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Here is a successful file recovery process on my Home PC. Though many tools have contributed to this recovery, PhotoRec is the Hero. I am going to narrate the entire story.

My PC is PIII-850MHz/192MB/20GB+10GB-HDD, moderately old system more than enough for serving as home PC. I had Arch Linux as Production system and Debian sid, Fedora 5 and Ubuntu-Feisty as test/review system. Last week, When I try to adjust the partition to make room for one more distribution, accidentally (over confident on my skills and recovery tools to blame!) I removed my /home production system partition. This is a XFS file system.

Then I used gpart to recover the partition table. It is a wonderful tool, which did the task just like that. I got the partition back. But my bad luck, I am not able to mount the partition, ended with “can’t read superblock” error message while mounting. Even xfs_repair tool failed to identify a valid super block. I tried my best for 10 days to mount the file system, but it went vain.

I use to take backup of my /home regulary. So I am not missing entire data, but post-backup update of my child’s important function photos. So I decided to try PhotoRec (An open source tool from the same author of TestDisk tool, Christophe GRENIER). It gave me options to choose file types to recover. I chose .jpg and .mov files. It recovered those files in just a matter of minutes. The interface of the tool is also very simple apart from its functionality.

Thanks to the author and open source world! I have also updated my Technology side bar column with a link to his site.

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