Recovery of files from broken partition

steve_fox

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Before my days of backing things up I lucked it though the years and everything was on a single storage drive in my PC.

I split with my wife and left with just the essential things I could carry so pulled the storage drive from my PC and had to leave everything else and the drive went in a draw.

When I got myself another PC I had the sense to copy the really critical things (photos and videos of my kids) to other places but didn't have the storage to duplicate the entire drive at the time so not wanting it to be powered it went back in a draw.

Fast forward a couple more years and I decided to re visit the drive and finally sort though it but when I connected the drive windows now states it as invalid in disk management.

I have tried clicking on reactivate disk in disk management which fails, I have tried a guide to set online status in disk part using cmd but no luck.

I have a very old version of disk genius with a dodgy standard licence but it is freezing up on me :(

The disk can be inspected by program that ignores that the partition is messed up but I need to find something that will recover the files and preserve the folder structure.

I have a program I used on another disk a while back but that dumped everything as a raw mess split across some 20 folders it created and inside those it created even more sub folders and inside those were raw dumps of file types where it had broken everything and had pulled apart install files and dumped all images from those with actual photos etc, it was a real mess that was so bad I found only what I really needed and discarded everything else for my own sanity!

Does anyone know of a free program (or cracked) that will dump the drive while persevering the folder structure please, the data is there but something has happened to make it unable to be read by windows.


I back everything up these days and everything is in at least two locations, hopefully I won't have to face this again!

Steve.
 

tech3475

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Do you suspect the drive has physically failed? If so I’d halt any recovery attempt and seek a professional if the data is important.

I presume you’ve tried a different SATA, power cable, SATA port, etc?

If you want to continue with software, I’ve used getdataback in the past to recover data successfully in a way you desire, this is commercial, but IIRC the free version allows you to at least see if the data is readable, just that you can’t recover it.

I’ve also used Linux Mint in the past to recover data from a physically damaged drive.

There are other free options (Recuva?), but I’ve not used them.

Note: We can’t link to any cracked software, as per site rules.
 

tech3475

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Before attempting any software based repairs it may be worth imaging the disk using a ‘sector by sector‘ method if you can.

I typically use the ‘DD’ command for this, but you have to be extremely careful and I’d look around for alternatives first.
 

steve_fox

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Before attempting any software based repairs it may be worth imaging the disk using a ‘sector by sector‘ method if you can.

I typically use the ‘DD’ command for this, but you have to be extremely careful and I’d look around for alternatives first.
It seems a few bad sectors were causing the recovery to halt, ran imaging to another drive as you suggested and it reported 4 read errors out of 976,773,168 during the process but ignored them and copied the data to the other drive.

The other drive still could not be read by windows as there is some sort of corruption in the file structure which obviously got imaged too but recovery was then able to pull all of the data of the image :)

I dont think the original drive has failed, formatted and check disk ran, it seems fine but i wont trust it, it will get re deployed as a mirror drive though where it can fail without tears.
 

Henx

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First you must test your drive to check what the problem is. The easiest way is to use smartmontools to understand the condition of the drive. Easier programs are the TestDisk suite or HDAT2. Ideally you should make a boot drive and test your disk in DOS exclusive mode. You can make one using FreeDOS.

Assuming you are talking about a hard drive, if it says it has bad sectors you can attempt to repair it, which basically marks the bad sectors as unreadable, and then your file system won't even try to reach them, avoiding read/copy errors. The best tool I have found over the years for this is DRevitalize. It is paid, but I can assure you it is worth it, as it saved me a few times already. It won't destroy your data! Otherwise HDAT2 above is also good and free.

Once you have the disk repaired, you can then use GParted to fix the partitions. From there you should be able to access the filesystem and copy the files.

I would recommend ddrescue, but it is a little more difficult to work with, if you are not familiar with linux.
If all else fails, try PhotoRec. Otherwise you have to take it to a specialised company I'm afraid. Be prepared for the charge!
 

steve_fox

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Don't you think it would be useful to maybe name the specific recovery software you used?
Maybe, dont you think it might be useful to read previous posts and see if ive talked about the specific recovery software ive used?

couldn't help that one lol.

I named it in the very first post and then on the very post you asked about, i talk about cloning the drive and then recovery being able to pull the data from the clone, i thought it was pretty obvious.
 

Kwyjor

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I named it in the very first post and then on the very post you asked about,
Maybe it's late, but no, I don't see what program you named. In your first post you referred to "a very old version of disk genius with a dodgy standard licence but it is freezing up on me", "program that ignores that the partition", and "program I used on another disk a while back".
 

steve_fox

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Maybe it's late, but no, I don't see what program you named. In your first post you referred to "a very old version of disk genius with a dodgy standard licence but it is freezing up on me", "program that ignores that the partition", and "program I used on another disk a while back".
Well you have just answered your own question and named the software i used!

Im baffled that you say you dont see the program i named then immediately say i referred to using disk genius?

I honestly thought that anyone reading my first post and the post where i say i got things to work would understand what id done and that id used the software named in the first post which worked on the cloned disk and that it was failing on the original disk because of bad sectors.
 

Kwyjor

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Well you have just answered your own question and named the software i used!

Im baffled that you say you dont see the program i named then immediately say i referred to using disk genius?
How is that baffling? You said Disk Genius was constantly freezing up on you, implying Disk Genius was unusable and thus that you did not use Disk Genius. Are you saying now that you were using Disk Genius? Because that's the only program I can see that you've named.

That's also the only time you mentioned Disk Genius. You did not mention it in your other post.
 

steve_fox

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Are you serious or just trolling?

Of course im talking about Disk genius, i state in my first post i was trying to use it and the problem it had then later i state that after cloning the disk i was able to get recovery to work, i never suggested i was using something else, you have just made assumptions/not read things correctly.

I did not mention Disk Genius in my other post? Do i have to name it in every single post?

Here it is in nice easy to read letters:
Disk Genius
 

Kwyjor

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I did not mention Disk Genius in my other post?
Well, as you wrote:
I named it in the very first post and then on the very post you asked about,
You definitely did not mention it in more than one post. You just called it "recovery software" in your other post. Hence my considerable confusion.

I thought it would be useful to know these things for future reference, but if the program has "a dodgy standard licence but it is freezing up on me" then that very strongly suggests it is not useful. It's not entirely clear why you made this thread in the first place since I guess it turns out you didn't need another program after all?

So, no, I'm not trolling. I'm just trying to learn about someone's successful data recovery operation, and maybe help people who in the future may stumble upon this increasingly confusing thread. Are you serious?
 
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steve_fox

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Well, as you wrote:

You definitely did not mention it in more than one post. You just called it "recovery software" in your other post. Hence my considerable confusion.

I thought it would be useful to know these things for future reference, but if the program has "a dodgy standard licence but it is freezing up on me" then that very strongly suggests it is not useful. It's not entirely clear why you made this thread in the first place since I guess it turns out you didn't need another program after all?

So, no, I'm not trolling. I'm just trying to learn about someone's successful data recovery operation, and maybe help people who in the future may stumble upon this increasingly confusing thread. Are you serious?
I stated what i was trying to use to recover and what was happening when i tried to use it then a couple of posts later i stated i cloned the drive and was then able to run recovery, i also stated it was bad sectors on the drive that prevented the recovery software from working and at no point suggested i was trying to use any other software than previously mentioned.

I dont see what is so hard to understand, its you that was overthinking, was i supposed to include some colorful pictures?

Yes i am serious, you are the one who left the grumpy comment about stating what id used because YOU did not read or understand things fully.
 

Kwyjor

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then a couple of posts later i stated i cloned the drive and was then able to run recovery
Sir, maybe this makes sense in your head, but it is very difficult to conclude from your post that "run recovery" is supposed to refer to Disk Genius, because literally any program constitutes "recovery".

you are the one who left the grumpy comment about stating what id used because YOU did not read or understand things fully.
And for some baffling reason it seems to be immensely important to you to have the last word in this thread, so screw it, I'm out. Enjoy.
 
Last edited by Kwyjor,

steve_fox

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Sir, maybe this makes sense in your head, but it is very difficult to conclude from your post that "run recovery" is supposed to refer to Disk Genius, because literally any program constitutes "recovery".

And for some baffling reason it seems to be immensely important to you to have the last word in this thread, so screw it, I'm out. Enjoy.
your complaining about your own inability to understand, the vast majority would have no problem coming to the conclusion i had managed to get the stated DiskGenius to work.

Last word?
Im simply responding to your whining, you are the one who made the slightly bitchy comment about stating what id used when i had!

your out, fine by me but i think you left the lights on.
 
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