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Initially, I had Windows 7 and Windows 8 running on the same system.(dual boot). And I wanted to install Ubuntu for my work. I downloaded Ubuntu 12.04 and burned it on a disk and installed it.

While installing, it asked to select partition, I had only 1 disk which I selected. later, when I tried to boot, no boot options were displayed, directly Ubuntu started. Once I restarted, I got a message saying: "missing operating system" I restarted and Ubuntu started itself.

I have lots of data on windows please help me here. either tell me how to open windows, or at least how to access windows files.

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Stop using your computer now. You might of allow Ubuntu to use your whole disk and had Ubuntu overwrite your data. Put your Ubuntu install disk and use TRY UBUNTU. Go to top left corner of screen, and click on the top button[DASH]. Type in disks and click on the disks button. Hopefully you will have three or more partitions showing. Two will be NTFS, these are your Windows partitions, and one should be ext4, this is Ubuntu. If you see this setup, you might only have to mount your windows partitions. Do this by clicking on one of the NTFS partitions, and go to the small box on the bottom, left side, click on the first button. If you only see one large partition, not do anything else on your computer, til you receive more help. You might be looking at data recovery, which I can not help with, hopefully someone here can help you with that. Only use the install disk or another computer till you get more help. Good luck. Colin

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Looks like you installed Ubuntu on the same partition where the Windows was. It is means, that the partition with Windows was formatted, and another OS was installed there. Part of your data was overwritten with data of newly installed system.

Here still could be a way to recover part of your data, but it depends on what kind of a data you're seeking for. You may try Dragon UnPACKer(I am not sure if it works on GNU/Linux despite the fact that this is Open Source, probably you need to launch it with WINE). It could recover some data like images(i.e. photo) and video, but I don't think that it can find something like Office documents.

What you have to do: load Ubuntu with live disk, next install there WINE(enter the sudo apt-get install wine in terminal), download and launch the Dragon UnPACKer, open this program with root rights(enter in terminal to the directory where the program is, and launch it with gksudo wine <paste_here_a_progam_name>). Next choose the plugin "Hyper Ripper"(or something like this, don't remember exactly, but you won't miss), you will see a menu that is asked for which format of files you wanna seek. (Un)check the ones in which you're interested, and open with this plugin your drive that most probably is the file /dev/sda.

Beware that this is will take many hours; depending on a speed and size of your drive you could wait even whole day. As a a good side this program can find even some partially screwed files -- I have tried this with a dump of some screwed flash card in which a man asked me to recovery photos, and this found even partially overwritten ones.

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