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I have an external hard disk which is non-bootable, and by some issues of mine, I deleted the partition, which resulted in it showing unallocated partition. It contained a lot of files.

I followed this link, to restore: this and well, I have restored the drive to show in "My Computer" but I cant for the life of me access the files. I have not formatted the drive. So I understand the files are there. Additionally I have not written anything there.

How do I recover those files?

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2 Answers

Try TestDisk which should automagically rebuild your partition table, given that you take 5 minutes to read this wiki page: http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk_Step_By_Step#Example_problem

This recovery example guides you through TestDisk, step by step, to recover these 'lost' partitions by: rewriting the corrupted NTFS boot sector, and recovering the accidentally deleted logical NTFS partition.

If you only deleted the partition it should work perfectly and it's pretty quick.

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Thanks Shadok,Can I confirm with you that, even after I used diskmgmt.msc it will not create a problem? I have downloaded TestDisk already, and have run it, but it has not found any hidden partitions. I didnt understand what happened or happening. So closed it. But anyway I will read the entire thing again. (To refresh: after running diskmgmt.msc the HD was detected by window but it looked as a brand new hd, though I didnt format it. No data, nothing. Looked like to me the file system was gone) –  Soham Feb 10 '11 at 15:10
    
From what you're saying you didn't ask any modification to the device since you deleted the partition. If your deletion was a "standard one" the only thing that was touched is the MBR : en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Master_boot_record In that case testdisk will scan the device looking for partition start and stop markers depending on the filesystem and rewrite the MBR accordingly. –  Shadok Feb 10 '11 at 16:33
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You should try a special partition recovery tool that specializes in restoring data from deleted partition. Note:
1. Stop using this drive immediately to avoid overwriting the original data, which can make your data gone permanently.
2. Save your recovered files on a different storage device in case of recovery failure.
3. Create a new partition to replace it if you like.
4. Back up you data in the future in case of similar problem.

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