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Urgent: Need Help With The Infamous Non-system Disk Or Disk Error


DLSS
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after recovering a system back to its dynamic-partitions i keep getting the non-system disk or disk error

the usual mbrfix etc dont help as they dont see the win7 install, neither does the win7 install disk.

i can however acces all partitions via a boot cd with a pe-xp , it has me baffled :(

anyone got a clue, or some tips on the recovery ? thnx in advance

(ps pretty urgent i need to have this system fixed by monday)

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From what I recall the 'non-system disk' is an error the Windows boot loader produces (or floppy disks and memory sticks (etc.) produce in some cases as well). Thus, the computer is booting from the hard disk but then the boot loader is failing to recognize the partitions on the disk or failing to identify which partition is should be using (which shouldn't be the case because ever since win 2k the boot loader tries to find a boot configuration on each partition sequentially (i believe)).

Thus, either the boot loader configuration on the partition is completely broken (using the MBR repair tool should fix this) or the boot loader is not able to locate either the partition table or the partition the bot loader needs.

Simplest option that will work first go: Back every thing up, reinstall Windows.

Other things to try:

Some kind of partition repair tool, even though Linux can see the partitions fix?

Wait ... dynamic partitions? Do you mean extended partitions or dynamic disks?

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From what I recall the 'non-system disk' is an error the Windows boot loader produces (or floppy disks and memory sticks (etc.) produce in some cases as well). Thus, the computer is booting from the hard disk but then the boot loader is failing to recognize the partitions on the disk or failing to identify which partition is should be using (which shouldn't be the case because ever since win 2k the boot loader tries to find a boot configuration on each partition sequentially (i believe)).

Thus, either the boot loader configuration on the partition is completely broken (using the MBR repair tool should fix this) or the boot loader is not able to locate either the partition table or the partition the bot loader needs.

Simplest option that will work first go: Back every thing up, reinstall Windows.

Other things to try:

Some kind of partition repair tool, even though Linux can see the partitions fix?

Wait ... dynamic partitions? Do you mean extended partitions or dynamic disks?

sorry yeah dynamic disks

first time i've encountered these,

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Go into the BIOS and check for SATA AHCI Mode settings, and make sure its on/off depending on the drive you boot from. If its SATA, turn it on, if you have no SATA and only IDE, turn it off.

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Go into the BIOS and check for SATA AHCI Mode settings, and make sure its on/off depending on the drive you boot from. If its SATA, turn it on, if you have no SATA and only IDE, turn it off.

Valuable contribution that man.

Can you install Windows on dynamic disks? They are used for creating a software RAID in Windows. Why would you want one dynamic disk by it's self?

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Valuable contribution that man.

Can you install Windows on dynamic disks? They are used for creating a software RAID in Windows. Why would you want one dynamic disk by it's self?

I've actually had this happen to me when building my last machine. Also, when I upgrade the BIOS, the setting was lost, and I got the error again just like this about invalid system disk, and you cant choose which SATA drive to boot from until resetting the BIOS. Just something to check off the list.

Worst case scenario, Copy all the files off to another drive, reinstall, restore the backed up files. Whatever you do, back up your data first. I wouldn't have even attempted to mess with the MBR until I had a backup first. Never know what could happen.

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Valuable contribution that man.

Can you install Windows on dynamic disks? They are used for creating a software RAID in Windows. Why would you want one dynamic disk by it's self?

didnt work unfortunately.

hell if i kno, a mate bought a laptop @ uni hp probook with everything preinstalled that was needed (win 7 ultimate upgrade, office, some av etc ....)

it came to the problem it has now after attempting to recover a deleted partition (just data partition not the os partition) with testdisk, it attempting & failing to convert dynamic to basic disk

and we recovered it to the current state with diskpatch -> http://www.diydatarecovery.nl/dp_manual/dy...cdiskrepair.htm

as said in 1st post everything is accesible through a xp-pe disk but it wont boot from HDD and win7 install disk persists there's no installation to be found

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Unplug any non-essential parts on the board for external USB and Media cards as well, see if it boots. Might have a bad cable or such end device. Did you check the BIOS for ACHI settings? How was this machine "recovered" as you put it? Is it set to boot from the proper HDD/order? You can convert an installed windows system disk to dynamic for spanning multiple drives as if they were one, but the initial drive containing the OS needs to be the first boot device in the BIOS or boot loader.

http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=314343

Edited by digip
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Unplug any non-essential parts on the board for external USB and Media cards as well, see if it boots. Might have a bad cable or such end device. Did you check the BIOS for ACHI settings? How was this machine "recovered" as you put it? Is it set to boot from the proper HDD/order? You can convert an installed windows system disk to dynamic for spanning multiple drives as if they were one, but the initial drive containing the OS needs to be the first boot device in the BIOS or boot loader.

http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=314343

cant really unplug mutch as its a laptop but doubt its a cable problem

i checked the setting & tied both

check my previous post for the recoery method

as far as i kno there's only one harddrive installed wich has the os will try and set it to firstboot in bios but doubt it'll make a difference ....

i'll check the boot loader again with mbrfix in a minute

-update-

no luck with mbrfix either

Edited by DLSS
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Is the HDD being recognized in the bios? What motherboard do you have? I ran into this before when I was trying to install Windows on a dynamic volume. Make sure you are only using one controller at the time, this can be adjusted in the BIOS.

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Is the HDD being recognized in the bios? What motherboard do you have? I ran into this before when I was trying to install Windows on a dynamic volume. Make sure you are only using one controller at the time, this can be adjusted in the BIOS.

the harddrive is seen by the bios,

i dont kno the exact motherboard, but its a hp probook 6550b

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the harddrive is seen by the bios,

i dont kno the exact motherboard, but its a hp probook 6550b

I had a similar experience, when reinstalling the windows for a friend of mine on his laptop.

In the beginning I was going to install windows XP, but the set up could not detect any HDDs.

When I booted off the machine, with a Windows 7 CD, the set up was able to see the HDD and its partitions.

For me I think, it has something to do with the controller drivers. Try downloading the drives from the HP website and installing them at the set up.

Edited by Infiltrator
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i gave up, made a backup of the files & nuked it

it wouldnt even format with the 7install disk or dban

so eventually was able to format using old trusy gparted <3

now just reinstalling from scratch

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While this sounds like it doesn't have the correct Laptop drivers for the HDD controllers (and could still be possible), I'd say probably not because you should be getting BSOD's with error output if it were a driver issue. If it were a driver, that means windows would have gotten as far as loading the OS or initial load to give an error related to the OS. Its not even getting that far.

Here are my thoughts, and based on common searches, pretty much the same thing I came up with:

1 - Floppy or CD that is not bootable is currently in the computer. (Check boot order in BIOS, make sure CD is after HDD, just to be sure. Disable booting from external media, such as USB, Firewire, Network, etc, and set HDD as first boot device)

2 - BIOS or CMOS setup is not setup properly (Being why I said check ACHI settings for SATA, again, make sure HDD is selected as first boot, no SD-Card or USB devices allowed just to make sure).

3 - Hard disk drive does not have bootable files on it or bad partition (Corrupt MBR, Boot Loader itself corrupt, or no activated partitions found). Windows Vista and 7 don't use NT Loader like XP and older did, so hope you didn't use an XP PE disc to do the Fix MBR as that could make things worse. You need to copy over the files from the 7 install disc. bootmgr is the utility in Vista and 7, not ntloader.

Machine Post > MBR > Boot Loader > Kernel (Windows user mode) is the order of startup, so I would say its probably not windows directly since you are getting a non-system disc error, probably the MBR, Partition settings, or Boot loader.

If the Windows 7 disc you used couldn't see it, its more than likely not a bootable disc, and only a recovery dvd and wont allow you to fix it, you would need a Windows 7 pro bootable disc and enter recover options and use the tools from there to fix.

4 - The hard disk drive is bad or not connected properly. (This one we know probably isn't true since you said you could see the files when booted in a PE environment. If you don't have a Vista or 7 PE install disc, in this case, I say BACK UP EVERYTHING, FORMAT, REINSTALL, Make sure system is booting and working, RESTORE YOUR FILES and live with it!)

edit: Just some other things coming back to me from A+ class, Vista and 7 use BCD, and there is a util bootrec to fix Vista and 7 booting issues. See here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/927392

Edited by digip
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While this sounds like it doesn't have the correct Laptop drivers for the HDD controllers (and could still be possible), I'd say probably not because you should be getting BSOD's with error output if it were a driver issue. If it were a driver, that means windows would have gotten as far as loading the OS or initial load to give an error related to the OS. Its not even getting that far.

Here are my thoughts, and based on common searches, pretty much the same thing I came up with:

1 - Floppy or CD that is not bootable is currently in the computer. (Check boot order in BIOS, make sure CD is after HDD, just to be sure. Disable booting from external media, such as USB, Firewire, Network, etc, and set HDD as first boot device)

2 - BIOS or CMOS setup is not setup properly (Being why I said check ACHI settings for SATA, again, make sure HDD is selected as first boot, no SD-Card or USB devices allowed just to make sure).

3 - Hard disk drive does not have bootable files on it or bad partition (Corrupt MBR, Boot Loader itself corrupt, or no activated partitions found). Windows Vista and 7 don't use NT Loader like XP and older did, so hope you didn't use an XP PE disc to do the Fix MBR as that could make things worse. You need to copy over the files from the 7 install disc. bootmgr is the utility in Vista and 7, not ntloader.

Machine Post > MBR > Boot Loader > Kernel (Windows user mode) is the order of startup, so I would say its probably not windows directly since you are getting a non-system disc error, probably the MBR, Partition settings, or Boot loader.

If the Windows 7 disc you used couldn't see it, its more than likely not a bootable disc, and only a recovery dvd and wont allow you to fix it, you would need a Windows 7 pro bootable disc and enter recover options and use the tools from there to fix.

4 - The hard disk drive is bad or not connected properly. (This one we know probably isn't true since you said you could see the files when booted in a PE environment. If you don't have a Vista or 7 PE install disc, in this case, I say BACK UP EVERYTHING, FORMAT, REINSTALL, Make sure system is booting and working, RESTORE YOUR FILES and live with it!)

edit: Just some other things coming back to me from A+ class, Vista and 7 use BCD, and there is a util bootrec to fix Vista and 7 booting issues. See here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/927392

1. checked & done but didnt help

2. also checked and tried with both settings

3. attempted to fix multiple times with bootmgr, mbrfix (not sure on the name but cba to look it up) and almost any other mbr related tool available on hiren 10.5

the win 7 cd was bootable, however recovery mode (general & startup) couldn't see the win7 install, when you'd do a install with it it would however see the partitions but not let you format them, delete them or anything else

4. eventually what i did >_>

(to edit) tried bootrec aswell

so yeah nothing i havent found or tried, but nice sum up nonetheless :D

thanks for wanting to help

the one thing ive learned is never to use computer management > disk management to resize or create/format a partition as after teh complete reinstall, my mate tried to split a partition & format the new part as ntfs the whole disk (wich was now normal) turned dynamic again

everything runs fine but after the shit ive now been through i'm not touching or attempting to fix a dynamic disk again (atleast not in the near future)

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