Almost every person must have witnessed a serious problem when his/her computer’s operating system crashes, since it is almost inevitable that this will not occur in the entire life of a system. The most frustrating part about this is that about the data we lose. We try to come up with an easy and possible solution to this very common system menace.
In this scenario if we try to recover the operating system, then all of our data will be lost, but if the Hard Disk Drive(HDD) is still functional then there two ways by which we can access our lost data. These two options are discussed in detail below:
Option I: By using a Linux Live Boot Disk
Users who are quite accustomed with Linux based operating systems will know that there are many distributions of Linux Live CD’s. These CD’s are nothing but bootable operating systems. These CD’s rather these operating systems run depending on the distribution, completely from the disk, a USB drive, your computer’s RAM or a small portion of a Hard Disk Drive(HDD).
You can download these Live CD’s absolutely free as an ISO image as these Live CD’s are open sources. Then this ISO image can be burnt into a bootable disk (for booting with a CD Drive) or you can also download the files and boot from a USB drive if your system BIOS supports USB booting device.
[ You might also like to read How to Recover Your Important Data From a Corrupted Disc ]
It is very simple to make the Live CD work. All you have to do is make a bootable CD and then have a pen drive or an external Hard Disk Drive(HDD) to store the files that you need to copy. Then just follow the procedure mentioned below:
1. Search the internet for the version of the Live CD that you like and download the zip file.
2. Once you have an ISO reader like Power ISO, the file will drag and drop straight into it.
3. Power ISO will then extract the image as a bootable image , the moment you click on the ISO image.
4. If you simply burn the CD or write the files into a USB drive you will possess a bootable Linux operating system ready for use.
5. Go to your BIOS settings by pressing the key assigned for it (mentioned in your hardware manual) an dset your first priority boot device to USB drive if you are using a thumb drive or CD drive if you are booting from a bootable CD.
6. Now restart your system with the proper boot device (USB or CD) inserted and Linux will start booting.
When the above mentioned tasks are completed you will be able to access your Hard Disk Drive(HDD) in pretty much the same fashion as you did in case of Windows. After copying all your important documents in an external HDD or a USB drive you can reboot and reinstall windows XP into your machine.
Option II : BY using your Hard Disk Drive as an external drive
If option-I using Linux live CD is not suitable for you, then this another much more simpler way to solve your problem. What you have to do is unscrew your processor, fetch a new external HDD case and connect your HDD to another computer by USB. The entire procedure is discussed in detail below:
1. Switch off your computer and carefully unscrew your processor(CPU) and take out your Hard Disk Drive.
2. Correctly adjust the jumper to change your HDD set from MASTER to SLAVE (for this you may consult the diagram illustrating pins for the ‘master’ and ‘slave’ settings).
3. Now set the jumper to slave by refering to your manufacturer instructions (although usually done by removing the jumper connector) but donot forget to reset the jumper after you finish.
4. Make all the connections and switch on the computer. Now your Hard Disk Drive will show up as an extenal drive in ‘My Computer’. From here you can copy your important documents and data which would have been lost if you tried to repair your operating system.
If neither of the two options is able to solve your problem then your Hard Disk is probably corrupted and your data can be lost forever.