It seems that we have hundreds of questions about recovering deleted files or partitions under Windows, but none of them in a really good format for Super User. Most of them degraded into the typical endless list of answers suggesting one application without giving context. The most popular ones have already been deleted for those reasons.

But recovering is more than that, I guess. All these answers just suggesting to use software don't go beyond the obvious and leave many questions open.

We need a canonical question that deals with recovering files or even whole partitions. Maybe something like this one here: What's the proper way to prepare chroot to recover a broken Linux installation?

If anybody is up to it, let's hear some ideas. Oh, and I'll also offer a nice bounty on the best answer!

Or do we already have such a question and I've missed it?

  • I thought we already had this... but I can't seem to find it. Commented Oct 15, 2012 at 5:08
  • As much as I'd love one, there are too many possibilities; I would suggest either a blog post or else a Community Wiki of the different ways or programs Commented Oct 15, 2012 at 18:50
  • 2
    @Luke I never objected to a Community Wiki question, in fact that's what my example was.
    – slhck
    Commented Oct 15, 2012 at 18:57
  • @slhck Ahhh didn't notice... Sorry, skimmed Commented Oct 15, 2012 at 19:19
  • I think we also need to define the question a bit more too. Is it simply recovering user data off of a disk in which Windows will not boot? There would also be totally different answers for whether or not the disk is physically damaged.
    – Bigbio2002
    Commented Oct 19, 2012 at 14:52
  • Good question. I think you could almost handle both cases but I'm rather thinking of no physical damage, just a user error (i.e. deleted files by accident or something) @big
    – slhck
    Commented Oct 19, 2012 at 15:10

1 Answer 1


We already have such question...

How do I recover lost/inaccessible data from my storage device?

It could still use some extra love though.

  • 2
    See, I've never seen that. Would be worth checking out and adding info though, you're right!
    – slhck
    Commented Oct 19, 2012 at 15:08

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