Help needed to recover data !

  boot-it-out 20:26 24 Nov 2008

My Laptop computer - 40Gb hard drive that has Windows XP on it has crashed - computer won't boot, reporting corrupted data.

I have removed the drive and fitted it in an external USB reader connected to another PC, but the drive cannot be accessed via Windows on the PC it is connected to.

It is listed as a Local Drive, but double clicking brings up an error message that "The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable."

I have tried a couple fo Freeware "Undelete" type utilities and these can find lots of deleted files on the drive, so I know it IS possible to access the drive, but these programs don't find the main files ( Documents, Music, Photographs etc ) that I want to retrieve, only previously "deleted" files.

Does anyone know of a ( preferably Freeware ) program that I can install on my PC which will then allow the contents of the drive to be read via the USB connection, and then copied to my PC ?

Many Thanks in anticipation !

  recap 20:35 24 Nov 2008

Linux Knoppix may be of some use to you. click here if can be used to rescue your data. Read the instruction carefully if you decide to use it.

  johndrew 20:42 24 Nov 2008

Use a `good` PC and download a copy of the Ultimate Boot CD click here using only the basic OS detail. Boot your laptop from this (hopefully you wont suffer any MS activation problems) and with luck you should either be able to recover your data and/or repair the directory.

I would also suggest a copy of Acronis True Image and an external drive as this will provide a full recovery facility.

Moral: `If you can`t afford to lose it, back it up.`

  woodchip 20:46 24 Nov 2008

Double Click "My Computer" then right click on the Drive\Properties\Tools\Check Disc tick the box and do a full scan and let it fix any errors

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