How can I fix my XP computer from UBCD?
August 13, 2012 4:50 PM   Subscribe

How can I run chkdsk (or something similar to fix my XP computer) from UBCD 4.1.1?

My work computer runs XP Pro and it after getting stuck in the middle of defragmenting it has refused to boot all day. Our IT help desk said that if I can "boot to disk" and "get a command prompt" I can run "chkdsk /fix /r" and that will maybe fix the issue.

I downloaded and burned an iso of UBCD 4.1.1 from my home computer, and I can get the menu when I start up my work computer. But there are lots of options there that I don't understand and "get a command prompt" is unfortunately not one.

Is there a way to run chkdsk from the UBCD menu? If not, is there something that I can run from that menu that will try to fix my computer? Degree of Difficulty: I am good at following directions but I am only marginally clever with computers.
posted by AgentRocket to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
 
It's hard to tell which of the current features existed in 4.1.1, but from here it looks like somewhere under the HDD menu there probably will be a DiskCheck option that will do what you want. There's also FreeDos listed there which is a command prompt.

Really your IT help desk should be answering these questions. Their job is fixing your computer.
posted by aubilenon at 5:22 PM on August 13, 2012


Oops - I have 5.1.1 rather than 4.1.1.

aubilenon - thanks for the suggestions but I can't find a DiskCheck under HDD. And I agree wholeheartedly that our IT Help Desk would be good to have here, but they seem to be into the whole "empower the user" thing in that so far they have just offered suggestions.
posted by AgentRocket at 5:41 PM on August 13, 2012


Do you have the freedos option that's pictured in that screenshot? That should be a command prompt, from which you may be able to run that chkdsk command they told you.

I don't have a UBCD or USB thing to write one to so I can't reasonably test this myself.
posted by aubilenon at 6:00 PM on August 13, 2012


When your IT "help"desk said "boot to disk" and "get a command prompt" they meant using a XP install disk.

The UBCD will let you boot to Parted Magic, which includes NtfsProgs* where you can run ntfsdefrag to Defragment files, directories and the MFT, and ntfsck to Perform consistancy checks on a volume. Whether this will work for you I can't say. As an IT Professional I would NEVER ask a user to do this.

*I've never actually used this program.
posted by zinon at 6:08 PM on August 13, 2012


Microsoft's own CHKDSK is the only tool I would ever trust to fix an NTFS filesystem, and it's available from the Recovery Console which you can get to from an XP Setup CD.
posted by flabdablet at 9:43 PM on August 13, 2012


Download and burn a copy of Hiren's Boot CD instead. You'll get to use a mini-XP environment instead plus have access to a command prompt with chkdsk.

The command would be "chkdsk /f c:"

You should be able to run chkdsk /f however from your existing Windows XP installation. It is packaged with the OS. You can also kick it off on the next boot by right-clicking on your C: drive and select properties, then the tools tab. You'll want to check the checkbox to scan for bad sectors.

However there's a catch I should warn you about. I'd personally be very cautious before running scan/recovery tools to make sure your HDD is not exhibiting bad blocks. You can check in on this by looking at the system logs under Event Viewer. If you are seeing write errors, and bad blocks...back up your data as soon as you possibly can (you should do this anyway as a good practice) and persue getting a replacement HDD if it is old or under warranty.

To check to see if HDD errors are being reported: Right-click on "My Computer" and select manage. Then navigate to Events/System and check for any Disk errors that are in red.
posted by samsara at 3:05 PM on August 14, 2012


You should be able to run chkdsk /f however from your existing Windows XP installation. It is packaged with the OS. You can also kick it off on the next boot by right-clicking on your C: drive and select properties, then the tools tab. You'll want to check the checkbox to scan for bad sectors.

This would be good advice to somebody who had not said

My work computer ... has refused to boot all day.

posted by flabdablet at 4:17 PM on August 15, 2012


Yes I realized that too after posting. The syntax was wrong however too so I hope atleast that part was helpful.
posted by samsara at 3:01 PM on August 16, 2012


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