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*HOW TO* - RECOVER lost files SD CARD

Ok, so a while back I posted about losing files on my sd card after playing around with HTC Sync. I was able to recover from a backup but still lost some files. Just this morning I lost about 2 gigs of files. All Picture and Video files.

I have no idea what is causing this to happen. I suspect it is the Gallery app and something gets corrupted when you plug in and out of USB to transfer files to/from a computer.

Anyway, long story short...files that are deleted aren't really gone until something is written over them...so if you act quickly you can get them back.

I downloaded Mini Tool Data Recovery and used the Undelete Recovery tool. I restored to computer hard drive and then moved to SD Card. Worked like a charm. I am back to 99% where I was before the data loss.

Hope this doesn't happen to anyone, but here is a way out. Good luck.

MiniTool Power Data Recovery Free Edition - Free software downloads and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Just an FYI...this is not a plug for the program....I really just did this and got my pics back.



#1 serpentine009, Feb 15, 2011
The one I've used is called Recuva-

It's from the same people that put out ccleaner and other outstanding softwares.

*also free

Recuva - Undelete, Unerase, File and Disk Recovery - Free Download
#2 andreezy, Feb 15, 2011
Nice...I use CCLeaner at home. Thanks for the addition. I got pretty much all my files back....took some cleaning up....it looks like it restored files that were deleted from the first time, then restored, then deleted again. So I ended up with dups. But they are there now.
#3 serpentine009, Feb 15, 2011
Thank you for creating this Thread. I thought I was SOL until I found this thread and tried MiniTool Power
#4 ROCer, Mar 26, 2011
Glad it helped...
#5 serpentine009, Mar 29, 2011
There is an app in android market called Hexamob Recovery PRO ,it recovers deleted files from your SD or your smartphone.
#6 Josema, Jul 13, 2011
Most likely cause is a dodgy card. Where did you get it from?
#7 daveybaby, Jul 13, 2011
...or if you don't/can't act quickly pull the SD card or take whatever measures you can to prevent writing to the SD card.
#8 takeshi, Jul 13, 2011
Yes, like "takeshi" said the first thing you should do when you accidentally lost pictures from the card is STOP immediately using the SD. Because any write or edit may cause the lost data become "lost for good" simplly due to OVERWRITTEN.

As to recovery program, this PhotoRetrieval is also a pretty nice one. Not only recover pictures deleted, but also from formatted or card corruption cases which is the shortcomings of Recuva or some other similar software.

Note: the best to do data recovery is to avoid it and do backup regularly.
#9 anncandy21, Aug 23, 2011
it seems that everybody have suffered from data loss.
once i accidentally format my d drive which contains all my photos and music. then i was told stop doing nothing to that drive, and get a data recovery software.
i googled easeus data recovery wizard, and found some good reviews of it.
fortunately it got 95% of the files back. thank god!
#10 Bailifei, Oct 13, 2011
lucky i never encountered such a sad situation, but thank god i know from you guys it can be recovered. I thought the recovery is really hard to do.
#11 Tombaby, Oct 13, 2011
Hexamob Recovery PRO runs correctly in my Samsung Galaxy S2 and I've recovered some deleted videos and PDF files very importante for my. They were stored in external sdcard before to be deleted and my son erased them. Now, I'm very happy with this app and I recommend to download it although you dont need it actually. It's cheaper than a beer!! :)

Thanks Hexamob! ;-)
#12 androidmab, Oct 20, 2011
I use Photorec or Recuva.
#13 aysiu, Oct 20, 2011
Before splashing out cash, check the support website of your card manufacturer. They may have recovery software available for free download.

Also, high-speed large-capacity cards intended for digital cameras often include such software either in the pack or on the card. If you're in the market for such a card paying a few bucks more for it could be money well spent as the software will work with any removable drive, not just the one it came with.
#14 Slug, Oct 20, 2011
By the way, both options I mentioned before are cost-free, so definitely don't splash out cash. I've never encountered a deleted file recovery scenario that I've needed to pay money for.
#15 aysiu, Oct 20, 2011
Recover files off sd card in your android can be done via freeware like the following

Recuva - simple undelete
iCare Data Recovery Free - Freeware
#16 2kand, Jan 9, 2012
I have used and always use a very power set of programs that are mostly CLI and have versions for Windows, Mac, Linux and others. These programs are written by Christophe Grenier

Web Site: Main Page - CGSecurity

TestDisk has the ability to repair corrupt partitions allowing you to retrieve lost data (Especially Useful when you plug a card / harddrive into a computer you know has good data on it and windows ask would you like to format now?) TestDisk itself has some recovery features but really isn't geared toward file recovery as much as Partition Recovery.

PhotoRec can recover Lost files Digital Pictures and much much more. Again this is a CLI program. Very powerful and extremely useful.

I have saved myself a lot of data using these two program. I've been able to restore harddrives so I could copy the corrupt one over to a new one with out any data loss. I have also been able to recover files from sdcards again without any data loss. Please support the Programmer by giving him a donation as he has and always will offer these for Free. And Again it is a true multi-platform program. A must have in my opinion.
#17 argedion, Jan 31, 2012
It hasn't been mentioned yet, but on Windows' PCs there is a setting in Device Manager, for the hard drives, called Write Caching. This is a delayed write function that allows the PC to switch to other, more important functions, and finish the write later. It makes the PC "appear" to run faster. (another M$ trick)

Before I realized what this setting was about, I had problems with loosing files being copied to flash drives and sd cards. I thought the write was finished and would remove the card, because it "looked" like the file transfer was done. This caused the file allocation table to be damaged...not to mention the file wasn't fully copied.

Turning off the "write caching" means Windows will finish handling the write before doing anything else. When the busy icon goes away, the write is complete.

Could this not be part of the problem being discussed?
#18 Sideman, Jan 31, 2012
My EVO 3D started saying the SD Card was damaged and needed to be reformatted. Ugh. Coincidentally, I had just installed HTC Sync the day before...

I removed the micro SD Card and put it in SD Card adapter, and then write-locked it :)

I can +1 this. It has a limitation of 1GB unless you pay for it, and you have to be careful to not install the download.com crap along side it, but otherwise, it worked flawlessly. I had a bunch of crap on the SD Card, but I only cared about pictures/video which came to about 900MB.. so, free recovery :)
#19 mynamewastaken, Feb 6, 2012
If you want data recovery software that's free with no limitations, try Photorec. It's awesome. It's free. And it's cross-platform (available for Windows, Mac, and Linux).
#20 aysiu, Feb 6, 2012
recuva should be on your try list, it's an undelete application. similar to deletion, which is a process that removed the pointer to the deleted files from file allocation table, the file allocation table damage should be recovered by recuva. then you can see how much data has been written on.
#21 ahmeny, Feb 15, 2012
Just saw ths article today & might be useful to some members

6 data recovery tools for SD cards, USB drives and more

Have a damaged USB thumb drive or memory card? These applications can help you save your data.

6 data recovery tools for SD cards, USB drives and more - Computerworld
#22 socrates0, Mar 5, 2012
@ serpentine009: Do you still have similar problems? Did you find out what was causing it? After losing those files where there any files of unknown type in LOST.DIR folder of sd card?
#23 PerpetualLoop, Apr 9, 2012
I've had very good results using both Photorec and Recuva. Both are completely free and so do not have a trial version.
#24 aysiu, May 29, 2012
First and Best way to recover data is to already have it backed up. If you use your camera a bunch or even download a bunch of stuff to your phone you should copy these to your computer at the very least Once a week. Next to that you should check the Manufactures web site as Slug has suggested to see what they offer for recovery and then there are a ton of free apps to use. PhotoRec being my personal favorite. The time to learn these programs however is not during a disaster but during a time that is much more convenient. Learn how to use the recovery program. Most have forums and tutorials that can help you learn their system. The best recovery is only as good as it user.
#25 argedion, May 29, 2012