How to recover deleted photos using PhotoRec

It can happen anytime, anywhere: When you check the photos captured with your smartphone or tablet, your finger escapes and ends up erased from the card. Luckily there are tools specially designed to recover lost images, as is the case of PhotoRec, one of the most effective. PhotoRec received an update last week, and it’s good to see that it has not lost even a hint of its functionality.

Anyone who owns a device with an integrated camera and takes pictures frequently has regretted ever deleting an image. Maybe at that moment, it did not seem so good, or it might have been a simple accident. After all, badly crawled folders found their end in the Recycle Bin with much less effort. Undeleting an image (or any file to be honest) is possible as long as the user acts carefully and has the right tools. Regardless of the medium, the first step is to reduce the activity to avoid any overwriting of the content and thus give a little more advantage to the recovery software.

The fact is that PhotoRec has been in the market for some years, to the point of considering it all a veteran. PhotoRec is not distributed separately but is part of a package that is accompanied by the TestDisk tool, aimed at checking the integrity of our units. PhotoRec has two versions: one that works from the system console, and the other with a graphical interface. The user must specify the partition type from which the images are to be extracted (the Linux extents are the secondary option here), the destination for the recovered files, and the search parameters, which are reduced to exploring the entire disk, Or only free space available.

Still, PhotoRec requires a certain amount of patience. When exploring memory cards and Pendrives, its lower capacity helps decrease wait times, but if the recovery takes place on a hard drive with hundreds of gigabytes, there is no other alternative than letting PhotoRec work. On the other hand, the payoff can be great. During our tests, PhotoRec recovered more than 400 images (all linked to old articles) that we had thought were lost forever. The performance will be different in each case, but you should not stop trying this software.

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