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dbminter

OKAY... I've got ANOTHER one...

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Anyone care to try and tackle this latest issue that STILL makes no fucking sense?

 

 

For some reason, I have one partition that NEVER unhides. HOWEVER, it's NEVER the same partition AND it's a partition that HAS been visible for YEARS!

 

 

I first discovered it just before the end of last month. I had a partition where IF Windows Explorer was open to the root directory of the drive and Windows was set to reopen all instances of WE that had been open on the last Windows shutdown, then, the drive would mysterious go Hidden. BUT, it could simply be unhidden by Partition Magic or Disk Director. BUT, if the above process was repeated, it would happen every single time.

 

 

Now, I've backed up the live system described above and have been working from a restore factory default partition since the 2nd of this month trying to debug it down. I hadn't noticed the problem repeating... BECAUSE IT CHANGED TO A DIFFERENT FUCKING DRIVE! :angry: BUT, of course, NOT the same symptoms. :rolleyes: A different partition on the same hard drive, an internal SATA, now just WON'T unhide at all! PM and DD say it is not hidden, but, Windows NEVER detects the drive. When Windows is restarted, the status of the drive returns to Hidden. TweakUI has not been set to not display this drive, just returns a ? for the drive.

 

 

And don't give me the run Scandisk and whatever shit. :lol: I've already run all that, virus scanners, spyware scanners. AND DOS utilities, too. I already knew that would return fucking nothing.

 

 

So, who's got the balls to step to the plate and come up with nothing? =))

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Sounds like the reverse threaded lock washers holding the drive in the bay are on backwards. Reverse and restart :lol:

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Despite that HELPFUL answer :) the answer lies in Windows, naturally. :rolleyes: Something occurs at Windows start, either something Windows is doing or something it is running, i.e. something else is doing it because it is telling Windows to do it. Because, when the drives are unhidden and Windows is restarted, booting from a CD into DOS shows the drive is present. Restarting and booting into Windows immediately there after hides the drive.

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AH! Well, HERE'S one of the goddamn problems... one of the DVD drives REFUSES to keep its changed drive letter! FUCKERS! :angry: It always reverts back to the first free drive letter after it's changed. The first DVD drive DOESN'T! :rolleyes: Only the 2nd. Normally, the drives are supposed to be R: and S:. The first STAYS as R:. The 2nd is going back to the first free drive letter on each Windows start.

 

 

So, how can I stop this? :)

 

 

Also, anyone know where in the Registry, etc. the keys, etc. that store the drive letter information are? I know they won't be of much use here, if any, but, I'm curious where this information is stored in Windows.

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Uh, hunh? :blink:

 

No, I think it's more likely that the U-joints are out of alignment. Pull driveshaft and check...

 

Sounds like the reverse threaded lock washers holding the drive in the bay are on backwards. Reverse and restart :lol:
Edited by Pain_Man

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So, who's got the balls to step to the plate and come up with nothing? =))

Question: Have you tried something exotic like adding another SATA drive and creating a raid/spanned drive? The reason I ask is that I had a pc with a single sata drive in it last year and had nothing but problems with it. (I think the BIOS was a bit dicky). Adding another drive and creating a raid volume fixed the problem.

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Question: Have you tried something exotic like adding another SATA drive and creating a raid/spanned drive? The reason I ask is that I had a pc with a single sata drive in it last year and had nothing but problems with it. (I think the BIOS was a bit dicky). Adding another drive and creating a raid volume fixed the problem.

 

 

I created the ultimate, unpardonable sin. First, I woke up alive, and, then, I made the stupid mistake of sitting down in front of my desk. :lol:

 

 

Honestly, no, I've done nothing like that at all.

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db,

 

Get us a screenshot from the 'Disk Management' mmc snapin.

 

 

What precisely are you looking for? Because, I really can't get a screen shot that has everything. All that will be returned on all drives is the bottom pane, with the bar representations of the drives. The top pane cannot be resized to a size that does not obscure part of the bottom pane. So, one or the other can be shown at one time. Which/what do you want to know?

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HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\MountedDevices

 

 

you tried opening diskmgmt.msc and right clicking changing drive letter etc

 

 

 

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/223188/

 

 

 

XP and hidden partitions

 

Windows XP keeps a list of visible partitions. With XP's Disk Management snap-in the drive letters can not only be changed, they can be "removed", rendering those partitions inaccessible to programs. Removing the drive letter is not the same as hiding the partition. Removed drive letters can be "restored", but a partition hidden from XP will not get a drive letter and will be inaccessible to XP (the OS will know something's there, but won't be able to manipulate it). Hidden partitions still show up in XP's Disk Management console, where they are typically identified as "Healthy (Unknown Partition)".

If a previously-hidden partition is newly visible when XP boots, it will be recognized and given a new drive letter. Once a partition is visible to XP it is recommended that you do not subsequently try to hide it from XP with a boot manager or PartitionMagic. Instead, use XP's Disk Management snap-in to remove the drive letter if need be.

 

 

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

What does "Healthy (Unknown Partition)" mean?

 

"Healthy (Unknown Partition)" is the way hidden partitions typically show up in XP's Disk Management console. Although XP can "see" the partition, it will not assign it a drive letter and cannot access files on the hidden partition.

On occasion, a data partition may accidentally have its partition-type code toggled to "hidden" and any data on it may appear to be lost. To recover, simply toggle the partition-type back to its proper code. There are a number of third-party utilities that can easily do this, such as PartitionMagic, BootIt-NG, Partition Commander, Ranish Partition Manager, et al. If you don't have something like that, the easiest way may be to download the free utility ptedit.zip. Extract ptedit.exe from within the zipfile, boot from a DOS floppy (or Win98 startup floppy, or see www.bootdisk.com if you don't have one), run ptedit.exe, and change the appropriate partition-type from hidden-NTFS (or hidden-FAT32) to normal NTFS (or FAT32). Reboot into XP and see if the partition now shows up as it should.

 

 

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Do hidden partitions still show up in XP?

 

It all depends on how invisible you want the secret partition to be.

Routine third-party boot managers like XOSL, GAG, and BootMagic can mark secret partitions hidden/unhidden depending on which partition is booted--W2K can boot with XP hidden, while XP boots with W2K hidden. However, "hidden" doesn't mean it's totally invisible--W2K and XP will each know the other partition is there, but won't be able to access it and won't give it a drive letter. Normally, this should be enough.

 

BootIt-NG, Ranish Partition Manager, and System Commander can also do that, but also have an optional proprietary mode with which they can even make the secret partition appear to be unallocated, unpartitioned space, hiding its contents even deeper. The downside, however, is that the proprietary partition handling means you have to swear off using other partition management tools--for example, you can't subsequently use PartitionMagic, fdisk, or XP's native disk management tools because they'll think the hidden space really is unallocated and may overwrite your secret partition. Normally, you shouldn't need to hide a partition this deeply unless you're hiding from a technician the fact that you have a dormant partition there.

 

 

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

source www.goodells.net

 

 

http://www.pcguide.com/ts/x/comp/hdd/letInvisible-c.html

Edited by dontasciime

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As for Disk Management, I tested the problem with the external drives powered off, and, it still happened. This reduced the display space to a point where I can get a screen capture. It seems my old haunt for posting up images last time isn't doing that anymore. Oh, well, let's try another.

 

 

6316untitled.jpg

 

 

All the data is there except for the left hand panel. It appears as if it is cut off on the right side, but, it is not. I don't see what you can get from this data that I haven't :D but, any help is welcome.

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Hey db, your on XP, how come you don't use convert to change your file system to NTFS ? You wouldn't lose any info that way. :)

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have you got an option in your bios called HPA ?

 

or Predesktop Area ?

 

 

What would it be under? In general? i.e. is it a drive option, etc.

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Hey db, your on XP, how come you don't use convert to change your file system to NTSF ? You wouldn't lose any info that way. :)

 

 

Oh, yes, I WILL lose info with NTFS! :lol: I absolutely hate it! People keep getting sucked into it for its perceived security, etc. ;) BUT, if you have a problem with the drive, that's it, you're screwed! Nothing outside of Windows can properly access them. I can't recall the number of times I've copied a file to an NTFS partition only to try and get it later and it says it cannot access it. And the times restoring down Drive Images, etc. and the files cannot be accessed because the descriptors or whatnot that mapped to the security features weren't there. The Recovery Console has NEVER booted for me. In the 5 years of XP's existence, on 4 different tested machines with their default setups, it always asks me for my admin account and password and claims the password is wrong or the account doesn't exist. And, without the account existing, I can't log into the Recovery Console, which appears to be the only way to access the drives that are NTFS. So, why fucking jump through hoops for what doesn't work right in the first place? :) Nope, my first step in any XP install is to convert the NTFS partition to FAT. It's worked fine for me for 5 years. No reason to move over yet, so, I'm gonna stick with what works. :thumbup:

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Didn't realize all those hassles with NTFS, :(:thumbup:

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HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\MountedDevices

 

 

... actually, it appears to have been easier than I realized. For once. :lol: Doesn't do me much good, though, as the KB article says you must reboot. I'll test it, though, on the incredibly off change it works.

 

you tried opening diskmgmt.msc and right clicking changing drive letter etc

 

 

I'm not an idiot. :) Disk Management is the only way I know of to change the drive letters for CD/DVD drives easily. Partition Magic and Disk Director only work on hard disk partitions. Anyway, yes, it is with Disk Management that I have changed the DVD drive letter with. But, on reboot, Windows resets the drive letter for that DVD drive to the first free drive letter after assigning the drive letters to the partitions on the SATA internal drive. Since that drive contains the booting partition.

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Didn't realize all those hassles with NTFS, :(:thumbup:

 

 

Well, YOU'VE probably never had them. :lol: As I would guess anyone else who has had the luck to cross my path has probably never had them either. Of course, these are also people who, for those reasons, have had lives worth living, too. :'(

 

 

:suicide:

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No, it's nothing that easy. Never fucking is. What is happening is the first (I had said second. Turns out it's the first DVD drive that keeps getting the letter change.) DVD drive is getting its drive letter changed by something on Windows start. Why it and not the 2nd one, too, is the mystery. Anyway, the SATA internal HD gets assigned its drive letters first, but, the first DVD drive then shoves its ass out of line and steals the next free drive letter, which WAS and should be going to H:, instead of its assigned drive letter of R: Which it had been taking just fine until now. And, if the drive letter is changed to R: in Windows, it will stay as R: until reboot. Then, the 2nd DVD drive keeps its old drive letter, S: which it should be and which the first one should be doing, like it had been. Well, since H: is hijacked, the partition on the first USB HD that would normally get it must take the last free drive letter after all the rest of the 2 USB HD partitions get theirs AND R: gets its. So, drive letters are getting shuffled around when they used to not to. All because that fucker :) has decided to shove ahead of the line. And, I need some way to change this because Windows has made some change to itself, or some application changed it, that turned on some stupid ability to do this. A typical error I see all the time, that can only be fixed by restoring a drive image. BUT, my newest one that doesn't do this is from January 1st! FUCKERS! :angry:

 

 

Problem has nothing to do with invisible partitions, etc. It's the DVD drive that is shuffling the letters around now when it hadn't anymore. No multiple Primaries, etc. Just the C: Primary booting partition and the Extended Logical partition to contain the Logical Extended drives.

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Nope! Renaming that key didn't do diddly, as I expected. It would only be effective on reboot... which is what is CAUSING the problem. :)

 

 

Well, in the meantime, might as well do some more shit to waste my time. But, I can at least counter anyone who suggests it by saying I tried that. ;) First, I'll swap around the IDE cables from drive 1's to drive 2 and vice versa. That will rule out the controller or the cables, since if either is the problem there, then, the 2nd drive will become the one that won't keep its drive letter. If the problem persists, as it most likely, will, then, I replace the 1st drive and see if it persists. Since that requires the MOST work at hand, I will end up most likely having to do that. :angry: I will put in the drive that had been in there before on this setup to minimize the possibility of introducing new elements into this already chaotic system. :rolleyes:

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Ah, it's definitely a fucker error. It is either caused by a bad application installation or a usual "Reboot Windows And It Stops Working" error.

 

 

I swapped around the IDE cables for the two drives and got the same problem. The first drive, the Sony, will not accept the new drive letter. So, I swapped the cables around back to their normal position, and, got what I expected, the same problem. I took out the Sony drive and inserted the LiteOn in its place... and got the COMPLETELY unexpected result of... now... the 2ND drive, the NEC, has inherited the fucking problem! :doh: This means there is a Registry error somewhere, and, that means either an application installation or an ReWAIStW Error caused the problem. Either one, they all fall under the category of fucker error. ;)

 

 

Yep, typical Big Bill fucker error. So, the only fix is to restore down to a backup and following the INSTALL.TXT instructions from that step on. At each installation, test the drive letter changes each time, reboot, and see if it isolates a culprit install.

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Your mad db, mad I say.......................... :shifty::shifty::ph34r::lol: .... good luck mate, way over my head :wacko::wacko:

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I never claimed I wasn't. After all, with problems like this one just the tip of my iceberg, I must be mad in that I'm still around!

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when you use disk mgr and change drive letter , you changing it to the drive you want, has or is that drive letter been i use.

 

If it has pick one letter that you know has never been in use.

Then reboot and see if it sticks.

 

 

or have you tried to remove the registry entry for the drive entry it used to be or the one you don't want it to be.

Edited by dontasciime

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