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| p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · Help! Retrieve deleted files from external hard drive. |
There are a number of free programs available on the web. I don't have experience with any of them, but Flash Fixers has a very inexpensive bit of software that I do have experience with. It worked very well and saved me from my own stupidity and/or bad luck several times. I paid 29.95, but this was some years back. I have received several versions of upgrades since, but have not needed to use it. Usually, when files are deleted or the drive is formatted, the FAT (File Allocation Table) is overwritten. This is a table of contents which the OS consults when you are looking for a file. The files themselves have not been altered in any way. The have been merely deleted from the FAT. That deletion also marks the space the file occupies as empty and thus suitable for new data. All of the software are able to bypass the FAT and look at the actual files. That said, it is EXTREMELY important that you do not write anything new to the drive, because the new data will be overwriting your old data, which is still on the drive. Once the data has been overwritten, it will NOT be recoverable. You will also be able to use the software to recover files from compact flash cards and the like. The FAT on these media is often corrupted by removing the card before the camera has finished writing an image. $29.95 is pretty cheap. Remember, there are only 2 kinds of people in the world: Those who have lost data and those who will. So it is important that you develop a suitable backup system. This can be as simple as a 2nd copy of your troubled drive, placed somewhere else than your home. In the event of theft or fire, you want to be certain that your backups are not at risk, too. And of course, you have to discipline yourself to backup regularly. Best of luck!!!