Monday, January 30, 2012

How to recover data after OS failure using Emergency Recovery CD

The instructions provided below will help you recover lost data from a damaged and re-formatted operating system and accidentally deleted files from a system partition.
Failures of an operating system can be caused by several factors:
  1. virus attacks;
  2. damage of OS boot sector;
  3. accidental deletion of system files;
  4. logical damages of a file system;
  5. physical damages (where the best solution would be to take the device to a data recovery service center in order not to aggravate data loss).
In most cases the operating system can be repaired through re-installation only. But before you start system re-installation you should bear in mind that chances to recover important files after installation of a new operating system will be close to zero. Until then you can still try to recover your files.

  1. Download UFS Explorer Backup and Emergency Recovery CD. The disk image contains full-featured Linux operating system and pre-installed UFS Explorer Standard Recovery for Linux that provide safe environment for data recovery.
  2. Burn the downloaded disk image to a disk. For example, from Windows operating system you can burn .iso file to a CD with the following utilities ISO Recorder and InfraRecorder; from Linux via a command line or GUI CD/DVD Creator; from Mac OS — Disk Utility.
  3. Boot the operating system from Emergency Recovery CD. To do this insert Live CD into CD/DVD drive and choose 'boot from CD' in BIOS settings of your PC (for detailed information read the motherboard manual).
  4. At the next PC start there must be a notification about booting from CD, otherwise booting from CD won't start. Please, wait until Linux graphical shell boots.
  5. Start UFS Explorer Standard Recovery for Linux with superuser rights. You will find application start shortcut, user manual and other useful files on the desktop.
  6. Carefully read user manual. Recovering your data follow the instructions.
  7. To save recovered files you'll need an external storage, because in the process of recovery the data are copied to 'local file system' (RAM-disk). Otherwise, all the data will be lost after reset. You can copy recovered files to an external USB drive as well. To do this click 'Places', select folder 'Connected Media' and then a folder of the required storage.
Hint: Copying files of a large size (more than 2GB) to an external USB flash drive may cause some difficulties, because FAT file systems that are generally used on such storages are limited to saving files with maximum size of 2GB. This problem can be resolved formatting the USB flash drive with NTFS (Windows file system) or Ext 3 file system 'native' for Linux. You can format the storage in Ubuntu Linux environment booted with Live CD. To do this select Administration in menu System and then Partition Editor. The application Gparted will start where in the right corner you can select the external storage you want to format.

Warning: Please beware: make sure you've selected the right storage for formatting, check if it contains important information because all the information will be lost after formatting.