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Tech Helproom


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windows xp lost files 7 years work on them


Linda Weir

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we lost some files for windows xp. my pc man says he can copy my old hard drive onto a new pc. i have to buy a pc from him (£100 dearer than online) plus set up and copy charges. he says if he rebuilds windows xp i will lose the files. so i can get my old pc rebuilt after the hard drive has been copied in total.

my question is , is this sort of service available now and is it reliable. i'd like to have options other than my usual man because , he is working full time and has lost his car.. i am without a pc and i need my files for my work. I have done rough bits of back up, but could never really do a full back up. i'd like to have a choice of where i can get this done and choose my own pc from whatever is available rather than being stuck to what he offers. linda

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Diemmess

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Could you please say in ordinary terms what you think has happened to the PC? Any lights or strange noises? Is anything at all showing on the screen You might just be able to resurrect your system and the world would seem to be a nice place after all!

Is it a PC or a laptop? Is it a proprietary name brand, if so what make/model is it? Finally, which version of Windows are you using?

If everyone agrees it is dead, the HD may still be OK, but these extra details will aid all those hoping to help without going up the wrong alley.

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lotvic

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and to add to Diemmess's post - it's not hard, once side is off tower, just two cables to pull off the back of Harddrive and four screws to undo. Then put in caddy.

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Diemmess

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I was unable to find a simple step by step story of how to remove the precious HD, needing only a small X-point screwdiver!

To start, do not try any more to boot the PC, you may actually lose some of the files you want to rescue.

The age of your dud computer means it almost certainly has an IDE or ATA hard disk. That doesn't matter until buy the case to hold and hopefully run it like any other extra drive plugged in to a computer that works.

So unplug everything so that you can handle its heavy box and get at it easily on a separate table.

Now look for screws on the left side of the computer as you face it. Really old computers had a variety of screws and things to undo, probably to deter meddlers, but yours will have two or four which will secure either a panel which slides off or (on oldest ones the whole top and sides will be removable).

Hopefully you know what your HD looks like, so remove two plugs from the back of the HD. You will see a similar arrangement to the back of your CD drive. One cable will be a sort of ribbon with many wires in it, the other will have a white plug and red black yellow and white wires. Each may be tight to remove but persist with a firm wriggle. the HD is ready to be removed from the computer. Again there is a variety of ways used by manufacturers to hold the drive in place but your ingenuity and pioneering spirit will find the way yours is secured.

Above all, a friend who has done this is worth everything for support.

If you get this far then I or someone else will take you over buying the USB enclosure/box/case, and fitting your rescued drive inside. Good luck and keep us posted.

If this all works out for you can eventually dispose of the original drive and fit a nice new one to carry copies of your files available on a drive which can be plugged in to another computer as needed.

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howard64

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Hi Linda as a silver surfer who plays around fixing friends and neighbours 'broken' pc's I have helped people with your problem a few times. As previously said by the good people on this site your existing hard drive can be simply and safely removed from your pc. It can then be connected as a 2nd. drive inside another pc or using a caddy to connect to another pc. I prefer to connect it inside another pc myself. I have talked my sister, who lives in Somerset whilest I am near Gatwick airport, through removing a hard drive and carrying out the things you need to do. I have used a free downloaded prog to recover all the files from a hard drive claiming to be unformatted. I am not really sure whether you have established if the hard drive itself is ok and windows is not loading or if the pc itself has died. If you want to have a go I am happy to be on the phone to guide you. Howard.

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Jollyjohn

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Hello again

Having read through the rest of the posts I would go this http://www.maplin.co.uk/usb-2.0-3.5-inch-hard-drive-housing-32139

I would not add your old HDD into your Windows 7 PC initially. Once you have recovered your files I would format the old HDD and with it still in the housing, use it as a backup drive that is then stored away from the computer.

Good luck.

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Nontek

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click here

A picture paints a million words - this should help get you started!

It really is quite easy.

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Fruit Bat /\0/\

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It may be a simple repair install will get your machine going again without loss of data.

However I agree with everyone else, to be sure of getting back what is recoverable better to connect in a caddy or direct to another machine and retrieve data first.

Removing the drive see pictures here

An external case here

fitting the drive in the case here

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Linda Weir

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Diemmess

hi what happened was , my son came backfrom uni and offered to 'sort out ' my files.he left it running ,maybe in the middle of some process. and at midnight, i switched off, without my glasses, i just pushed ok button. next day no boot, missing files. had my pc mender over, he tried to reboot off lots of discs he had but dnothing worked.

he was going to sell me a pc and then copy my hard drive on it, thenput it back in my old pc , which i have insurance for ( I don't think they can ever get your info off adequately)it really is invaluable stuff . i'm an artist dozens of thoushands photos, links , notes and info. all my docs, records addresses. i had bought a go flex one click but could nt' figure out how to work it.so although i've got some back up, i can't really access most of it, espcially as my other pc is windows 7. aparently the operating system is missing essential files. if we reboot, i could lose all my stuff.

unfortunately my pc man is working full time now and has had a car crash so is thin on the ground.

i can't do stuff myself, I was the one who failed to back up adequately and caused one way or another the crash. i also should have bought a back up pc. i need a reliable shop, who can copy my hard drive completely or put the hard drive in a new pc. but if it is windows xp it will have conflicts. old pc is packard bell, 7 years old. i have mastercare insurance on it, but need to find a way to save my contents.

thanks very very much for your reply i realy appreciate the boffins help. linda

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lotvic

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If you already have a 2nd pc "my other pc is windows 7" there is no need to be buying a 3rd one.

In your situation I would simply put the XP harddrive in a usb caddy and plug it into the W7 pc and then explore the contents and copy all your files, photos ect to the W7 harddrive. Hopefully you have not corrupted them by switching off XP when you interrupted whatever the XP was doing.

I am very surprised your 'pc repairman' did not do this for you. It would seem he is more intent on selling you another pc.

The simplest way to backup your personal data is to just copy the files you have made. Copy them to an external Harddrive. Not mysterious at all.

There is also the matter of what you actually have (if anything) on your go flex one click. It's contents ought to be able to be looked at in your W7 pc.

Diemmess and others will no doubt be back to comment and have further advice so wait till then before doing anything.

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Diemmess

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Thank you for the extra information.

As lotvic says there's no need to buy yet another computer to rescue files from a moribund PC.

You can buy simply a powered case for your precious HD and this means removing the HD from your computer and sliding it into the case which has a USB lead to plug in to your second PC, which will be able to read it just as though it is an extra HD.

It should be realised that IF the original HD is itself expired,dead, and not something else, or corrupt Windows the simple way wont work. (still possible to have a professional laboratory work miracles for you but at a serious price).

The first fence for you to jump, is removing the HD from your late lamented PC. Having done that, you will be able to buy the correct HD case (ATA or SATA). Most likely the ATA variety in a PC of senior years.

Sorry, to have to stop here I have to attend to domestic stuff, but tomorrow I'll send a link to suitable how to DIY if someone else dosen't do it first.

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