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Get data back from formatted disk?

  • Hard Drives
  • Storage
Last response: in Storage
a b G Storage
June 14, 2010 5:06:41 PM

Hello hope someone can help!!

I recently rebuilt a friends computer after it was riddled with viruses etc - he said to just wipe it and start a fresh so I did. I kept a copy of the profiles on there with pics and music in and copied them back to PC after Windows re-install.

Problem is now he says he had pictures in another folder on the C:\ but I deleted the partion, formatted and installed XP.

I know you can get software to retrieve from formatted disks but what about if you have deleted, recreated, formatted and installed Windows on top?? I'm assuming it's game over for the missing pics's??

More about : data back formatted disk

a c 367 G Storage
June 14, 2010 7:31:08 PM

Game over is a good bet. It usually takes a lot of time, skill and software to recover files so well destroyed. Not impossible unless the original files were carefully overwritten, but very difficult and expensive. Of course, if all the new stuff installed actually happens to have used the space formerly occupied by those "lost files", they REALLY are lost!
June 16, 2010 8:54:43 PM

As billy_2010 says above, reformatting your HD does not necessarily mean your files are lost. Give Recuva a try, it's a great/free file recovery program.

Good luck.
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June 16, 2010 9:09:28 PM


The data may still be there. Use a file recovery program and see what you can get back
a b G Storage
September 17, 2010 10:42:58 AM

Technically speaking, format or resintallation won't erase the information on the disk, you may also give this disk format recovery software a chance to try.

Moreover, as your missing items are photos, you can also use Wondershare Photo Recovery to see if you can rely on this photo recovery program to recover photos.
December 30, 2013 4:57:26 AM

I'm not aware of any freeware data recovery apps. If there are any, they're probably worth what you pay for them, as data recovery is a very complicated operation.
Data Rescue is probably your best option, and is dirt cheap compared to professional recovery. It all depends how much your data is worth. Most recovery apps will give you a basic free version to show what may be recoverable, but will not let you actually recover the data. That version costs money.
Whatever you do, don't write anything to the disk you formatted, as that may overwrite the files you're trying to recover.