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Old 11-15-10, 10:18 PM   #1
SonataInFSharp
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Files Lost During Moving

Short version: Moving a folder of files from one folder to another. Some files disappeared or are now inaccessible. Where did they go?

Long version: Co-worker’s computer crashed, brought it in for me to look at. BSOD read “Unmountable boot volume”. I did a "CHKDSK /r" with Hiren’s Boot CD. Computer then booted, but folders were in all the wrong places (e.g. WINDOWS folder was in the MyPictures folder, etc).

I told my co-worker to put everything into a folder for me to transfer to another hard drive (so I wouldn’t dig through his stuff myself) before I wipe his hard drive and start over.

Problem: He went to copy the entire My Pictures folder which included a bunch of other junk, and it got stuck/lost in space somewhere. Now, when trying to access some folders within the My Pictures folder, it said that a process was using it so access was denied. I searched for photos that we knew were in the folder and they didn’t come up in search.

More: I connected the drive to another computer. Drive mounted just fine. I tried to access folders within the My Pictures folder; the same folders giving me issues before were still giving me issues, but this time it was simply “access denied.”

I searched the folders and found them with this crazy path: E:\Documents and Settings\HP_Administrator\Desktop\BACK-UP\My Pictures\Documents and Settings\HP_Administrator\My Documents\My Pictures\Documents and Settings\HP_Administrator\My Documents\My Pictures

I tried recovery software and still couldn’t find the actual photos.

Question: Where did the pictures go that were lost during the first moving of files? Can I recover them somehow? Does my co-worker have to pay USD$1,000,000 to have the files professionally recovered?

Thanks in advance!

Last edited by SonataInFSharp; 11-15-10 at 10:33 PM.
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Old 11-15-10, 10:26 PM   #2
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the pictures might have been on the bad sectors, in which case the chkdsk /r function would try and recover them, but if it fails they get deleted from the table of contents, and remain in a sort of limbo, where they'll be in their damaged form on the disc, but neigh accessible.
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http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm
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Old 11-15-10, 10:34 PM   #3
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Ah, but we were able to view the photos before he starting moving the folder.
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Old 11-16-10, 09:02 AM   #4
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In my research, I found someone else with the same exact* scenario that I ran into, but the question is unanswered. (*Except the folder my co-worker moved was 161GB.)

Again, this is not me writing this, but the author of this has the exact same problem and is more articulate about it: http://www.questionhub.com/YahooAnsw...3201046AAygKYI
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Old 11-16-10, 11:46 AM   #5
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So, I removed the video card and now I can access all the files...

I love talking to myself.
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Old 11-16-10, 11:54 AM   #6
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what a strange solution...
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Old 11-16-10, 12:07 PM   #7
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If it goes much beyond rebooting and slapping the machine around a bit, it is over my head. What size hammer do you use to remove a video card? Is cussing involved?
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Old 11-16-10, 12:38 PM   #8
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This should be merged with the favourite toul threaud.
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Old 11-16-10, 12:45 PM   #9
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copying folders is asking for lost files. if something happens during the move, it is a huge pain to go back and see which were lost. next time use a sync app to make sure source and destination are duplicated correctly.
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Old 11-17-10, 05:08 PM   #10
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Use the robocopy program, then a utility that compares directories to each other to make sure everything went as planned. As a second suggestion, create a temporary ZIP or RAR file.

Another moral: Money is tight, but I do highly recommend spending some cash for an external hard disk and a backup program.
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Old 11-17-10, 05:46 PM   #11
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My Documents is not an ordinary folder -- it is a pointer to another place. My Pictures is within My Documents. It sounds like something got effed up somewhere and the point is pointed somewhere else.

What happens if you just do a recursive search for a few known images files from the root (be sure to include all attached drives)? Seems like you should find them.
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Old 11-17-10, 09:52 PM   #12
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+1 on backing up ur stuff... family pics specially.
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Old 11-17-10, 10:52 PM   #13
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This DeltaCopy programme is a good one to copy your important data folders off to an external drive (or network backup location). After the 1st sync, it updates all changes to the 2nd location automatically and very quickly (only changed blocks are copied).
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Old 11-18-10, 09:23 AM   #14
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As I mentioned, I was able to recover everything for my co-worker. Removing the video card and using onboard video seemed to do the trick. Why? Who really knows, but my guess is that there were bad nVidia drivers* in the My Pictures folder, and when my co-worker moved the entire My Pictures folder, that driver was in use and maybe messed everything up? Again, I have no idea.

*After the initial hard drive crash, all of his WINDOWS and other system folders were in the My Pictures folder. There was a WINDOWS folder on C:, but it was completely empty (yet the OS was running from the drive). Also, when I got the BSOD to stop, nVidia was listed the first time.

Anyway, my co-worker is already in the process of backing up to an external hard drive as well as online--I stress the importance of offsite back-up to everyone I know. As for myself, I have triplicates of everything at my house on three hard drives, plus a box of stuff at my sister's house for offiste back-up. The only catch is the unknown life expectancy of ink-based burnable media, so when a new format becomes just as normal (aside from the cloud), I will re-back-up my burned DVD back-ups to that. I use Mozy for my smaller files, but I have 160GB of photos that I don't feel like uploading--I get them to my sister's fast enough for my comfort.
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