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  1. #1
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    How to recover from HDD failure with Win8 or 8.1

    I have been battling for 2 weeks now.... My Samsung Book8 laptop HDD died on me, leaving me with a real challenge!

    1. How do you get the laptop to boot off either a USB stick, or an external DVD-Rom if the laptop has UEFI Bios?
    2. I have managed to create a bootable original drive using an image from Samsung, but its an early Win8. Windows Update tells me there are 196 updates, which it proceeds to install, and I have now reached a spot where I have 42 updates pending, but each time I restart, or try to install, they fail. I have no way of identifying which one fails, because it rolls ALL of them back.
    3. I know that MS offers a Win8.1 download, but don't have the Key to access it. How do I get the key off the laptop, since there is no sticker?

    I am now getting close to seeing if I can install Linux..... :-(

    Thanks for the guidance

  2. #2
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    All UEFI based machines should allow you to boot form other sources, usually by pressing F11 or F12 on start up. Alternatively press Del on boot to access the set up and change the boot order.

    If you have Win 8 running you should be able to select the Win 8.1 update before other updates. This will remove the need to install Win 8 updates already in 8.1.

    How have you managed to run Windows 8 if you can't boot from an external device?

    cheers, Paul

  3. #3
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    Hi Paul

    I have used another machine with two USB enclosures to clone an Acronis image to the new HDD (actually a new SSD). This did eventually work, and I could at least boot the laptop with the new SSD in the machine. The image was one create dwhen it was in Win8.1 status, with a few programmes installed.

    The image was quite old, around a year old, and after removing the outdated programmes and doing Windows Updates eagerly I was hoping to be up and running quite swiftly. Not to be! Eventually I got stuck on the Windows Update Rollup which simply would not install. The updates would download (all 870Mb) and would install on a restart, but then revert saying updates failed. Reading up, I tried downloading the KB patches and installing manually, with the same result, except this time it tells me that the updates are not appropriate for this computer.

    I then tried another option and downloaded the Drive image from Samsung.... "factory install" This was 130Mb, and used a proprietary install to restore to the original factory Win8 image, with all the bloatware. So.... lets try again! I removed the bloatware, hoping to be able to just jump into Win8.1 - no luck! Windows store tells me that I have to install all the Windows updates before trying to install Win8.1. Which will also mean that I need to install all the Win8.1 updates that failed before.... :-(

    How do I get around these updates that just won't install?

  4. #4
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    You could open a Command Prompt (Admin) and enter -

    dism /online /cleanup-image /startcomponentstore

    followed by dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth

    and then sfc /scannow to see if any errors remain and then retry the WUs if all clear.

  5. #5
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    Yup - I've just read up on that, and tried it. The first run showed that there were things to be restored, which were then fixed. The final run showed that all is in order with no problems!

    Still having the same issue with Updates.... can't even get to Windows 8.1 installation! AAAARG!

  6. #6
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    For no apparent reason........... I have just been able to install 3 Updates that ran fine....??? I am now also allowed to download Windows 8.1! All 3.6GB of it!

    I will leave it running overnight, and let's see if it installs properly. Holding thumbs!

    (I really have no idea why the installs worked.... I tried shutting down, switched off using the power button, and now it seem like it has taken the bait, and allowed me to install Win8.1....

    When Win8.1 installs, could I simply install the Windows Update Rollup? I downloaded KB2919355 Rollup as well as KB2919442 and KB3000850. Should I try to install these, or simply go through the pain of trying to do the windows updates bit by bit (and take another year?)

  7. #7
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    If one of those is for Win 8.1.1 as it was known, then I think you should get that one in - but as they are on a roll, I would take them as is.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul T View Post
    If you have Win 8 running you should be able to select the Win 8.1 update before other updates. This will remove the need to install Win 8 updates already in 8.1.
    cheers, Paul
    Thanks Paul. That's useful to know, as I only have Win 8 installation disks.

  9. #9
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by georgelee View Post
    Thanks Paul. That's useful to know, as I only have Win 8 installation disks.
    This post contains the link and instructions for downloading Windows 8.1 via the Windows 8.1 ISO Media Creation Tool.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
    Unleash Windows

  10. #10
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    OK - final update done! Windows 8.1 now reports that there are no more updates to download! Hooray!

    I did notice that after installing Win8.1, there were only 29 updates to install. This is rather encouraging, since there were 184 to install on Win8 before I was allowed to update to Win8.1 from the Windows Store.

    If the windows updates did not start working, I was going to have to try downloading the Win8.1 ISO as BBearen suggested. I don't know if that would have worked, because the licence installed in the BIOS of my laptop is a Windows 8 Single Language licence. I don't know whether that would have allowed me to install the Win8.1 ISO.... but that will have to wait for the next time!

    I am now going to try to create a new Image of my system as it stands today. Does anyone have any suggestions before I install anything that I probably shouldn't? I was going to install Acronis True Image 2014 (which I have a licence for), to create the image, however since that didn't work this time, I am a little hesitant. The Acronis Clone Drive works perfectly (I used that in the past) but I am a little hesitant to dedicating a specific drive to that type of backup. I would prefer an image of the HDD that I can store somewhere to revert to today's current state. EasUS Backup might be an alternative?

    I might be able to get my machine working again in the next week, installing programmes and copying data - around a month now since the original HDD crash. I can't afford to do this again!

  11. #11
    jwoods
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    Macrium Reflect Free and EaseUS ToDo are two popular freeware disk imaging programs...

    http://www.macrium.com/reflectfree.aspx

    http://www.todo-backup.com/

  12. #12
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photorer View Post
    If the windows updates did not start working, I was going to have to try downloading the Win8.1 ISO as BBearen suggested. I don't know if that would have worked, because the licence installed in the BIOS of my laptop is a Windows 8 Single Language licence.
    Your Windows 8 License is all that you need for that Windows 8.1 ISO (which also includes the Update for 8.1, by the way).
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
    Unleash Windows

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  14. #13
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    Update -
    My laptop is up and running again - eventually! I am copying data overnight to the machine, and still setting up the required software..... You don't realise how much stuff you accumulate (and USE!) until you have to do a clean install! The good part is that you only install what you are really going to use, so hopefully there will be less clutter and a faster machine to use.

    Now the challenge is going to be to re-learn the keyboard and get used to a larger screen again! (I've been using my Lenovo x240 as a backup in the meanwhile!)

    Both machines have now offered Windows 10 to me, so I hope (and pray!) that this update will not mean a complete re-install like I have just done.

  15. #14
    Silver Lounger RolandJS's Avatar
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    I've been using Acronis True Image from v11 to v15. What exactly was the problem? I'd like to learn from you! And, the cause may not have been Acronis, the cause could be related to hard-drive read/write OPs. Like an old commercial used to say: It may not be your fault, but it is your problem.
    "Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee." Ben Franklin revisited.
    http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forum...-Technologies/

  16. #15
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    Acronis is a fantastic product, but when you can't boot from an external device to get into the Acronis environment, you have a problem......

    Once I was able to boot into Acronis, then you are able to restore to the last backup image you made. I had a problem in that my image was corrupt, so could not use it. I also had one that was waaay out of date, so it was a better idea to try and get things straight using a factory restore using Samsung Recovery that sets the machine up to factory condition (Windows 8.0, though!) A whole set up windows updates were required before Win8.1, and then another lot of updates...... that took the time!

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