handheld scanner format / delete content of microSD when batteries removed : need to recover deleted files

Posted on 2015-01-18
Last Modified: 2015-02-19

I got one of those China made handheld scanner (not Brother, not VuPoint) & when I removed
its four pcs of AA batteries to recharge, all the scanned files in the microSD were gone (but the
DCIM folder is still there).

Any freeware tool to recover the formatted (or is it deleted because the DCIM folder is still there)
Question by:sunhux
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LVL 20

Accepted Solution

marsilies earned 200 total points
ID: 40556678
If you didn't use the SD card after changing the batteries, the files might still be there. What format were the scans in? PDF?

You need a file recovery program.  Below is a list of some free ones that may work.




Additional tools:
LVL 81

Expert Comment

by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
ID: 40556720
I am under the impression that the scans did not go to the sdcard
LVL 70

Assisted Solution

Merete earned 200 total points
ID: 40556772
all the scanned files in the microSD were gone (but the
DCIM folder is still there).<< the DCIM stands for Digital Camera Images, this folder will always be there as it is built-in to the software.
It was designed to save time for some desktop image-editing programs to look specifically for ‘DCIM' folders on any media inserted into the PC. That saves time in scanning the media for images--and it prevents the software from importing images that your device may not have captured.
Inside this DCIM should be another folder called 100MEDIA  or similar.
Is this folder missing??
100MEDIADCIM folder
There should have been no reason for the images if any contained in this folder to just disappear when removing the batteries., are you certain you didn't lose them based on your actions?
What I advise anyone using these portable battery operated USB devices is never cut your images when transferring from the device to the PC just incase the batteries are low and the transfer is interrupted you have lost them.
Always use the copy/paste.
Always use the mass storage safely remove before unplugging. regardless just incase you have the folder open and unplug the device while explorer is accessing it.
Now on the other hand if the scanner locked it self due to low battery you would not have access to this folder DCIM on the microSD. So if you can see inside this folder and it is empty your chances of recovery are limited for normal recovery tools.
The folder/images should have been restored once powered on again.
I bought and use RunTime Get Data Back for ntfs  it has a fully functioning trial where you can test run to see if you actually have any photos on there.
Which I feel possibly is empty now just to prepare you for the possibility of loss.
As I have NTFS I cannot use it to scan a Fat 32 file system testing it GDB does see my USB Skypix Hanyscan but will not access the Fat32
To my knowledge these recovery tools only restore files that are deleted  but still hidden on the partition or from an inaccessible drive system so the files are still there. Not files lost in transferring a cut and paste.
I suggest to you if the above suggestions don't interest you download the fully functioning GetDataBack Simple V1.00 - NEW for Fat32 and ntfs included trial. It will at least re-assure you one way or another
The thing is if you can see your files you cannot use the recovery until you purchase it.
Plug in your scanner wait till you see the open folder,
Fat 32 drivethen run Get Data Back using the I dont know
Step twoThat is as far as I can go since I have NTFS and says to me get Fat32.
But I can assist you further if needed
Get Data Back includes  How To guides on the LEft.
Please Note it never be used on the same drive as your current windows. only USB or secondary drives.
About Get Data Back
Get Data Back comes in NTFS and Fat32 formats

Please let me know if you have the 100Media folder behind the DCIM
regards Merete
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Author Comment

ID: 40582484
>I am under the impression that the scans did not go to the sdcard
The above is not the case; after scanning, I moved the microSD to my
laptop to copy out just 1 of the jpg file (to email out) & saw there's
others in it;  then put it back into scanner but removed its rechargeable
AA batteries to recharge them & the next day, when I read again on the
same laptop, the microSD folder.


> if you have the 100Media folder behind the DCIM

>didn't use the SD card after changing the batteries, the files might still
> be there. What format were the scans in?

I'm sure I recall there's 100Media behind the DCIM but I've since
copied a few mp4 files (from youtube) to it & move it to a dedicated
"hardware" media player to play on it : OMG, now even the DCIM
folder is gone : looks like the hardware player removes it & created
a folder called  \media  in the top folder of the microSD

Author Comment

ID: 40582489
>I'm sure I recall there's 100Media behind the DCIM but I've since
>copied a few mp4 files (from youtube) to it & move it to a dedicated
>"hardware" media player to play on it : OMG, now even the DCIM
>folder is gone

Ignore the above, actually I've just got another (same brand/make of
Strontium Nitro) of microSD & it was the one that hold the youtube
mp4 files.   So the original Nitro microSD in question still have the
DCIM\100Media  folder though I did scan in a few jpg files to it

Author Comment

ID: 40582492
Marsilies' list of freeware recovery tools come in handy:
I've just emailed out a 13MB zip file (with password) to my gmail
to be saved there & then delete it away (using 'delete' command
of Win XP at command prompt) from the disk: minutes later, a
'bounced' message came back to my Outlook saying it needs to
be resent but after clicking "Send Again", what's received in gmail
is without the attachment.
LVL 81

Assisted Solution

by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
David Johnson, CD, MVP earned 20 total points
ID: 40582503
perhaps you should have logged into your gmail account and from there sent a message to yourself!  or save the file to google drive!

Author Comment

ID: 40582514
Recuva successfully undeleted the zip file.

For the microSD (which is FAT32 filesystem), the quick scan for "Pictures"
 (ie jpg, bmp), Recuva found only 1 jpg file, so I'm doing "Deep Scan" now
... estimated almost 50 minutes

Author Comment

ID: 40582538
Recuva only recovers 1 jpg file & even that, is not the jpg file I'm looking for
as it has a little tiny icon in it only;  not the scanned docs
LVL 34

Assisted Solution

Michael-Best earned 80 total points
ID: 40602280
Never delete the original file until the copy has been confirmed.
You say that the email failed and you deleted the original 13MB zip file.
It appears that your scanned docs have been lost.
Make sure you have charged batteries when scanning and do not remove the microSD  
with the power on.

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