Saturday, October 30, 2004

maricle on Casper st.

i get a call last nite at 6:15 pm (I was not home yet) that said the pastor's notebook had died and was no longer booting. I call him aback around 7pm and sure enough, it won't boot. so he's brining it over as the last backup was 4 months ago.
i go to boot it - and it's missing some core windows files. inturesting. he says he may have allowed a virus to run on it by clicking the wrong button in norton antivirus. no big deal.
throw in knoppix 3.3 and bloom - knoppix can't load - fatal error or something. strange. never seen that before - maybe it's some non-standard ide interface or something (oh yeah, and the cd was in a firewire cd drive)
SO - i install windows on top of it's self knwonig that the user accounts will be untouched.
right as it's finishing, John says "oh yeah, i had a password on my account"
i'm thinking - how bad can it be, it's windows xp home.
so it loads, we click on the old profile and 'error accessing folder' , ok, so it's encrypted. i just need a tool to feed it his old password and we're off and running, right?
WRONG - read this. i found a hairy walk through on recombining both keys (lost the link) - but home does not have all the tools. i stole one from xp-pro, but the other would not run.
i was conviced we were pretty much screwed and gave him a generous 35% recovery estimate possiblity - and sent him home at 10pm.
I started banging on google learning more windows security terms and came up with this which pointed to this. a close inspection of the win xp home demonstrated nothing fancy with keys. wow, it can't be this easy.
i almost didn't try it, but figured i'd nothing to loose.
it worked!@ - and 3.8gb was recovered. flawlessly.
i called him back at 11:10 so he could sleep easier and burned him a dvd around midnight while watching some sermons i found in his stuff. good sermons.


k2h said...

I was SO HOPING that knoppix saved the day, especially about how you lectured me about bartPE a few posts ago.

I am glad to hear you got it running! I'm sure you'll be in his next sermon, probably akin to pulling an ox out of the ditch on the sabbath.

forkev said...

I did volunteer during share time that i'd help someone the night before and God had cracked some encryption to save the day.
the pastor then grabbed the mic and volunteered that it had been his computer and publically thanked me for my help.