Over the last two weeks, the client I work for had multiple power outages. The one outage broken several LCD monitors and a few PCs. One of the PCs had Windows Vista installed. The problem was a corrupt OS and would not boot into Vista. Booting from Last Known Good Configuration or Safe Mode would not allow me to fix the problem. I explained to my customer that would repair Vista using the enterprise DVD. Although he liked that option, he was concerned about losing his data.
No problem. I brought up my bootable USB Ubuntu 10.04 flash drive I made a little while ago. While it was booting my customer explained that his PC has 2 hard drives. The primary drive contained Vista on a 40GB partition, the rest was his “D:\” drive. The second hard drive was used to additional data storage. My Ubuntu flash drive found all the hardware on his HP XW4600 Workstation and using GParted I verified his hard drive configuration statement.
On the second hard drive I created 2 folders, zzz-d_drive and zzz-c_drive. All data files my customer was concerned about were copied to the perspective folders. After a shutdown, I disconnected the second hard drive to ensure all data files are safe. Unfortunately the repair for Vista failed as did restoring from the last 2 restore points. My only option was to reinstall the OS. After installation I copied all the data files back to the “C:\” drive, the “D:\” was intact since I didn’t format that partition.
If you don’t have a bootable Ubuntu flash drive you should take the time to create one. For me it is a valuable tool which enables me to meet my SLAs.