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  1. #1
    Uranium Lounger
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    Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    A friend just dropped off their tower for me to work on. It is presenting what I believe is a "Unmountable Boot Volume error on boot up and then reboots. I have not been able to see the entire message as it runs by rather quickly before the reboot and then leaves me after the XP splash screen with the startup options window. No matter what I select it runs through the beginnings of a boot sequence, throws up the error and reboots. The error screen is blue with white text and the unmountable Boot Volume line is about mid-page.

    I think the answer is to use the Recovery Console and at the command prompt do a CHKDSK /R but if that doesn't do it, would FIXMBR possibly do any good or more harm ?? I've already pulled the drive and slaved it to my system but was denied access. I could see the drive, but it wouldn't allow me to explore it to save the data.
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Neither the Recovery Console nor FIXMBR should hurt anything. You could not see any of the fiolder structure? This volume was not encrypted was it?

    Joe
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Doc
    I did have success when my system went SNAFU, by following through with some of the possibilities in XP's Little-Known 'Rebuild' Command. It is geared to the boot HD though, not a slaved disk.

    Alan

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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Thanks for the reply Joe.

    I couldn't do anything with the drive but connect it via external cables to a USB port to my system. The drive showed up in both My Computer and Windows Explorer, but when I attempted to open it the hourglass spun for a bit longer than usual and then presented an access denied message. I know there was an error number too, but didn't make a note of it and now the drive is back in the original system.

    AFAIK the drive is not encripted. It's a family PC used by 2 adults and 4 kids. I'll try the Recovery Console and see if I get any joy.
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Thanks for that Alan.

    The drive has been reinstalled in the old system and I'll give the Recovery Console a shot and include some of the ideas in the article you linked to if CHKDSK /R doesn't work.
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    If you get it attached to your system again, can you even right click and select properties? You could take ownership if you can.

    Joe
    Joe

  7. #7
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    OK... I ran CHKDSK /r and got the system back. Then ran Disk Cleanup and installed and ran Perfect Disk 6.0 and then set it for a boot time defrag of the system and page files. Perfect Disk balked on restart and told me to run CHKDSK /r /f c:'. I've run Perfect Disk several times in both smart placemant & defrag only modes and get 395 Metadata fragments each time.

    Is the command Perfect Disk is asking for safe or do I risk losing data ?? Now that I have the system up I don't want to do someting and lose the data before I back it up to external media.
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Doc,
    Good of you to try RC and chkdsk /R. Could it be that you should try it again?

    I've never understood the "CHKDSK /r /f" command, it's not like it will do both /r and /f because both switches are mentioned. But yes, "CHKDSK /r /f" is mentioned a lot on the net, but I don't think we'll see it at MSFT (outside their forums). Perhaps I've missed something.

    A quick /? tells what command includes what, as you know.
    <UL><LI>At the command prompt /r Implies /f.
    <LI>At the RC /r Implies /p.[/list]Description of the Windows XP Recovery Console for advanced users
    "If you specify the /r option, the /p option is implied. When you specify the chkdsk command without arguments, the command checks the current drive with no options in effect."

    So, "CHKDSK /r /f c:", that must mean using the command prompt (or Windows running) since mention of the /f (not used in the RC).

    You ran RC and chkdsk /r and got some results, did you test running it again?

  9. #9
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    If you can get the data backed up, I'd recommend doing that ASAP. Then you can experiment on the drive to your hearts content. I sure seems as though there is a hardware problem.

    Any time you let CHKDSK repair problems you have the opportunity to lose data. You may have issues getting to the data before the CHKDSK repair and have to use some data recovery tool. Once a repair is done and you've got sectors marked as bad I'm not sure how you level of difficulty will have increased for data recovery.

    Joe
    Joe

  10. #10
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Hi Argus,

    I think you are correct that I need to run the CHKDSK command again with at least the /r switch and I'm leaning toward adding the /f switch even though I believe it's implied by /r. A far as what I already know.... when it comes to the command prompt or any DOS commands I am just poking around in the dark. I'm not formally trained and have never taken a computer class. So, I don't know as much as some assume.

    I'm going to follow my instincts and backup the person's data today before I run the CHKDSK command again just to be safe. Thanks for your thoughts. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Joe

    Thanks for confirming my suspicions. I'll try and do an image backup before I go to work on the drive. At the very least copy the documents, music & pictures off.

    What type of hardware problem would you suspect ??? I first thought the drive had quit until I slaved it to my system and could see it. Once I ran CHKDSK /r on it and it came back up I figured it was a software or configuration issue (still do), but I am open to thoughts as to what hardware could be causing this other than the HD itself. Perfect Disk didn't indicate any physical problems with the drive, just system file corruption and configuration. <img src=/S/shrug.gif border=0 alt=shrug width=39 height=15>
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  12. #12
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Things are not going well. I just found out that both optical drive are not working correctly and cannot consistently see a disk in the drive. Will backup to an external drive and copy to CD if necessary. I just wanted to post a screenshot of what Perfect disk is showing me as it begins it's defrag routine. The metadata files at the bottom of the display are what concern me. They remain at 395 fragmented sectors after every defrag. Can anyone determine if there could be some physical issue that is causing this ??
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Could be an intermittent disk controller problem. Could be just a bad spot or two on the disk. Could be an electrical issue with the disk.

    Is this a SMART disk drive? If so, what does the SMART status say?

    Joe
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    Doc,
    Sorry to "intervene".

    "What type of hardware problem ..." etc:

    At MSFT: Unmountable Boot Volume they mention some causes for this error in XP:
    <hr>
    1.The file system is damaged and cannot be mounted.
    2.You use a standard 40-wire connector cable to connect the UDMA drive to the controller instead of the required 80-wire, 40-pin cable.
    3.The basic input/output system (BIOS) settings are configured to force the faster UDMA modes.<hr>
    but I think you have seen that KB.

    Also see this:
    Error Message when you restart your computer or upgrade to Windows XP: "STOP 0x000000ED UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME"

    I agree with Joe, a backup or data recovery (if possible) would be a first. (Wouldn't a defrag make it even harder, if there are errors?). And not installing any programs until a backup or stable and running. Any repair could of course result in lost data, thus the possibility to look with no switch.

  15. #15
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    Re: Unmountable Boot Volume (XP SP2)

    If you have other intermittent problems on the same PC, perhaps you've got a failing power supply.

    Joe
    Joe

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