Question Data or partition recovery software suggestion?

QueBert

Lifer
Jan 6, 2002
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I don't know what happened to my drive, but the data vanished on it, I have it back up weekly, but I stupidly had it set to do 1 backup, so it backed up after the partition table got corrupt, or whatever happened and the backup is also hosed. I don't believe it was due to a physical failure, there are no click of death or any symptoms I've seen with a HD that's failing. I can't find reviews for software outside of sites that look like sponsored ads. I ran chkdsk and it said "volume does not contain a recognized file system" Now I don't know 100% the drive's okay physically, I'm assuming something happened to the partition table and I should be able to buy a software to recover the files or the partition table. It's an external HDD, so it's not my system disc. Anyone have a suggestion for a software? I'm not sure if I what would be better, recovery software or one of the partition recovery programs I'm seeing. Both partitions are showing up, I just can't access either.
 

Tech Junky

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Jan 27, 2022
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I've used this before to make a forensic copy of a "dead" drive and it collected a copy of all items on said drive I was working with. It won't / didn't make it bootable but, it did grab all files off the drive. It might be able to repair the drive to work again but use it to copy the data before trying anything else.
 
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QueBert

Lifer
Jan 6, 2002
22,136
550
126

I've used this before to make a forensic copy of a "dead" drive and it collected a copy of all items on said drive I was working with. It won't / didn't make it bootable but, it did grab all files off the drive. It might be able to repair the drive to work again but use it to copy the data before trying anything else.
Thank you! This didn't turn up when I was scouring for software reviews. It's free so it's I have nothing to lose. This isn't a system drive so I don't need it to be bootable. In an interesting twist, even though it did a backup last night so I knew the backup was bad. I've never actually had to restore a backup. I went to look in it just to see. Something wasn't set up correctly in the backup software and the 2 backup files have nothing in them so even if I had a backup from a month ago, it still wouldn't be of any help. I verified by checking the backup file for my system drive, and it was empty lol.


*EDIT*

Wow, afrer running it I remember this software now, but had forgot about it. I absolutely love anything that makes me feel like I'm on a Dos box again, it didn't help the problem. But I forgot a basic rule of troubleshooting and I tried putting a drive I know works in the enclosure and it came up saying it was corrupt too. So something's wrong with the enclosure, I and I doubt the drive's actually bad. I suppose the enclosure could have done something to both drives, but it looks like I just need to get a new enclosure.

I appreciate the software suggestion I'm putting that on my util flash drive
 
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Tech Junky

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Yeah, it's a good util w/o any frills.

Sounds like the enclosure is the issue though if it's reporting a known good drive as corrupted.

What size drives are we talking about? M2 / 2.5 / 3.5 ? I have some enclosure options I've scoped out for all 3 options and even just a simple cable that connects to the 2.5/3.5 drives that works great.
 

QueBert

Lifer
Jan 6, 2002
22,136
550
126
Yeah, it's a good util w/o any frills.

Sounds like the enclosure is the issue though if it's reporting a known good drive as corrupted.

What size drives are we talking about? M2 / 2.5 / 3.5 ? I have some enclosure options I've scoped out for all 3 options and even just a simple cable that connects to the 2.5/3.5 drives that works great.
3.5 4TB Seagate in a Wavlink enclosure that holds 2 drives. Since it was also saying the 480GB SSD was corrupt I installed Lite Linux to do some more troubleshooting. The SSD comes up fine there, but it's not showing the 4TB until I open Gparted and there it shows the partitions and their type as unknown. When I booted back into Windows 11, it's saying corrupt for the SSD. So I went back into Linux and it showed up fine. I tried installing Testdisk in Linux but LORD it's been forever and I've never used Lite Linux so I gave up after 20 minutes lol. I'm not entirely sure the enclosure's bad since the SSD appears in Linux, but it can't hurt to get another one to see what happens. I tried both drives in both slots with the same results in Windows & Linux.

I did some reading and I'm not even sure Linux can properly see a 4TB drive that wasn't formatted natively in Linux. This would explain why the drive isn't being detected and Gparted is saying unknown for it's partition type. I suck at Linux though so what I'm reading is just confusing me.
 

Tech Junky

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StarTech.com USB C to SATA... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071GRCGF4

Great cable for both types of drives.

Linux is helpful for cutting through the windows bs and river issues.

sudo apt install testdisk

From a terminal should work.

If gparted sees them then you should be able to mount them in disks. Or just use the mount command from terminal.
 

QueBert

Lifer
Jan 6, 2002
22,136
550
126
I tried using Sudo, said unknown command so apparently Lite Linux doesn't use it. I'm guessing it could be added, but figuring all this would take me forever lol. Lite Linux has a package manager, which I found Testdisk in and installed it, but it's not coming up when I search for it, and when I go back in the package manager I can't even find Testdisk when I search to try and reinstall it. I'd like to poke around more in Linux, but just in case the drive's actually failing I'm gonna leave it unhooked until I get another enclosure. Then I can use some USB cloning software to back up the drive and have at it. The cable you linked looks like something I should have on hand.
 

Tech Junky

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It's all case sensitive..... commands are all typically lower case

Code:
sudo apt install testdisk
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree... Done
Reading state information... Done
The following NEW packages will be installed:
  testdisk
0 upgraded, 1 newly installed, 0 to remove and 1 not upgraded.
Need to get 410 kB of archives.
After this operation, 1,519 kB of additional disk space will be used.
Get:1 http://mirrors.edge.kernel.org/ubuntu jammy/universe amd64 testdisk amd64 7.1-5build1 [410 kB]
Fetched 410 kB in 1s (666 kB/s)
Selecting previously unselected package testdisk.
(Reading database ... 239165 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack .../testdisk_7.1-5build1_amd64.deb ...
Unpacking testdisk (7.1-5build1) ...
Setting up testdisk (7.1-5build1) ...
Processing triggers for man-db (2.10.2-1) ...
Scanning processes...                                                                                                                                                         
Scanning candidates...                                                                                                                                                         
Scanning processor microcode...                                                                                                                                               
Scanning linux images...
 

Tech Junky

Platinum Member
Jan 27, 2022
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The cable you linked looks like something I should have on hand.
It makes things quicker and it's versatile enough to use with SSD's as well with the 10gbps cable the SSD 550MB/s shouldn't be a bottleneck. It works w/o the AC adapter on the 2.5" drives as well for portability w/o worrying about needing an AC outlet.

Enclosures are nice for long term carry but, when you're dealing with different drives it's quicker to de/attach them this way and you're not fiddling with screws to mount things and it's better cooled by being exposed off the cable. I've used different versions over the years as USB protocols get updated it's nice to have a cable that does the best speeds. With SATA not progressing any further beyond 6gbps it's future proofed from needing anything faster.
 

igor_kavinski

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Jul 27, 2020
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Wavlink enclosure
Learned years ago not to trust unknown brands with my data. As TJ said, StarTech or Thermaltake or Ugreen etc. have quality enclosures. Try Minitool data recovery.


Haven't used it but a friend recovered his corrupted partition successfully using the Minitool partition software.


You have this one? Seriously looks like a cheap rebrand of some Chinese crappy cookie-cutter design.
 
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Tech Junky

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@igor_kavinski

My one and only instance with wavlink was an utter fail with one of their HDD docks I picked up on eBay and of course no returns on it. Their products are the dirt cheap generics of the tech kingdom and sometimes they work great and other times they suck. IOW you have a point here.

The cable will work in the meantime until considering a different enclosure.
 
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SKORPI0

Lifer
Jan 18, 2000
18,051
1,978
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Just happened to a HDD.:confused_old:

I'm also using a Wavlink (2 docks) USB 3.0 enclosure with a 8TB Seagate HDD schucked from it's external case. I dropped it accidentally a few months ago after moving some cables, and Hard Disk Sentinel suddenly showed <10% remaining life "Do a backup soon drive will fail". Still used it without incident for weeks, until I rebooted the system and windows wanted to "recover/fix the drive or press a key". Stopped it from doing that. Then when Windows 11 desktop appeared....First thing it said drive "is not accessible, permission is denied".

Followed this guide - https://www.easeus.com/storage-media-recovery/fix-drive-is-not-accessible.html.

Had to change security permissions, using USER profile, administrators didn't work. After this, now I could access the HDD., showed 28.7GB free which was the case last time I used/accessed the files. Still no go with folders showing "empty".

So now EaseUS Data Recovery seems to see files that R-Studio says are empty folders after a deep scan. :confused_old:

So still about 21 hours or so to finish the "Advanced Scanning" until I can do a recovery of the folders/files to another external Seagate 8TB HDD. So far found 562932 files (7645.98 GB). I have a tiny 7" fan pointed at the enclosure to keep it cool.
 
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QueBert

Lifer
Jan 6, 2002
22,136
550
126
Just happened to a HDD.:confused_old:

I'm also using a Wavlink (2 docks) USB 3.0 enclosure with a 8TB Seagate HDD schucked from it's external case. I dropped it accidentally a few months ago after moving some cables, and Hard Disk Sentinel suddenly showed <10% remaining life "Do a backup soon drive will fail". Still used it without incident for weeks, until I rebooted the system and windows wanted to "recover/fix the drive or press a key". Stopped it from doing that. Then when Windows 11 desktop appeared....First thing it said drive "is not accessible, permission is denied".

Followed this guide - https://www.easeus.com/storage-media-recovery/fix-drive-is-not-accessible.html.

Had to change security permissions, using USER profile, administrators didn't work. After this, now I could access the HDD., showed 28.7GB free which was the case last time I used/accessed the files. Still no go with folders showing "empty".

So now EaseUS Data Recovery seems to see files that R-Studio says are empty folders after a deep scan. :confused_old:

So still about 21 hours or so to finish the "Advanced Scanning" until I can do a recovery of the folders/files to another external Seagate 8TB HDD. So far found 562932 files (7645.98 GB). I have a tiny 7" fan pointed at the enclosure to keep it cool.
GOOD post, I just bought another HD a few weeks ago and have been playing with all the recovery programs I can find. A lot seem to have a demo version that can't do any recovery but will show the data it finds. As of a week ago, EaseUS has done the best, only issue is the directory structer and file naming is absolutely crazy about half of what it found. It's also claiming close to 8TB of files, when the drive's only 4. So it's I guess finding duplicates of basically everything. I would be unable to accuratly rename most of the files and what I could would take A LONG TIME. But the results are still better than R-Studio and the others I tried.

If anyone has an idea about it finding twice the TB of files I actually have I'm all ears. I had run the deep scan, it took 11 hours or so and crashed right at the end. I managed to deep scan the other partition and save the scan result so I don't have to scan it again. Trying to do this on the 2nd partition too. Both scans found roughly double the TB of files. So maybe when the scan finishes without a crash I can look deeper and will find a good copy of everything, if not sorting thru an extra almost 4tb of stuff will be... not fun lol. Better than losing it.

I was really hoping it would find a backup of the FAT that I could restore. The drive seems good, I thought it was close to dying, but I was able to clone it to the new HD with no problem. Still not 100% but I have it cloned at least. There are probably some other softwares out there I need to give a shot. With how much better Ease did over R-Studio (night and day difference) I'm hoping there might be one that does an even better job than Ease. I'd pay even $300 if there was something that would find a backup of the FAT or something where I had all the directory and files intact as everything was before the crash. and not Dir.00001, Dir.00002 etc with a bunch of random file names.

That might not be possible, but the other 3 I tried did a worse job than Ease so I'm going to try whatever else I can find that has a free demo that'll at least do the scan and show the results.
 

QueBert

Lifer
Jan 6, 2002
22,136
550
126
I ran the scan again and got to where the directory structure looked spot on, but when I tried to preview about 100 different files it was unable to. Some images some AVI's. This is a semi stupid question, but assuming whatever softwares I try here can't get the files back. Would a recovery center be able to do anything?? After trying 100 different files and none coming up on the preview, I'm assuming there's nothing that can be done. But I don't know what Data recovery places are capable of. I'm curious because I've tried 6 different programs and am seeing 6 different things. So I'm thinking, maybe the data's still intact, but after what happened I don't want to purchase software only to have the files it restores be corrupt. I doubt any of them will have a refund policy.
 

SKORPI0

Lifer
Jan 18, 2000
18,051
1,978
126
Update:

1. Tried EaseUS Data Recovery, but it insisted doing a full scan without interruption, 20 days WTF. :oops:
2. GetDataBack saw that the drives MFTs was "corrupted". Didn't have to do a deep scan, it saw the found files/folders (dir.***.chk), but .didn't show their sizes. Clicking inside the folder shows the subfolder (names intact) and inside shows the file sizes.
3. Selected a folder to test and managed to recover/copy each file (*.mkv)completely , some >12gb (2160p movies/documentaries - from usenet). Verified mkv files, by playing it back. This is the bulk content of the drive. +3 TB IIRC.
4. Decided to move the Seagate 8TB HDD internally to the 6 GB/s SATA-3 motherboard port. External USB 3.0 dock was too slow in my case.
5. So much improved copying speed from internal to a external USB 3.0 HDD. It will take hours to copy all folders/files but a least I know they can be recovered at this point.
 

QueBert

Lifer
Jan 6, 2002
22,136
550
126
That's awesome, I'm going to try another few programs I found, it might be foolish but I still have hope something will be able to actually recover working files.
 

igor_kavinski

Diamond Member
Jul 27, 2020
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5. So much improved copying speed from internal to a external USB 3.0 HDD. It will take hours to copy all folders/files but a least I know they can be recovered at this point.
Looks like GetDataBack saved the day, again! Which version are you using? Wayyyyyy back, maybe in 2004, I had a whole HDD partition table wiped due to Chernobyl virus. It could easily have been prevented if I had kept the antivirus on but I had disabled it to keep my PC's overhead low. That bit me in my bum, big time! I took my HDD to a shopkeeper who advertised recovery. He was able to recover only one partition. Somehow, I happened upon GetDataBack NTFS. It did an initial scan and showed all the folders in the missing partitions. And the way it shows what it is doing when scanning and reading the filesystem data structures. Like they want you to know how complicated their software's recovery algorithm is and what it has to go through to recover your data. That'level of detail convinced me that it was the best data recovery software ever!
 

SKORPI0

Lifer
Jan 18, 2000
18,051
1,978
126
Looks like GetDataBack saved the day, again! Which version are you using?
Pro 5.5.6. Already recovered 2TB of my 2160p mkv files (movies/documentaries).
Some errors showed up, told GetDataBack to ignore all. So I'll try to do a files size comparison from the other recovery app (EaseUS Data Recovery) to see what could be missing/wrong files size. Should there be a difference, I'll have to repeat the download for that file/s via Usenet, hopefully within retention and complete.
 
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igor_kavinski

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Should there be a difference, I'll have to repeat the download for that file/s via Usenet, hopefully within retention and complete.
Contiguous files have a better chance of recovery. If the partition you are recovering from saw frequent addition/deletion of files, the fragmented files won't fare very well.
 
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SKORPI0

Lifer
Jan 18, 2000
18,051
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Update 2:
Well, the Seagate 8TB HDD finally "died" as predicted by Hard Disk Sentinel. I accidentally dropped it from my table (3 foot) on a carpeted floor, it was mounted on a Wavlink USB 3.0 enclosure. It worked for months, then the MFT got corupted, thus the need for a recovery apps several which I tried. As mentioned GetData Back save the day. The HDD was giving some read errors/clicking on some files while doing the copying, which I told the app to ignore/all. This most probably killed it and no longer detected in BIOS.

But I was able to "recover" almost all, but lost about 970 GB of files (Youtube Game cutscenes in 4K, Android Apps (2017-present), some music files (mp3, flac) which i could re-download later. Using Level 2 scan with GetData Back to "fix" the MFT corruption, managed to recover more files than Level 1 did.

This is the second time the MFT on a HDD I had got corrupted, but managed to fix it without having to do any recovery.
 

QueBert

Lifer
Jan 6, 2002
22,136
550
126
MAN you got lucky, I didn't drop my drive, and running a deep scan the drive isn't even reporting any bad sectors so it looks like the drive's fine and I just got really unlucky. I can see all the files on it, but it seems 99% of them aren't going to be recoverable. I called a data recovery center, explained to them my problem and they assured me they could recover my data successfully.
 

igor_kavinski

Diamond Member
Jul 27, 2020
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