Recovering files From Hard drive

Ok my situation is a bit complicated so please bare with me.

I have a drive (Let's call it drive "X") that had Win XP Pro SP2 but the install got corrupted and I tried the Repair feature using the Windows Install CD but that failed. My goal is to recover some photos and documents that are still on the drive. I have verified that the drive itsels is physicaly fine.

I have installed a fresh copy of Win Xp on another drive (Lets' call this one drive "Y") that I had access to. I then connected drive X as slave to my secondary IDE controller. under Windwos Disk Management I then intialized the drive as it shows in this pic:

The drive still showed up as "unallocated" so I chose to create a new Partition like this:

Except that I chose "Do not format this this partition"

Now when I go to My computer, the drive shows up but it says that it is not formatted.

Please tell me that I didn't lose all of my data........

Any ideas on how to recover my files??

Thanks Guys!


Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Hi SebastianAguilera,

You could install Windows over that disk, without formatting, and everything would be safe. The new Windows installation would exist along with the old one, so you could recover everything. But as you initialized it and created a new partition... well... do you have any backup of your files... I suppose not...

You asked not to tell you've lose all your data. OK, I will not tell...

You have nothing to lose, now... If you don't have better hints than mine, I suggest you to install Windows over it again, saying not to format or erase whatever. Just create a second Windows installation... If you don't have any better hint...

First of all, I would stop using your 'X' drive until you do one of two things:

1) Purchase a data recovery tool like 'Recover My Files': 
Which you can download and preview what you would recover should you decide to purchase it ($69.95)


2) Get your hard drive to a professional data recovery specialist like:
(not my affiliate link - just copied it from the search engine).

Personnally, I would download the recovermyfiles softare and give it a spin and see what I could recover... than if it the data I could recover was important enough to me, I would pay the fee and recover the files.

Good luck,
Let us know what you decide and how it goes.

You shouldn't have initialized the drive, but a program like getdataback (the best such software on the market) should be able to read the files on the disk and with the registered version you should be able to copy the files from that disk to your new one. The trial you can download will just be able see the files.

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
Acronis True Image 2019 just released!

Create a reliable backup. Make sure you always have dependable copies of your data so you can restore your entire system or individual files.

I would immedeatly stop using the drive. Leave it plugged in but stop making changes to it. Get PC Inspector File Recovery ( - FREE and try to recover your files that way.
Dushan De SilvaTechnology ArchitectCommented:
IF you loosed any data you can recover those with getdataback.

Best is getdataback
Try with getdataback.

BR Dushan
SebastianAguileraAuthor Commented:

I used all of the apps recommended and the best one in my opinon was GetDataBack. Worked like a charm. First you need to scan the drive. My drive was 80GB and it took about 90 minutes to scan . You then get a folder list with all tye files on the drive and they all retain their original filenames and folder structure which is ecellent! You then have to recover or extract the files onto another drive which for 50 GB of info took about another hour. I did not lose a single file!!

One thinkg that was a bit disconcerting was the fact that I found all kinds of file and programs taht i deleted over a year ago. Pretty scary.....

Anyways thanks dudes. EE Rocks!.

your welcome.
Glad to hear that you recovered your data.  (=
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.