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I wanted to install another Linux on my computer, so I tried to resize one of my NTFS partitions with Norton Partition Magic. It didn't complete successfully, showed some errors, said that the partition is not resized and that it's the same size like before. But when I rebooted my computer I couldn't open that partition anymore and I am also not able to mount it from Linux.

So this is my question: I had very important data on that partition - can I recover it? I guess nothing's deleted; it's just something messed up so it's not usable, but can I get it back? Please reply if there's any possible way of doing this, thank you.

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first rule - DO NOT WRITE ANYTHING on this drive while data is not recovered. –  stim Apr 6 '10 at 17:43
    
DO NOT ATTEMPT TO BOOT OR MOUNT THE PARTITION EITHER. –  Hello71 Jul 15 '10 at 18:30

4 Answers 4

I'd highly suggest imaging the raw data on the drive before you do anything else. Install a second hard drive that's at least as large as the original drive, then boot from an Ubuntu Linux Live CD. Open a terminal and run these commands:

  1. sudo bash
  2. fdisk -l
  3. Looking at the fdisk output, identify which drive is which--for example, your drive with data might be /dev/sda and your newly-installed drive might be /dev/sdb, or vice versa. Make sure you are absolutely certain which is which before continuing!!
  4. Assuming the drive you want to recover is /dev/sda and the backup drive (whose contents will be completely overwritten) is /dev/sdb, run this command: dd if=/dev/sda of=/dev/sdb bs=1m
  5. After the copy is done, install your data recovery software on a separate PC, and install the backup drive (not the original drive) in that PC.

I have had amazing success at using RecoverMyFiles to recover data from reformatted drives in the past. Other utilities that I've tried either couldn't find the files at all, could find files but not the filenames (making it pretty much worthless since there were thousands of files with scrambled names), or could find filenames but not the data. The trial version of RecoverMyFiles will let you see all the files that are potentially recoverable, as well as the degree of certainty with which each file can be recovered intact.

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Just download Get data back for NTFS. Your MFT is probably fine so it will find everything fine and fast. http://www.runtime.org/data-recovery-products.htm

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  1. As others have suggested, backup the drive first. If you own Seagate hardware, you can use Seagate's DiscWizard software for free. Otherwise, get Acronis TruImage. However, if the partition isn't accessible, you may have limited results trying to back it up. You may have to jump to step 2.

  2. Once you have the drive backed up, then try to restore data from the backup. Stellar’s Phoenix Recovery Software will do this type of recovery for you, by scanning the entire drive or partition and recovering files byte by byte. It also has the ability to recover a deleted partition.

You generally only need to hire a "service" for a mechanically failing hard drive, however, if you don't know what you're doing, it may be better to hire an expert if the data is too valuable. Only use an expert that someone you know and trust personally recommends. Some so called experts are just as likely to lose the data as you are.

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Yes, you can probably get most of it back, but it would take a lot of effort and might cost a lot of money. Of course you should have had a backup before doing any kind of partitioning work, but if that wasn't done and if it is very important data, the first thing to do would be to make sure that you don't allow any more changes to that drive and copy the drive bit for bit to another drive. Copy the entire hard drive to an identical drive. You might do this twice so that you'll have two copies of the bad drive. You can then send your drive (or a copy thereof) to a service that will recover the data. To find such a service, just google for "hard disk data recovery".

There are also software packages that can try to recover your data, but a service might be able to do it better and faster.

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