How to get back deleted files

Hi there,

So this has been a nightmare from hell.

I went to change my p/w on my Win 10 laptop, & when I went to log in, I couldn't.

My friend found something online that would crack it (something from MS) & when I went to burn it onto my thumb drive (I think it was an ISO file), instead of it burning there, it burned it onto my external 2 TB Toshiba HD.

We are now using Piriform's Recuva to try & get my files back, but so far it's been around 4 hours, & it found 46 files (there has to be around 400-500 files) within the first 30 minutes, & nothing since, & it's already at 29%.

I don't know what to do.

Any ideas?

Thanks
 

Darren

Moderator
Staff member
Recuva is probably your best free bet, without paying out the nose for professional data recovery that may or may not work.

In theory if you can rebuild the file structure (using Recuva or otherwise), you should be able to recover any sectors that weren't physically written over with the ISO burn. Wouldn't bank on it though.
 
Recuva is probably your best free bet, without paying out the nose for professional data recovery that may or may not work.

In theory if you can rebuild the file structure (using Recuva or otherwise), you should be able to recover any sectors that weren't physically written over with the ISO burn. Wouldn't bank on it though.

Yeh, I can't budget out paying a professional.

So the burn would have deleted the files for good? :(

Any other free ones like Recuva that are better?

I'm now at 33% & still only 46 files - sigh

Thanks
 

Darren

Moderator
Staff member
I'm not 100 percent sure about the burn, particularly if you changed the file format when you did it. I work in enterprise storage, but not sure on specifics down at the drive level.

But in theory, when you delete a file all you're doing is removing the label or pointer that tells the OS where the data is physically parked on the drive. If you delete something, you just delete the label/pointer, but the actual data on the disk remains and is marked as available for future writes. The data will stay there until a new write operation comes along that happens to point at those now available sectors, and overwrite what was there. You can also clear those sectors by doing a "zero" or "shred" of the disk, which goes thru and manually writes 0's to the sectors, and fully removes the data.

Recuva and other programs work by scanning the drive and attempting to rebuild the file structure with what it has left over. If the sectors your files were parked on haven't been overwritten or zeroed, and you're able to rebuild the file structure (labels/pointers), you should be able to get it back.

Given that you wrote to it, you're likely going to be missing at least something. Let Recuva finish, see what you get, and go from there.
 
Ok, so I ditched trying to get the files.

Turns out that Windows puts the software to sleep if I'm not at the computer 24/7 so it gave an error & while it found TONS of files in the end, they were ALL missing a file name & there was no way I could figure out what was what.

It also changed MP4s to PDFs. What??? LOL

So I just gave up. I already spent 2 days trying to deal with 2 computer issues.

Thanks a ton guys.

Have a good one!
 
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