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deleted file with shift key

Posted on 2010-08-31
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
by mistake i deleted a file with the shift key- so it is not in the recycle bin - is there any way to recover it?

thanks
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Question by:anushahanna
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dvast8n earned 42 total points
ID: 33568697
You would have to use data recovery software in order to retrieve it.

Here's a nice comprehensive list of free data recovery software (most are free trials):

http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/XP/Q_21014635.html#11240391
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by:uescomp
uescomp earned 42 total points
ID: 33568718
there should be an option in the recycling bin (if emptied) to recover deleted items, otherwise double check and run a search for the file to make sure it was not accidently moved into another folder.

Otherwise you would have to use some sort of file recovery software
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by:msallam
msallam earned 84 total points
ID: 33568720
Yes, plenty actually.
One of them is "Restoration".
You will find it here: http://www.softpedia.com/get/System/Back-Up-and-Recovery/Restoration.shtml

You choose the partition and scan for the deleted files.
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by:msallam
ID: 33568735
Forgot to say it is free!
Here is some other list, free also: http://www.thefreecountry.com/utilities/datarecovery.shtml
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by:torimar
torimar earned 83 total points
ID: 33568892
These are the two best free file recovery tools:
Recuva: http:/www.piriform.com/recuva
PC Inspector: http://www.pcinspector.de/default.htm?Language=1

If they don't retrieve your file, check out the demo versions of these commercial tools:
GetdataBack: http://www.runtime.org/data-recovery-software.htm
R-Undelete: http://www.r-undelete.com/
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by:aleghart
aleghart earned 42 total points
ID: 33569547
If the file wasn't recently edited, go the parent folder (if it exists).
Right-click.  Properties.
Go to the tab marked "Previous Versions".

There should be a list of backup copies with date/time stamps.

Select one (single left click).  Click the "Open" button.
This opens a window showing the backed up contents.
Find your file, then copy it to another location (like another hard drive, USB drive, network folder, etc.).

If this is not the best copy, try other dates.

Keep in mind that if you drag copies to your own hard drive, you may be writing over the space from the deleted file.  Better to use a different drive or attempt file recovery first.
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by:anushahanna
ID: 33570699
>>there should be an option in the recycling bin (if emptied) to recover deleted items

can you guide where in recycle bin is that option? is it in xp?

It was really deleted, but accidently with shift key - so it totally skipped the bin?
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by:anushahanna
ID: 33570703
Thanks for all the links. Before I try any of these tools, is there any precaution in installing? (that it does not overwrite the part of the hard disk where this file might have sat on)
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by:anushahanna
ID: 33570714
aleghart, this was a text file in desktop. does the "Previous Versions" apply here?
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by:dbrunton
dbrunton earned 124 total points
ID: 33570881
>> Before I try any of these tools, is there any precaution in installing? (that it does not overwrite the part of the hard disk where this file might have sat on)

You install the recovery software in another system and attach your drive to it (USB caddy will do fine) and then run the software.  Don't install the software to your present system.  In fact don't use the present system until you recover the file.
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by:msallam
msallam earned 84 total points
ID: 33572046
For the "Restoration" option; you do not need to install anything.
It is a portable exe file.

When yo restore the file, just restore it to a different partition (on the same hard disk if you wish) or to a flash drive.
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Assisted Solution

by:BitsBytesandMore
BitsBytesandMore earned 83 total points
ID: 33573014
The best program I've had a chance to use and has never let me down yet is Recover My Files from GetData http://www.recovermyfiles.com/ . They have a nice video on the home page to help you get started and excellent support.
As you probably already are aware, once you press shift-del, this instruction basically "permanently deletes" the files so no action performed on the recycle bin properties will bring them back.
Nevertheless, it really IS NOT a "permanent delete" but just a bypass of the recycle bin so the files can be recovered as long as you have not written to the sector/cluster of the hard drive that contained the deleted file.
The best methodology (as mentioned above by our respected sage dbrunton), if possible, is to connect the problem drive to another computer as the secondary drive. This enables you to install your data recovery software on the C: drive of the 'good' computer, and then scan the secondary  'problem' drive to recover your files. This methodology make it far less likely that Windows, or you, will write new data to the drive.
Of course this methodology is not always practical, as you may well have lost your files from your current C: drive and have no alternative that to continue to use Windows on this PC. If this is the case, limit your use of the computer until you have the opportunity to search for your deleted files.
Recover My Files is a small program (approximately 10mb), so installation of the program onto the problem drive, whilst not recommended, is a small risk.
Glad to hear from you.
Bits ...
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by:anushahanna
ID: 33580336
Hello all,

I first tried the portable exe mentioned by msallam because it is a portable- but it could not find it.

then i tried Bits's recovermyfiles recommendation. there was no choice but to install it on the workstation, hoping it was not going to overwrite anything- but it also did not find the file.

then i ran r-undelete; i searched by name, and i found the reference to it!!!! I was overjoyed. When i tried to restore it, it said it was a LNK file to the actual file. So it was disappointing. Then it asked i i want to fix or delete it. I said fix, and then i saw it restored the actual text file by name!!! Thank you Lord!!! The content was little outdated, but still very good news...

when I checked it's property, i saw the create/modifed/accessed date was Aug 4th instead of Aug 31st, and the contents are off by a few weeks..

i tried again the same process.. this time it brough the txt file, but it's content was more metadata and junk.

"L        À      F›       Û) ¿íÊÙÉá IËÙÉá IË–u                    H F 2 –u =r  MAY10~1.TXT ,   ᆭ<se=r   M a y   1 0 . t x t      f            -       e         ~f´    C:\Documents and Settings\jimw\Desktop\May 10.txt   . . \ D e s k t o p \ M a y   1 0 . t x t , C : \ D o c u m e n t s   a n d   S e t t i n g s \ j i m w \ D e s k t o p `      X       jimwpc A†Ð¤2AJ»]÷¹_ØSî¨èý]Qß·X rx¿pA†Ð¤2AJ»]÷¹_ØSî¨èý]Qß·X rx¿p    "

The filename  indeed is May 10.txt

Do you recommend I keep trying to see if it gets the latest version of the text file.?

or would you recommend i run recovermyfiles again or try GetdataBack?

Thanks so much, to all of you...
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by:dbrunton
dbrunton earned 124 total points
ID: 33580490
Try both.  No guarantee either will work but won't hurt.  But if you install apps on the workstation you lessen your chances of a successful recovery.
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by:anushahanna
ID: 33580581
what do you think may be the cause for the file to restored 4 weeks ahead of the last usage date?
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by:BitsBytesandMore
BitsBytesandMore earned 83 total points
ID: 33580605
You computer creates "Shadow copies". You probably were able to recover one of these.
Bits ...
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by:dbrunton
dbrunton earned 124 total points
ID: 33580722
It depends on the location where Windows saved the file.  If you save at different times those are different locations.  But the newest save is the one Windows knows about.  All of the other locations are marked as available for use.  

They aren't necessarily used straightaway.

So the file recovery application has found an unused location with that file in it from an old date.  It is quite possible that Windows has already used the location where that SHIFT-deleted file was.

The file recovery application has found a munged up file where Windows has already claimed that location for data of some type.
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by:torimar
torimar earned 83 total points
ID: 33580834
Are you sure you really saved changes before deleting that file?

Then maybe the only explanation is the one dbrunton gave above.
In this case, the last file version will most likely not be retrievable by conventional recovery tools. Your last bet could be Photorec ( http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/PhotoRec ). For a large variety of file types (including .txt), it will not only recover complete files that are lost, but also scattered  bits of files that are no longer recoverable in their entirety, and the names of which the file system no longer holds in its catalogue.
Try the step by step method here: http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/PhotoRec_Step_By_Step
Or follow the video:
http://www.irongeek.com/i.php?page=videos/data-carving-with-photorec-to-retrieve-deleted-files-from-formatted-drives-for-forensics-and-disaster-recovery
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by:anushahanna
ID: 33587262
hmm.. it was a worthwhile effort.

Thanks very much for every bit of the help you offered, and grateful for what I was able to restore for the user.

appreciate you experts!
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Expert Comment

by:BitsBytesandMore
ID: 33588380
Thank you anushahanna... I wasn't expecting any points since it was torimar who recommended the r-undelete and dbrunton who suggested that you use the drive attached via USB to another computer... you are very kind with the points.
We are all here for you whenever you need help... just ask.
Bits ...
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