Can't view old photos in Windows Vista Photo Gallery

Discussion in 'Windows Vista Music, Pictures and Video' started by Frustrated Chris, Jul 11, 2007.

  1. I tried a few more things, so I'll summarize where I'm at:

    1) No viewers will see these jpg files from my external USB hard drive (I believe it is NTFS file format) on the Vista machine

    2) XP and 2000 machine also do not see files

    3) All other files seem to be fine (video, excel, etc) except for some wierd permission settings

    4) Taking ownership of files allows me to copy files to new locations, but neither file works

    5) When I look at properties in Windows 2000 for one of the jpg files, I noticed the "Archive" checkbox was checked

    6) JPEG Recovery 2.0 said that "Image Header" was missing

    All this seems very strange that only the jpg files would be effected and it seems like others have had the same issue when moving to a new Vista machine ... hopefully that means a fix is out there somewhere.

    The only other thing I remember from the XP crash was that when I hooked up the external drive (which had a partition table error) to the Windows 2000 machine, I fixed the partition table, but I noticed the drive was going through every file like it was validating or re-writing each file.

    However, I do remember looking at some photos after that point, and they looked OK (but honestly I could be mistaken ... it's all becoming a blur!)

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    Michael Thomas, Jul 31, 2007
    #21
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  2. Frustrated Chris

    Michael Guest

    Michael

    1 - 2 :When you say 'do not see' does that mean the files don't show in
    explorer or just that no display program works with the files?
    (I am assuming it just means will not show picture, but the file name shows
    in explorer).


    1 - 2 - 6 : You are hosed! I doubt that anything you can do will get your
    pictures back.

    5 : Ready for archiving checked is OK, simply means that the file has been
    changed since last backed up by a backup program.

    There were/are viruses that took great pleasure in destroying any jpg files
    they could find.

    Looking at the files under explorer (rather than Photo Gallery) and right
    clicking, properties do you see the normal jpg items? (compare to a working
    jpg file).
    If not that would be confirmation of item -6-.

    For a little bit of hope: could it have been possible that during the
    Windows 2000 repair that the files were 'compressed' ? If so perhaps you can
    go back to the 2000 machine and 'uncompress' them (I don't have 2000 so that
    is a wild shot in the dark).

    My condolences,
    Michael


    in message news:...
     
    Michael, Jul 31, 2007
    #22
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  3. I wish you would upload a couple of jpeg images to the web that you
    can't open so someone that has a system that is displaying JPEGs
    correctly can take a look at them to rule out there is something wrong
    with the files or if your problem lies elsewhere otherwise we're just
    playing an electronic version of twenty questions.

    Your external drive doesn't change it's file structure depending on
    what computer it is hooked up to. We need to know what file system
    your external drive is formatted to. When it is hooked up to ANY
    computer, right click on it's drive letter, properties, general tab,
    what does it say is the file system?

    What permission setting?

    If some tool is reporting that the image's header is missing, that
    could be very serious.

    Now you tell us your external drive had a partition table error, IF
    true, and you saw it rewriting files you could have a bunch of
    corrupted files nothing is going to get back for you. That's why it is
    so important to have and USE a backup plan.
     
    Adam Albright, Jul 31, 2007
    #23
  4. Adam - my external USB hard drive is NTFS

    As far as the partition table error ... it's happened several times in the past (I think due to a bad USB hub in the old computer) but the partition table was always easily recovered without losing any files.

    The strange thing in this case is that ONLY jpg files are an issue ... all other files open normally (even video files in the same folders).

    When I view the properties for these jog files, I can see the created date, file size (which looks normal), modified date, accessed date. All look OK. But nothing can view them.

    Here's the wierder part. I saved two of these jpg files to a flash drive and took them to work (Windows 2000 machine). Niether file opened in Photo Editor ... BUT one file had the correct thumbnail of the image.

    I'll try to upload a couple files so you guys can review.


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    Michael Thomas, Aug 1, 2007
    #24
  5. http://www.mthom.com/IMG_1076.jpg
    http://www.mthom.com/IMG_1887.jpg

    The second one is the one where I can see the thumbnail on a Windows 2000 machine.

    I viewed the files in notepad and a hex editor and compared to good jpeg files. The front-end data is definitely missing or corrupt ... you can clearly see some of the metadata on the good files, but not these corrupted ones.

    The only other thought I had was whether my work laptop (the computer I used to recover the partition table to the external HD and saw doing a "file check or re-write" of some kind) ... I wonder if it could be some kind of encryption. Just a long shot.

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    Michael Thomas, Aug 1, 2007
    #25
  6. Frustrated Chris

    Tom Lake Guest

    Nicest pix of a red X I've seen all week! 8^)

    Tom Lake
     
    Tom Lake, Aug 1, 2007
    #26
  7. But you don't have to rub it in!

    Does anyone know why I can see the thumbnail of the second image, but it still not show up in any viewer? Is the thumbnail information identified in a specific part of the file, that may not be corrupted?

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    Michael Thomas, Aug 1, 2007
    #27
  8. Well, I finally know what the issue is, and will hopefully have a solution.

    It wasn't:
    1) Vista
    2) XP or its crash
    3) File corruption at all

    It was encryption! When I restored the partition table of my external drive (while hooked up to my business laptop ... thanks to the timing of the XP machine crash), my laptop restored the partition table (Partition Table Doctor - a program well worth the price) and the laptop "assumed" I had written the enitre hard drive from my business laptop.

    So the encryption policy of my laptop proceeded to encrypt all of my files of a particular type (which jpeg was one) but the files looked fine to me on that machine when I checked the photos.

    Hooking the external drive to the other computers ... corrupted files. All the other files that I'd added later from my own machines could be accessed fine, which is why only the jpeg files were a problem.

    Good news is when I go back to the laptop I can see all of the photos again ... the bad news is I have to have my IT department figure out a way to get encryption free versions of them that I can view on any computer.

    Apologies to Vista, and the developers of Photo Gallery for the initial blame ... it was all an issue of Data Security.

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    Michael Thomas, Aug 2, 2007
    #28
  9. Don't encrypted file names show as a different color when viewed in
    Windows Explorer so you KNOWN they were encrypted?

    If they are encrypted, that doesn't mean they are corrupted. They
    simply are encrypted. On a system that doesn't understand the
    encryption key, they can't be opened and that just shows the
    encryption scheme is working.

    ALWAYS decrypt encrypted files before moving them to another system.

    All you should have to do is copy the encrypted files to a new folder
    on the system you can see them. Then BE SURE that folder isn't
    encrypted, then copy them to the new system.
     
    Adam Albright, Aug 2, 2007
    #29
  10. Frustrated Chris

    Jume Guest

    LOL!! oh well that's good... at least you didn't lose them so it will be ok
    :)

    properties of the drive/folder/files (ultimately), button "advanced options"
    in general tab, and uncheck the encryption, that should do it

    or another method (if you want to let them encrypted) is to export the
    security certificate and load it into the new machine, that would allow you
    to see the files again, though encrypted
     
    Jume, Aug 3, 2007
    #30
  11. Well it definitely was encryption.

    Adam - the files didn't show any differently in Windows Explorer or identify them as encrypted in any way, and unfortunately the encryption procedure is completely behind the scenes.

    Basically the business laptop automatically encrypts files written to the hard drive and removable media. The program then automatically decrypts it when accessed by the same user. My problem came from when the HD partition table was fixed, my OS assumed I was writing that information and the encryption process started (it runs in the background so it is invisible to the user except for noticing the HD activity).

    It's actually a pretty slick encryption program (Credant) and keeps any files from being accessed outside of the company network user base. And of course protects data from stolen laptops, etc.

    The program was also set to only encrypt file types that are at risk of having sensitive information ... jpeg files were encrypted but my music files were not.

    Anyway - IT has created a solution for me to get them back! And Adam - I will immediately take your advice to enact a thorough and frequent back-up process!

    EggHeadCafe.com - .NET Developer Portal of Choice
    http://www.eggheadcafe.com
     
    Michael Thomas, Aug 3, 2007
    #31
  12. Well it definitely was encryption.

    Adam / Jume - the files didn't show any differently in Windows Explorer or identify them as encrypted in any way, and unfortunately the encryption procedure is completely behind the scenes. And apparently I can't just decrypt them myself ... it's a more secure encryption policy / program that's setup on my business laptop.

    Basically the business laptop automatically encrypts files written to the hard drive and removable media. The program then automatically decrypts it when accessed by the same user. My problem came from when the HD partition table was fixed, my OS assumed I was writing that information and the encryption process started (it runs in the background so it is invisible to the user except for noticing the HD activity).

    It's actually a pretty slick encryption program (Credant) and keeps any files from being accessed outside of the company network user base. And of course protects data from stolen laptops, etc.

    The program was also set to only encrypt file types that are at risk of having sensitive information ... jpeg files were encrypted but my music files were not.

    Anyway - IT has created a solution for me to get them back! And Adam - I will immediately take your advice to enact a thorough and frequent back-up process!

    EggHeadCafe.com - .NET Developer Portal of Choice
    http://www.eggheadcafe.com
     
    Michael Thomas, Aug 3, 2007
    #32
  13. Understood. I thought (incorrectly) you were using the build-in
    encryption that's part of Vista business and shows encrypted files in
    Explorer as green text by default. Glad you finally were able to
    recover.

    Years back I had a interesting experience with some Norton Encryption
    software, that they long ago took off the market. Lucky for me I was
    just playing around with it to see how it worked, others weren't so
    lucky and couldn't access their data since they had encrypted it and
    had no way to get it back. Was a bug in the software that prevented it
    from accepting even valid keys.
     
    Adam Albright, Aug 3, 2007
    #33
  14. Frustrated Chris

    tewkes Guest

    I was hoping this would solve my issue also, but mine sounds different. My
    pictures all open, but they are pixelated and messed up. I do not think my
    issue is encryption. How can I upload an example of one of my images for you
    to look at?
     
    tewkes, Aug 3, 2007
    #34
  15. Anyone that doesn't have their own web site to put up images can
    always use a free feature of Google called Picasa. Go to the Google
    main page, click on 'more' then photos to learn how to set up an
    account. Then upload and make them accessible to the public if you
    want anyone in the newsgroup to be able to both see and download them.
     
    Adam Albright, Aug 4, 2007
    #35
  16. Frustrated Chris

    tewkes Guest

    Adam,

    Thanks. I didn't even think of using Picasa. Please check out 5 samples
    that I posted as "public". This is a good cross section of what they look
    like. Thanks a lot for the help with this. I can't tell you how many hours
    I've invested already with no improvements or answers yet.

    http://picasaweb.google.com/tewkes/ScrewedUpPics/

    Kris
     
    tewkes, Aug 5, 2007
    #36
  17. The dog picture is the most telling. Note how the bottom third of the
    picture is shifted to the right and there is a distinct break from
    that point where the color values shift as well. Classic signs of the
    file being corrupted. You see that a lot due to transmission problems
    is you download something off the Internet and you can get if there is
    some miss match in color profiles.

    So I downloaded a copy and opened it in Photoshop. It reported that
    the image has an embedded color profile; sRGB IEC61966-2.1 JE which
    happens to be color space Vista will use as default.

    I no longer have access to your original post, I clear out old headers
    daily, so just guessing...

    If you are importing images form a camera or scanner and they only get
    messed up if you work or try to view them in some build-in Windows
    application like Photo Galley that suggests whatever color space your
    importing devices uses isn't converting properly between the
    variations in the color spaces, hence you get what you see.

    About the only suggestion I can offer is go to Control Panel, Color
    Management and under Devices make sure your actual graphic card you
    have installed is reflected at the top. You may want to check if there
    are newer drivers for it just in case that's causing the problem.

    Going further you're getting in the deep end of the pool. You could
    look under the All Profiles and Advanced tab in the Color Management
    window and see if there are custom profiles listed for other devices
    you have like a scanner or printer. I happen to have a whole bunch of
    different ones. One of these could be throwing Windows off or there's
    just a bug in Vista that it can't handle certain flavors of certain
    color profiles. So it may be a matter of trial and error to try to
    find out which if any causes problems.

    If you use Photoshop or another higher end graphic application you
    maybe would get lucky if you change the color space it saves images in
    and just that may make the problem go away. There are other older RGB
    color profiles that worked fine in prior versions of Windows and the
    differences are so slight compared to what Vista wants as default
    nobody would probably notice the difference.
     
    Adam Albright, Aug 5, 2007
    #37
  18. Frustrated Chris

    tewkes Guest

    I tried messing around with the color profiles with no luck. What is odd is
    that sometimes it is different pictures (same program). One day a file will
    look okay and the next time I open it it's pixelated. Thumbnails always look
    good too - even when opened very large.
     
    tewkes, Aug 5, 2007
    #38
  19. Frustrated Chris

    Rob Lytle Guest

    My advice: keep jpeg's off of Vista. Either the OS or a new virus
    destroyed 5 years of my photos. AVG could not find any virus. YMMV. Rob.
    ps. there are JPEG recovery programs but the one I tried worked on only
    1/2 the photos.
     
    Rob Lytle, Dec 20, 2007
    #39
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