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How to Scan a Reformatted Hard Drive to Recover Files

written by: Asheesh•edited by: Simon Hill•updated: 8/12/2010

Do you want to recover your important files by scanning your reformatted hard drive? Here we describe the solution through a simple process.

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    Sometimes, after reformatting the hard drive, you feel that you need some files that were present on the hard drive. It’s not easy to find these files and copy them to another place. This is because the files have been marked as reused by the system, and they have been restricted as open space. However, these files are still available in their original places. If you want to recover most of the files, you will need to follow some steps carefully. The steps on how to scan a reformatted hard drive to recover files are described below.

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    Steps Involved in the Process

    Remove hard drive from the computer

    Firstly, you have to shut down your computer, and switch the power off. Then, remove the hard drive from its place using a screwdriver. It’s very easy to remove the hard drive, but do it carefully to avoid any damage. You will need another computer similar to first.

    Hard Drive 

    Install the hard drive to another computer

    Now, it’s time to open another computer. Fix the removed hard drive as an additional drive for the second computer. The work becomes easier if the drive is of serial advanced technology attachment type. You just connect it to the computer with a SATA connection. However, the whole process becomes difficult when the drive is of ATA type that is not serial. For such hard drives, remove the CD or DVD drive and attach the hard drive to the computer using the optical drive connection. Supply the power of an open power connection by the plugs present on the hard drive.

    Start the second computer

    After the above process, start the computer. You will see an additional drive on the window that shows drives present on the computer. If it shows the additional hard drive, then it means you did a good job accurately. Finding the icon of the additional hard drive is half of the process.

    Install file recovery software

    The main work begins here. Now, you will need file recovery software to recover the files. You have to install this software; this is why you need another computer. The use of another similar computer is to install file recovery software and to run through the hard drive.

    Run the file recovery software

    The last step of the process is to run the installed software. Choose the additional hard drive when the software asks for a drive to scan. The process of scanning may take several hours to complete. After the completion of scanning, the software will show a list of recovered files. Choose required files from the list, and copy them on any CD, DVD or drive.

    Fix the hard drive at its place

    Finally shut down the computer, remove the hard drive, and fix it at the right place, i.e., at its place on the first computer.

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    Some File Recovery Software

    Easeus Data Recovery Wizard

    The company provides good and cheap file recovery software. You will get a variety of products regarding data recovery on its website. You can find the software according to the type of the file to get best results. According to the reviews, this software is easy to install and easy to use. You can also download a trial version.

    Runtime Data Recovery Software

    This product also has a good place. It has good features such as easy installation, easy to use, and inexpensive. You can get the demo version of this software. Actually, you can use any of the two, both will work very well.

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    This process is not very difficult, though the job of removing and fixing the hard drive should be done carefully. If you commonly play with computer parts then it’s not a big deal for you. These software solutions don’t give the best results, if the computer has Windows Vista or Windows 7 installed. Therefore, it's best if you are going to recover your files using the second computer that it has the Windows XP operating system.

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    Image- Hard