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Windows 7: Please recommend Data Recovery Software (folder structure required)

10 Dec 2016   #1
peteagreatguy

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 
Please recommend Data Recovery Software (folder structure required)

Hi all,

Brief description on my predicament ...

Two days ago I shutdown my PC and everything was working fine. I then booted into Windows and tried to edit my web sites where Dreamweaver gave out an error which caused me to suddenly realise that one of my hard drives was not present. My Seagate 2TB which included all my music, my documents data.

I went into Disk Management and saw that the 2TB disk was present but it hadn't initiated. I rebooted into Windows with the same issue. I reloaded disk management. Selected the disk where I was prompted to initialise the disk. I selected its previous GPT setting. Upon it appearing in explorer all my files were gone.

Note: My Windows is working fine so I suspect a possible hard drive failure? I'm unsure because both SeaTools and WD Lifeguard pass on SMART. I haven't run the tests though. I checked the power connection and data cable and they are secure. The drive itself is running fine now which puzzles me.

I've currently got Easeus Data Recovery Pro running a deep scan in the background. I can see it is picking up all my files but from what I can see it isn't maintaining the folder structure and I really need this folder structure. I'm contacting their support about this also.

What data recovery software would people recommend for Windows 7 Ultimate x64 which would be able to get the folder structure back?

I really need it because it would take me weeks on end to completely organise all the data myself as it's about 400GB in total that was on this drive.

Thank you for your aid in my situation.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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10 Dec 2016   #2
samuria

win 8 32 bit
 
 

You need to use partition recovery not data recovery if the partition is recovered all data folders will be there. Data recovery will just try and find files not the partition. If you Google free partition recovery there are lots to choose from
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Dec 2016   #3
peteagreatguy

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Hi samuria,

I am using the partition recovery section of the Easeus recovery software. As I said it isn't providing the folder structure. I'm in contact with Easeus about it but it will be some time before I get a reply.

Is there a particular partition one you would recommend?

Thanks for your help
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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10 Dec 2016   #4
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

DO NOT ATTEMPT TO RECOVER YOUR DATA YOURSELF! It's simply too easy to destroy any data that may still be on your HDD, if you didn't already do so when you initialized it. I've seen far to many horror stories from people who attempted to do their own data recovery and botched it.

Although it is expensive (as much as several thousand dollars) and comes with no guarantees, professional data recovery is much safer and far more likely to succeed than any data recovery software you may use, especially a freebie. Attempt your own data recovery ONLY if there is no way you afford professional data recovery and have accepted you most likely will never see your data again.

While this is closing the barn door after the horse has bolted, you need to starte backing up your data. You should have at least two frequently updated backups—one stored onsite and one stored offsite—to ensure your data is reasonably safe. If you had already been backing up your data, you could have easily, inexpensively, and much more safely recovered your data in much less time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Feb 2017   #5
Brendan999

Windows 10 Home 64 bit
 
 
Try GetDataBack

Hello,
I am facing a similar situation and have tried various freeware to recover data from one of my external drives which failed. The drive still spins up and is working in a hard drive dock, but the folder structure is gone. Various programs can "see" many files on the drive, but, like you, I really need the folder structure.
Then I tried the trial version of GetDataBack - seemed to very quickly recover the folder structure as best I could remember. I haven't purchased the full version of the software yet as I am still checking other freeware - most of them are exceptionally slow on a 3TB Seagate drive.
Hope this helps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Feb 2017   #6
simrick

W7 64bit
 
 

MiniTool Power Data Recovery retains all structure, from my experience. But, you'll have to buy the paid version, as the free version only allows for 1GB recovery.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2017   #7
peteagreatguy

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Hi all,

I thought I'd provide an update on this.

I sent off my hard drive to a professional body (Fields Data Recovery - Hard Drive Recovery and Data Recovery from SSD, RAID and USB disks).

This is what they diagnosed:
Quote:
Diagnosis results have shown that the head assembly unit has failed. The technician has advised the next stage of the recovery process is to replace the complete head assembly unit, rebuild the HDD and then attempt to extract your data. This is a highly skilled process but unfortunately isn't infallible. The chance of a successful recovery once the process has been completed is approximately 70%.
I got back majority of my data but without the folder structure. The data I lost was not a major issue as it was mainly gaming files and projects. All my music was recovered and majority of my personal files (around 80%). It cost me a small fortune (just over 1000). I'm now looking into backup options such as RAID 1 or weekly backups using an external drive and Allway Sync software. Thank you again for your advice all.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2017   #8
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by peteagreatguy View Post
Hi all,

I thought I'd provide an update on this.

I sent off my hard drive to a professional body (Fields Data Recovery - Hard Drive Recovery and Data Recovery from SSD, RAID and USB disks).

This is what they diagnosed:
I got back majority of my data but without the folder structure. The data I lost was not a major issue as it was mainly gaming files and projects. All my music was recovered and majority of my personal files (around 80%). It cost me a small fortune (just over 1000). I'm now looking into backup options such as RAID 1 or weekly backups using an external drive and Allway Sync software. Thank you again for your advice all.
Raid is NOT a backup! Please read this from here:


RAID is not designed to replace a proper backup solution, it's there to protect against drive failures with minimal to no down time. I don't understand why some people think that just because different RAIDs such as RAID 5 or RAID 6 can take a drive loss and still maintain data integrity that their data is backed up. It simply is not. Data needs to be in multiple places to actually be backed up, not just a single RAID volume in a single PC/location.

RAID arrays do NOT protect against:
  • Boot Sector Corruption
  • Human error (deleting files by mistake)
  • RAID controller/software failure
  • Fire, flood, or other calamity such as an EMP in your PC...
  • Theft, hacker attack, or other offensive action
  • Multiple disk failures and Unrecoverable Read Error
  • Data corruption
  • Virus'

For data to be safe, it has to be kept in at least three places, such as on the computer, on an onsite backup, and on an offsite backup. Backups must never be connected to the computer except while updating them. Local backups should be updated frequently since any data on your computer will be lost if the drive the data is on dies or the data is otherwise lost. I do weekly backups but I also backup more frequently if I add critical data that cannot otherwise be recovered if lost. Offsite backups should be swapped out with the local backups as frequently as practical. I swap mine out no less than once a month; more often if I add a lot of new or changed data.

An onsite backup should be kept disconnected and stored away from the computer, preferably in another room and out of site. Offsite backups can be kept in a locked drawer or locker at work or school, a trusted friend's or relative's house, or in a safe deposit box in the vault at your financial institution (I do the latter; it costs $60/year but, since I already had one anyway, it's not costing me anything to keep my backup drives there).

If you have a decent broadband internet connection, a good, PAID, cloud backup service, such as Carbonite.com (my choice, btw), Crashplan, or Backblaze can also be used as an offsite backup if you don't have too much data (stay away from the free cloud storage; they are more work, not as secure, and are notorious for disappearing with little or no warning).

The downside of a good cloud backup service is the time it takes to upload and download the data. I have so much data, it would take weeks to download all of it if I ever needed to so I maintain offsite backups on SSDs but have a Carbonite account to recover just the data that was added or changed since I put the offsite backup drives in my safe deposit box. It also backs up data very soon after I generate it so I have a little more time before I have to update my onsite backups. Another advantage to my Carbonite account is I can access my data where ever I have a secure internet connection when I'm on the road since my notebooks don't have enough capacity to carry all of it with me.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2017   #9
peteagreatguy

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

External weekly backups using syncing software sounds like the option then Thank you for that extremely informative post
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Feb 2017   #10
RolandJS

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 

"...I'm now looking into backup options such as RAID 1..." If I understand RAID 1 a little bit, I do not recommend this; if a viri or malware or worse - ransomeware - hits your computer, both RAID 1 created original and second copies could become lost in an instant. I recommend making weekly, bi-weekly, bi-monthly, u-pick-how-often, using Macrium Reflect or anything similar, full images of your OS and Data partitions onto affordable reliable external media.

I see three of us were posting at the same time
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Please recommend Data Recovery Software (folder structure required)




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