Data Recovery Software: An Overview

Businesses of both small and large scales store a large amount of information on their computers, including client or patient information, contact lists, payroll data, email correspondence, spreadsheets, and various data pertaining to certain jobs or projects. The loss of these files can be disastrous for a company, and can incur thousands of dollars in cost as their employees work around the clock to gather the information lost, as it is vital for the business’s day-to-day functionality.Data Recovery Software DefinedData recovery software provides individuals and companies the ability to restore any files that have been permanently deleted, regardless of the cause. The majority of data recovery programs will recover any files lost as a result of a power surge, failed hard drive, virus attack, formatting loss, file corruption, unexpected system shutdown or system failure.How it WorksWhen a file is “deleted” by the user, the file has not actually been removed from the computer, but rather, the information showing the location of the file has been deleted, and the hard drive has been given permission to write over the file. File recovery works by restoring the bit of information that shows were the file is located. Restoring files that have been corrupted, however, is, hit-or-miss. Data recovery software can work to recover the majority of the files, but random pieces of the file can be lost or written over, thereby making it corrupt and inaccessible.Cost of Data Recovery SoftwareThe price of file recovery software is extremely affordable, especially when compared to the cost of time loss incurred by having to manually relocate every file lost. Basic data recovery software can be found for around $30 (ideal for individual or personal use), and more advanced recovery software runs from $60 to $300 depending on the amount of different file formats needing recovery. Some software companies offer free trials, which will either a) locate and restore a small amount of files lost, or b) locate all files lost, but requires the software be purchased in order to complete the restoration.How to Use Data Recovery SoftwareInstalling and running software for data recovery does not require the assistance of an IT technician, and the majority of software companies provide 24/7 customer support. However, there are two major precautions to take before installing or downloading recovery software:- If you’re downloading from the Internet: Download the software program to a different drive than where the file existed.
- If you’re installing on your computer: Install the software on an external hard drive or boot from the CD-ROM.As previously discussed, a deleted file isn’t lost until new information is written over it. This can include the data recovery software itself.Once the software has been installed, follow the on-screen instructions for restoring or locating the missing/deleted files.ConclusionShould recovery software be purchased as a precaution? An estimated 13% of all hard drives fail per year. Stretch this statistic over several decades, and the average person will experience at least one hard drive failure in their lifetime. Software should not be purchased as a precaution, since it makes no difference if the software is purchased before or after the hard drive fails – it won’t work to prevent a crash, it only works to relocate and restore the files lost after a crash. Purchasing online backup storage is an alternative, and it can spare the expense incurred by costly data recovery specialists.

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