I was repairing a hopelessly fouled Asus CM5570 AP006 unit today. Granted, not normal Sunday fodder for most people, but we take computer repair seriously. Very seriously 🙂 Very seldom do we ever end up with recovery disks or install disks when we repair computers for customers. Either they can’t find them, or they never got the restore dvd or the restore cd, etc. This was one of those cases.
This particular customer is actually a daughter of one of my longer term clients. Daughter didn’t realize Mom already “had a guy” for computer repair, so she took it to ye olde “Big Box” store. She was told the hard drive was bad and quoted somewhere over 200 for the computer repair. She spoke to Mom, who then let her know that she indeed, “had a guy” for this kind of stuff.
She dropped the computer off and it was indeed horribly corrupted with various error codes coming up – none of which were actually ever the same. Definitely a problem. It might appear to be a hardware error, so the best thing to do is test the computer hardware to rule that out. But you actually need the right software (or hardware) tools to do the testing on this kind of stuff. Can make the diagnostic completely off the mark if you don’t have the right tools – and obviously our “Big Box” peers don’t. I ran Eurosoft PC to actually test the hardware and did a 20 minute burn in test with absolutely no hardware failures. (Good job “Big Box” – those scripts don’t always tell the truth now, do they?)
After an ill-fated install with a 64 bit Vista disk that apparently was hard-coded to install Ultimate, I decided that there must be a better way than another install after fidgeting with the install settings. Well, we COULD try the recovery partition. Nice.
I did a google search for info on accessing the partition which was hidden. I knew it was there though from earlier work in other tools trying to cure the continuous blue screen (BSOD) errors. When partitions are hidden, you can always make the partition visible, but for the life of me, I’ve NEVER had any luck trying to access the partition or software install routines this way. Normally the recovery partition is accessed via a recovery cd or dvd and runs from there. And this is of course, REAL unhandy – since no one EVER seems to have the recovery cd. I was led to many many sites that wanted to sell me the recovery DVD for this model – but that really is not what I needed. Really didn’t want to spend $25 for a recovery disk that may or may not work. Needed something pronto.
And after wading through several dozen pages on the Asus CM5570 and similar models, I stumbled across the answer: Hit F9 on boot. I was actually ghosting the disk when I found it and had to wait. Unfortunately as fate would have it the Ghost copy failed twice – however since it took about an hour and a half each trip, I decided that the backup of the user folders I had made should be more than sufficient. I really was NOT planning on putting almost 5 hours of waiting for just ghosting into this computer after having wasted a few hours already yesterday.
July 6, 2011
Thank you so much for your ASUS CM5570 repair information. I have same unit and even though it seems that the virus is removed, it never operates like before. The virus was imported when my 8 years old daughter downloaded game software on line. Since I misplaced its recovery disc I was not sure what to do with this PC until I read your how to recover article this morning. Unfortunately I was not able to recover (I tried 2 times) because the PC requests for recover disc.
So I wonder if you could help me locating recovery disc/ discs for this PC.
It came with VISTA. Is it possible to install xp ? (I am still happy with xp)
Thank you once again for your help!
July 9, 2011
As long as you have an XP disc with a viable license key on it, you SHOULD be good to go! You may need to nose around to find drivers for XP, but I would say that if we had it in here, we would eventually get the drivers all found. I think there is probably a way to override the recovery thing but I don’t know it right off. Do a google search for the recovery disks – there IS a company I think in the UK that has a ton of recovery disks for sale. Never used them, but they do seem to be authentic.
August 11, 2012
Hi, i am having issues finding the os restore. I tried the f9 thing and many other things. The story starts off with hard drive was having issues. First it was freezing and, i got the blue screen of death once also or twice. It happened all of a sudden one day. So i thought it was a virus. I used the OS restore, it continued to freeze after i dled my video card drivers and updates. It would freeze from startup, or 2-5 mins after startup. I took it to a store. They couldnt help me because i refused to pay 200 for them to make sure i have to get a new hard drive but they were pretty sure that was the issue. I bought a new hard drive WD caviar green and i put it in. After i put it in, i attempted to reformat it with the os already on board like it was the 1st time. It didnt work, it was gone. The os on my cm 5570 was a xp. I installed a vista and either my drivers are not installed correctly or something is wrong. It runs fine for basic use, it isnt slow and i can go on websites and such. But i am a gamer, and for some odd reason, i cant play Diable 3. I was able to play before but now i cant. What changed was the hard drive and xp to vista. My sound card is not detected by my skype sometimes also where i would have to restart, or tell someone to call me(chat not video calls). Does my computer need windows xp? Or is there an issue with the drivers i installed? When i intially went to look up the drivers, it seems like all of them were only meant for xp on the asus website since vista was not listed. That is how i figured it needed xp and i use to run xp and when i restored with no prevail, it was xp.
August 11, 2012
Sorry to hear about your issue. Problematically, if I’m reading this correctly, the restore partition is on your OLD hard drive. With the new hard drive, there IS no restore partition – it’s a factory straight type thing and with a new hard drive – no restore. I would recommend a chkdsk on the old hard drive to see if it really IS bad – that’s beyond the scope of this forum, but there’s a lot of great info out there – maybe even on my blog somewhere about using chkdsk.
RE: Vista – is and always will be problematic for a lot of folks when it comes to drivers. Your best bet may be going back to XP and then just downloading the proper drivers from the website if you want to try a nice clean install from an XP disk. Suggest you have a thumbdisk on hand because the one driver that never seems to install is the NIC network driver. Get the driver from the website and have it ready to install on the laptop after you finish you initial install. That will make the rest of your driver hunting MUCH easier! Good luck!
September 22, 2012
You totally saved my computer…I was about to drop $50 on a Restore disk on the Asus site. I had tried everything…so frustrating. Then I stumbled upon your post, and now I’m the family hero! Kudos to you…thanks much!!!
October 4, 2012
You totally saved my kids computer, too!! It was so messed up and I’m just tech savvy enough to get myself into trouble so I tried this. Hallelujah! On the first try I got it right and now the computer is running like a champ! I had to say thanks!!!
December 17, 2012
This fix saved me too much trouble, time and money. We caught a virus through AVG on Friday, got all the data on Saturday and today and found this site this afternoon. We are re-installing data on the restored OS now. It worked exactly as you said it would. Thanks for being willing to share info with people too far away to be paying customers. Put us on your list of people who owe you a favor. Merry Christmas and may the Lord richly bless you.
December 12, 2013
Hey, I have a problem with the Asus to I have put a windows 7 disk in to reload the OS on there but while im in installation mode it wont find any drivers to recover the system it shows no partitions at all, I’ve tried multiple trouble shooting steps my brother said it could be the clusters gone bad on hard drive and it over heats but when I plug the hard drive on to another computer and read it off another OS it reads its a healthy hard drive. I need some help with booting problem and hard drive partition can you please respond back with an answer.
December 27, 2013
The partition that you need to use to do the recovery is actually a hidden partition if I remember correctly. There are a lot of things that it actually could be unfortunately. One of the most possible is that the partition really IS not there. Did you buy it new? It may have been owned previously by someone – that had the desire and know-how to clean off the whole disk for their own usage – and thus remove that partition.