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[Archived] Recovering Files

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I had a blue/black screen and have lost all of my word files, some of which are very important as it is a paper that is due on thursday. They were unbacked up and I don't have the file recovery on vista running. Any ideas as to how I can get them back?

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I had a blue/black screen and have lost all of my word files, some of which are very important as it is a paper that is due on thursday. They were unbacked up and I don't have the file recovery on vista running. Any ideas as to how I can get them back?

1. Load up Word, look at recent documents and see if any of them are in there.

2. Use the Windows search function and look for *.doc this will then find all Word documents on your computer that still exist.

3. Panic!

That's the only things I know to be honest, unless you have a time machine?

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If the files have actually been deleted then you'll need some recovery software. One that I've used in the past that's currently freeware is Undelete Plus. There's 2 versions to download - one with an installer and one that's a standalone exe with no help file. I would recommend the standalone one first, saving the file onto another physical device (ie. a memory stick, or another HDD where the files weren't stored) as any files written to the drive would decrease the chances of recovering them.

I've had mixed results with it but it's worth a shot.

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  • 1 month later...
Things like this always tend to happen at the worst moments. Never have a problem with my hard drive when all I stand to lose is a few fm files and some music.

Bit late now but I'm always telling people:

1. Partition your HD, use C: for OS and programs, D: for all your personal files

2. Make recovery discs and, since you have Vista, set restore points regularly

3. Backup often, at least monthly, portable HD's and memory sticks are very cheap nowadays

Stick to that and you should stay out of trouble...


Masters IT

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  • 1 year later...

I'm looking at getting an external hard drive to regularly back up the two laptops in the house, as well as act as a repository for old and underused photos, music etc.

I was going to get one which plugged into the router via ethernet, but I've gone off that ... partly because I'd need to also get a multi-port ethernet switch (as both the ports on my router are in use) ... and partly because I don't really need an "always on" solution - there's something stubborn in me which says the external HD will be only be used once a week to back up the laptops, so for the other 6 days it can live on a shelf, safely disconnected from the outside world which might damage it.

So will probably go for something via USB (likely to be Toshiba 1TB.) What I'm not sure of, even after a lot of Googling and reading online, is what software to use to run the back ups.

Is what Microsoft provides as part of Vista and Windows 7 enough? Do people use software like Acronis True Image?

What is really tempting me is the Clickfree CA101 backup transformer cable which sits between the computer and the external drive and contains the software within the device - it has got some good reviews. Is it a unnecessary gimmick? Is anyone using this?

Cheers in advance ....

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Cheers in advance ....

Tris, my advice would be this.......keep it very, very simple and make sure you use something that allows use to easily check what you are doing. So my backup rules are these:

1. Use an external hard drive connected via USB

2. Ideally buy a hard drive which comes with its own software

3. Failing (2) get some simple Sync software

4. Do NOT, under any circumstances rely on something that claims to be automated, it will fail, or is anything to do with Microsoft, it will be unneccesarily complicated.

My back up routines, for both home (weekly) and work (daily):

1. Freecom 250Gb hard drive for work, 100Gb for home both connect via USB cable

2. Install Freecom Personal Media Suite (or the current software) It's the third one down on this list of updates Freecom Tecnologies Support

3. Set up a Sync file. This simply copies everything you chose to include across to the hard drive.

4. For your backup routine set up a Sync routine which checks for new and altered files on both the PC and the external hard drive. When you run the Sync it will update accordingly

5. Check this is working by making sure you can open files on the external via your PC

Freecom have some good offers, usually in PC World and have some new, very small hard drives with huge capacity. I carry my little 250Gb everywhere for work. It gives the security of having a full backup which is out of the office plus I can work on files on the external when I'm away and then simply update the office system when I return and Sync.

Do keep it simple. I have had major failure and software recovery needed using complicated systems which were supposedly automated. This is not a difficult process

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Paul - many thanks for all that.

On the software question, does anyone use this useful looking freebie??


I'm using Mozy for online backup, its under $5 a month for unlimited storage (that is per machine so you may need 2). They will give you 2gb for free so you can check it out before you have to commit.

The initial sync is BIG but after that I haven’t really noticed it.

As ever I have a referral code :)https://mozy.com/?ref=4T3DXL

The combination of cheap storage and innovation in cloud computing is leading to some interesting stuff dropbox is a personal favourite. This allows me to keep folders synced across many computers, Macbook, IMac, Win 7 and also online. It lets you share folders with other dropboxers too. You get 2gb for free and 250mb per referral for free.

Referral for that too https://www.dropbox.com/referrals/NTI5NDQ2MTk

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