Installing XP on a partition with XP already on it

  Bobly 18:44 08 Nov 06
Locked

I have a laptop on which XP is severely corrupted and won't start up.

-Chkdsk doesn't work
-fixboot and fixmbr don't work
-I can't boot Ubuntu from a live disc

Okay so I'm doing to booting from my XP CD and reinstalling XP. I was hoping XP would detect the current installation and offer to repair it but it doesn't so I'm left with installing XP on my current partitions with XP and all my documents on it.

If I install XP to this partition, will it overwrite my "Documents and Settings" and "Program Files" folders?

It is vital that it doesn't as I have some school work I need at a later date.

Any help much appreciated.
Bobly

  Trackrat 19:09 08 Nov 06

Do a repair install, it works as I have used this guide myself.

click here

  GaT7 19:24 08 Nov 06

Trackrat you missed "..I was hoping XP would detect the current installation and offer to repair it but it doesn't.."

Your only option as I can see it is to install XP on another hard disk (borrow/buy if you haven't one). Then connect the non-working drive & save all your important data to the new hard disk.

If you have to buy, secondhand 10-20Gb hard disks on eBay are not very dear click here. G

  Bobly 19:52 08 Nov 06

It's a laptop and I have an External Hard Drive coming at Christmas... Think I'd be able to install to a USB device? I could maybe convince my parents to mail it over from France... Though this also means they need to have already bought it XD

Back to my main question though:

Will installing XP on a partition that already has XP on it overwrite the folders "Documents and Settings" and "Program Files"?

  GaT7 19:59 08 Nov 06

Will installing XP on a partition that already has XP on it overwrite the folders "Documents and Settings" and "Program Files"? - unfortunately it will. Only a repair-install shouldn't, but it's not guaranteed. G

  GaT7 20:05 08 Nov 06

Apparently booting from a USB hard drive (or sufficiently large pen drive) can be done click here. G

  Bobly 21:52 08 Nov 06

Damn I really wanna avoid writting over these files... What about if I install a Linux OS on the hard drive? That will make it's own folder in C: won't it? or does it need to format a partition? (I was thinking of Ubuntu)

Grrr :(

  GaT7 22:33 08 Nov 06

Yeah, good thinking. It's possible, but not without its risks.

The Windows partition will need to be shrunk/resized (with a partitioning tool like GPartEd or NTFSresize), then Linux installed in the resulting free space (or pre-formatted partition). The problem is that the resize can result in data loss. But if that goes OK & you're able to install Linux successfully, you can copy your data across to Linux from Windows & either burn to removable media or copy to a pen drive.

I'm new to Linux, only recently having set up a dual-boot with it & Windows click here. G

  ed-0 22:46 08 Nov 06

" so I'm left with installing XP on my current partitions with XP "

If you already have separate partitions on the hard drive, then yes, install XP on to that partition. With a bit of luck you should be able to boot from the new installation and recover the files you need.

the my documents and programme files will be intact, if they are readable. Though you will not be able to drag the " programme files " of the corrupt installation, to use on the new installation or burn to disk. Part of the programmes will be embedded into the "C" drive.

If you do not have any partitions, then you are stuck. you would need to boot to windows to install the third party software you need to create a partition with out loosing valuable data.

The safest way is to use an external caddy with another machine. If you were to insert the drive into an caddy, you could use the drive as a slave drive to a good known system. All the data you need could be copied or cloned to that hard drive. This could be then burned to disk or transfered to a newly formatted hard drive, the one you are now using.

Hope that is clear.

  Bobly 23:46 08 Nov 06

Yeah that is clear, I think I might take it down to a shop tomorrow to see if they can identify the problem and make sure it's not a hardware issue and maybe see if my Christmas External Hard Drive can come early, in which case the shop can probably transfer everything to the HDD and then I can just format it... Thanks for your advice

  woodchip 23:55 08 Nov 06

Looks like the Laptop Drive needs sorting on the desktop, By using a Hard Drive caddy. I got one for a £5 at a Computer Fair You can then right click the drive on the desktop and run Check disc. Plus you could first save your files from the drive before you start. I got a Laptop Drive from a Dumpit Site in the same state as yours and did the above, I now have a External USB mini drive 20gb

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