Ooops, I formatted my drive and lost all my data!

Real Estate Agent with eXp Realty Hawaii Lic. # RB-20941

Retrieved All My Computer Files After Accidental Formatting

Data on my computer is key to my business and if you're like me, you'd be lost if something happened to your computer and you didn't have backup files.  I thought I was being very careful about such things but due to a series of computer failures, I found myself "up the creek" and looking for a paddle.  Here's how I got my data back so that my business was not affected.

The problem began with the need to reformat my drive and reload Windows to correct some issues.  After backing up my entire hard drive to a portable, I reformatted the drive in preparation for reloading Windows.  In mid-process, I then  accidentally destroyed the files on my portable.  The good news is that I was able to retrieve all files from the formatted drive without paying thousands of dollars wanted by a professional data restoration company on the mainland.  I bought a software package called "Recover My Files" and it recovered 100% of the information including file names and folder hierarchy.  Cost was only $60. 

The key to full recovery was that I hadn't loaded any software on the formatted drive which would have overwritten some of the data.  It was also key that the drive had 2 partitions and I could load and run the software from the unaffected partition.  I did a little test and learned that even for a formatted drive with Windows reloaded, most of the files were recoverable.

I hope this gives encouragement to anyone out there who has had a similar misfortune.  I have no business relationship with the software company outside of purchasing their product.  And of course your experience may not be the same as mine.

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Richard Dolbeare
Accredited Buyer Representative & e-PRO
Century 21 All Islands
(808) 651-4550 (cell)
(866) 757-8239 (FAX)
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Richard T. Dolbeare, R(B)

Keller Williams Realty(808) 651-4550 and 

 Hawaii multi-island specialist, Maui & Kauai
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Maria Holland
RE/Max Homes & Estates, ABR,GRI, CDPE, SFR - Nashville, TN
Realtor, ABR, GRI, CDPE, SFR
Good information.  Thanks for sharing
Apr 24, 2008 04:22 PM #1
Richard Perkins
Hey thanks for sharing that great info Good luck
Apr 24, 2008 04:38 PM #2
Randy Prothero
eXp Realty - Mililani, HI
Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645
I had something similar happen a few months ago.. Fortunately I have a friend who is one of the best tech guys I know.  He was able to recover most of my data.
Apr 24, 2008 09:25 PM #3
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Richard, you were very lucky. I had a similar experience and was only able to retrieve about half of my data. I now have a backup drive on every one of my systems and back up my data every three days.

Good information and thanks for sharing.

Good Post!

Apr 25, 2008 01:41 AM #4
Rachael Hite
Finance of America Mortgage Winchester VA Branch NML#1071 - Winchester, VA

Thanks for the comment on my similar blog:  This is something we not only need to do for ourselves, but something we need to add as part of our "Gold standard" service to our clients.

May 01, 2008 05:30 AM #5
Dione Sage
Nova Home Loans - Gilbert, AZ

I am glad you got it retrieved, Thanks for posting this information. Sometimes we just dont think about this type of thing happening. Keep up the great informative posts!!!!

May 24, 2008 12:59 AM #6
Pam Dent
Gayle Harvey Real Estate, Inc. - Charlottesville, VA
REALTOR® - Charlottesville Virginia Homes / Horse

Richard - Thanks for telling us about this software.  It is good to know that it exists if I should ever have a similar problem.

Jul 04, 2008 11:46 AM #7
Richard T. Dolbeare
eXp Realty - Kahului, HI
R(B), ABR, CRS...Hawaii Multi-Island Specialist

Hi Pam,

As another person said, I was very lucky.  May we both be lucky with our real estate.



Jul 04, 2008 07:36 PM #8
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Richard T. Dolbeare

R(B), ABR, CRS...Hawaii Multi-Island Specialist
Buy a home or condo in Hawaii
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