Data Recovery Digest

Do-It-Yourself Windows File Recovery Software: A Comparison

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Professional Data Recovery Software: A Comparison

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File Recovery Performance Detailed Results

Below are the results of the data recovery tests we performed with each of the software candidates. These tests were designed to recreate the most common data recovery scenarios faced by professionals. In each test, the operating system was Windows 7 32-bit.

For each test, the same set of test files were deleted from the disk. In instances where the file system was damaged or a partition was deleted, the files listed below were present on the disk prior to the damage or repartitioning.

Test File Set

File Type File Extension
Archives rar, zip
Audio files acc, mp3
Documents doc, docx, xls, xlsx, odt, ods, pdf, txt
Video files flv, mp4, mpg, avi, m4v
Images jpg, png, tiff
Programs exe

Deleted files (Recycle Bin bypassed)

Files were deleted using Far Manager with the “Delete to Recycle Bin” option disabled.

Product Rating Deleted Files (NTFS)
Disk 1 – Disk Size: 1 GB, Partition Size 1 GB
Disk 2 – Disk Size: 1 GB, Partition Size: 500 MB
R-Studio 5.5 All files and folder information found successfully, except the avi file, which was found but appeared damaged. No disk scan required.
Restorer Ultimate 5.5
UFS Explorer Professional Recovery 5.5
GetDataBack + RAID Reconstructor + Captain Nemo 5.5
DMDE 5.5
For both disk setups, all programs successfully found all files in their correct folders and recovered them, except for the avi file which appeared damaged. The files were found without a disk scan.
Product Rating Deleted Files (FAT32)
Disk 1 – Disk size: 1 GB, Partition size: 1 GB
Disk 2 – Disk size: 1 GB, Partition size: 500 MB
R-Studio 5

The rar, zip, acc and mp3 files were found in the recovered folder. Recovered files folder was incorrectly named.

The following files were located as Extra Found Files: jpg, png, tiff, doc, docx, xls, xlsx, odt, ods, pdf, txt, flv, mp4 (2 similar copies), mpg.

The avi file appeared damaged for the both disk setups. For the second disk setup, the rar and mpg files appeared damaged.

Restorer Ultimate 5

The rar, zip, acc and mp3 files were found in the recovered folder. Recovered files folder was incorrectly named.

The following files were located as Lost Files: jpg, png, tiff, doc, docx, xls, xlsx, odt, ods, pdf, txt, flv, mp4 (2 similar copies), mpg.

The avi file appeared damaged for the both disk setups. For the second disk setup, the rar and mpg files appeared damaged.

UFS Explorer Professional Recovery 4

No files were found during the standard scan. After scanning for file signatures (IntelliRAW), the following files were found: jpg, png, tiff, mpg, doc, xls, pdf, mp3.

The following files were found but appeared damaged: avi, zip.

No folder information recovered.

GetDataBack + RAID Reconstructor + Captain Nemo 2

No files were found during the standard scan. After scanning for file signatures the following files were found (Lost files): jpg, doc.

The following files were found but appeared damaged: mp3, zip.

No folder information recovered.

DMDE 0.5

Found a folder, but no files were found.

R-Studio and Restorer Ultimate showed the best results in file recovery. DMDE recovered no files.

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