05-31-2020 04:33 PM
The original HDD has serious issues, and could completely fail at any time. Currently the machine will boot and run Windows, but it has numerous issues that make it pretty much unusable. Diagnostics, and using SeaTools, confirms HDD failure imminent - that was March. None of the repair options worked, it's basically toast.
In December 2019, I had created a USB Recovery drive from this installation, no hitches in creating the USB. So, I finally purchased a new SSD to replace the old HDD and installed it (old HDD has been removed). I booted it up from the recovery USB and started the recovery process to reinstall Win10, however, this has now failed 3 times, twice it got to 32%, then just gave me the 'recovery failed, no changes made' message - I have no idea what's going on. After 3 attempts, I just shut it down.
I don't honestly know what to do with this thing now, I need to get this laptop working again, it's been out of commission for 3 months! Are there any workable solutions to this failing Recovery issue?
I could install a fresh copy of Win10 from an ISO download, but I do NOT want to install the problematic May 2020 2004 update (major issues) especially with this somewhat older machine. I also don't have access to another Win10 machine to download the media creation tool anyway - won't work with my old (but working!) Vista machine.
So, help! Suggestions/solutions very much appreciated.
05-31-2020 05:02 PM
You can do a CLEAN install Windows 10 and keep all your programs/data/files using the following installation tool
The tool will allow you to make a bootable installation media (USB/DVD) and you can use installation media to install.
During the installation process if you are asked to enter a product key, check the 'Skip' box and W10 will install and then automatically activate once you are connected to the internet using the key embedded in BIOS of your machine.
Note: Please REMEMBER to "tick" option to keep all programs and users files.
Then you can install the drivers and available software you need from your PC's support page. Normally few Windows 10 updates can install nearly all drivers for you.
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05-31-2020 05:21 PM - edited 05-31-2020 05:22 PM
Well, since the original hard drive is failing and I've already replaced it with a new SSD, 'saving' my programs and data isn't an option anymore.
The ONLY windows 10 install ISO available is for the very buggy May 2020 2004 update, which MS has noted has quite a few serious problems. With an older machine I'd rather not take the chance. Besides, I don't have another Win10 machine to use the Media Creation Tool anyway, it will not work on Vista, my only other available laptop.
06-01-2020 02:35 AM
Just to supplement Banhien's excellent answer....
heidoc.net has W10 downloads.
I am sure Vista can burn a DVD/USB with Rufus or AnyBurn.
As to recovery, an external caddy?
How to Retrieve Windows Files Using a Linux Live CD/DVD or USB.
You can create your own CD/DVD or USB using Rufus or AnyBurn software, with a downloaded .iso file, even use family/friends PC if needed. Sometimes a local store has a Magazine with a Linux Cover Disk attached, or you can buy, from the internet, a pre-made media for a few quid.
A Live (nothing installed to overwrite anything on the Hard Disk Dive, or to stress the unit unnecessarily) USB provides a way to use readily available LinuxMint on a PC, desktop or laptop, without installing it to the Hard Disk Drive, but allowing it to run in Memory (RAM).
I’m going to stick to the USB stick type, since many PC’s don’t have CD/DVD drives any-more (although the principle still works).
The hardware is 2 USB sticks, one an 8 GB for the OS (some OS’s will fit onto a 650Mb CD and others a 4.2 Gb DVD), and the other, bigger than the amount of data to recover, EG:-256 Gb USB, or an actual disk drive in a caddy should that be preferred.
Getting a suitable Linux Operating System (Distribution or Distro for short) is easy, either from here or an actual OS site like…LinuxMint, the creation process DESTROYS ALL THE DATA absolutely and finally on the OS target Stick.
Just format the larger capacity USB normally and name it something sensible (FAT32_VFONE).
Once created you boot from the stick, ESC and F9 is quite usual, but not all PC’s are created equal. It takes a few minutes and is not very responsive compared to an installed version of the OS (it does not install on your PC and therefore running in RAM can be a little lumpy).
But using the RAM and CPU it will present a Desktop with C:\Windows visible if at all possible.
Then you get a desktop that’s not completely alien I hope. Bottom Left use the Menu just as you would the MS Windows equivalent.
Click on that to open it and the listing to the left of the screen should show the something sensibly named (FAT32_VFONE) USB stick and other Partitions. Folders files etc etc. Mine is called Windows and is ‘/dev/sda3’ /media/lbb/…Windows incidentally.
Usually the data you want is in C:\Users under the appropriate user name, but not necessarily, so navigate as you would in an MS OS. The drag and drop feature is exactly the same, as will be the “several hours” to write them out to a USB stick, unless there is only a small amount of data that you actually need. NB:- Battery should be fully charged if appropriate. Right-click and Copy the files. Right-click and Paste the files.
Satisfied with the end result, that your precious DATA/Files are on your USB drive, ready to Re-Install on your computer once it’s fixed. Close down the File Manager and look for the SHUTDOWN button menu, bottom left corner and click and select shutdown as is your usual practice.
Another window will open with some choices on how you can log out. Click on Turn Off Computer.
Once the PC is shut down, remove your USB drives and put them away for safekeeping, until your PC is up and running again.
A screenshot of my installed LinuxMint, with “Gparted” and “Files” already open, and a USB stick (FAT32_VFONE) attached for BackUp files.
Longer, far more eloquent, guides (HOW2’s) are here…