Lost files on Hard Drive

I haave a 10 gb hard drive working on w98, 64 mb ram and AMD450.
Recently a number of files have disappeared on this drive, I haven't deleted them, accidently or otherwise.
Can someone tell me
How this could of happened?
Is there any software that I can use to attempt to restore these files?
Any help would be appreciated.
Hannibal.
H4nnibalAsked:
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Patricia Siu-Lai HoCommented:
Hannibal.

<<Recently a number of files have disappeared on this drive, I haven't deleted them, accidently or otherwise. How this could of happened? >>
You didn't mentioned what kind of files has been lost and any adverse effect on the computer after deletion of these files, please advise more details.

<<Is there any software that I can use to attempt to restore these files? >>

One very effective file recovery software: "Lost & Found" of PowerQuest.
Go to this web site http://web.powerquest.com/demo/lostandfound/index.html
There is a demo version. You can download it and extract it.
You can install it on a floppy according to the instruction and run to inspect your problematic hard disk thoroughly. The green light it was showing are those deleted files which are safe for recovery.
 
Remark:
This version will only show you what files it can recover.  To actaully recover the files, you will have to purchase the full version.
 
pslh.
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H4nnibalAuthor Commented:
pslh,
Thankyou for your quick response.
Here's the history.
When I was doing a routine scan check on my partioned hard disk a number of errors appeared including invalid file names and incorrect fat allocation. So I decided to copy the information (that I wanted to keep) on my other hard drive. About 4gb in total. I put them into folders on my e: drive titled
f,g and H. I tehn went into fdisk and deleted all of the partitions and primary dos partition. I then created a single primary dos partition of 9664mb. I then booted w98 and formated the new partition and moved the folders f,g and h into this new hard drive. I moved a number of other files into here. These files were mainly gif, jpg and html.
I booted the pc this morning to find all of the files missing apart from the ones copied in today. That's basically the history. Have you any further ideas?
There have been some very quirky things going down with my pc lately, when the hard drive was partitioned, I tried to install FIFA 2000, when I put this onto the 10 gb drive, the game errored with invalid page file but it was fine on my 6gb drive. What's going on?
nough said,
Hannibal.
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H4nnibalAuthor Commented:
pslh,
The link you refer to requires a password! Is there anywhere else that I could look.
:~)
Hannibal.
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Patricia Siu-Lai HoCommented:
Hannibal, try to download the Lost and Found demo and inspect if you can recover those valuable data files of images from those folders F, G and H. This software will show which files is damaged/corrupted or in good condition for recovery.

http://www.powerquest.com/en/freestuff/index.html
This URL does not need a password and it is free for a demo version.

Try to recover them to a good hard disk or other removable disk.

At the last time of scandisk, there may be already some files (quite a large amount of files) has been cross-linked together and the cross-linkages may still be there in your previous backup folders F,G and H.
Thus, we need to recover those good ones and close the cross-linkage so that it will not affect your newly partitioned hard disk. After closing the cross-linkage, “*.chk” can be deleted.
pslh
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H4nnibalAuthor Commented:
Brilliant, I'll have a look and keep you informed of the progress.

P.S.
Are you really working at 3:00 in the morning?

Thanx

Hannibal
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Patricia Siu-Lai HoCommented:
Yes, nearly working all day long with intermitten short rest. My time here is not 3:00am.   ;p)    pslh      
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dew_associatesCommented:
Hannibal, before you go too much further, could you take a moment and explain this move of the files that you did. It would help if you explained carefully where you moved them when moving them from drive "C". Tell me into what partitions and on what drive were those partitions.
Dennis
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H4nnibalAuthor Commented:
Dennis,
6.4 gb Hard Drive is split into 2 partitions.
c: 2gb FAT
e: 4gb FAT32
10.1gb Hard Drive was split into 4 partitions
d: 2gb FAT
f: 2gb FAT
g: 2gb FAT
h: 1.8gb FAT
leaving 1.6gb spare (that I could not use!)
I created a new folder called d and transferred all of the files on the d: drive to this new folder. I then transferred this folder to the e: drive (6.4gb) hard drive. I repeated this operation for f,g, and h.
I then went into fdisk deleted everything on the 10gb hard drive and started again with large disk support, thus creating one 9.6 gb d: drive. I then transferred folder d,f,g, and h (from the e: 4gb partition)to the 10gb hard drive. The next day all of the files and folders had disappearred. I have spoken to a friend and he suggests that there could be a FAT problem. I took pslh's advice and retrieved the lost and found software. The software informed me about a FAT allocation problem. Should I start again? Should everything on one physical hard drive have the same FAT type? How do I change my 6.4 gb drive?, 2gb is FAT16 and 4gb is FAT32, is this correct?
Sorry so many answers, so little points, but unfortunately I do not have a lot to spare.
Hannibal
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H4nnibalAuthor Commented:
Adjusted points to 80
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Patricia Siu-Lai HoCommented:
Hannibal, Besides the Fat problem, you may need PowerQuest driver mapper too to change the registry as you've removed the original f,g,h drive letter.

Follow what Dennis' suggested.  pslh
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dew_associatesCommented:
Hannibal, I don't know how critical those files are, so rather than delve into what to change and re-do, I would like to concentrate on recovery for the moment unless you don't need those files.

Normally large numbers of files do not  completely disappear as yours have. If you transferred them, presumably in windows explorer, and were able to see them, then something change between that moment and when you went back.

Let's start with what exactly you did after transferring the files. Be very critical of yourself and walk through the steps carefully. It could be corruption, but then it could be inadvertance on your part that corrupted the partition table. As long as you don't write to the drive where you believe the files are, they should be recoverable, but at this moment I would write to any drive unless absolutely necessary.

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H4nnibalAuthor Commented:
Dennis,
Thanks for that. I think I have found the culprit.
I have this message appearing when trying a scandisk.
>>
The second FAT media byte is missing or incorrect.

This is a code that is located at the beginning of your file allocation table (FAT). It indicates that a disk is properly formatted.
>>
I want to destroy all of the contents on that disk and start again. There was nothing very critical (things that can't be replaced).
Apparently I have been told that I have to do a low level format in order to correct things.
I believe that a scheduled scandisk ran on Friday night and automatically deleted the files because of a FAT error. I'm no longer concerned with the files but now believe I'm getting to the bottom of things. Is there anything else that you can suggest or should I go ahead with the low level format?
Hannibal.
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dew_associatesCommented:
Not that I can think of Hannibal. I'd try the low level format and really test that disk though.
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H4nnibalAuthor Commented:
All,
It was a faulty disk (that has now been replaced). I tried everything, even low level format and still I had this message
>> 
The second FAT media byte is missing or incorrect.

This is a code that is located at the beginning of your file allocation table (FAT). It indicates that a disk is properly formatted.
>> 
Can I thank Dennis and pslh for their help, and I think that it would be a nice gesture to split the points between you two accordingly.
Please let me know how?
Thanx again
H.
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dew_associatesCommented:
I'll have Ian or Linda from E&E handle it Hannibal!
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H4nnibalAuthor Commented:
Dennis,
Quite new to this, Do I have to do anything else?
Cheers,
Hannibal.
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dew_associatesCommented:
They will post here Hannibal as soon as they can. I'll monitor it in the meantime.
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dew_associatesCommented:
Hannibal, they have their hands full with some other issues. Go ahead and accept this and I'll handle the points split myself. Thanks!
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linda101698Commented:
Thanks for the cooperation Dennis and Patricia.  Good job.

I'll post a question for pslh to award her for her participation.

Linda Gardner
Community Support @ Experts Exchange
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Patricia Siu-Lai HoCommented:
Thank Hannibal.
 
And thanks Dennis and Linda for your arrangement.  ;)   pslh
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dew_associatesCommented:
Thanks Linda!  ;o)
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