in. Now I had turned off the caching for the hardware update, but on the reinstall, Windows decided to install part of itself onto the cache drive and part onto the 3TB. So the SSD didn't want to be wiped, nothing would work other than putting it into an external and wiping it from another computer.

Unfortunately I didn't realize at the time that the SSD was necessary for the 3TB to boot. So it effectively put me back to square one, only this time, the 3TB couldn't be accessed. Now my original boot drive still can be accessed, just refuses to boot with that error.

So I popped in a new drive to try and sort this all out. The original pops up fine, I transferred stuff over no problem. The 3TB however, doesn't want to do anything. Admin tools sees it, sees there is an OS on it and all the works, but it won't mount it.

At this point I'm thinking, buy an external for a 3.5 drive and see if I can pull the same trick like I did with the SSD. Maybe starting from a USB will resolve it/etc. But if it doesn't work, I don't even know where to go next. Never seen Windows fight me so hard.

I'd like to tell it's Windows installation to switch off and I came across this during the last two days trying out stuff in the command prompt. Surprised I could actually re-enable an old Win 7 installation. But I forgot the commands it took to get there.

So yeah, file scans don't work, rebuilding mbr doesn't work. Just about every prompt trick or check disk doesn't work. The drive is otherwise fine and healthy. Just Windows is preventing it from being accessed. Ideas? I've messed a little with Aomei's disk partition thing but everything that might work, requires the paid version. Hate to spend money on something that will likely be one time use. Although I might because it has something that can turn a GPT drive to MBR without data loss. I'd get my SSD Cache drive back if it works.
So if I am reading this right you had an HHD that was on your FX build and you moved it to a new build with a Ryzen CPU? Your main storage for the OS is on an SSD right?

Quick side note, buy oem windows keys, they are like $25
 
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#10
Got everything transferred and then wiped the drive
Gonna probably now take me weeks to download my Steam files again
Ok so moving on,........ you wiped the drive but, you got :"what".. everything transferred"?
Did the Steam not get transferred?
There are some programs out there to recover files from even formatted drives.
Might look around here at TPU for them threads.
I have used GETDATABACK for years, even on multiple formatted drives, and dead drives fresh from the freezer very excellent program.
There have been a few more [Recuva??]mentioned here in those threads.

Good luck going forward,:toast: it sux when HDD snafus happen :eek:
 
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#11
Windows decided to install part of itself onto the cache drive and part onto the 3TB.
Really?! Dude, I think it's not possible, I never heard that installation files can be stored on two disk, it's either on SSD, or on HDD, never heard on SSD and HDD.

I recommend you to use Windows PE, or install one (in one disk ), then boot PE, to see if it can access the 3tb disk and its important files, if it can, then you shall move or backup files there, and just get them to a safer storage first. Maybe clone a system can make it simpler for you to use Windows 10. Sigh.

And for those words:
"just refuses to boot with that error" what error?
"sees there is an OS on it and all the works, but it won't mount it." why it won't mount? What kind of mount you are referring to?
"turn a GPT drive to MBR"? why? They are different disk formats, how come it shall work for Windows 10 failure? Drop it.
 
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#12
When installing Windows, you don't have to disconnect all drives, just make sure the drive you are installing Windows to is set as the boot drive in your BIOS/UEFI.

Really?! Dude, I think it's not possible, I never heard that installation files can be stored on two disk, it's either on SSD, or on HDD, never heard on SSD and HDD..
It is possible, for instance have the user directory on a different drive, but it is a PITA and can cause headaches.
 
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#13
When installing Windows, you don't have to disconnect all drives, just make sure the drive you are installing Windows to is set as the boot drive in your BIOS/UEFI.
Couple of issues can happen. If you have a data drive connected when installing a system to a drive. Acdently select the wrong drive and erase your data. Also with GPT and UEFI your drive configuration is stored in the boot configuration and if you disconnect a secondary drive you may have boot issues. I've seen this too many time. So just disconnect all other drive and it can't happen. Just a precaution, not required
 
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#14
Frank your missing what has been done, Dude, sigh and Drop what?????
As far as MBR or GPT don't really matter,
see if it can access the 3tb disk and its important files
The 3Tb drive is ALREADY reformatted
Really?! Dude, I think it's not possible, I never heard that installation files can be stored on two disk, it's either on SSD, or on HDD, never heard on SSD and HDD
Otherwise you end up with a mess of boot flags and an OS that won't boot
As a senior member has posted, He had the SSD as a cache drive when the WinX install so that confused it. It can easily mess up the BCD store when there is more than 1 drive active.
Even using Advanced installation it can happen
When installing Windows, you don't have to disconnect all drives, just make sure the drive you are installing Windows to is set as the boot drive in your BIOS/UEFI.
They don't always list order the same as the BIOS Boot selection.
I cant speak to WinX, but for 7 it can still be a hit and miss. Again you must be able to use the Advanced options to make sure you can get to the drive you wish to install on. It can still confuse the BCD store
With some ISO's I have to disconnect my drives connected to SATA III since it needs a 3rd party driver, unless I load the driver before hand.
Also It don't have to be the BIOS boot drive, again using Advanced options you can then select any partition available to install.
With 6 HDD's and sometimes 12+ partitions, you have to know what's where or suffer the pain of recovery o_O
It is always preferred to only have the ONE drive you want to install on to be active...............................................:ohwell:
 
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#15
[
Couple of issues can happen. If you have a data drive connected when installing a system to a drive. Acdently select the wrong drive and erase your data. Also with GPT and UEFI your drive configuration is stored in the boot configuration and if you disconnect a secondary drive you may have boot issues. I've seen this too many time. So just disconnect all other drive and it can't happen. Just a precaution, not required
I have never experienced that, so interesting. But Windows installer does suck for multi-drive computers.
 
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#16
[


I have never experienced that, so interesting. But Windows installer does suck for multi-drive computers.
Like I stated its not necessary, just good practice. Especially if you move drives around a lot
 
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#17
I have never experienced that, so interesting
Then you must have the experience of recognizing what partitions are what.
But Windows installer does suck for multi-drive computers.
After a user get's used to understanding how to use the Advanced install options, and understands how to read the HDD/SSD info that appears in the selection menu it's not really different than if there is just the 1 partition or 15 knowing what the partition size is that where you want to install to is all that is required. It only read's the partition size for the installation menu
Like I stated its not necessary, just good practice
For the less informed or seldom done users, it's the best practice to only have the drive in which they know they want to wipe all data, and install windows.
 
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#18
Then you must have the experience of recognizing what partitions are what.

After a user get's used to understanding how to use the Advanced install options, and understands how to read the HDD/SSD info that appears in the selection menu it's not really different than if there is just the 1 partition or 15 knowing what the partition size is that where you want to install to is all that is required. It only read's the partition size for the installation menu

For the less informed or seldom done users, it's the best practice to only have the drive in which they know they want to wipe all data, and install windows.
The big issue I always ran into, was the error message that windows cannot be installed on the selected hdd/partition or some such error. I could either unplug all the drives I had connected, or set the drive I wanted to install to as the boot drive in my BIOS/UEFI. Yes, that can be confusing when you have drives of the same capacity/type. To be honest, my home has been free of the windows OS for over a year now. The only installs I do now are image deployments over SCCM with simple hardware configurations, lol.
 
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#19
Just name your boot parition\drive "Windows", "Games", "Backup" etc. Easy to pick out the right one.
 

eidairaman1

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#21
Frank your missing what has been done, Dude, sigh and Drop what?????
As far as MBR or GPT don't really matter,

The 3Tb drive is ALREADY reformatted

As a senior member has posted, He had the SSD as a cache drive when the WinX install so that confused it. It can easily mess up the BCD store when there is more than 1 drive active.
Even using Advanced installation it can happen
They don't always list order the same as the BIOS Boot selection.
I cant speak to WinX, but for 7 it can still be a hit and miss. Again you must be able to use the Advanced options to make sure you can get to the drive you wish to install on. It can still confuse the BCD store
With some ISO's I have to disconnect my drives connected to SATA III since it needs a 3rd party driver, unless I load the driver before hand.
Also It don't have to be the BIOS boot drive, again using Advanced options you can then select any partition available to install.
With 6 HDD's and sometimes 12+ partitions, you have to know what's where or suffer the pain of recovery o_O
It is always preferred to only have the ONE drive you want to install on to be active...............................................:ohwell:

Ive seen XP put boot files on the secondary drive, and yes it is a pita,

Best rule is to have other HDDs or storage media such as usb flash and hdds removed before installing Windows, not to mention Service Packs.
 
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#22
error message that windows cannot be installed on the selected hdd/partition
I have that very issue on my Z68, it just don't like to see a dozen partitions, and also some are/were IDE from BIOS. Some reason the limitation of Z68 with ACHI, I had to have 4 as IDE 4 ACHI so I can see all them in Windows. Another issue is the same error if the 2 Marvell SATA3 ports are connected. Obviously all boards are different.

Just name your boot parition\drive "Windows", "Games", "Backup" etc. Easy to pick out the right one.
That can be very useful for veteran installers, but Sometimes some ISO will only read the basic info of drives, ie partition size ,granted it may be older drives so unless a new user had that knowledge before hand to do so[name the partitions] they can end up with the data gone snafu.
Even on mine I have a couple drives that are named, one is 320GbHIT but always shows as 298Gb partition.

As for most visitors whom come in here reading with limited experience, as senior members pointed out it's still best to only have the single drive connected in the installation process.
It really sux when they come back with bad installs and as the OP having a real glitch mess up all his other data and then member's try to scramble to help find a resolution.

It's akin to bricking a GPU, should always inquire first and totally understand the what and why and when to do it before
 

rtwjunkie

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#23
Really?! Dude, I think it's not possible, I never heard that installation files can be stored on two disk, it's either on SSD, or on HDD, never heard on SSD and HDD.
Actually, as many long-time members here can attest, it does happen...a lot more often than we would care for it to. That's why the generally accepted advice is to only install windows with just the OS drive connected. Finish. Shut down, and then connect the others.
 

eidairaman1

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#24
I have that very issue on my Z68, it just don't like to see a dozen partitions, and also some are/were IDE from BIOS. Some reason the limitation of Z68 with ACHI, I had to have 4 as IDE 4 ACHI so I can see all them in Windows. Another issue is the same error if the 2 Marvell SATA3 ports are connected. Obviously all boards are different.


That can be very useful for veteran installers, but Sometimes some ISO will only read the basic info of drives, ie partition size ,granted it may be older drives so unless a new user had that knowledge before hand to do so[name the partitions] they can end up with the data gone snafu.
Even on mine I have a couple drives that are named, one is 320GbHIT but always shows as 298Gb partition.

As for most visitors whom come in here reading with limited experience, as senior members pointed out it's still best to only have the single drive connected in the installation process.
It really sux when they come back with bad installs and as the OP having a real glitch mess up all his other data and then member's try to scramble to help find a resolution.

It's akin to bricking a GPU, should always inquire first and totally understand the what and why and when to do it before
Your drive reads 320Gigabytes but in reality it is 298 Gibibytes, HDD manufacturers always measure in whole numbers, not decimals, where Ram manucaturers always measure by divisibles of 8bits=1 Byte. 1024MebiBytes is 1GibiByte. 4096MebiBytes is 4 Gibibytes.
@FordGT90Concept can explain the conversions better.
 
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#25
Your drive reads 320Gigabytes
Yes, sorry it's the Name that I have for it [320GbHIT ]. It will only show a the partition size in setup, not show the name of it also. Like mentioned earlier using a name "Games" to find the correct drive don't always work.