I have a customer who had a Dell Optiplex desktop running Windows XP on a Western Digital 70 GB SATA drive (single partition, and very small utility partition I think). Somehow his PC crashed (don't know the full details) and he shipped his drive to me to recover data. I mounted with a USB-SATA adapter on my Win7 laptop and disk management sees the disk, but sees it as RAW format and can't browse the disk at all. There are no weird sounds coming from it, as far as I can tell - it sounds like any other SATA disk.
I tried a couple programs including Recuva and ZAR but neither of those had any success. I then got a trial of Filerecovery Enterprise and ran a scan. It scanned the whole disk and actually found something like 27000 files I think (I didnt save a log of what it found unfortunately).
It went slow at first, then started going super fast when it started finding bad blocks. But it did find 27000 files, so I'm not sure if it may have worked? I went to open a sample .DOC that it found, but it said I needed to purchase a license in order to open it. A message also had come up though saying that the disk may need more assistance from Kroll (the vendor, who also provides data recovery as a service), based on the errors it found.
So at this point do you think it may be worth purchasing the full version of FileRecovery Enterprise? Or is there possibly another program I can use that can do this for free?
Even if those documents are in fact intact, is there any chance of also recovering the full directory structure? Because the output from Filerecovery only showed a bunch of randomly-named files.
I also heard of another possible program called R-Studio, so I downloaded that and am running a scan on it now. Just to give an idea, this is what the scan shows so far: http://i.imgur.com/O0WUOZZ.png
Is that promising at all? Or does this not indicate much of anything?
Or does anyone have any other possible recommendations for this situation? I am pretty desperate.
RAW hard drive often needs to be formatted, if you still want use this drive as before.
However, as to the inner data, formatting often would increase the difficulty of complete data recovery. Therefore, you are supposed to restore your data at first and format this drive afterwards.
So, try to opt for an efficient data recovery program.