How to recover save files from SD card?

Shantrius

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I'll start by saying that I'm very new to this and apologize in advance for any "crime" I've committed and any stupid questions that follow it.

So, I bought a New 3DS XL that came with cfw and a ton of games and apps pre-installed. It was pre-cleaned so there were no save files or any account settings of the sort.
I wanted to transfer the legit games and saves I had on my old (non-hacked) 3DS XL, and so I read up on it for a bit, and saw that the solution was a system transfer.

Before I did the system transfer, I backed up my new system with GodMode9, and then proceeded with the transfer. After the transfer was done, I chose to keep the files on the old SD card when it prompted it, just in case something would go wrong. After this, the New 3DS had all my legit games, account and saves, and my old 3DS had been formatted and cleaned up while still having the original files somewhere in the old SD card.

This is where I think I did an oopsie. I then restored the GM9 backup on the New 3DS. I thought that restoring the GM9 backup would simply restore/merge the apps and other games, but it turns out it completely replaces everything, including accounts, saves etc. At the same time, the hacked apps and games were not restored either (I can see their files are still somewhere in the card but I'm not too bothered by it since I can just re-download whatever I want to have on the system).

So here's the situation: I logged in my Nintendo account on the "restored" system and re-downloaded the legit games. I've tried a few ways to restore the saves to no avail. In my new SD card, I have 2 different <ID0> folders, both with the same <ID1> inside it, which in turn has the respective games according to which "system" they belonged to (so one of them has the hacked apps + the redownloaded legit games, while the other one has the original legit games and saves). On my old SD card, as I said, I also have 2 <ID0> folders - one with the old account and one with the formatted account (the "active" one). And yes, I know I should have backed up the original saves using Checkpoint or something but my old 3DS is not hacked and I didn't have an SD card reader on-hand when I did this (everything was transferred wirelessly, and the New 3DS can connect through FTP).

My question is if there is a way to recover the saves from either the "old system-transferred" <ID0> folder, or from the old SD card which contains the original copy of that same <ID0> folder, just with a different <ID1> number since it's a different card.

I have tried to BruteForce a moveable.sed using my original Friend Code so I can get the saves from the old SD folder through ninfs but I can't get past the "add friend" step since that Friend Code account doesn't exist anymore in any of the systems. It's kind of nerve-wracking thinking that I have 2 different copies of the files containing my original saves, but I can't access any of them. There's gotta be a way I'm sure...

Thanks in advance for your help.
 
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KleinesSinchen

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Ouch. Reading this hurts.

Next time ask BEFORE doing such stuff. I don't see any way to retrieve the encryption key unless you backed it up before running a NAND restore. (Before restoring a NAND image for whatever reason it is a good idea to back up the current status -- in your case: Right after the transfer). Search KeyY on the old (source) console might be possible, but I'm not sure.

For the record (and for any random reader):
  • NAND restore overwriteseverything on NAND with the status from the point when the backup was created (it can be destructive!). This includes:
    • Tickets, settings (including NNID), activity log AND
    • movable.sed
  • System Transfer (as described in the official Nintendo manual) moves licenses, games, saves and all settings from source console to target console. Target console must not have an NNID set up. Source console will perform factory reset ("Format System Memory") right after the transfer. The old encrypted data on SD will work on target console but not on source anymore ("move").
  • NAND restore is often considered on the source console ("Clone a setup"). Not a good idea either (if source console goes online after the restore).


And yes, I know I should have backed up the original saves using Checkpoint or something but my old 3DS is not hacked and I didn't have an SD card reader on-hand when I did this (everything was transferred wirelessly, and the New 3DS can connect through FTP).
*Sigh*. It takes just a few minutes to install custom firmware on a 3DS. Anybody can do this. From the perspective of protecting data against loss, homebrew/CFW is a must. Checkpoint/JKSM offer what Nintendo should have integrated into the operating system (Yes, I know... Anti-Cheat, DRM and blablabla).
After the transfer to the new and hacked console, running Checkpoint would have been the easiest thing.
======


I'm at a loss. I have no idea how to retrieve KeyY here:
  • Can Seedminer find it just from the friend code?
  • Can KeyY be found on the source console with TurdPooChargers script? He explicitly said that System Transfer can make it impossible. But I have no idea if on source, target or both.

Sorry for the overall negative reply. No ideas. Bad situation.
 
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Shantrius

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After the transfer to the new and hacked console, running Checkpoint would have been the easiest thing.
Yes, this is where I immediately regretted pressing "restore". I had this instinct in the back of my mind saying "hmm maybe I could've backed this up first". It was one of those brief lapses of judgement that you instantly know you messed up. And it clearly reveals how noob I am at this.

Before doing the transfer, I searched a lot everywhere on how system transfers interacted with cfw, and it's never really clear what the exact results are. Many places will tell you "oh the system transfer will just merge with the cfw" or "simply go to this folder to restore your backup", which both are correct but vague enough to lead an untrained person such as myself to very bad mistakes (in these examples, the cfw stays but it's not really "merged", and yes I could restore a backup if creating a backup with cfw was mentioned in a previous part of the process, which in many cases it's not).

I guess it doesn't hurt to always have backups for everything, eh.
 
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Plazorn

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@Shantrius DO NOT use your micro sd card from your old 3ds

Edit: I found a data recovery software called anyrecover, (anyrecover.com) that can restore files from sd cards, there is a slim chance it will work.
Simply plug you sd card into your computer and launch the program, and pick your drive, and it will try to recover files. I think it is worth a shot.
 
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Shantrius

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@Shantrius DO NOT use your micro sd card from your old 3ds

Edit: I found a data recovery software called anyrecover, that can restore files from sd cards, there is a slim chance it will work.
Simply plug you sd card into your computer and launch the program, and pick your drive, and it will try to recover files. I think it is worth a shot.
Thank you, but I'm not sure how this would help? I already have the files from that SD card. It's just that they aren't the "active" files on any of the systems, and so they can't be decrypted.
 

KleinesSinchen

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Yes, this is where I immediately regretted pressing "restore". I had this instinct in the back of my mind saying "hmm maybe I could've backed this up first". It was one of those brief lapses of judgement that you instantly know you messed up. And it clearly reveals how noob I am at this.
We all make mistakes. Afterwards… "How could I do this??" I've had my moments like this… more than enough.

I know it is not going to help you now, but it will help you next time: If you are unsure and descriptions online are vague or can be misunderstood, then ask before doing anything. The worst that can happen is some arrogant guy/gal online telling you that everything is clear, easy and whatnot. But in the most cases somebody will be genuinely helpful and clarify things.

I guess it doesn't hurt to always have backups for everything, eh.
Exactly. A backup you don't need can be deleted once you are sure it is unneeded. And as long as you have storage it doesn't hurt to have seemingly unneeded data.
 

Shantrius

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If you tell me which Pokémon games you have/had, and which Pokémon were in each game, I can make new checkpoint compatible saves for you. (:
I had Pokémon Ultra Moon, X, Alpha Sapphire, and Crystal. The Pokémon there weren't anything special, as I moved everything of value to Bank/Home. It was just because I've spent so many hours on them and had every side quest complete, collectables acquired, etc. Also, having the games completed meant easy access to trades, transfers, shiny hunting, breeding etc.

I was actually mid-way through a new run on Alpha Sapphire, where I decided I wanted to use Pokémon I've never used before, starting with a shiny starter which took 4 days of resets to get (it's safe in the Bank, so no worries there).
 

Plazorn

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Do you have a PC?
Does your new 3ds compatible with FTP?
If so you can get a Program called PKHex, it’s pretty simple and can save edit any Pokémon game, from red and blue to sword and shield. There are many guides on YouTube on how to use it. And make sure you only it from ProjectPokemon.org.
 

Shantrius

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Do you have a PC?
Does your new 3ds compatible with FTP?
If so you can get a Program called PKHex, it’s pretty simple and can save edit any Pokémon game, from red and blue to sword and shield. There are many guides on YouTube on how to use it. And make sure you only it from ProjectPokemon.org.
Do you think it's possible to take my old .sav files and copy their progress into a new save with this program?
 

Shantrius

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