Last Updated on January 31, 2022 by Muhammad Junaid Khalid
If you own a computer or laptop, there is a probability that you may have experienced hard drive failure at least one. The reasons for this may vary from person to person – accidental deletion of important files, damage from water, hard drive power failure, or damage caused by some virus or malware, etc. In most cases, data recovery is possible. This article will discuss how file recovery works.
What is Data Recovery
Data recovery is a process of recovering lost, accidentally deleted, corrupted, or inaccessible data.
How does File Recovery Work?
Before starting the recovery process, you have to understand how file recovery works. The data recovery process may depend on the cause of data loss. If you experience data loss due to aperture arm failure in the hard drive or any damage in the platters, then you may not be able to recover the data by using a software program. In these cases, you might need to go to a computer technician.
No matter what the size of the hard disk is, you can recover the lost data. You can recover lost data even if you delete the file from the recycle bin. The data that has been lost somewhere on the disk can be recovered as well.
Data hijacked or encrypted by ransomware (A type of malware) can also be recoverable in some cases. Actually, the ransomware cannot encrypt your original files. It creates encrypted copies of your files while deleting the original files.
You can retrieve those deleted files, but the data recovery process has to be done by a data recovery expert. In case the ransomware deletes and then overwrites your files many times, then it might be impossible to recover the data, and you might need to pay ransom to get back the copies of the original files created by the ransomware.
Data can be recovered from any operating system, whether it is Windows or Mac, and from any hard disk format or filling structure, including NTFS and FAT32.
If you have multiple hard drives on your computer, the RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) configuration can also be retrieved. If a single hard drive on the RAID configuration fails, the RAID setup will blot up the damage, and there will be no data loss.
On the contrary, if the whole RAID configuration is damaged, the problem would be much severe. Whenever this happens, you’ll need to go to a data recovery expert for further assistance.
VIP Tip to Avoid Data Loss
The one and the most important tip to avoid data loss; always back up your data to cloud storage, a backup hard drive, or a USB disk. Although with the help of the latest technologies, tools, and software, you can retrieve the lost data efficiently, prevention is better than cure!
You may want to read: Top 7 Best Data Recovery Software
Limitations of Data Recovery
Even though you have the latest techniques and tools, there are some situations where the data recovery process cannot work. Some of those scenarios are:
- Severely damaged storage device with acid, alkali, or any other corrosive liquid.
- Data has been overwritten many times.
- Data over-written by some deadly virus or Trojan.
- Very old deleted file.
- The stored location has been missing or cannot be located by the recovery program.
- Storage device with the damaged magnetic area (a magnetic area is a place on the drive where the file is actually stored).
It is a recommendation that you should not apply unnecessary attempts to retrieve the lost data. Even if you do not have the technical knowledge and don’t know how file recovery works, you can still recover files using data recovery software which often comes with step by step guide. Or, consult a data recovery expert.
Frequently Asked Questions
According to the definition from Wikipedia, data recovery is “the process of retrieving lost, corrupted, inaccessible or deleted data from the storage devices like hard drives (HDD), solid-state drives (SSD), USB drives, magnetic tapes, CD’s, DVD’s RAID subsystems, etc. Recovery may be required due to physical damage to the storage device or logical damage to the file system.
You need data recovery software to recover your deleted, lost, or damaged data. Only use the data recovery software if you know how to use it properly otherwise you may lose the data permanently. If you don’t know how to use data recovery software, the better option is to consult a computer technician or data recovery expert.
Yes or maybe not. If you know how to properly use data recovery software, it will be safe. Otherwise, you may permanently lose your data.
It depends on how many times the data is overwritten. If the data you want to recover is overwritten many times (more than 7 times) it will be very difficult to recover it back even if the lost data is not too old. On the other hand, if the lost data is not overwritten then it is possible to recover it even if it is lost 3 or 5 years ago.
Following are some of the best data recovery software:
a. EaseUS Data Recovery
b. Stellar Data Recovery
c. OnTrack Easy Recovery
d. Wise Data Recovery
The data recovery process starts with the storage scan. The software reassembles or rearranges the structures of the damaged file system if the lost file is not overwritten too many times.