One of the biggest and most common headaches of carrying all our important files in digital media, is that possibility that for some reason they are lost, in many cases because we delete them by accident or by believing that they were backed up elsewhere. . When we do not have a backup to go to for salvation, we can only go to tools that are capable of recovering the data .
Interestingly, and although there are numerous tools available to recover deleted files , it is common for many users to believe that this is not possible, or that they have to pay large amounts of money to be able to have their files safe and sound again. Today we recommend several options that in addition to effective are easy to use.
With that detail in mind, it would make sense that when you want to recover files from a hard drive, stop using your computer or device immediately , to avoid overwriting the space by adding new files. That is why it is advisable to install the recovery tools in a portable way on a USB drive, or if possible, remove the hard drive from your computer and connect it to another where you have installed the software you are going to use.
And what about the SSD?
Solid state drives (SSDs) work differently than traditional hard drives. Before any type of data can be written to them, the disk must be clean.
When the operating system deletes files from an SSD it uses the TRIM command to completely clean the sectors , so the writing process in the future will be faster, and we already know that speed is the great selling point of these devices. This comes with the benefit or curse, depending on the eyes you see, that it will be almost impossible to recover data from them.
This is only valid if it is an internal SSD . If you have an external SSD, or an SD memory or USB, or any type of drive of this type that works as removable, the system will not erase the sectors completely , which means that your files will still be floating and you could recover them.
Recuva is one of my favorite programs to perform data recovery work. It’s free, it’s simple, it’s easy to use and it’s effective . Whether photos, documents, music, videos, emails, or any type of files you can think of, with this program you can return them from the grave.
Recuva lets you recover files by selecting all available drives on your computer, lets you filter the results according to file type in case you only look for photos, for example. It lets you do deep scans in case something becomes very difficult to find, and it also has a function to erase files securely by overwriting the disk.
The program’s interface is rookie-proof, once it finishes scanning it shows you in green the recoverable files with full path and name, and allows you to select which ones you want to recover and where to save them. The free version is more than enough for most cases, although it has a premium that offers greater features.
Free Data Recovery Software Recover Deleted Files Easily
If you are looking for an alternative that works on Windows and macOS , Disk Drill can come as a ring to your finger. It is capable of reading all types of file systems: NTFS, FAT32, EXT, HFS + and more. It works with internal and external disks and is very easy to use.
Disk Drill also lets you filter the results by file type, in addition to size and date. It has fast scans and deep scans. You can connect your iOS or Android devices to the computer and you can also recover files from them with the application. The only drawback is that the free version only lets you recover files of maximum 100 MB.
EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard
Another excellent free alternative that also works on both Windows and macOS , is the EaseUS data recovery system that already has a few years between us and is well known. The free version lets you recover up to 2 GB of files , if you want to continue recovering data you will have to buy a license. Either way, it serves for an emergency.
Like the other recommended tools, EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard also lets you scan only some or all types of files, and then you can preview them before recovering the ones you want.
NTFSUndelete is another fairly old and effective recovery program. It supports the FAT12, FAT16, FAT32, NTFS, and NTFS5 file systems. It is compatible with all versions of Windows from XP to Windows 10.
It works with your hard drive or any type of removable media, in addition to offering recovery according to file types, it has a special and improved way to recover photos . Unfortunately NTFSUndelete is not free, but you can download a trial version to get an idea of how it works and decide if a license is worth paying for it.
Glary Undelete is completely free and very easy to use. As Recuva does, this one of the few software tools of this type that allows you to recover files without limits of size or number of uses. It supports FAT, NTFS, NTFS +, and EFS file systems.
Glary is also able to recover files that have been compressed, fragmented or even encrypted . You can filter by file name, creation date, size and also by current recovery status, so that you only see the data that is recoverable in the results.
MiniTool Power Data Recovery is another data recovery software for Windows and macOS that has a free version. It promises to recover deleted files either by accident, even after formatting and even in some cases corrupt data.
You can recover complete partitions, you can do a quick scan specially designed to recover multimedia content such as photos, music or videos. You can scan damaged partitions and you can even recover files from CDs or DVDs.
We include TestDisk in this list because despite not being precisely a tool for the novice, it is still a very powerful resource for those who dare to learn how to use it. It is a free and open source program to recover data, lost partitions, and make a bootable disk reboot again if it has been damaged.
TestDisk can fix partition tables, recover and rebuild boot sectors, recover files on FAT, NTFS, and ext2 systems. It can run on Windows, Linux, macOS, FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD DOS, and SunOS. You can download the image from here .