There is a standard formatted data recovery process applicable to all software applications you could use. In this post I’ll show you the steps involved and some of the precautions you should take in order to ensure the best chance of finding all your documents.
Formatting a computer will often help it startup faster and provide a workaround for severe OS problems. However, the chances of forgetting to backup some file you need is ever present. Data recovery tools such as Undelete Plus and Smart Recover can help when this occurs.
The formatted data recovery process involves the following steps:
- Install your downloaded data recovery application onto a second partition. Do not place installation files into the formatted disk as this will definitely overwrite your original files.
- Launch the program and select the formatted disk for analysis. If the hard drive itself is a large capacity disk then it is recommended to filter the results based on file types/extension.
- The scan will begin and the application will attempt to find clusters on the disk that can be reassembled into your original files.
- Review the list of found files and clone the ones you need onto a secondary partition.
One of the major drawbacks with formatting a disk is that the file allocation table will be cleared of all information. This contains an index of your files, including the file names you will recognize from Windows Explorer. As a result, your data recovery application scan report will list of files which will seem unfamiliar to you. You can work around this by copying them to a secondary drive and searching through them for specific documents.
It is also worth pointing out that formatted data recovery works best if done promptly after the disk was formatted. Leaving any period of time could result in new files being stored over your original documents.