08-06-2009 11:58 AM
I have received this error message at first when using Ghost 14, then in an attempt to repair it, I then bought Systemworks Basic and received the same error message.
After three failed attempts to use Ghost to copy my Vista programs and settingsto new hard drive, one attempt with Ghost tech support remote control and two of my own attempts leading to more self-revelations, the Ghost tech support recommended discussing my issue with HP tech support for the computer and Samsung tech support for the hard drive.
After lengthy chat session with HP, I then discovered that the HP computer recovery CDs I bought for $20 and postage didn't include the full Vista recovery environment needed to repair the master partition table. My phone tech support with Samsung also was fruitless as I was forwarded to the hard drive section, but as soon I was going to leave a voice message, the connection closed (ominous sign).
During HP tech support chat, their person sent me a link to a partition repair utilitiy but I decided that I had better wait to apply that software to my computer. Upon google search, I ended up at NeoSmart who provides an Vista Recovery Disk ISO has the features not included in my HP recovery CDs.
And now for slight aside regarding Ghost tech support, the very first tech support who didn't remote control my computer recommended that I use "Copy My Hard Drive" which subsequently failed. The second tech used "Copy Drive" under remote control which also failed.
After doing my own research, I am thinking that I have to repair Vista using the NeoSmart Vista Recovery ISO.
My question is how likely is it that I will be able to repair the master partition table using the ISO, then use Ghost to copy this hard drive to new hard drive? Has anyone else experienced this situation?
I am also considering the possibility that the computer might have come to me with this major hard drive problem.
08-06-2009 01:08 PM
Just a few questions to make this clearer in my brain. Does your computer work normally apart from when you use Ghost 14 and Systemworks Basic?
How many partitions are on your HD? (from Disk Management)
Is the computer new or second hand?
Desktop or laptop?
Do you know how it look at your partition table?
08-06-2009 04:34 PM
Our HP computer is new and is from Best Buy.
I first bought Ghost to transfer my Vista programs and user profile settings to new hard drive. After installing Ghost I tried to backup my hard drive prior to transferring the files to the new hard drive. This was the first instance of this error message. After failing three times to transfer the programs and user profiles to the new hard drive, I then bought Systemworks in the hopes that the Systemworks software could fix the problem using the Disk Doctor. This is explained in my topic opener to this thread.
I want to know if others in the same situation have had success repairing their master partition tables using the bootrec utility in the Vista Recovery CD?
08-06-2009 05:12 PM
Could you download ptedit32.exe from....
Double click ptedit32.exe and post the partition table similar to this post.
08-07-2009 11:28 PM
That looks normal. Two NTFS cylinder aligned partitions. No overlap. 240 head geometry. Is it a laptop?
Could you also look at your partition table with BootIt NG.
Download BootIt NG. There is a one month trial usage. Unzip the file and make a boot CD.
double click makedisk.exe, next
dot in I accept the agreement, next
no tick for Registration, next
dot in Mouse Support Enabled, next
dot in VESA Video, next
dot in Partition Work (Don't put a dot in Normal), next
don't choose any Default Device Options (if necessary, these can be chosen in BING), next
leave Registration strings blank, next
select your CD burner drive letter (you can use a CD-RW or a CD-R disc)
Boot from the CD....
the BootIt NG CD boots to the Work with Partitions window
Using the radio buttons on the left side of the Work with Partitions window, select HD 0
Do you see * Errors Exist * at the top of the window? If not, then your partition table is OK.
08-08-2009 02:10 AM
08-08-2009 02:19 AM - edited 08-08-2009 02:25 AM
Thanks for your hard investigation work. That was a false error message as your partition table is fine. Good news that Ghost is now working. We didn't do anything to fix it. Not that I know.
Edit... I knew HP laptops had 240 heads geometry. I didn't know HP desktops had the same geometry.
08-08-2009 03:09 AM
Thanks, Brian, for your timely suggestions.
Personally I feel that by directly interacting with my primary partition using PDEdit and Bootit NG knocked something loose. Several other factors might have also helped, the first is that repositioned the Samsung HD320KJ hard drive in the cage so that it was not so close to the computer case. I have not heard this annoying click ever since I did. The other is that after installing Systemworks I have been running the Win Doctor app, repairing numerous errors with it (perhaps several of these error were corrupting the parition).
My other opinoin is the more I think about Vista, the more Vista resembles Windows Me.And while researching Vista partition information, I found many articles extolling its wondrous capabilities in hard disk management but noticed an outright scarcity of information regarding issues such as the one I experienced. Perhaps this is Vistas major weakness?
08-08-2009 11:02 AM
Although I successfully backed up my computer using Ghost without the error message, this same error message still exists in Systemworks Basic Disk Doctor. After consulting with HP tech support, HP recommended that I use HP recovery CDs to reinstall operating system rather than attempt repairing the master partition table.
Using Neosoft Vista Recovery CD, I tried bootrec /fixmbr; then after loading Vista, I tried Systemworks Disk Doctor but again the same error: Master Partition Table is unreadable, etc etc etc.
Are there any alternatives to repair master partition table other than complete reinstallation of Vista?