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File Fragments after running CHKDSK

This is a discussion on File Fragments after running CHKDSK within the Computer Data Recovery forums, part of the category; The other day my perfectly good USB 80 gb external hard drive (FAT32 I think) started saying files not found, ...

  1. #1
    mss25 is offline Junior Member
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    Default File Fragments after running CHKDSK

    The other day my perfectly good USB 80 gb external hard drive (FAT32 I think) started saying files not found, not letting me open files, and adding crazy characters to the file and program names.

    I shut down and rebooted with the drive still plugged in, something I almost never do. When it rebooted, I allowed it to run CHKDSK. It found the crosslink files and lost file fragments which it saved as files with the names FILE0000.CHK though whatever. It is several hundred files totalling about 15 gb.

    I was able to see the drive through Windows XP Explorer but could not do anything with the files because they were applications and media files instead of text.

    Then I must have pressed OK to some request because now Windows Explorer will not find the drive letter though the drive itself can be seen in Control Panel Device Manager.

    How do I get Windows to find the hard drive again and how do I convert those 500 plus files back to their original programs? Can I get the crosslinked files back? I think they may have been deleted by CHKDSK.

    Please help. There are several hundred pictures and applications archived on this drive. All new data was already removed and copied to a DVD

    Thanks

  2. #2
    GDH
    GDH is offline Administrator
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    Default Data Recovery

    Hi,

    Download Recover My Files from www.recovermyfiles.com and install it on your C: drive.

    Run the program and in the first wizard window select "Complete File Search". Click next.

    In the next wizard window put a tick next to the "physical drive" that is your USB problem drive (you will be able to tell which drive it is by the size). Click next.

    Select the file types that you are trying to get back. I suggest you just do a scan for pictures to start with.

    When you run this search Recover My Files will treat the drive as one big chunk of raw data, including all the non deleted files and chkdsk files.

    Let me know if this finds the files.
    Graham Henley
    GetData Support Staff
    www.getdata.com
    www.recovermyfiles.com

  3. #3
    mss25 is offline Junior Member
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    When you run this search Recover My Files will treat the drive as one big chunk of raw data, including all the non deleted files and chkdsk files. Let me know if this finds the files.


    It found files. Mainly PDF files that had previously been deleted. It found some pictures, but I could not preview them the way I previewed the PDF files. Does that mean they cannot be recovered?

    I had also saved numerous uninstalled application files on that drive but I don't see *.exe on the list of file types to recover. Can they be recovered?

    Also, what is the next step? Is it to buy an activation key and click recover? I don't remember every type of file that was on the drive. Can I select more than five file types at a time?

  4. #4
    GDH
    GDH is offline Administrator
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    Default Data Recovery

    You should be able to preview the pictures. If you cannot preview them then it is not likely that they can be recovered fromt the current search results.

    The thing about check disk is that it creates CHK files of all about the same size (just over 1 megabyte from memory). This can mean that it chops off the end of your files if they were originally bigger than this. CHKDSK does a really good job of screwing with your drive and makes recovery difficult and you rarely get all files back.

    If you purchase an enter an activation key into Recover My Files it will allow you to save the files that it has found.

    You should experiment with some other types of search to see what you get back. Try a "Fast Format Recover" of the physical drive and a "Fast File Search". As the names suggest, these are fast searches to run.

    Also try a "Complete Format Recover" searching only for the default selected file types.
    Graham Henley
    GetData Support Staff
    www.getdata.com
    www.recovermyfiles.com

  5. #5
    mss25 is offline Junior Member
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    I am in the process of running a complete file scan of the disk. It is finding the FILE****.CHK files that were saved during the accidental scandisk. It found some paperport files all of which are 1024 kb. Since I know this is the size of a cluster and not the size of the original file, does that mean those files cannot be read? Is it possible to reassemble the pieces?

    So far the search has not found any of my pictures or mp3 files. It has found nearly 3,000 small *.txt files all of which are a jumble of symbols and codes. Is this what has become of my pictures, mp3s, and applications? Or am I just being inpatient. After about 20 minutes, the scan has found 3,100 files of which 2,900 are *.txt files.

    Am I out of luck getting back the important stuff?

  6. #6
    mss25 is offline Junior Member
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    It has been 5.5 hours and the file search is nowhere near finished. How long does it generally take to scan an 80 gb hard drive that was only 25% full?

    Are any files that were originally bigger than 1024 mb gone for good or can they be restored as well (remember the problem is compounded by a session of chkdsk).

    And when I save the files to another disk or DVD, what do I do with the hard drive? Should I reformat it? If so, how do I get Windows XP to reassign it the drive letter?

    Thanks for your help.

  7. #7
    GDH
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    Default Data Recovery

    To maintian search speed, search for up to 10 file types at a time. I would expect that a "Complete File Search" of an 80gb drive should complete within 5 hours.

    Do not search for .txt files - it will slow down the search. Video files are also very resource intensive, so run a separate search for these.

    Once you have tried all the options I described below and are happy that you have recovered everything that you can the it would be best to start fresh with a clean formatted drive.
    Graham Henley
    GetData Support Staff
    www.getdata.com
    www.recovermyfiles.com

  8. #8
    mss25 is offline Junior Member
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    24 hours has passed and there are only 4 squares on the progress meter. At this rate it will take about 7 days to scan the entire 80 gb hard drive. But at least it is finding the files.

    Is there a way to reassemple lost clusters saved as 1024 mb files?

    And is there any way to restore the orginal file names? They are appearing as restored***.***

    Is there a way to search for *.exe files?

  9. #9
    GDH
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    This search is going way to slow.

    What type of search are you running?

    What file types do you have selected?

    How is this drive connected to the computer? (is it USB 1?)

    Do you know if the drive has bad sectors?
    Graham Henley
    GetData Support Staff
    www.getdata.com
    www.recovermyfiles.com

  10. #10
    mss25 is offline Junior Member
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    This search is going way to slow.

    What type of search are you running?
    Complete file search

    What file types do you have selected?
    JPG, GIF, WPD, DOC, PDF, MAX, AVI, MOV, MP* (I deselected TXT Files)

    How is this drive connected to the computer? (is it USB 1?)
    Connected to a USB port

    Do you know if the drive has bad sectors?
    No bad sectors.

    I finally stopped the search yesterday after about 30 hours. I started a new scan, but this time I did not select TXT files in the search options. The first seach recovered about 18,000 TXT files, none of which were text and were probably of no use to me. The second scan has been running for the last 10 hours and has found 3,000 files. The meter indicates it is about half way finished.

    Is there a way to recover *.exe files such as SETUP.EXE? EXE is not one of the file types that can be selected.

    After I recover the files from the current search, should I run other types of searches. Will it find new files or will it just find the same ones all over again.

    Also, Windows no longer assigns a letter to the hard drive. It appears in your program as a physical drive but not a logical drive. How do I go about formatting this once I have removed the data?

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