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recover lost files.

morning all,

recently my girlfriends computer began acting really sluggish. asked her if she ran any scans recently and she said no. most of the software that she had was still the trial software from when she first got it (most likely start of summer). its a compaq. as for the other specs im unaware of them, but can get them if necessary. now i installed registry mechanic and ran a scan. 200 problems! fixed those. since her antivirus trial was over i then installed comodo antivirus. following install it asked for a reboot so i did.

this is when things went wrong. the computer would never fully load up. continued to try and address the issue. no luck. now this other tool at the school managed to get her computer running, however in his little escapade he lost a lot of her pictures and some movies she shot during her trips and h.s. graduation. i know that files arent completely deleted when removed from recycle bin. is there some way where i can recover them for her?

if you need any more specifics let me know and i'll gather them.

sorry if i overread it every time i read your message.

Which Operating system do you use?

Is there a possibility to take this hdd into another pc as a secundary hdd?
So it should be possible to scan this hdd from the other pc.
there are programms who can scan the hdd for deleted (not wiped!!) files and can recover them. The most pictures etc. i think should be able to be recovered so.

< just a idea >
< sorry for my bad english - i don't know how to write it in good english :-\ >
Try PC Tools File Inspector - this will recover deleted files for free. It's unlimited software (eg. it's not a trial) and I can highly recommend it.
Some tips:
don't do anything with the disk. If the files are deleted, the actual data will stay on the disk. But when you put other files on the disk the deleted files can be overwritten.
You could try to put the disk in another pc, but there are other options. If you used FAT32 for the filesystem, you could boot the pc with a DOS-floppy disk and search the net for free undelete programs. Put them on the DOS disk and use them from dos. Then no data will be accidentially overwritten.
If that doesn't work you could boot the disk and try freeundelete for windows (

Good luck!
But don't boot from the Windows on that disk! You must put the disk in another computer and load it as a secondary drive, or use a live CD (Knoppix for example). Also, save the recovered data on another disk.

Whenever you write on the disk you want to recover from, you decrease your chances. Even booting that drive decreases your chances because of the swap file, among others.
That's true. Therefore I suggested using a DOS-disk. It's better to put the disk in another pc and I myself would certainly do that, but a lot of people don't know how to do that, or how to use a life cd. So booting the windows on the disk doesn't do the pc any good, but reading the post I guessed the already did that.

The best solution if the files are important is: ask someone who knows what he's doing and don't try to do it yourself...

There are a lot of utilities to recover data.
But perhaps the best one is SpinRite, made by Steve Gibson's company.
It's not free but it's valuable because it is made by a man that seems to be a real pro. He has the ability to program in real machine code, or, in other words, he understands the machine.
He told in an interview that he even doesn't bother if one person gets a pirated copy of SpinRite, recovers the data and afterwards buys the software.
Here's his site:

Be careful using your hard-drive. Don't run anything over it. You should have another drive where the recovery software will run.
The recovered data should also be saved in another drive, because if you recover in the drive that is damaged, you are changing that drive and might compromise other recoveries.
I have read somewhere that i live knoppix with a usb flash hard disk
could find and copy everything you need. Dont trust any software even the expensive ones are not affectivre....
use the hard drive as a secondary drive and avoid anything that would make a great disk activity on that drive. then select any tools mentioned on the above. that's the best option you have.
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