I want to retrive my files, I can not get past safe mode.

5 pts.
External hard drives
Microsoft Windows XP
Windows XP SP2
I have a Windows XP, home edition, serv.pack 2 os that has been shutting down about every six mos. Ive been backing up on an external hard drive but, I have not for the last 3 mos. the comp. is down again and I can only get into save mode. I can not get my pictures the are save in my documents. what can I do? some say I can use a flash drive. that does not work. If I take it to a tech. how with they get my file. can I do it my self. How? Please! What XP should I load on the next time the service pk. 3.?

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The very first thing you have to do is to determine if your hard disk drive has a hardware damage, because hardware damage in a hard disk device would make any files stored unrecoverable. However, if there is only a corrupted operating system, you can still recover your files by installing it to another computer unit as a slave storage device, it would work like an external device.

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  • Pressler2904
    There are a few ways you can go about retrieving your documents. What I'm about to suggest are basically further explanations of what Alessandro.panzetta discusses above... 1. Boot from an external source/hard drive. If you have access to a USB Flash drive or external hard drive which has been set up as a bootable device, you can boot from that media and access your hard drive to move/copy the desired data. 2. Along the lines of item 1, above, you can attach your failed/failing hard drive to a different system as a secondary or "slave" hard drive (those of you in California, USA may not know what I mean - see article here: http://media.www.nyunews.com/media/storage/paper869/news/2003/12/04/Opinionshardwired/One-P.c.Techies.Should.Avoid-2390717.shtml), boot to this different system and (hopefully) access your data from you newly attached failing hard drive. 3. Your most efficient and probably least painful method (at least one which requires the least amount of work and no disassembly of your hardware) would be to boot to a "live CD" such as the Ultimate Boot CD for Windows (UBCD4Win). If you can boot the system from a CD - in other words if it will even boot with the old hard drive installed (ie: if the hard drive is not so far gone that it stops the system from even booting at all) - you should be able to access most or all of your data and either copy it over a network, or e-mail it to somewhere (yourself???) or copy it to one of the free or low cost internet storage /backup sites for later retrieval. Let us know if you need any other help or any specific information.
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