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Old 01-16-2008, 09:37 PM   #1
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Default Recovering old files *URGENT*

Okay this is extremely important. I won't go into the details of the scenario, this is the gist of it:

Someone is currently in possession of one of my old computers. This computer contains a document worth a lot of money. The computer has not been formatted, and as far as I know the file is in the same directory where I originally put it. However, I am only being allowed 1 hour to recover this file.

But there is also a chance it has been deleted. So in the event of this, I would need to somehow be able to recover the file. I know the name of the file, and thats pretty much it. Is there anyway I can recover this file if it has been deleted? And for the OS, it is either windows 95 or Windows NT. Any help is greatly appreciated.
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Old 01-16-2008, 09:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

what i would do first. (and this would be the quickest way is.) 1. Go to my computer then click search (u said u knew the file name) type the file name. and if it doesn't come up. then heres a list of free data recovery tools. From PCWorld
http://www.pcworld.com/downloads/col...ads/files.html

but BE CAREFULL WITH THE PROGRAMS cuz some of those are programs that will wipe deleted files for good
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Old 01-16-2008, 09:52 PM   #3
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

Quote:
Originally Posted by _-..zKiLLA..-_ View Post
what i would do first. (and this would be the quickest way is.) 1. Go to my computer then click search (u said u knew the file name) type the file name. and if it doesn't come up. then heres a list of free data recovery tools. From PCWorld
http://www.pcworld.com/downloads/col...ads/files.html

but BE CAREFULL WITH THE PROGRAMS cuz some of those are programs that will wipe deleted files for good
I am first going to perform a search for the file; but as I said I only have an hour with the computer. So I need to be able to be prepared for all scenarios. If the search doesn't turn up, I will check the recycle bin. And if its not in there I know there is a third way to find 'deleted' data.

This is what I understand so far. When you delete a file to the recycle bin, you don't actually delete it. You rename it and send it to a hidden folder, essentially your recycle bin. Then when you empty the recycling bin the information is still not lost. Rather it enters the file into a queue of other files that have been 'emptied from the recycle bin'. And Windows simply tells you that this space is now available. Although in reality that file is not lost until you require that space, and it is overwritten. I want to know how to recover a file if it has been 'emptied from the recycle bin', but not yet overwritten.

I do not want to install a 3rd party program, because the computer is so old that it has minimal HDD space. And installing a 3rd party program might take up so much space that it overwrites the file in its final stage of life.

So I guess my question is:

How do you recover files not yet overwritten once it has been 'emptied from the recycle bin' in windows NT and windows 95, without 3rd party software.
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:04 PM   #4
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

i found this. its a real small app its like 200kb.
http://www.aumha.org/a/recover.php

but other than that. recovering deleted files is beyond windows ability
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:09 PM   #5
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

Well the files emptied from the recycle bin are queued up and aren't actually deleted until its overwritten. So the file must exist in some form somewhere, and the 3rd party program is merely finding it there. So where is this hidden directory where things are queued up to be overwritten when you empty a file from the recycle bin.
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:12 PM   #6
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

Here's a good, free program that works great for recovering lost files: PC INSPECTOR™ File Recovery.

Do you have a spare drive you can take over there? You can install the program on the spare once it's set up in the host computer.
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:25 PM   #7
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

I'm guessing its not as simple as there being a hidden directory with a queue of the most recently deleted files to be overwritten since everyone is telling me to run a 3rd party program. Is this the case?
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:38 PM   #8
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

Kinda looks that way. Here's a good read: http://www.geekgirls.com/windows_recycle_bin.htm
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:39 PM   #9
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

I read that; which is kinda why it made me feel like there was just this directory with all these files in it sitting around waiting to be overwritten. I guess its not that simple. If it is though, and someone knows what hidden directory this is please let me know! :-D

BTW congrats on 2k points Atomic Rooster. You joined two years later than me and I still haven't broken 1,000!
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:42 PM   #10
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Default Re: Recovering old files *URGENT*

Hey cool! Thanks mayorredbeard. I didn't even notice till you said something.
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