I have a Dell XPS M1530 Laptop, running Vista Home Premium 64bit. I have support from Dell but they have been unable/unwilling to save my data in the past so I'm exploring my options before calling them.
My computer threw an error and then froze so that I couldn't close any open programs or access task manager or shutdown/restart. I was forced shutdown by holding the power button. On turning the computer back on, I got a "disk read error, use ctrl/alt/del to restart" response. Using ctrl/alt/del simply causes the same error to repeat.
I can access F2 and F12, but not F8. I have tried both my Dell Vista Reinstallation CD and a Recovery CD made using the tutorial on this site (found here: Create a Recovery Disc
). In both cases, I have to use F12 to get it to boot from the disk. It says "loading Windows files" and then shows the little bar with Microsoft below it. Afterwards, however, it never gets to the system recovery/repair options screen...or indeed any request for input at all. It simply shows a black screen and the CPU seems to be working at something but never does anything. Occasionally, I will hear a little blip sound.
Any ideas? Like most folks, I'm desperately hoping to retrieve data I haven't backed up in a week or two, some of it absolutely irreplaceable!
If anyone has any suggestions for getting in to backup data in any way, I'd be immensely grateful!