FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions about GetDataBack

Should you have any questions that are not answered here, please don't hesitate to contact technical support.



GetDataBack Pro

What are the differences between GetDataBack Pro, GetDataBack Simple, GetDataBack for FAT, and GetDataBack for NTFS?
Can fragmentation of the disk affect the result of the recovery?
Can I investigate the quality of my recovered files before I buy the software?
Can I use GetDataBack to recover data from CDs, CDRs and DVDs?
Can I use GetDataBack to recover data if my hard drive is not recognized by the BIOS of my computer?
While running GetDataBack I received a disk error. What does this mean?
How can I optimize the quality of the recovery?
I cannot open the recovered files. Why?
I don't know which file system I had on my drive before it crashed. What do I do?
Is it safe to run GetDataBack on my crashed hard drive?
The software only runs in a Windows environment, as my computer is a laptop, I cannot have more than one hard disk.
Will GetDataBack work on large hard drives?
How do I recover files I deleted with Windows Explorer?
Why don't I see any drives?
Does GetDataBack support Unicode character sets?
What is the difference between a regular and a technician's license?



Q. What are the differences between GetDataBack Pro, GetDataBack Simple, GetDataBack for FAT, and GetDataBack for NTFS?

A. GetDataBack Pro is the newest and recommended recovery software for NTFS, FAT, exFAT, EXT, HFS+, and APFS file systems. GetDataBack Simple was the direct predecessor of the Pro version. GetDataBack for FAT and GetDataBack for NTFS are our discontinued classic recovery products.

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Q. Can fragmentation of the disc affect the result of the recovery?

A. It depends. In case of a FAT file sytem GetDataBack is searching your hard drive to find one of the FAT (File Allocation Table). If no FAT is found GetDataBack will attempt the recovery without this information. In this case the possibility of bringing fragmented parts from all over the drive together gets smaller.

Fragmentation in NTFS should not effect the results of the recovery. Information about a file's allocation is stored in a MFT entry (other than with a FAT file system, where this information is stored in the FAT). If the file shows up in the recovery tree, it should be recoverable. If it does not contain the expected data, you should review your selection of the file system.

Fragmentation in EXT, HFS+, and APFS should not effect the results of the recovery.

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Q. Can I investigate the quality of my recovered files before I buy the software?

A. Yes, GetDataBack contains a build-in viewer which lets you investigate the quality of your files and you can also open the files with their original application before you have to register the program.

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Q. Can I use GetDataBack to recover data from CDs, CDRs and DVDs?

A. No, GetDataBack is a software for hard drives, SSD, floppy drives, Memory Sticks, Smart Media, Compact Flash, Secure Digital and Multi Media Cards only.

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Q. Can I use GetDataBack to recover data if my hard drive is not recognized by the BIOS of my computer?

A. No, if the BIOS is not recognizing the hard drive, our software is not able to perform a recovery. Please make sure that the connections, jumper settings and controllers are okay. If the hard drive is still not recognized, try to connect it to another computer and see if it gets recognized there.

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Q. While running GetDataBack I receive a disk error. What does this mean?

A. GetDataBack is a solution for software related problems, it cannot help you with failed hardware. A disk error is a sign for a hardware problem. We recommend to stop working with the corrupted drive until you make a disk image. (Every try to access data can increase corruption!) After successfully creating an image you can use the image file as an input for GetDataBack.

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Q. How can I optimize the quality of the recovery?

A. In the second screen ("Please select a file system"), be sure to choose the file system which contains the most applicable information. The rectangle describes the kind of file system, its size, and its location and size in relation to the containing drive. For example,

  Select file system

indicates an NTFS file system with a size of 953 GB. This size covers 99% of the containing drive and is located at 0% (i.e., at the beginning) of the drive.

A similar looking entry,

 


indicates an NTFS file system as well, but has a size of less then a GB, which is 0% rounded, and is located near the end of the containing drive (99%).

You will probably prefer the former entry over the latter. If in doubt, choose higher ranked entries over lower ones.

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Q. I cannot open the recovered files. Why?

A. There are three possible reasons for the inability to open the recovered files.

  • When recovering a FAT file system, GetDataBack is searching your hard drive to find one of the FATs (File Allocation Tables). If no FAT is found, GetDataBack will attempt the recovery without this information. In case of fragmented files, the chances of bringing all parts together gets smaller. However, only a fraction of the recovered file is usually affected by this problem. Another FAT related problem can occur if GetDataBack find a FAT that is not the file system's FAT. In this case GetDataBack uses misleading allocation information.

  • Another possible reason is that your files were overwritten by other data. In this case there is no way to retrieve the data.

  • The third possible reason is that you have chosen the wrong file system. Be sure to choose the file system that contains the most applicable information to perform the recovery on.
Recommendations:

Regarding point 1: you should check the beginnings of the bad files with a hex viewer (you can use DiskExplorer for that)). Compare these file starts with the starts of the same type of files that are readable. The file starts should look "similar". If they do, there is a chance of putting together the files manually using a disk editor, e.g. Runtime's DiskExplorer. The file info option in GetDataBack shows you the clusters it uses for the recovery of the certain file. If GetDataBack was using a false FAT, go to Tools->Settings->File Systems->FAT and check the option "Ignore FAT". Then re-run the scan.

Regarding point 3: Try other file system entries, that come close in size and position to the partition you want to recover. We will gladly assist you in determining which entry to choose please contact our Technical Support Department for more information.

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Q. I don't know which file system I had on my drive before it crashed. What do I do?

A. You use GetDataBack Pro. It will automatically recognize the file systems in your drive.

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Q. Is it safe to run GetDataBack on my crashed hard drive?

A. Yes, as long as your drive doesn't have a physical problem, it is safe to use GetDataBack. The program will not change anything on the crashed drive, since it is a read-only software. Install the software on a working Windows computer and attach the hard drive which contains the lost files as a second hard drive to this computer. Make sure that the second hard drive is recognized by the BIOS. Then run GetDataBack and select your bad drive (usually this is DISK1). Let the program scan your drive. As soon as the scan is ready you will see a list of possible file systems the program has found. Usually you should select the first file system on the list. After a while you will see a tree with your recovered files and folders. If the files are found you can evaluate the quality of the recovered files. Just select a file you are interested in and press F3 or Enter. If the files look okay, they most likely will be okay after you have copied the recovered files to a safe location on another drive.

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Q. How can I recover files from my Notebook/Laptop drive?

A.

  • One option is to remove the drive and connect it to the internal cable of a Desktop computer and run GetDataBack from the Desktop computer.
  • Or remove the drive and connect it to another computer using a USB connector.
  • Another option is booting your Notebook with and running GetDataBack from the Runtime Live CD.
  • Or consider creating a WinPE Boot Medium and running the recovery software from the boot CD or USB stick. Instructions on how to create such a boot disk and how to integrate the required plugin for GetDataBack can be found on our website. Keep in mind that you will still need enough space on a different drive to copy the recovered files to.

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Q. Will GetDataBack work on a large hard drive?

A. Yes, GetDataBack generally will work on any size of hard drive. There might be restrictions imposed by your BIOS or operating system, though.

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Q. How do I recover files I deleted with Windows Explorer?

A. In GetDataBack Pro, check "Deleted" underneath the recovery tree.

"Permanently deleted" files can be found in their original folder (if still available). Files from "emptied recycle bins" can be found below the RECYCLE directory. Note that these files have lost their original file names, but still have their original extensions. It is also a good idea to use the Search feature.

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Q. Why don't I see any drives after starting GetDataBack?

A. Make sure that the drive is connected correctly and that is was detected by the BIOS.

You must have administrator rights to access drives or partitions.

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Q. Does GetDataBack support Unicode character sets?

A. Yes it does. You can recover files whose names are encoded in non-standard character sets. This includes all Unicode character sets, such as Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Russian, Greek..

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Q. What is the difference between a regular and a technician's license?

A. A regular license can be used to recover data from computers owned or controlled by the licensee. Only the licensee can use the software. The software must be installed on only one computer at any given time. A technician's license can be used for all purposes of a regular license. In addition it can be used to perform commercial data recovery services on computers not owned or controlled by the licensee. Only the licensed technician can use the software. The software must be installed on only one computer at any given time.

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