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URGENT HELP : External hard disk full, but files are invisible

Discussion in 'Gadgets / Electronics / Laptops' started by dj.nish, Apr 3, 2012.

  1. fiatlover

    fiatlover Esperto

    Messages:
    1,599
    Bangalore/Kasargod
    Bangalore
    Grande Punto 1.4
    You could try the FastFile Undelete software. It recovers almost everything, even if you do a shift+delete. I have used this software on my pocket hard disk and could recover everything that I copied to it from day one.
    Also, check if any of the folders are compressed or encrypted. Click Properties>General>Advanced.

    compressed.png
  2. fiatlover

    fiatlover Esperto

    Messages:
    1,599
    Bangalore/Kasargod
    Bangalore
    Grande Punto 1.4
    The Malwarebytes is a terrific tool. You can run your PC withput any anti-virus software if you have malwarebytes installed. My home PC got infected about a year back, and none of the popular anti-virus SWs worked. Finally I had to use malwarebytes, which was then free, to bring it back to life.
    1 person likes this.
  3. dj.nish

    dj.nish Superiore

    Messages:
    543
    Mumbai
    Thanks Cinju. The Kioskea link was the first one that I also saw. Tried that method but no luck. Let me try Tree Size.

    I ran Malwarebytes yesterday itself. It shows system as perfectly clean. Also, files and folders are not encrypted.

    How can the disk be shown as nearly full but no files are visible? All folders are zero byte sized.

    ---------- Post added at 01:27 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:27 PM ----------

    I committed a grave mistake just a while back. Went to Properties->Tools option (right clicked on the hard disk) and selected the Error Checking thing.

    Little did I know that my folder structure which I was until now able to see would vanish! Now it says files are recovered under "Found.001" or some sh$t but I'm unable to view them! And the folders are all gone too! However, as before, the hard disk is showing nearly full.

    Ran Recuva again and it shows all the files as unrecoverable :-( Let's try to recover whatever I can
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2012
  4. fiatlover

    fiatlover Esperto

    Messages:
    1,599
    Bangalore/Kasargod
    Bangalore
    Grande Punto 1.4
    Did you run check disk (chkdsk)?
    EDIT: I guess that is what you have done now.
    From command line, navigate to the disk and see if it shows any contents other than the folders.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2012
  5. nitinkumardba

    nitinkumardba Superiore

    I agree on this. This can be a virus impact. Try to first level directories from command prompt (Drive:\Folder_Name). This is what I've done in same situation few days back.
  6. dj.nish

    dj.nish Superiore

    Messages:
    543
    Mumbai
    It shows Found.000 as one folder and $Recycle.bin as a standalone file (with a filesize of 16 KB).
    I have ran two extensive tests. No virus, no malware, no spyware.

    I entered the dir structure thru CMD and found that the size of 'Found.000' folder is 285 GB and it contains 3409 files. SO ofcourse this is what I want to retrieve. Now all the files listed here are with .chk extension. Which software will revert them to their original extension?
  7. dj.nish

    dj.nish Superiore

    Messages:
    543
    Mumbai
    I connected the external HDD in Ubuntu. I was pleasantly surprised to see that contents of the FOUND.000 folder's were recognized as file types! (See attached screenshot).

    That helps me to a large extent. I have to just rename the file extension depending on the filetype and it will work. The pain is going through 3405 files and identifying useful vs junk ones. But still, this is a good headstart.

    Another MASSIVE reason to love Ubuntu/Linux and further HATE Windows (particularly Win 7). I'm so deeply disturbed by this incident that I'm seriously thinking of reformatting my laptop and installing Ubuntu with Win XP dual boot. Or maybe just let go of Windows completely.

    Screenshot at 2012-04-03 16:49:18.jpg
    1 person likes this.
  8. fiatlover

    fiatlover Esperto

    Messages:
    1,599
    Bangalore/Kasargod
    Bangalore
    Grande Punto 1.4
    Here is some interesting information, in case you havent see it already :)
    Recover CHK Files
  9. dj.nish

    dj.nish Superiore

    Messages:
    543
    Mumbai
    Have seen it already buddy. However, both unCHK and FileCHK require "MSVBVM50.DLL" to install, which is not supported by Windows 7! So this is a no-go.
  10. speedJet

    speedJet Superiore

    Messages:
    856
    Gurgaon
    You can try to rename files by giving shell commands on Ubuntu console.

    METHOD 1 (works only for files in a folder):
    First try the following command with a few files (more than 1) that you already have (not ones that you want to recover):
    cp *.CHK *.mp3 (if you do not have space on the hard disk then use the command mv instead of cp - however please note that when you use mv your original files will no longer be present)

    If above command succeeds, you can try the above command on the files you want to rename. It should rename all files to .mp3 extension. You can rename other files manually. You shall have to repeat this for all folders

    METHOD 2:
    Search for a shell script or file copy tool that allows to rename files while copying

    While using Windows, it is extremely important to use licensed operating system, licensed anti-virus. Thumb rule is not to use any pirated software and keep your software updated (Windows OS updates, driver updates, other software updates.
    I use Norton 360 on my home laptop and desktop. My other laptop uses McAfee. About a month back, while reading TFI I got a malware attack. Norton 360 was able to block it, however McAfee was not able to block it and I ended getting the OS installed again

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