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File recovery

Gilesmp asked
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2008-03-17

A friend of mine had a problem with his Sony Vaio Laptop and just stuck the recovery disk in and reinstalled windows.  Whilst doing this he managed to wipe all his documents, pictures etc.  What are the chances of getting the files back using an application like File Recover, is there a better piece of software for this specific task?

Many thanks,

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You can try Easy Recovery Pro from http://www.ontrack.com, you can get a trial version.
It has saved me countless times.

It has various recovery options e.g Format Recovery, Delete recovery and many more.

Let me know how it goes.

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Great, will give that a go and report back

Expert of the Year 2004
Top Expert 2004

Data can be recovered only when its not over-written, as your friend has reinstalled the system again after erasing the previous data, there are only 5% chances that you can recover the erased data, otherwise its lost!


Right, ok.  But would all of the documents have been overwritten if it was just a clean windows install as surely they are located on another part of the disk to the OS?  Does it maybe depend on how the Vaio recovery console works?
Expert of the Year 2004
Top Expert 2004
> if it was just a clean windows install as surely they are located on
> another part of the disk to the OS?

you can never guess that where exatcly they were\are stored!
and yes it can depend on the method of recovery also, some recovery softwares just quick format the drive, while others completely erase it.
you can always try to run a reocvery tool, just to check what its reporting?


Ok, thanks for the info.  Will give it a scan and report back with results

Thank you
Here are some links to get free data recovery tools:


Recovery works in conjunction with the MBR, the Master Boot Record is an index to your HDD. So all info about where data is stored is recorded by the MBR.
When you delete a file from your PC, or format the disk. The MBR still has the record, until new data is written over that location of the disk.
So the recovery program will compaire the MBR to the HDD and build up a list of files that it can recover, and some that are potentialy partly damaged, or corrupt.
If you are lucky, and the location of where the doc's were stored has not been overwritten by the recovery installation disk, then you will be able to recover the documents. I would say you have about a 10 -20% chance of recovery.
Good Luck
Doesn't look hopeful, but you could try PC Inspector File Recovery (freeware):

Try this free software :


The best I could suggest you is http://www.stellarinfo.com/partition-recovery.htm 

I have used this software many time and found it recovers more effectively than many other softwares. I have been using licensed version, you could go for their demo version which would help you to recover. Please try and updates us the status.
Helix is the standard for data recovery. It will take a little time to learn how to use it, but if you want your data back this is the way to go.


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