Possible Losses

This road trip is coming to an end. Sara and I are in New York City for a few days before heading on to drop the car off in Maine. We’ve amassed what must be some hundred over a thousand pictures from the trip, but I’m afraid only a handful will last.

I’ve spent today troubleshooting my HP Pavillion laptop computer after it and Windows XP crashed last night. It died in a sudden death shutdown (a symptom of overheating, which I had noticed getting worse for a while) and wouldn’t start up—not even in safe mode. It hung (froze) on atisgkaf.sys and wouldn’t load any more drivers during the boot process.

I’ve been using the MicroSoft Recovery Console™ from the original installation CD to attempt to recover a previous restore point as described in the linked article. At first things seemed hopeful. After deleting the appropriate files in c:\windows\system32\config, the computer booted into Windows. But only for a few minutes before experiencing sudden death shutdown again.

Unfortunately, a few more attemps yielded no further success until finally running chkdsk from the Recovery Console yielded this depressing message.

The volume appears to contain one or more unrecoverable problems.

This message usually appears when there is a hardware problem such as, I’m afraid, a (physical) hard drive failure. Ultimately, this means that all those pictures from the road trip I’ve just been on for the past two and a half months might be lost for good. And that is depressing.

However, after yet another reboot into the Recovery Console, chkdsk /r is reporting the following hope-inspiring message:

CHKDSK is checking the volume...
29% completed.

So, I guess we’ll see.

5 replies on “Possible Losses”

  1. i’m by no means a computer expert but i’m pretty good with hardware at this point. my laptop had three hard drive failures earlier this year, and my advice to you is that with windows it’s usually only a section of the hard drive that’s failed and therefore refuses to boot up windows. a big percentage of the time you can recover your data on the remaining good sectors. if you know anyone who has an enclosure and can recover the data you’re set–they charge a fortune at pc repair places.

  2. Your computer is in good hands now, and chances are that we’ll retrieve everything. We will know on Monday.
    Be well , Love and miss you. Aba

  3. GREAT NEWS – Of all the files you cared about, especially the road trip photos, EVERYTHING is safe, and backed up. AND, it seems that NOTHING else is lost. So Rejoice!!!!

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