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  • It’s Always “When”, not “If”

    Posted on bbearren Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Home Forums AskWoody support PC hardware Questions – Maintenance and backups It’s Always “When”, not “If”

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      • #2287714 Reply
        AskWoody MVP

        This topic falls right in line with this one.

        After trying unsuccessfully to replicate OneDrive issues for this post last week, my desktop icons were scrambled. Instead of trying to move them all around, I just restored my OS drive image by going to All settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Advanced startup and clicking the Restart now button.

        From there I selected Troubleshooting, which brought me to TeraByte’s Image For Windows that’s installed in my WinRE partition. I chose Restore > Normal and restored my latest OS drive image. After the restoration was complete, I rebooted back into the A side of my daily driver and all was well, icons in their usual places.

        The next day I posted this, and proceeded to install the latest version of Image For Windows. I followed my usual routine of updating my TBWinRE USB stick, and then updating my WinRE partition. The script reported that it couldn’t find winre.wim and “Press any key to exit script”. I had just used WinRE the preceeding day. I opened an elevated Command Prompt and typed in reagentc /info and got the report that the Recovery environment was disabled, and it didn’t know where it was, either.

        Next I opened Disk Management to discover that Drive 0 was gone. I rebooted, then opened File Explorer and the three unhidden partitions on Drive 0 showed up, drive letters and all. Again I opened an elevated Command Prompt and typed in reagentc /info and got the report that the Recovery environment was enabled and its location. I followed through with updating WinRE, then opened Image For Windows to make a complete image of Drive 0. IFW got about 75% finished and then bailed. In my experience this means bad sectors on the drive, and that usually means time for another.

        I ran chkdsk /r on all logical drives on Drive 0, and they all came back clean. I tried creating an image again, and it completed this time. Drive 0 is a Seagate SSHD and the warranty had expired October 5, 2017, so it and another that I bought at the same time are pretty long in the tooth. I also ran chkdsk /r on the second SSHD, which came up clean, and created a complete drive image of it, as well. Friday I ordered two Samsung 860 EVO 1TB SSD’s, and they arrived today.

        I plugged each in turn into the drive dock on my NAS, initialized them and ran a full format. I don’t care for quick format, just a personal preference. After they were both formatted, I shut down my daily driver and swapped out the SSHD’s for the SSD’s, booted back up into BootItUEFI, deleted the MSR partitions on each of the SSD’s (put there by Windows during the format), and resized the remaining partition on each to occupy the entire drive. Now they were ready to restore the complete drive images I had made last week. I had older images I could have used, but the most recent in my opinion is always better.

        The restoration of Drive 0 proceeded without issue, all partitions/logical drives in place, including the WinRE partition, which is the first on that drive.  Reagentc /info reports all in order.  OneDrive was impatiently waiting for the restoration of Drive 1; “We can’t access your “OneDrive” folder in W:\”, so OneDrive was ‘Online only’ during the wait.  Now OneDrive is happy and reports that it’s up to date.

        I’ve updated my PC specs.  Two spinners are gone, I now have 6 SSD’s, everything has been restored and all’s right with my daily driver.

        Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
        "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
        "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

        • This topic was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by bbearren. Reason: corrected link
        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2287975 Reply

        My most recent drive failure took place during a restoration from backup also. I’d noticed that the drive I was using was nearly 5 years old and had tens of thousands of in-use hours, amounting to about three of the five years. I thought that was pretty impressive, given that it was a laptop drive that was constantly exposed to high temperatures (45 C or so), and it was still going strong, no sign of impending failure or any sign of weakness in SMART.

        And then when I was restoring, it just turned off, like it had been disconnected. I removed it from the laptop and connected it to my USB3 to SATA adapter, which I then plugged into my desktop PC, and it still was not recognized.

        This drive had come with a 5 year warranty, apparently purchased just before the warranty period of the average hard drive plummeted, and I had a couple of weeks left. Seagate set up a RMA and I sent it in, and the replacement is now the boot drive for the PC that serves as my backup server (really just a PC with a lot of hard drives in it). I did not want to wait until the replacement drive came back, so I bought a new, larger one for the laptop.

        Group "L" (Fedora 32 Linux w/ KDE Plasma).

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