Thanks to all, I appreciate the help and advice. Here is where I am up to at the moment: I have burned an iso image of Hiren's boot disk to a DVD and ordered a couple of 2TB hard drives from a computer shop - they expect to receive those drives from their supplier some time between 00:30 hrs and 06:30 hrs UTC Friday. My intent is to use one of these to become a clone / image of the problem drive and the other to receive the data I hope to recover from that clone. Hopefully the next time I report back to the group I will have an image / clone of the "departitioned" disk and be launching myself into the great adventure of data recovery. Thanks again. 73 Frank vk2akg.