Windows Vista - Automated Repair Errors using Recovery Disk

#1
Hi, I've run into some trouble when trying to use the Recovery Disk. It boots to the Recovery options, and I've been able to copy all of my essential files to a thumb drive. But when I try to use the automated repair function, I get the following message: "The selected partition does not contain a valid windows installation. You've either selected a data drive or the volume has been formatted and cannot be repaired. Please select a different drive to continue."

So, then I try to do a system restore and get the following error message: "The selected partition cannot be recovered with this repair CD. You must use winRE for unknown windows instead."

When I go into the partitions editor, there is a note next to the vista partition which says this: "Warning: this disk has a bad sector. Physical damage on the disk surface caused by deterioration, manufacturing faults, or other reason. The reliability of the disk may stay stable or degrade... Unable to read the contents of this file system. Cause might be a missing software package."

I've had this comp for 4+ years, so deterioration seems plausible. But my OS crashed soon after a colleague downloaded a new version of R-project (open-source statistics software). I have a 32-bit system but he didn't know so he downloaded the 64-bit version, and we started running some code, within 24 hours, my comp crashed. Could this be the cause (hoping for some compensation from him if this is likely what happened, and I need a new comp...)?

-Tevet
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#2
This isn't deterioration, it's partition corruption.

Try launching the command line tool and running "testdisk" to repair.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#4
The plan is to (at some point) write a testdisk crash course in our own wiki, but for more advanced users the testdisk docs are the better guide.
 
#5
The plan is to (at some point) write a testdisk crash course in our own wiki, but for more advanced users the testdisk docs are the better guide.
I've run testdisk, and then wrote a partition, but can't tell if that was what I needed to do. I now have two drive options to run the auto-repair and system restore on. But when I run these, I get the same errors that I was getting before running testdisk.

I think I may not be doing exactly what is needed with testdisk. The wiki doesn't offer a step-by-step solution for what i'm trying to do, and I don't think I understand it well enough to piece it together with the info from their site. Do you have any other resources/references for a step-by-step guide to restore the recovery information for vista?

Thanks

-tevet
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#6
Can you access the partitions via the backup/browse feature?
 
#7
Can you access the partitions via the backup/browse feature?
Yes, I can browse both the vista partition, and the recovery partition.

Addendum

Yes, I can browse both the vista partition, and the recovery partition.
Not sure if this helps, but when I go to the partition editor, there are now 3 partitions.
1. Recovery 10.64 GiB
2. Vista 222.25 GiB
3. Unallocated 1.00MiB

Addendum

Yes, I can browse both the vista partition, and the recovery partition.

Addendum



Not sure if this helps, but when I go to the partition editor, there are now 3 partitions.
1. Recovery 10.64 GiB
2. Vista 222.25 GiB
3. Unallocated 1.00MiB
Also, the vista partition shows --- in the used and unused column.