Data recovery is hard to wrap your head around. TV tells us that even if we smash our hard disk to bits, burn the bits, and scatter the ashes in the sea, law enforcement will still be able to find incriminating data on it. Reality is very far removed from what you see on TV and data recovery isn’t as simple. It has its limits such as time and more importantly how you lost the data. If you deleted a file, cut and paste it to a different location, or formatted the drive it was on, you need to manage your expectations. That said, there are still ways to recover lost files within the realm of reason.
Wondershare Data Recovery is a data recovery app that can scan a whole host of files for deleted data. It then attempts to recover those files. The results are mostly good. The app isn’t free and a single lifetime license costs $50 while a family license for 5 computers costs $100 which is a pretty good bargain.
Wondershare Data Recovery supports a myriad of devices including your computer, memory cards, flash drives, practically all types of removable storage, and digital camcorders. It also supports older devices like the iPod Nano and Nokia phones. It can recover data regardless if the device is on NTFS, FAT16, FAT32, or exFAT.
Quick Scan & Deep Scan
Wondershare Data Recovery can scan for lost files by type and it can target a specific folder or area on your computer. It can run two types of scans; a quick scan, and a deep scan. The quick scan will look in a specific location while the deep scan searches all drives for a specific file type.
Running A Scan
Launch Wondershare Data Recovery and select what type of file it is you want to recover.
Next, select where you want to recover the file from. If you know where the file was located before you deleted it or moved it, you can select that location but the app can also scan entire drives if you need it to.
Wondershare Data Recovery will initially run a quick scan and show you the files it’s recovered. The files are sorted by format and you can choose to recover only a few select formats.
If the quick scan doesn’t find all the files you need it to, you can run a deep scan. A deep scan will obviously take longer to finish and it’s going to come up with a lot of files that you will then have to sort through.
Wondershare Data Recovery has a filters option though that you can use to narrow down the files that are recovered. The filter lets you narrow files down by date and size.
Does It Work?
Features and filters aside, the main question about any data recovery app is if it can recover lost files. We conducted a few tests on a USB drive. The drive had a folder of images on it that was deleted in one test, and cut and paste to a different location in a second test.
In both scenarios, Wondershare Data Recovery was able to recover the files without damage.
We ran the same tests again, this time the USB drive was removed from the system and the system was shut down. The system was powered on and recovery was run. In both cases, Wondershare Data Recovery was again able to recover the files without damage.
We ran a final test whereby the drive was formatted and then a recovery was run on it. No files were recovered.
Failed Recovery And Damaged Files
Wondershare Data Recovery was able to recover the files in our tests but the recovery was run right after they were deleted. It seems that if too long a time has passed after a file has been deleted, Wondershare Data Recovery won’t be able to recover it. It’s not clear what that cut-off time is or what circumstances will prevent the app from recovering a file but you should run a recovery as soon as you realize your file is gone. The chances of you saving your file are much better than if you were to wait a week to do it.
Sometimes, the recovered files are damaged. Again, this occurred with older files that we tried to recover. Wondershare Data Recovery was able to recover a media file but it was damaged so that only a few KBs of it came back. The same happened with some images where missing header information resulted in a corrupt file.