Recovering files deleted on Windows Server 2003

We have Shadow Copy in place on our file server and running at three different times during the day. It is helpful when recovering files ONLY after it runs. However, we ran into a situation where some files were deleted accidentally and need to restore them, but there was no way to do it.

Here is the dilemma. When deleting files while logged on to the file server, the files go into the RECYCLE BIN. Howerver, we noticed that when deleting files on the server from a workstation mapped to a server drive, the deleted files were no where to be found. Why aren't the files also going to the RECYCLE BIN then? How do we retrieve a file deleted by a workstation? I tried using the utility RECUVA, but had limited success. And frankly, I would rather not depend on such a utility if there was a way to do it better on the OS level.

So, my questions are:
1) Is it possible to have files deleted on the server by a workstation also go to the RECYCLE BIN.
2) Are there enterprise class utilities for recovering files on the fly that were deleted accidentally?

Thank you
htamraz1Director of TechnologyAsked:
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Justin OwensITIL Problem ManagerCommented:
The short answers are:

1) No.  Deleted files only go to the recycle bin when delete is initiated from the server, not the workstation.

2) Yes, there are.

Further explanation:

Recycle bin is tied to user profile, and when a delete command is sent to a server, via a mapped drive, the user profile is not actually loaded on the server at all.  Because of that, Windows doesn't know where (as in which recycle bin) the deleted files would be stored.

I don't want to get into the methods which the "recover deleted items" programs work in detail, but basically they operate one of two ways.  One, they take over the recycle bin and make it to where they manage file deletion on the server instead of Windows.  This offers a much more stable recovery process at the expense of using large amounts of storage space on the server.  Two, they just install a pretty GUI over the built in Windows recovery utility.  They may throw in some advanced search features, but once the system deletes it from the file system, there are only a couple of ways to get it back.

You can Google "file delete recovery windows 2003" and get over 1,000,000 hits.  Ultimately, your choice of software will be dependent on what you are willing to spend in regard to resources on the server and in regard to pocketbook expenses.

This is an excelent starting point: 

An enterprise class utility is Undelete:
All the best.

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Windows Server 2003

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