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Windows 7: Help! accidentally reformatted external drive!Need good file recovery!

22 Jun 2013   #11

Windows 7 64 bit

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Phone Man View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Birddude007 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Phone Man View Post
Recurva has an option to restore folder structure under actions.

ya i saw that.....but does it work?
Yes it will. I had erased an external drive and did a recovery on some files. I created a recover folder on one of my internal drives and recovered the files I wanted to that folder and it recreated the file directory. Give it a try, it lets you recover a single file if you want to test.

Well I tried it with EASUS recovery program and it recovered my files and it showed the main file structure but only a few files in them, it however created a "lost files" folder where it threw the majority of all the other files it recovered, and by the looks of it, it was all my files I lost, but if I kep that, then I would be forever just trying to reorganise these files. If Recuva would just put all my files back in their respective folders than I would be a happy camper.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2013   #12

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64

Try it and see.

I am not too hopeful if you formatted the drive.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2013   #13

Windows 10 Pro X64

If a quick format was done then the folder/file structure and data should still be there, right?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Jun 2013   #14
Phone Man

Windows 8.1 Pro w/Media Center 64bit, Windows 7 HP 64bit

Read all about it here:

Piriform - Recuva

Recovery options
To restore the files in the same folders they were deleted from, select Restore folder structure.
For example, if you are recovering these files to E:\Recovery
  • C:\test.txt
  • C:\Word\sample.doc
  • C:\Program\Install\install.bat
using the restore folder structure option, they will be recovered as:
  • E:\Recovery\test.txt
  • E:\Recovery\Word\sample.doc
  • E:\Recovery\Program\Install\install.bat
If you do not use the restore folder structure option, they will be recovered as:
  • E:\Recovery\test.txt
  • E:\Recovery\ sample.doc
  • E:\Recovery\ install.bat
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2013   #15

Windows 7 64 bit

Well I have not written anything to the drive yep so everything should still be there, right now I am scanning just for all my photo files and photoshop etc files, I am going to just save them all to my other external drive, then I will have all the time in the world to go back into the 3TB drive and try different programs, I will also try that Recuva and try a full scan and recovery....wish me luck
I need to know what software program I can use to scan all my image files and thin out all the duplicate files, does someone know of a good one?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Jul 2013   #16

Windows 7 64 bit

Ok folks I finally have an update along with an outcome and a moral to the story-

It took me about three~four weeks of trying out different recovery programs and hoping I could get it to just restructure my files back to original, guess I was just wishful thinking.

I originally started out with EasUS data recovery program but was not happy with the outcome because it didnt recover the file structure, So I never even checked to see the quality of my restored files, I got impatient and just moved on. So I tried many more, but most of them were only recovering just partials of my folders, for example many of my images would only render 1/2 or just bits and parts. None of them would just restore my files back to their original structure so I gave up on that concept, I just got in the frame of mind of just trying to recover my files and then I will address it from there.
After a lot of trial and error I finally resorted back to giving EasUS another try. Well......I gave it a couple of days to recover all my files (three terabyte drive takes a while). When it was finished recovering the files I randomly tried out several image (DNG) files and I couldn't find one corrupt file, I even browsed the folder with Bridge and everything looked awesome. Either way I was content with what was recovered, however there was 750 GB worth of files that I needed to go through, talk about undaunting! and monotenous! and boring!
First thing I did was directed the view mode to just group all files by file type (that helped immensely) and then I went through and tossed all the files that were not image related, that whittled it down to around 500 GBs.
I then created folders and put the perspective file types in each folder, this made things easier for the computer to go through, I then went into each folder and sub-folder in those perspective folders and started to copy all the contents into one folder, when Windows noticed copies/duplicates it would ask me what I wanted to to, I just clicked "Skip" and ticked the box asking to do it with other affected folders, however I always paid attention to the files size because i didn't want to leave a file in there that was a smaller file size than the one I am deleting. I would then go back into the sub-folder I was moving the files from and just deleted the remaining files.
After about a day of doing just this I finally had my one big folder in each perspective file type and I whittled the size down to 300 I am getting somewhere!
I still had duplicates in these folder because most of them had file extensions at the end of the file names, so I spent some time going through them and discarding all the duplicates and keeping the originals, some of them even had up to ten copies of themselves! and at an average of 15 MBs each those really added up and took a lot of disk drive space. After all was said and done I ended up with 110 GBs of image files! due to my laziness and non organizational skillz over the last ten years I managed to bloat my files up an extra 640 GBs!
All I had to do next was put some sort of as-semblance to my images, that is where Lightroom stepped in!, after about four hours of importing my files into LR I now know where every single image is and can locate a certain image within seconds, and I also know I don't have the files laying around on my hard drives just sucking up space. When LR imported the files I had them put on my first hard drive and a second copy was put on my second external HD (yes I finally wrote files to my three terabyte drive!) I even backed up my LR catalog to the first external HD as well.

Now the morals/ lessons learned-
1-with computers and image files, always be organized, pay attention to where your files are going when you are finished working on them. Now ALL my image files go into ONE folder I have names "My Lightroom Files" so Light room can have an easy time controlling them and working with them, plus it will make thing a whole lot easier when I do backing up, all I gotta to is copy and past the folder onto my other hard drive without worry of losing even a single image.
2-when doing something like reformatting an external hard drive-UNPLUG ANY OTHER EXTERNAL HARD DRIVES!!!!!
that way there is no way you can accidentally format the wrong one like I did. I learned a serious lesson here that cost me about a month of work and worry, however it was a blessing in disguise, I was actually forced to reorganize my files and now I have two totally cleaned out external hard drives where I know where every thing is....and that is in there place. I actually feel real good about how I have it set up, and my computer is working a lot faster now.
3-EasUS data recovery to me is the best one out there for recovering your lost files, it is the most thorough and complete scanning and recovering software I have found.....worth every penny.
4- Patience is a virtue when it comes to computers......if you get in a hurry and are going to pay for it dearly.

I hope at least someone can learn from my mistakes here.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Help! accidentally reformatted external drive!Need good file recovery!

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