If however you have emptied the recycle bin or have deleted the file using some other application bypassing the recycle bin, you still have a chance to recover the files. That is if the file was deleted only a short time ago.
What has happens is, initially windows has removed the reference to the file but has not as yet removed the file from the hard drive. The section on the hard drive where the file is located has now been made available to be overwritten, but Windows does not use this space immediately. Therefore if the deletion was recent it is in fact still there and available to be recovered. But the longer the computer is used after the file was deleted the greater the chances are that the file has been partially or completely overwritten.
Unfortunately tools that can help you recover deleted files that are not in the recycle bin are not provided as standard with the Windows operating system. This being the case you will have to use a third party software to restore the files. This software understands the internals of the system used to store files on a disk, and can locate clues to the whereabouts of the disk space a lost file occupied. This software can read the unallocated space on the hard drive. This is now where the deleted files will be located.
You can also use this software to restore files on flash memory drives, digital cameras and certain mp3 players.
Amongst the file types that can be recovered are:
If you have defragmented your hard drive since deleting the file, then all the pointers to the location of the deleted data will have been lost, and your file will probably have been overwritten.
The best way to avoid this problem in the future will be to back up your files. Perhaps to a second hard drive or partition, a removable hard drive, a rewriteable cd/dvd or even a flash drive.
Unfortunately very few people take the time to back up their files until disaster strikes. Will you back up your files?
I hope this article was of help to you.
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Martin S Young