Cant recover deleted file?

  • alamode
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Ok.. I deleted a file when i was on Windows Xp.. Now i installed Windows 7 and i removed windows Xp.. Now i want that file which i deleted back, Ive used many softwares none of them come up with the deleted file.. They just dont show those files, Its like those files never existed..

I dont understand why i cant find those deleted files.. I've tried like 10 different recovery programs.. none of them can find those files.. Also when i was on Windows Xp i used to recover files all the time without any problem..

Why is it that the recovery programs cant find my file? is it because i installed a new windows and maybe for some reason it cant read the files which were deleted on Windows Xp?
  • Anonymous
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • Don2007
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Chances are that file was overwritten when you installed Windows 7. You've been here a long time. I'm surprised you didn't know that.
  • joebert
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Post 3+ Months Ago

If the file is crucial, send the drive to a specialist. They may be able to recover the file using those magical magnetic memory hardware tools a lot of people claim can be used to determine the entire history of a drive.
  • Don2007
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Post 3+ Months Ago

That would cost about $300 & I doubt it can be done after a clean install.
  • joebert
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Post 3+ Months Ago

An interesting thread.
  • alamode
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Yeah no, I didnt install windows on the same drive though, My data was in D Drive while i installed Win7 on C drive.

Cant really understand why the files dont show up.. Even if the files were overwritten, They still used to show up and it used to say that their condition is not good and you cant recover them but for some reason i cant even see those files now :S.
  • joebert
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Do Windows XP and Windows 7 use the same disk format ? (NTFS I believe for XP?)
  • Don2007
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Alamode: If D was just a logical drive, setup may have wiped it.

Joebert: I believe it's still NTFS.
  • pccare_himanshu
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Try a software called Recuva



It can try to retrieve deleted data
  • Mollywhite
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Post 3+ Months Ago

So you can, just try a data recovery tool.
Recuva is a nice free one, or you can try Hodo Data Recovery software as a professional one.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Problem: you installed a new OS (Win 7) and removed XP.

In XP your files were "Stored" in the recycle bin and could be in most cases restored from the recycle bin. The reason for the ease of this kind of restoration is that the files aren't really deleted. Nor are they actually "stored" in the recycle bin per se. When a file is deleted the operating system (works the same in XP and Win 7) marks the file name in the Master File Table (MFT) with a special character that indicates the file is deleted. However, it also marks the file as being allocated to free space. This presents a problem that any activity after the deletion has the potential to overwrite some or all of the blocks on the hard drive where the file is actually stored.

Even deleting files from a drive other than the C: drive works the same way. So when you deleted files from your D: drive it changed the file as mentioned above to mark it as deleted in the MFT and it would have appeared in the recycle bin.

I would venture to say that unless you've added / removed a bunch of files or defragged your D: drive since the Win 7 install, the data probably still exists in their original blocks on the D drive (this is somewhat questionable, because once the files are marked for deletion in the MFT they become part of "free space" and any activity has the potential to overwrite them). However, the install of Win 7 and removal of XP would have totally overwritten the MFT, so now your computer has no record of those files or where they are located.

The software you are most likely using depends on the MFT to find these files and since the records no longer exists for the old deleted files data they won't be able to find them.

I would venture to say that an expert forensic's company could probably locate them, but unless they are mission critical data, the cost would most likely be prohibitive.

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