Some days ago I have re-installed Windows 7. But I forgot to backup some files from partition C to other hard disk partitions.

I have created a PHP based project and all was done in XAMPP which was installed on partition C.
But I forgot to save it elsewhere and while installing Windows 7, I have formated my C partition.

Is there any way to restore this folder?

  • No, it cannot be restored. – Srijan Aug 30 '12 at 12:07
  • 1
    Computer problems are really better suited to Super User. I've flagged for migration. But the answer is 'no' a format is destructive. – Alexander R Aug 30 '12 at 12:07
  • @AlexanderR This is not true. A FULL format is destructive, but a quick format which is was is usually run, only erases MFTs. – XToro Aug 30 '12 at 12:38
  • Use forensics level recovery software to recover such overwritten data. There's still high chance of recovery because original data would only have overwritten few times. – user79032 Feb 4 '13 at 6:36

There is a slight chance it can be recovered, especially if you have a large hard drive and when you re-installed Windows and you performed a quick-format instead of a full format.

A quick format only wipes out the MFT which is like a list of files and folders and that tell the OS the physical location on the disk of where to find those files (Along with creation dates etc). The actual DATA doesn't get erased or overwritten, it just gets orphaned and is no longer marked as data, therefore the OS is free to use those bits to write new files there.

Unfortunately, re-installing your OS means you're potentially overwriting those bits with new files, and the more you use your computer, the more chance there is that you're still overwriting them. Again, a very large hard drive could save you if the files you want to recover are at the end of the drive.

I've recovered data from formats before and there are several free products that can scan your drive for you and recover files, but it takes a LONG time as your ENTIRE drive must be scanned.

Here's some free software you can try:

Recuva : http://www.piriform.com/recuva

TestDisk : http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk

Undelete Plus

Restoration : http://www.aumha.org/downloads/restoration.exe

I highly recommend you stop using your computer now and plug your drive into another computer where you can install and run the recovery software.

  • thanks for your help, one question is this will have any effects on my current files and did you try or know about "phoenix data recovery" one of my friend recommend me to try. – itistg Aug 30 '12 at 15:40
  • Not familiar with that program, but no, it will not affect any of your current files. Most recovery software programs will ask you where you want to place the files they recover. For myself in the past, I've just created a folder called "Recovered" somewhere like the desktop, and put all the files in there. – XToro Aug 30 '12 at 15:55
  • have you solved you problem? – Arvin Jason Cabrera Sep 8 '18 at 3:51

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