Software to undo an accidental quick format. HELP!

Right... Oh my God! FML!!! Now that I got that out of my system....

I was playing with Ubuntu and I wanted to install it on my USB hard disk since my computer can boot from USB. Well I installed it but for some reason it would not boot. When it installed it it did not put the boot flag, but adding that did not help.

So I decided to use the USB Startup Disk Creator. I had a separate partition and everything ready to go. Then for reasons that completely escape me I hit the Format button instead of the Make Startup Disk Option after selecting the correct partition and picking all the options.

Up until the point where I clicked Format it had already been a very long day... After that point words cannot not describe my reaction.

On the bright side the format process took literally a few seconds and since this is a 1.5 TB USB hard disk there is no way it formatted every sector (thank God!). As soon as I realized what I had done (and after clicking okay on the messages that the disk I was using were no longer there) I unplugged the hard disk.

What I am looking for is some software to undo my incompetence. I found exactly what I am looking for from Seagate but it costs "ONLY US$129.00" and that is a bit too much money at this point.

Any help or advice (including don't be a dimwit and don't hit format unless you know what you are doing) would be appreciated. I am going to end this by saying one word. Oy!
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  1. Thanks joeman42! I will look into it. My main system is actually running Windows 7 and I wanted to try Ubuntu from the external HDD because I was getting tired of the Live CD.

    As for the number of files I have to restore I should have mentioned that. It is thousands of files totalling over 500 GB. The two partitions they are on are both NTFS.

    I will see what free options there are, but it looks like I might have to go the paid route. Oh well I did not get to go away for spring break this year so I will just take the money out of my vacation fund. :|
  2. Thanks joeman42 for the quick replies! I will look into it in the morning because after "accidentally clicking format" I think I have done quite enough for one day.
  3. I just wanted to say thank you in your first post for reminding me not to restore the files to the same drive. I will say that it is lack of sleep as to why that was not obvious to me at this point.

    I am going to have a snack and then I am going to bed.
  4. Try test disk it is available on the konppix live cd you can restore your previous partition table information with it.
  5. Actually, I also have encountered the similar recovery problem before. That’s why I come here to share my experiences with you.
    At that time, after inserting a WD external hard drive to my computer, a warning message popped out and asked me to format it. Without hesitation, I just stupidly click “Yes” because I thought I have backed up all my important data well. But, it was not true. So, I had to rudely eject it from the computer for stopping the formatting process. But, the data also became inaccessible.
    So, in order to recover my data, I tried a lot of ways, including trying a bunch of recovery tools. Finally, all my inaccessible data was retrieved at the aid of a free hard drive recovery tool:
    Am I lucky?
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