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Hard Disk file recovery - I dodged a bullet

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Old 09-09-2009, 10:02 PM
DannyRaphael's Avatar
DannyRaphael DannyRaphael is offline
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Near Seattle, Washington, USA
Posts: 6,300
Hard Disk file recovery - I dodged a bullet

"Recover my files"

It's long story, but in brief I accidently deleted about 2.5 years of photo and digital art files while revamping my "automated" backup process.

RecoverMyFiles recovered 24,967 out of 24,967 files (about 550 gb) including:
* Hundreds of fairly large, unflattened (multiple layer) Photoshop files (example: 40+ layers, > 600 mb), including a few over 1GB in size
* .nef (RAW)
* .jpg
* Plus all the supporting .txt, PDF, Excel and Word files

* Very good documentation
* Easy to use
* All files recovered
* GREAT service/support
..... - VERY SHORT WAIT TIME for replies to e-mail questions, like less than 10 minutes. Really.
..... - While recovery was in progress I received an unsolicited follow up e-mail asking "How is it going?" and "Let us know if we can help." Never got an e-mail like this one before.

Bottom line: I am a happy camper who is breathing a lot easier now.
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Old 09-09-2009, 10:21 PM
MiningArt's Avatar
MiningArt MiningArt is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: United States
Posts: 792
Re: Hard Disk file recovery - I dodged a bullet

Close call, glad it work out ok. The data recovery software you linked to is reasonably priced. Lesson learned, backup before you auto-backup? :-))
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Old 09-09-2009, 10:51 PM
Craig Walters's Avatar
Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: somewhere over there
Posts: 8,786
Blog Entries: 4
Re: Hard Disk file recovery - I dodged a bullet

thanks, danny. that's good to know. there are a LOT of those types of programs around, so it's always good to know which ones actually work and work well.
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Old 09-10-2009, 11:23 AM
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weshoot weshoot is offline
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 52
Re: Hard Disk file recovery - I dodged a bullet

A word of advice. Use another drive for backup and have two copies of every file. Hard-drives crash, for good. I had it happen to me. I copy everything I do to a 2nd drive, just in case.

Gary Silverstein

We Shoot
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Old 09-10-2009, 04:48 PM
Robt Robt is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Seattle
Posts: 131
Re: Hard Disk file recovery - I dodged a bullet

Given your background, I am shocked. But I'm also glad you did save yourself. Wish I could say I've never made that oopsy.

Danny, one terabyte Western Digital externals are $129. at Costco. Sure would save a lot of grief.
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Old 09-10-2009, 05:40 PM
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seattle-light seattle-light is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Vancouver, BC (formerly Seattle and New York)
Posts: 133
Re: Hard Disk file recovery - I dodged a bullet

Hey DannyRaphael...

You got really lucky (and happened to have the exactly the right software at exactly the right time for exactly the problem you were having). Hard drives fail over time -- that's just a simple fact of life. And essential files can easily easily get lost or corrupted. Over the years, I've think I've seen every kind backup system fail. And retrieving data can be a real crapshoot. You don't want a year's worth of work to be dependent upon a piece of retrieval software. If the files are important, you should have systems in place to safeguard them.

The only real way around that is to back up everything to two separate hard drive systems (and those hard drives shouldn't be running except when your backing things up because hard drives fail over time so you want to keep the mileage down on them) and then make a couple DVD copies of every project when it's completed. That's two sets of files on hard drives (in addition to the working files on your main system) plus two physical copies of the finished projects on disk. And then you need to keep it all really well organized so that you can get to what you need when you need it.

Don't get lulled into a false sense of security just because you were able to get your data back this time around. Hard drives are cheap and so are DVDs. It's a question of what are your files are worth to you. And the time to think about that is before you have a critical hard drive failure.

I'm really glad it worked out for you this time around.

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Old 09-14-2009, 10:19 AM
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gholmes1936 gholmes1936 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Austin, Tx USA
Posts: 733
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Re: Hard Disk file recovery - I dodged a bullet

I use a Mac. I have had occasion where a download contained some PC type files-like .exe. Maybe they were the culprits, I am not certain. All I can tell you is that I have 5 count em 5 external hard drives. One day I turned them on and they were all empty. Not bad hard drives, just empty. I ran Tech Tool Pro, and Norton on my best one (all imagefiles only) and got one empty folder back. Wish I had known of the URL that Danny mentioned then. As it was I wound up signing on with They are an online backup business. I bought 60GB of space for $99.00 per year. They have other levels of back up available for different prices. They have software for every OS and it allows one to sync any drive, folder, or file with them. Works automatically in the background. Now I can <<<smile>>>

I do have a 1TB external hard drive, it to was wiped, my bad because TENDED (past tense) to turn them all on after I booted up in the A.M. Not anymore Horatio.......

I did find a lot of my files in various places like flickr, kodak gallery, etc. Plus I had backed everything up on CD's up until 2 years ago, so I have all that. Still my trip to Paris last fall was wiped out.

Enough of the crying over my own spilt milk. I just hope that someone else learns form my mistakes.
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