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For some mysterious reason, my computer formatted my 'Data' drive while I was running Windows 7. I managed to recover a large amount of the data to another drive using Test Disk in Ubuntu. Because the 'Data' drive was NTFS to be compatible with both Windows and Linux, any files that became fragmented by the NTFS file system are now incomplete or corrupted by the recovery process.

Ideally I would like to simply undo the format and recover the original partition table. As far as I'm aware, that isn't possible (NB, the drive has remained untouched other than the recovery process).

My real question here is whether there is a utility (either Windows or Linux) that can go through my cluster of almost 1TB of files and remove any corrupted and incomplete files so I do not have to open all of them in turn to see if they work or not.

About my setup: I have Windows 7, Ubuntu and Fedora on a 'System' disk and all my data on a separate 'Data' disk plus the external I'm using to recover my data files. The file types include images, videos, installer EXEs, TAR.GZ, DEB packages, RPM packages, PDF, Powerpoint, Word docs, Excel docs. MP3s and anything else I wanted to keep off of my 'System' disk. I am also using FSlint in Ubuntu to check for duplicates of any files.

UPDATE 26Feb13 (to respond to comments dated 23Feb13)

@Karan - I understand what you're saying, I'm just being hopeful there is an easier way.

@Adambean - I ran 'chkdsk /R' and got the below result. Result of running chkdsk /R It looks as though it only sees the new (post formatted) file system so shows almost 1TB free, not almost 1TB used.

@vonbrand - The apparent formatting of the drive happened to coincide with me installing a new program into Windows 7. It could have been a dodgy installation EXE, or a coincidence it happened at the same time. If it was a virus, it must have happened before my virus scanner found it.

@Wayne Johnston - I have read the post you linked to. I have just installed Active@ File Recovery. I will see how it goes.

UPDATE 12Mar13 (reporting findings since last update)

@Wayne Johnston I read through the linked page and decided to try Active@ File Recovery. As best I can determine (without clicking on every single file) managed to recover the entire file structure to my recovery disk! Although it didn't restore the formatted disk itself, I can now re-format that drive and copy my files back onto it. Well worth the few dollars to activate the program! Unfortunately we didn't find a tool for finding corrupted files, but at least I got my files back (I can now delete the other recovery folders that contain the corrupted files).

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Archives aside, for a program to know that a file's corrupted, it would need to know the complete file format so it can parse the file and check for inconsistencies. Indeed, depending on the format it might even be possible for data to be missing without resulting in any inconsistency, thus making it difficult to confirm the loss in an automated manner. For even partial success you'd need a general purpose utility that understands every format you're looking to check, and I'm not entirely sure something along this line exists. Will have to check though. – Karan Feb 23 '13 at 15:02
To my understanding the MFT (master file table) on an NTFS partition knows exactly which clusters of the file system a files' data is stored at. Running "chkdsk /R" may even help you recover incomplete files, though if TestDisk has been inaccurately re-building the MFT then chkdsk will likely not detect any issues. – Adambean Feb 23 '13 at 16:09
Find out what "misteriously" formatted your disk, you might have a serious problem with some prankster. – vonbrand Feb 23 '13 at 17:20
This is a popular question at Superuser. Try searching for data recovery. This question has a number of suggestions. You've already taken the one essential step though. Don't try to change anything on the drive, but recover to a different location. – Wayne Johnston Feb 23 '13 at 19:12

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