Are you regretting for the important files which you have deleted unfortunately? – This happens with us quite often. But, you can still recover the deleted files from your hard disk or pen drive.
The files you erased are actually not gone. The computer tells that it’s been deleted and gives you back the disk space. Over the next span of time, the deleted files get written over and over with new data until the old data is no longer available for recovery. Therefore, up to some period of time after you deleted the files from your hard disk or pen drive can be recovered provided they’re not completely lost.
Not only the hard disk but also you can retrieve deleted files from your pen drive or other external storage devices, even after you formatted the USB device.
What happens when you delete a file?
Let’s take a quick overview on the file deletion mechanism. When you hit the Delete key, the file or folder you chose gets lost for you not deleted completely. The system just removes the address (pointer) of those data. Pointer is a value which holds the address of the data sector. There is some certain rules to assign pointer values for any file.
So it is possible to recover the pointer values which was assigned for the files you have deleted. Obviously it is possible for some periods of time after the deletion until the operating system assigns the pointer values for other files.
How to Recover Deleted Files From Hard Disk or Pen Drive
There are dozens of file recovery tools available but what we’ve chosen as the best tool to recover deleted files is Recuva. It has several options to sweep your hard drives or USB drives and retrieve the recoverable data. (Here is how to recover deleted files from Android.)
Using Recuva to Retrieve Erased Data from Hard Disk or USB Drive
Recuva impressed me a lot after trying too many file recovery applications for Windows. It acts fast when recovering any deleted file from your storage media and brings back the data to your hard disk within a moment. Here is how to work with Recuva.
At first, download Recuva and install it into your Windows system. The installation process is quite easy. Once installed, run the program from the start menu or the desktop shortcut (if you’ve created it at the time of installation).
At the very starting of the program, it offers the Recuva wizard to guide you step-by-step into the recovery process. However, you can press the Cancel button to go directly into the advanced recovery mode.
After pressing the Cancel button it will take you into the Recuva Advanced Mode where you can choose the drive you want to recover the deleted files from, set advanced options from the “Options” button etc. Once you press the Scan button, it will start sweeping the hard drive you’ve specified and gather the information about the recoverable deleted files.
After completing the scan, you will get the list of files which the tool was able to find. You can see some files as unidentifiable but lots of file names are with their original name as well. You can also notice that not all files are listed their are with the same state. The files marked with green button indicate that they are in an excellent state and Recuva can easily recover them. The red button indicates that though Recuva was able to find out the file information but it can not recover that deleted file.
Select any one from the list and head to the Info tab from the right side. It will show the detailed information about it.
Now, tick the boxes for the files which you want to recover and click the “Recover” button. As soon as you do it, Recuva will ask you to browse the location from your hard drive where you want to save the recovered files.
That’s all to do. Just remember to untick those files which you ticked just for recovering because Recuva remembers those files for the next time and will continue downloading over and over.
Avoid Accidentally Deleted File Panic
If you want to make sure that you won’t have to recover any deleted file, perform a regular backup for your disk drives or atleast enable File History or Windows Backup option in your Windows version. Even, you can make your important files in a folder undeletable to make sure you never delete them accidentally.
Final Words on Recuva
As I said earlier that there are so many applications to recover deleted files from your hard disk or pen drive, you can even recover the deleted data from Windows 7 or 8 without using any software but there are so many limitation for this inbuilt feature of latest Windows versions. At the end, we suggest Recuva as the best Windows tool to retrieve the deleted data from your fixed or removable storage devices.
The Risk of Recover-ability of Deleted Data
Though the data recovery option for deleted files may give you some peace of mind but it is vulnerable because any one can retrieve the deleted data from the device you accidentally lost or just recycled/sold without erasing the data completely. You might be thinking that a quick format would erase the hard drive or USB drive completely but it won’t do it actually.
You can check it yourselves. Just format your pen drive in the quick mode and perform a scan with Recuva. It will show the deleted data from the pen drive
How can I ensure that the deleted files can be never recovered?
We recommend to use any cross-platform encryption tool or Microsoft’s Bitlocker to ensure that the recovered files can be never accessed without the decryption key. This is very important if you have any sensitive data in your hard disk or pen drive like bank A/C details, credit card information or even the captured photos of the naughty moments with your girl friend.