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Step 1: Restoring Files That Have Been Deleted From the Recycle Bin
A great program for doing this is called Restoration. Download it and install it. The program installs itself to a folder in c:/restoration. Double click on the ".exe" file in that folder. Once the program launches, it will allow you to search the specified drive. Once the results are pulled up, highlight any files that you intend to restore and click the "Restore By Copying" button.
Step 2: Restoring Files From Damaged CD/DVD's
This method is for restoring files off of scuffed CD's/DVD's, where it often says that it cannot copy the source file or it gives a "cyclic redundancy" error. The program for this method is called CD Recovery Toolbox. Download and install that program and, once installed, it should create a shortcut on your desktop.
-Go ahead and run the program.
-The first window will have you select the drive that you want to restore (the corrupted media should already be in it at this point). Then click next
-Select a folder where you want to restore the files to. Default is "c:\_CDRestored". Then click Next.
-Select the files on the CD that you wish to restore and click "Save"
-When it's through, it should open up the folder in which it saved the files to.
Step 3: Restoring Files From Formatted Hard Drives
This method is to restore files from hard drives after they have been re-formatted. For instance, this would come in handy if you have reinstalled windows on a drive and then want to see if you can restore a file that was on it before you reinstalled windows. A great program to do this is called PhotoRec. Download, install, and run the program.
-Open up the program (it will open up in a DOS window)
-First you will need to select which hard drive you want to restore (using the arrow keys) and then hit enter to Proceed.
-Second, you will need to select how your hard drive is partitioned, whether it's a PC,MAC, Linux, etc.
-Then select the file system. If it's a Mac/XP/Vista, it will be HPFS or NTFS. If it's pre-XP, then it will be FAT32. If it's linux, then you should know which one it is :-)
-Select where you want to restore the files to. The default is "C:\Phtotrec". It's recommended not to restore the files to the same drive that you are restoring from.
-Then just let it restore the files and select which ones you want to keep.
Step 4: Restoring Files From Unbotable Hard Drives.
This method can be used when you can't even get your computer to boot to the hard drive. The method is by booting to what's called a "Live CD". You can download Linux Live CD's from almost anywhere. Ubuntu is probably the most popular and will serve the purpose. However, if you want a Windows LIve CD, we can make one of these by using a WindowsXP cd and a program called "BartPE".
-Download, install, and run the program
- Put in your XP cd, and use it as the source path. You can also select alternate paths for things to include with the CD. Under Output, you can select the name of the folder that it will put the working information in.
-Then select, under Media Output, "Create ISO image". And click "Build"
-Once it's finished, you can use a program such as Deep Burner to burn it to a CD.
-Then just boot to the CD once the computer is starting up.