This is not a finger pointing post, so please do not take it that way.
The other day, I helped a friend install Windows 7 Ultimate on his PC. He was running Windows XP. We did a full backup of his PC using Acronis True Image, so he could do a full disk restore if needed. We also just backed up his data, so that he could import it into Windows 7 when we got finished.
He installed a new hard disk. He went into XP’s Disk Management and verified that the PC could see the new drive. He wanted Windows 7 to install on the new drive and keep Windows XP on the old drive. This way, he would still have his XP while he tried out 7 to see how he liked it.
He started the install. When it got to the partitioning section, I watched over his shoulder as he told Windows 7 to install on the new drive. I verified his choices and all looked good. When the install completed, Windows 7 was up and running. We went into Disk Management and low and behold, Windows 7 had installed on the old drive and wiped out XP.
Even Windows 7 can do this. It’s not a SUSE thing. Any time you are dealing with partitions, you are running a risk. Luckily we had backed up his data. Wait. I take that back. There was no luck involved. We did it the right way.
He ended up liking Windows 7 so much that he just imported his data into Windows 7 and did not restore the XP partition, but we did have the disk restore option available.
I believe in a safety net when doing installs or upgrades. We are constantly telling folks to “Back Up Your Data,” because we have seen problems like this occur too many times.
As I said in the beginning, this is not to point fingers. It is only to use this thread as an example of what can happen and why we stress the need for backups. It is too late to help you, but if it helps one other user to prevent the loss of his/her files, then it will serve its purpose. I feel bad for you, but this was preventable.
I can not stress this enough.
Please back up your files!
It still comes off sounding wrong, but there is no way to say what needed to be said and make it feel good. Sorry for that.