How to Recover Files Deleted/Lost from an External Hard Drive
External hard drives are a popular storage solution for people who need extra space for their digital files. They offer more storage capacity than thumb drives and have faster read speeds. This makes them ideal for collecting large files like videos, music, etc.
Although external disks are designed for easy data storage and backup, data loss can still occur, like formatting, deleting, volume disappearing, drive logic error, malware attacks, etc. If you find yourself in this situation, there is no need to panic. Don't worry; this article will introduce how to restore data from an external hard drive with/without software.
- Quick Navigation
- Part 1. What To Do If File Deleted/Disappeared in Your External Hard Disk
- Part 2. How to Recover Files from External Hard Drive With Software [Easy and High Recovery Rate]
- Part 3. How to Recover Deleted Files on External Hard Drive without Software [Free]
- Part 4. How to Fix a Not Detected External Hard Drive to Find Files
- Part 5. How to Protect Important Data on Your External Hard Disk
- Part 6. Frequently Asked Questions
What To Do If File Deleted/Disappeared in Your External Hard Disk
Recovering files deleted from an external disk can be a tricky business. Even if you have a backup, there's no guarantee that you'll be able to get everything back. And if you don't have a backup, you could be out of luck entirely. However, you can do a few things to improve your chances of recovery.
- 🎏 When dealing with a data loss situation, you should first check if there is a copy or backup of the target files. If not, you can stop using the drive immediately to avoid data secondary corruption and make the external hard drive recovery more complex. You must know that the lost files are not gone but hidden. If you continue to use it, it will generate the cache or temporary files to overwrite them.
- 💽 If it is an SSD, please disable TRIM immediately. A traditional mechanical hard disk will only delete the index and keep the data. But whether the SSD is deleting files or formatting, its TRIM command will first completely clear the data and index information, then mark it as blank space to wait for new data to be written. This can improve the SSD's performance, but it will cause you to be unable to recover deleted files from external hard drive in Window 11/10 and Mac.
- ⏰ Finally, don't try any method of repairing a damaged drive and start getting back to work as soon as possible, even if it is inaccessible or needs to be formatted before it can be used. Because data matters to us, and when we resume them, you can use the hard disk repair software to fix it.
While staying calm in the face of such a loss may be difficult, taking quick and decisive action can help you get your data back. These tips will give you a better chance of recovering your lost files on the external hard disk.
How to Recover Files from External Hard Drive With Software
No one likes to lose data, but it can happen to anyone. Want to access your files freely from an external disk? It's practical to use a professional external hard drive recovery tool. For example, iBeesoft Data Recovery offers incredible file recovery features to help users to restore data from external hard drive in Windows and macOS within four easy steps.
- Install, download, and launch iBeesoft data recovery software on your PC.
- Connect your external disk to the PC. Tap on 'go to setting' to identify all the file types to save time to scan.
- Specify one drive to proceed with scanning. All the external disks will list through this interface. Select and tap the 'Scan' icon for extracting your missing files.
- Once the software completes scanning, you can look for the lost files in that list. Choose them and tap the 'recover' icon to save all the deleted or lost files.
5 Alternative Tools to Recover Data from External Hard Drive
While iBeesoft Data Recovery is one of the market's most popular and effective data recovery tools, it's not the only option available. File recovery is a broad field with a lot of software products. In general, they work similarly. Each application uses different algorithms to search for specific file types on your hard drive, allowing you to get them back. Here are a few of the most popular:
1. EaseUS Data Recovery
It is not only easy to use but also potent. It supports recovery from various storage media, including hard drives, SD cards, USB drives, and other multimedia mobile devices. Whatever the reason for the loss of files, it can help you get them back in most cases.
- Its expensive: $69.95 /month, $99.95 /year, and $149.95/lifetime
- A deep scan will take a lot of time.
It is an open-source file recovery that can be used to get back various data types, like documents, videos, photos, and more. However, the external hard drive file recovery tool doesn't have a GUI, so that it may be less user-friendly for some people.
- The Command line interface requires specialized skills to use it.
- Cannot preview files before recovery
3. Wondershare Recovery
In terms of data recovery, Wondershare has two modes. In the actual test, the software's recovery speed is breakneck, and the recovery effect is good, but It cannot find the target file in some cases of data loss.
- Expensive: Premium - $99.99/Year, Standard - $79.99/Year, and Essential - $69.99/Year
- RAID recovery is not supported
Developed by the makers of CCleaner, it is a free file recovery program that offers a wide range of features. It can retrieve permanently deleted files from hard drives, USB drives, and memory cards and supports many file types.
- Only Windows version and discontinued updates
- it has no preview function
5. Stellar Data Recovery
Stellar Data Recovery is a simple and practical disk recovery software that can help users quickly resume lost file, covering various common file types and easy and convenient operations.
- Recovery for specific file types is mediocre
- Only supports preview function in text format and hexadecimal format
The removable hard drive file loss is a common problem that can strike anytime. Whether you're dealing with a corrupted disk or accidentally removed files, the frustration of losing necessary data is all too real. Fortunately, several recovery tools are available to help you recover deleted files from external hard drive on Mac or Windows PC. But, with its robust data recovery and damaged file repair capabilities, it's no wonder that iBeesoft is a top choice.
How to Recover Deleted Files on External Hard Drive without Software
Losing important files can be a nightmare, especially if they're stored on an external hard drive. If you want to try to retrieve files from an external hard drive without software under the empty. Then you can try your luck and try the following method:
Method 1. Use Show Hidden Files Option
It's always frustrating when you can't find a file on your removable disk. Even more so when it turns out the file was never actually lost, just hidden away where you couldn't see it by faulty operation or malicious software. In this case, you can often resume disappeared files from the external hard drive simply by showing the hidden files option.
- Open your drive in explorer.
- In the top menu click View > Options.
- Switch to View in the pop-up window, and select "Show hidden files, folders, drives" under Advanced Settings.
- Hit "F5" to refresh and check if any target files are displayed.
Method 2. Check Previous Versions
Anyone who's ever been frustrated by accidentally deleting a file or making unwanted changes to a document knows that there's a way to go back in time and undo those changes. That's where Previous Versions comes in. This feature, built into Windows PC, allows you to restore external hard disk files to their previous states.
- Open the location where the file was lost and right-click to select "Restore previous versions."
- Select a recent copy in File Versions and click "Restore."
Method 3. Use the CHKDSK Command Line
To recover permanently deleted files on external hard drive in Windows 11/10 by command prompt, ensure to run CHKDSK. Refer to Check Disk. It is a commonly used Windows tool specially designed to ensure the integrity of your disk and fix it if it's corrupted or damaged. CHKDSK is used for repairing both external and internal disks.
Read the below-given steps to learn how to operate CHKDSK in Command Prompt for external hard drive data recovery in Windows 10/11.
- Click on the 'Win + Q' keys on the keyboard to access your search box. Enter 'cmd'. Choose "Run as administrator."
- Input the below command to detect any logical error on the external hard disk.
Method 4. From Previously Made Cloud Backup
The Office 365/ Google cloud renders many ways to recover files on external hard drive. For example, all the recently made changes are backed up by default if you operate a cloud-based platform. Instead, it allows users to track changes within their files.
- Go to the Managed Items Folder. You will find a list of options. If you have saved your file, proceed with the other steps.
- Open your documents. You need to work on Tap on File > Info.
- Under the 'Manage Document' tap on the file's name, you need to work. Tap on 'Restore,' and your file will appear.
Note: If all methods fail, your mobile hard disk may have been seriously damaged. At this time, you can send it to a professional data recovery center. You still have the opportunity to retrieve files lost from the external hard drive but at a higher price.
How to Fix a Not Detected External Hard Drive to Find Files
Method 1. Check the connection and cables
One of the common errors in recovering data from an external hard drive is an issue with the power cable or data cable connecting the drive to your PC. Most troubleshooting guides for any hard drive issue include inspecting your power cable. Honestly, you can fix the power cables issue quickly. Follow the steps below.
- At times, replacing your hard disk connections or SATA/ATA power lead will fix your issues. This step is essential when you notice the internal hard drive doesn't show up on your PC operating system disk management tool.
- To check this, open your PC case and locate your storage device. Check your data cable.
Method 2. Try a different port or computer
The connection request is heard via a default listening port when you connect to your PC(either a Windows server or Windows client) via your remote desktop client. Changing the listening port on your Windows PC when you modify your registry is accessible.
- In your search box, enter 'regedit' and proceed to start your registry editor.
- Switch to the below registry subkey: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\WinStations\RDP-Tcp
- Look for the port number.
- Click Edit > Modify, then tap on the decimal.
- Enter your new port number Tap on OK.
- Close your registry editor. Restart the PC. Remember to enter your new port the next time this connects your PC with the Remote Desktop connection. If you're a firewall user, the firewall configuration is essential to allow links to your unique port number.
Method 3. Update device drivers
Windows Driver updates and several devices like video cards, network adapters, printers, and monitors are downloaded and installed by default through Windows Update.
- On the taskbar of your search box, type device manager, Choose Device Manager.
- Double click "Disk drives" in the list point, right-click the target HDD/SSD, and select "Update driver."
- Click "search automatically for drivers."
If your Windows fail to look for a new driver, consider looking for the driver on the device manufacturer's website and follow the instructions.
How to Protect Important Data on Your External Hard Disk
External hard disks are a great way to store large amounts of data, but it is vital to take steps to protect the data from being lost or stolen. To effectively protect your files on the external hard disk. Keep the following points in mind:
- 📋 Keep a check on your drive temperature, health, usage, etc.
- ✔️ Avoid filling the hard drive with immense data. Ensure some existing space.
- 🔍 Scan for any malware or virus using trusted anti-virus software before using your external hard drive.
- ⁉️ Don't copy infected files to the hard drive.
- 🕛 Indulge in regular backups.
Losing important data can be a frustrating experience. Whether it's a cherished family image or a critical business document, the loss of digital information can be devastating. This article will acquaint you with different ways to recover data from external hard drive. Act quickly after losing digital data is essential regardless of your chosen method. The longer you wait, the more likely the lost data will be gone forever.
Frequently Asked Questions
A few frequently asked questions regarding data recovery from external hard drives come up. Here are answers to some of the most common questions about this process:
A: Removing a file from your external hard disk doesn't simply disappear into thin air. Depending on how the file is stored, it may still be present on your hard drive, even if you can't see it. So, you can get it back by iBeesoft Windows or Mac data recovery software.
A: If you backed up or were just hidden, you can get them back yourself. Please use professional software if data is lost due to the wrong operation or drive failure. Trying to manually recover files lost/deleted from an external hard drive can further damage the storage device and may even result in permanent data loss.
A: When you remove a file from an external disk, you can immediately use Ctrl+Z to undo the operation. If that fails, you can also use iBeesoft data recovery software to retrieve permanently deleted files from external hard drive in Windows 11/10 and macOS.
A: Seagate is a renowned name for external hard drives. The devices manufactured by the company are designed to offer high storage capacity and durability. However, like any other hard drive, Seagate external hard drives are also susceptible to data loss. In some cases, users may accidentally delete important files from their Seagate hard drives. Fortunately, it is possible to get them back by iBeesoft recovery software. It can scan the hard drive and identify deleted files. Once the software has located the data, it can restore them to your computer. As a result, you can recover permanently deleted files from external hard drive that you may have thought were lost forever.
A: When you remove some files, them doesn't simply disappear. Instead, the file's space is marked as available for new data to be written. Using special recovery software, you can often undelete files from an external hard drive. However, suppose you want to ensure that the privacy of photos, videos, or other files is gone. In that case, you'll need to use a specialized utility like iBeesoft File Shredder that performs a low-level drive format. It will erase all of the information, making it unrecoverable.
A: When you format an external disk, all of the data on the drive is erased. It can be a frustrating experience, especially if you have important files saved on the drive. Fortunately, there is a way to restore files from a formatted external hard drive. With iBeesoft Data Recovery, you can get back virtually any file, including photos, videos, documents, and more. Please act quickly; the longer you wait, the greater the chance your data will be overwritten and lost forever.
A: If you have accidentally deleted a volume on your removable hard drive, there is no need to panic. Here are a few simple steps that you can follow to recover a deleted partition on external hard drive.
- Connect the external hard disk to your computer and open the iBeesoft Data Recovery.
- Select the lost partition with the yellow ⛔ icon and hit the Scan button.
- Preview the files extracted from the deleted partition.
- Select them and hit the Recover button to save them to a new location.
- Create a new section by Disk Management utility and copy the original files into this volume.
A: The removable hard disk often cannot be recognized or accessed due to a problem with the file system. You can now try these ways to repair a corrupted hard drive. If you send data loss problems, you can also try iBeesoft Data Recovery to get them back.
A: If you recover files on external hard drive, I prefer using iBeesoft Data Recovery software. It would cost around $49-$69. The cost usually depends on the level of damage and the characteristics needed to touch the data extraction point. For example, the price to get files back may reach an advanced class if your hard drive fails mechanically.