Tuesday, 8 January 2013

How to open C drive when Windows is hibernated?

Windows saves the information needed to wake up from hibernation usually in the "C" drive, in a file named hiberfil.sys. Its size is approximately the size of your RAM and is stored on the hard disk when the computer is asked to hibernate.

Because the system is hibernated and needs to be in the same state when revived, the partition is made read-only and should not be changed from another operating system, if it is a multi-boot system. So, when you open your Windows drive from a Linux-based operating system, such as Ubuntu, you may get an error message such as this:
The error message obtained when the hibernated Windows partition is asked to mount.
You can retrieve your data from this drive, without having to open Windows in steps:
1) Open a command-prompt, such as your gnome-terminal.
2) Type

sudo mount -r /dev/sda2 /media/your_username


In place of sda2, type the name of the device where your Windows is installed, like sda1 or sdb1 or something like that. To see which device on your Windows is installed on, type

sudo fdisk -l

and try to recognise the Windows partition by looking at the "blocks" column which shows the size of the Windows partition. And in place of your_username, type your user-name or type /media/ and press tab to see a list of options or the correct option itself! The "C drive" is now mounted and you can see your data!


Caution: Do not try to modify any thing in the Windows drive, even if it may seem to be abnormal as this may cause your data to be lost which may not have been saved while hibernating.