Recuva for Windows is a free data recovery program to recover deleted files, images, documents, PDFs, audios, videos and other files from memory cards, external hard drives, internal system storage on your PC.
It is very easy to use. You firstly select the hard drive, connected memory card or external hard drive, then specify the file type you want to retrieve, pictures, music, documents, videos or compressed files, then scan for those lost files. Wait for the scanning to complete. You will then be presented with the detailed information about the files, such as name, exact location on the hard drive, last modification date, file size, and the likelihood of recovering the data. If you can see the file you’ve been looking for in the list, just click ‘Recover’, and choose a destination folder to save the file.
Windows 10, 8.1, 7, Vista and XP. Including both 32-bit and 64-bit versions, but not RT tablet editions.
Get this free data recovery software onto your Windows PC from the developer’s website here.
Similar data recovery software
- Stellar Data Recovery for Windows: a powerful DIY software to retrieve permanently deleted files and data from all types of Windows devices, PCs, laptops, ultrabooks, external drive, etc. It supports all popular file types, like documents, emails, photos, videos, audio files, etc.
- Recoverit for Windows and Mac: If you are looking for a data recovery software to retrieve lost data, files & folders from computer hard drive, CD/DVD disc, SD card, CF card, USB stick or any other external storage media, Recoverit is your best choice. It can recover photos, videos, audios, email, documents and other files. More than 550 file types or data formats are supported.
How Recuva works?
Windows uses the Master File Table (MFT) as an index to the files it stores on your hard drives. As we mentioned before, when you delete a file, it’s faster for Windows to mark its MFT entry as ‘deleted’ than for Windows to overwrite the file itself, so the file is left on the hard drive. Recuva scans the MFT for files marked as deleted.
As Windows finds the need to create new files, however, it will eventually reuse and overwrite these MFT entries as well as the spaces on the hard drive where the new files actually live. That’s why Recuva can’t recover every file – and that’s why your best bet is to run Recuva as soon as you realize the file’s been deleted. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to recover.
You should avoid new software installation, file downloading, internet surfing, system reboot, and other activities that can cause data overwriting. When you need to install Recuva, make sure install it to a different hard drive than the one you need to retrieve data from. Do not add, copy, move or save other files on the hard drive or storage that you need to scan and retrieve data.
What Recuva can and can’t do?
- Scan through your hard drives, memory cards, and USB sticks to find files and folders you’ve deleted.
- Tell you in advance how likely it is that your file(s) can be recovered.
- Recover files that Windows can’t.
- Securely delete a file you may have previously deleted.
- Recover emails you deleted ‘permanently’ from Microsoft Outlook Express, Mozilla Thunderbird, or Windows Live Mail.
- Recover files from your iPod, iPod Nano, or iPod Shuffle (iPod Touch and iPhone not supported at this time). Recuva will even recover songs with Apple’s FairPlay DRM.
- Recover Canon RAW (.CRW) format image files.
- Recover files from NTFS, FAT, and exFAT-formatted drives.
- Bring your files back!
- Recover all files. Yes, as great as Recuva is it won’t work all the time. Sometimes Windows has overwritten the area where the file used to be, or sometimes the file is too corrupted to recover.
- Recover files you’ve deleted securely.
- Securely delete certain very small files that are held in the Master File Table (MFT) and files of zero-byte length.
- Recuva is capable of recovering from NAS devices, however the drive needs to be connected directly to the machine via USB/IDE/SATA. Recuva is not capable of recovering data over a network.