I have a bit of a dilemma and was hoping some of you guys could maybe help me out. I am switching a hard drive out on a laptop that I have determined to be faulty. I was able to backup the needed data onto a usb thumb drive, but the usb port is on the back of the computer, so when I lifted the computer to look for something under it, I forgot about the drive and bent it a little. Now, whenever it is put into any computer, it shows up, but the system says it is inaccessible and asks if I would like to format it. That data seems to be lost, so I turned to the old hard drive.
I put the drive into a usb-to-ide external enclosure and tried to access it from another computer, but windows says that the device has malfunctioned and the data cannot be accessed. So, I put it back into the original laptop, and went into the emergency console from the XP boot disk.
I then tried to fix the MBR, thinking that might have something to do with it, because the drive wouldn't boot into XP when placed back in the original laptop. I typed in "fixboot c:" which completed successfully, then typed in "fixmbr" which completed successfully, but when I put "bootcfg /rebuild" it gives an error and won't perform that step. If I look up the directories in the emergency console, it shows modified dates and folder sizes, but instead of the usual "Documents and Settings" and "Program Files", etc, each folder has a jumble of weird symbols like a heart, some letters, an "i" but instead of a dot, it's an apostrophe, among numerous others.
Has all data been lost? Something is obviously still there, but this is beyond me.