A Good HDD Partition recovery software needed pls

Hi Guys,

A few weeks ago I lost my hard drive. Now I don’t know if it was a virii attack or a back sector on the disk.

I had 3 partitions on it:

1 My C: drive for games
2 My D: drive for browsing and general stuff.
3 My E: drive where I stored any large data or downloaded stuff.

Now since this problem for some strange reason Partitions 2 & 3 have merged making one huge partition and now I only have my C: drive and a larger D: drive.

I lost a lot of valuable data on the partition such as emails and favourites and important docs.

Also the machine will no longer boot saying there is a problem with the hard disk

I was wondering if I took the Hard Drive out of this machine and put it into another one could I recover any data from it as the hard disk doesnt appear to be broken just the FAT Table is trashed.

Does anyone know of any good software either freeware or commercial that could recover data from a partition that Windows may no longer see?

Thanks in advance, I would like to try and retrieve some of the data on the drive. :slight_smile:

Spinrite from www.grc.com is the best there is. And next time, use a drive imaging backup plan.

Thanks for the help m8, much appreciated.

Could you suggest a few good drive imaging backup software, I know Ghost is one but what other options are there?

Acronis True Image…:slight_smile:

Access Data FTK Imager + Forensics Toolkit

EZ recovery pro could also help with your recovery (it’s from Ontrack).

And next time - don’t partition. It used to make sense, but now it’s just foolish - and as you can tell, dangerous!

Well, not if you plan to have multiple OSes on the same disk :stuck_out_tongue: (e.g. Win + Linux or WinXP-1 + WinXP-2 + Win98 + …)
And even in single-OS frameworks having only one large HD I’d prefer to split it into a “system partition” and a “data partition”, so that system backups with utilites like Ghost or True Image are easier and more effective. :wink:

But I totally agree with you that all that “merging/resizing partitions” stuff really make me scary… :eek:

Regards, :slight_smile:

ET

Agreed. This is the ONLY good reason to partition.

And even in single-OS frameworks having only one large HD I’d prefer to split it into a “system partition” and a “data partition”, so that system backups with utilites like Ghost or True Image are easier and more effective. :wink:
Actually True Image is perfectly happy just backing up from a directory. No need to use a separate partition or drive letter. But even were that argument valid (as it is for ghost, I suppose), there’s a huge price to pay. That partitioned drive has just become HALF as fast. Plus you’re working it twice as hard, seeking from one end of the drive to the other.

I am a HUGE proponent of having 2 or more drives in a system. The ONLY benefits you get from partitioning are the above mentioned ease of ghosting… and somewhat less fragmentation. And the fragmentation is, again, offset by the overworking of the drive.

YUP! Me too. Expecially with current HD prices. This is the setup for all PCs that I build for friends. :iagree:

I still think that in some cases (in particular newbie users) a two-partitions setting is preferable, but I admit that you have some really good points there. :iagree:

Regards, :slight_smile:

ET

EDIT: zevia, your post below made me realize that we definitely went off-topic. My apologies to the original poster.
Thanks for putting it on the right track.

For data recovery, I use R-Studio (network edition). It recovered all my data from two failed HDDs in the past.

Recently I almost lost around 120GB of my research data because windows won’t recognize the HDD (shows as a new unformatted hdd - partition structure was damaged). R-Studio recovered all data without problem.

IMHO, the best tool for partitioning, imaging, and boot management is BootitNG from Terrabite.com. A bit geeky to start, indispensible afterwards. Plus, 100% reliable.
Also, only works before Windows starts, thus no drain on resources and no problem with open files when imaging.

I need some help here…

  • What does a HDD Imaging software do?
    I don’t really have anything critical on my system - except for my collection of family pictures, music, softwares, iso-images, videos/clips, my personal stuff and some more.
    However everything I have listed here is either backed up on a separate partition or backed up to a disc which I do regulary.

  • I don’t see why using 2 partitions is so bad. My 1st partition is for backups, the 2nd is for everything else. When I format, the 1st is leaved untouched!

Thanks a lot in advance!

It makes a full backup of a hard drive partition, “as it is”. Essentially the same thing that you could do with whatever you use to do backups by selecting the entire partition to be backed up. Also, hard drive imaging software will make backups of BOOT partitions, SYSTEM drives, etc. It makes a lower-level copy than your average backup software.

  • I don’t see why using 2 partitions is so bad. My 1st partition is for backups, the 2nd is for everything else. When I format, the 1st is leaved untouched!

In this case, it’s not so bad. My complaint is when I hear that people partition up their BOOT drive, or have two ACTIVE partitions on one drive.

Here’s why:

Let’s say that you have your system partition (C:) on a drive, AND another partition with your games on it (D:). The drive will look like this:

|----------C-----------|x|-------------D--------------|

Ok. Now keep in mind that windows is CONTINUOUSLY writing to your swap file, which by default is on your C: drive. It is also nearly continuously READING from your C: drive to get system files and check the registry and suchnot. ASSUME that those things are at the BEGINNING of the C: drive.

Now, let’s say you play a game from the D: drive. The hard disk’s head will seek back and forth from the beginning of the drive to the end, over and over again, repeatedly. It’ll get a few KB from C: then jump to the end to get a few KB from D:, then jump back to the beginning to write to the swap file, then back to the end… see where this is going?

It’ll make the drive work SUPER SUPER hard, and reduce its speed to a crawl.

In your case, where the C area in the above diagram is just a storage partition for backups and is almost never accessed… you’ve got no problems. But bear in mind that you are in no way “better off” having that partition, it’s simply to help you keep organized, and make you feel better. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the informative post. I’m guess I’m cool then?

However… how the hell do I backup a whole HDD? My two partitions weight 140GB’s altogether - I cannot store that amount of data on a harddisk or an optical disc. Heck, I cannot even backup the smaller partition, which weights only 10GB’s. Am I doing something wrong? Should I backup the WINDOWS folder only? Using Acronis TrueImage.

Thanks in advance.

Many image softwares offer compression. I just imaged both of my systems onto a single external 250gb hd which I partitioned (one partition for each system). One of my drives had 120gb, and the image only took 90gb with compression. I got the external on sale for $80.00. That is cheaper than backing up to dvd’s, and a heck of a lot faster.

Bah… I don’t have an external HD either… Nevermind, guess I’ll just keep backing up those pics on CD’s!

The subject is so vast, this thread couldn’t accomodate. I suggest you read: http://www.langa.com/backups/backups.htm , or better still, subscribe to the free newsletter. I did, and it was so useful & informative, that next year I subscribed to the Plus edition. Best 10$ I ever spent!

on windows - bet you linux runs great with a single partition :stuck_out_tongue:

Actually I think you’ll find that Linux installs several partitions by default.

I think you’ll find he was taking the piss out of ya :cool: