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Thread: No Drives found

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    No Drives found

    Hi All
    After an abortive attempt to wipe clean a USB flash drive on rebooting my machine I have an error message saying no operating system found. Looking closer at the the screen during the booting process there is a brief glimpse of a message indication no drives found.

    I have a full disk image so can restore but with the absence of any drives being found I am completely stuck.

    Any advice on how to recover?

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    You should boot into the BIOS and see if any drives are being found there. If you not, you have an hardware problem.
    Rui
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    I've tried this but without any success. All drives were working OK but now nothing. Any other ideas?

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    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    Are the drives listed in BIOS or not?

    Jerry

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    Hi,

    I run an IT repair business in Cornwall and I’ve seen this problem a few times, particularly with Vista and Win7. Unless you did something very silly and deleted your OS by mistake I doubt you have actually lost the HD or your operating system on it. Vista and Win7 start up files easily get broken.

    Most likely the BIOS can no longer find where the boot.ini file is to kick Windows into action.

    If you try these suggestions below then on your own head be it - I'm just telling you the sort of thing I try first in this situation.


    I have assumed we’re talking Win7 here but Vista works similarly (but is more erratic).
    Put your Windows7 installation or backup disk in the drive and boot from it at start up. The Windows disk will run a check and give you options. Choose the ‘Startup Repair’ option first. The disk will attempt to repair the start up part of the Windows installation on the HD. Don’t use the System Image Recovery option as it will most likely lose your user data – there are other things to try first.

    Here’s a good tutorial page on how to use the Windows repair options and also download links to the correct disk for your OS if you haven’t got one:
    http://www.techfleece.com/2012/10/18...ally-for-free/

    If Windows starts normally at the next boot, breathe a sigh of relief, go down the pub and treat yourself to a beer.

    If it fails, have another go – I’ve seen it take two runs to get it sorted. Next I think you should have a look with a decent partitioning tool to see if you actually have any partition structure left to repair. Download MiniTool Partition Wizard Bootable CD from: http://www.partitionwizard.com/parti...otable-cd.html

    Go very carefully with this tool – just have a look at what it finds first. Plenty of opportunity to go zapping the lot if you’re not careful! There are some very good tutorials on the Partition Wizard site if you decide to go further.

    As a last resort you could use Partition Wizard to re-write the MBR (Master Boot Record) of the HD and then use the Windows Startup Repair again to try to get the boot.ini firing up. I’ve seen this trick get a system back from the brink but don’t do it unless you know what you are doing!

    Other things to try:

    Download Linux Mint and run it in as a Live DVD demo (runs in RAM). When Mint finally loads it looks and works a bit like WinXP and you can use it to view your Windows partitions via ‘Computer’ – it will even allow you to make a back up of your user data to a USB drive so that you could re-install Windows if you have to.
    It may even be a good idea to do this first of all so that you can get your data off the drive before you dig yourself in any deeper.
    Linux Mint download here: http://www.linuxmint.com/edition.php?id=119

    Finally, a partition recovery is possible via Partition Wizard, but again, don’t do it lightly.

    Let’s just hope the first Windows startup repair pass gets you down the pub before closing.

    Cheers, Chris
    Last edited by Chris Cooper; 2013-04-14 at 12:20.

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    Hi Chris
    Many thanks for your thoughts. My machine is a desktop running Windows 7 (64bit).
    To explain a little more although the machine tries to boot and displays the screen giving me the option to enter BIOS by pressing Delete, nothing happens when I do this. A further screen will allow me to manage boot options but again pressing the appropriate buttons achieves nothing. A message briefly flashes across the screen saying no drives found and then the final message - missing operating system.
    I've downloaded the MiniTool Partition Wizard Bootable CD but again because no drives are found the machine will not boot; same position with Linux Mint.
    I've not yet tried removing my drive and reading it on another machine but this remains an option if all else fails.
    So no beer yet.
    Any other thoughts would be appreciated.

    Regards
    John
    Last edited by jaygee175; 2013-04-14 at 17:18.

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    I think you have an hardware problem. Probably a trip to a repair should is in order.

    Of course, if removing the drive is an option, you can remove it to make sure it is working, but it is unlikely to solve the base issue. It's looking like your motherboard is the cause of your current situation.
    Rui
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    jaygee175 (2013-04-14)

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