(Partially Resolved) Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

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Garef
Posts: 5
Joined: 24 Jan 2019, 03:55

(Partially Resolved) Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

#1 Post by Garef » 24 Jan 2019, 04:43

Hello, I am a total noob at this, and I'm not very good at expressing myself, so I'll start from the beginning.

I was using my Samsung S7 when it suddenly crashed. Upon (auto)reboot, I noticed my SD card was not detected. Tried rebooting my phone again to double check, still not found.

SD card is a 64gb Sandisk in exFAT. It contains very important data to me, pictures and videos taken mostly. I thought I had a backup, but turns out I was wrong. (Last backup was like 2 years ago... oh no...)

Thinking it may be a problem with the phone, I connected my SD card using an adapter to the PC (Windows). Fortunately, SD card is detected. In hopes of trying to copy the contents out, I tried to access the SD card.
For a brief moment (about 5 seconds), I can see and access the SD card and view it's folder. However, before I am able to view any contents, it crashed, and I was unable to access afterwards.
It suddenly became an exFAT drive with 0 bytes...
sdcardstatus.jpg
sdcardstatus.jpg (54.4 KiB) Viewed 285 times
That got me very worried. I tried searching for solutions online, and finally found photorec and testdisk (recommended by many users), and it seemed to be the best option available.

Here is where I attempted to salvage my SD card (as a newbie, but to no avail):

I tried using photorec first, to recover the files. No luck. 0 files detected/recovered. (Worried.)
Seems like my files turned into RAW.

Partition listed as "Unknown".

Tried using testdisk to create a backup and restore corrupted partition. No luck. (Very worried.)
Attempting to create an image (which lasted ~8 hours), yielded nothing. It created an image.dd with 0 kb. "Image created successfully but read errors have occurred."

partition table type> None
Type > exFAT
Tried to Analyze. Quick Search, and Deeper Search yielded no results... (x_x)

List>
Can't open filesystem. Filesystem seems damaged.

Boot>
Boot sector
Bad: can't read exFAT boot record.

Backup boot record
Bad: can't read exFAT backup boot record.

Sectors are identical.


Have no other options aside from Quit, and Dump.
bootscreenbad.jpg
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I think I am out of options... I do not know what else to do.
Is this the end of my data...? The end of my SD card...?
Just because of a sudden phone crash?
I need help...! Just when my life is about to improve... this happens! Bad things always happens.. why...

Read through the guides, it didn't work for me. Searched around the forums for similar problems that I've encountered, doesn't work for me.
Also, the cmd.exe will pause momentarily when it is attempting to access the corrupted SD card. It works smoothly for other drives.
Sorry if the information provided is insufficient...

Please help me...! Thank you...!
Last edited by Garef on 25 Jan 2019, 13:32, edited 1 time in total.

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cgrenier
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Re: Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

#2 Post by cgrenier » 24 Jan 2019, 07:01

Try PhotoRec on this memory card. Does it recover some files ?

Garef
Posts: 5
Joined: 24 Jan 2019, 03:55

Re: Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

#3 Post by Garef » 24 Jan 2019, 21:29

Good day kind sir, thank you for replying.

Something odd happened today... I was able to recover some files using PhotoRec... BUT... well...

Let me start from the top.

Feeling depressed by the unsuccessful recovery attempt previously, I went out for a long walk. I have almost given up hope when I received a reply to my final call for help on this forum.
Although it was a simple suggestion to use PhotoRec on the memory card, in which I did previously but failed to successfully extract any data, I've decided to try it out again.

To answer your question;
cgrenier wrote:
24 Jan 2019, 07:01
Try PhotoRec on this memory card. Does it recover some files ?
Garef wrote:
24 Jan 2019, 04:43
I tried using photorec first, to recover the files. No luck. 0 files detected/recovered. (Worried.)
Seems like my files turned into RAW.
That was yesterday.
I also mentioned;
Garef wrote:
24 Jan 2019, 04:43
Thinking it may be a problem with the phone, I connected my SD card using an adapter to the PC (Windows). Fortunately, SD card is detected. In hopes of trying to copy the contents out, I tried to access the SD card.
For a brief moment (about 5 seconds), I can see and access the SD card and view it's folder. However, before I am able to view any contents, it crashed, and I was unable to access afterwards.
It suddenly became an exFAT drive with 0 bytes...
I also remembered reading across the forum to avoid accessing the card, as Windows might break the card when trying to read it when it is corrupted. I think that was what happened yesterday when my card suddenly turned into a 0 byte exFAT. Thinking about it, I searched online as to whether if there was a way for windows to not read the card at all when inserting into the USB port. One article mentioned to hold SHIFT down when inserting the card into the USB port.
Lo, and behold, it worked!
sdcarduntouched.jpg
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I do not know if this actually worked or I was lucky... after 5 seconds or so, nothing happened, and I am starting to think that I may actually stand a chance!
And to not test my luck any further, I quickly moved away from /Computer/, and fired up PhotoRec immediately to start the recovery process.

Fingers crossed, and...
abletodetectpartition.jpg
abletodetectpartition.jpg (57.16 KiB) Viewed 270 times
Partition detected! It was shown as an "Unknown" partition previously, so this is starting to look good...
I selected whole disk, and began the recovery process.
photoreclucky.jpg
photoreclucky.jpg (60.96 KiB) Viewed 270 times
Yes! Recovery successful! I was so glad that I retried PhotoRec again...
BUT
Turns out... all 9405 files are of the SAME image. For some weird unfathomable reason, ALL of them are of the same picture, just named differently, but same size, same date created, time, dimensions, everything. And it is the least important image of all... Is this some sort of a bad sign? Really bad corruption? Cursed picture/memory stick? Bad luck?

What does this mean?

It is worth noting that upon examining the folder properties, it contains 18,799 files, and is 26.8 gb... that would mean that the recovery was partial?

-continued in next post-

Garef
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Joined: 24 Jan 2019, 03:55

Re: Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

#4 Post by Garef » 24 Jan 2019, 21:41

-continued-
recoveredfiles.jpg
recoveredfiles.jpg (84.09 KiB) Viewed 267 times
this is what I meant... this would mean that there are actually 18,799 files of the same picture?!
Just, take a look yourself... ugh... T_T
prawnsprawnsprawnsss.jpg
prawnsprawnsprawnsss.jpg (98.04 KiB) Viewed 267 times
(Baked prawns...)
I don't know whether I should laugh, or whether I should cry... it is hilarious, and yet disastrous at the same time... :')
All of my precious data...

I am hoping someone is able to solve this puzzle/mystery for me... Just when I thought that there was hope... nope.

In the meantime, I shall take the chance to try to create another backup image of the micro SD card again, since PhotoRec is able to read it at the moment. Hopefully it works, and not full of prawns...

Thank you cgrenier again for replying. I hope you will be able to help me...

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Re: Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

#5 Post by cgrenier » 25 Jan 2019, 07:01

It may be a problem with the flash controller. You can try to contact a data recovery company.

Garef
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Joined: 24 Jan 2019, 03:55

Re: Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

#6 Post by Garef » 25 Jan 2019, 11:21

Alright, thanks for the reply... just googled about it and it seemed like something beyond my field of expertise and repair.

At this point, I think I've almost given up on recovering anything on the micro SD card. I'll just tinker around with testdisk a little bit more first and see what happens...

Update:

As mentioned, tried to create image for backup, but it seems that I am unable to do so successfully.
imagecreatereaderrors.jpg
imagecreatereaderrors.jpg (34.26 KiB) Viewed 247 times
Only a small amount was created.
Does that mean it is unsalvageable?

Attempted Quick Search and Deeper Search, gave me read errors and detecting no partition at all.
Deeper Search got stuck at 00% for hours, which I just gave up and stopped.
readerror00nohope.jpg
readerror00nohope.jpg (96.98 KiB) Viewed 247 times
Tried to use Advanced options. Strange, no partition found, again.
Safely removed USB and plugged it in again, taking care to not let Windows read it.
Immediately fired up testdisk to access the micro SD card, and into the Advanced options.
Success! I was able to copy the contents out somehow onto another location! (Fingers crossed, hopefully it's not full of prawns...)
copyingfilesfail.jpg
copyingfilesfail.jpg (47.08 KiB) Viewed 247 times
...it worked! (somehow, somewhat, and no more prawns...!) For some strange reason, it copied files that I have never ever seen before as well, which I assume was deleted data from the previous owner. (The micro SD card is a hand-me-down from one of my siblings.) But most importantly, it managed to copied over the files that mattered the most, which are the pictures and videos taken from my phone. Thank goodness! Although there were alot of "failed"s, I don't really think that it matters anymore.

But now, the question remains, what were the other files that failed to copy over?
How did it happen? Were the files that failed to copy over corrupted? And are they the ones that caused the corruption?
It's a mystery that remains, but for now, I'll put it to rest. I will write a summary of the events that happened in the next post, so that others may read it and try to understand it, and also for those who may encounter a similar problem such as mine, be able to recover the files that are important to them, and perhaps even fix it fully.

But before that, I would like to thank cgrenier for the replies, and also for creating such an amazing app to be able to help those in need (and even provide it as free-use for everyone!).
I would have given up on trying to recover the files, but seeing that someone else tried to help, I've decided to give it one last shot. The final attempt managed to salvage the situation.
By providing me the clue about the flash controller, and contacting a data recovery company, I googled around and determined that there was still some kind of hope, and perhaps testdisk is able to copy the files out somehow. It fortunately did copied some files out, and most importantly of all, the files that mattered the most.

So, THANK YOU so much cgrenier! PhotoRec and TestDisk is such an amazing app! ^-^

Garef
Posts: 5
Joined: 24 Jan 2019, 03:55

Re: Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

#7 Post by Garef » 25 Jan 2019, 13:19

I'm still in awe that I was able to recover my files, seeing as I've never seen such a bad corruption before, and it was also my first time recovering files.
Here is a brief summary of the events that happened. Note that it may or may not help you at all, but just putting it here so that by any chance someone faces a similar issue, it will be able to help them.

Summary

-I was using my phone when it all happened. MicroSD card became corrupted.
My Samsung S7, Android OS, suddenly crashed while I was playing a game. (It wasn't the first time that the phone crashed, but quite a few times in recent years.)
Upon auto reboot, I realized that my microSD card, a 64GB Sandisk, wasn't detected. It is worth noting that my phone was unusually hot. I even tried rebooting a few times, removing the card and putting it back in, to see if it was just a trivial connection issue. Still no luck, I then proceeded to attempt to read the card using my PC (Windows). For a moment, the card was detected and seems to be normal, but trying to access it (bad move), caused the card to become corrupted. It turned from a readable card into a non-readable card with 0bytes in exFAT format. This is when I realized things got serious.

-Searched online for solutions and found PhotoRec and TestDisk. I used TestDisk-7.1-WIP.

-Trying to fix the card and extracting any information from it in this state is futile. Safely remove your card and reinsert it (while holding SHIFT(?)), and see what happens.
If your card has turned into 0bytes, try to safety remove it and reinserting it again, taking care to not let Windows read it, or even be in /Computer/ to be safe.
I was lucky that I realized my card was readable for a few short moments when it is freshly inserted each time. This meant that having the system read the card would cause it to become corrupted and unreadable. This opening gave me a chance to access the card using TestDisk.

-If a pop-up window appears after reinserting the microSD card, quickly close it, and turn on TestDisk immediately. Access the corrupted card using TestDisk, you should be able to access it now.

-Go to Advanced.

-List.
If it says "Can't open filesystem. Filesystem seems damaged.", don't worry. Exit TestDisk, repeat the previous steps again of reinserting the microSD card safely.

-When successful, you should be able to access the corrupted drive quickly. List, and copy all of your files into another safe location.
I recommend copying it into another safe location with plenty of space to work with. (At least bigger than the corrupted disk space.)
After it has finished copying your files, scan them, just in case. There's always a chance that the corruption may be caused by a virus or a malware, I don't know, but better to be safe than sorry.
For my case, there was nothing wrong with my files. Probably corrupted when the phone was trying to read it and crashed it.

-From here onwards, I am not too sure, the results may vary from person to person depending on the severity of the corruption.
In my case, alot of files were unrecoverable. But fortunately, the important ones were salvaged, mainly pictures taken using my phone camera.
The DCIM folder and it's content was fully recovered((?) too many files over the period of 2 years to know for sure, but my most recent files to the oldest ones seems intact).
Other folders were recovered as well, but they were all empty. From downloads to documents to music, etc., all was empty. Doesn't matter for me. My important files were the pictures and videos taken, as they hold sentimental value to me. Hopefully you were also able to recover the files that were most important to you, or perhaps even all of your files. If this method didn't work for you, then I'm sorry I couldn't help you any further.

-Summary END-
Hopefully this has helped you guys in some way.
This has taken me about 2-3 days to resolve. I was really unlucky. I was studying halfway, just taking a short break when my phone crashed and caused my microSD to become corrupted. While trying to recover the files, midway through, my house had a power outage! It was quite ridiculous... Fortunately, I was able to resolve each issue one by one, and finally today, and I can finally put it to rest.
It felt like everything that could possibly go wrong in a year, went wrong in a single week, and concentrated into a single day! Such unluck...

This whole situation is just weird. It felt like it was caused by bad luck, and resolved by good luck with TestDisk as the main ingredient of course!
I would like to thank cgrenier again for the assistance. (And for making this amazing program!)


Lessons Learnt

Well, always backup your data frequently! This is really a hard lesson learnt. I used to backup my data, but I guess I got complacent as time progressed, and got punished for it.
Spending few minutes weekly to backup your data wouldn't hurt, especially the important ones. Just spend the time backing up the important data while doing other things, and you shouldn't be wasting any time; rather than spending days and days of unwanted effort and undue stress to recover your data...

Well then, good luck to those trying to recover your data! I hope you will be able to get your precious data back in one piece.
Let me know if this has helped you guys out!
If you had faced a similar situation as I did, did you manage to recover all of your data?
Was your data recovered only just from DCIM as well?
Did you find out a better way or more efficient method in resolving this issue?
Note that I've tried many different ways to access and recover my files using PhotoRec and TestDisk. Even after reading through the forums and looking for solutions online, it didn't help.
It is by sheer luck and realization that I arrived at this step, which managed to help me.

I shall take a break and see if I can do more with TestDisk to fix the microSD card. But I will probably buy a new one and not risk using it again...
In hindsight, I should have noticed that something was probably wrong with the microSD card when it started behaving oddly a few years back. My phone crashing in the recent years could have been caused by the microSD card, just that it wasn't that noticeable, until it finally became unreadable.

Update:
Specifically targeting the individual folder increases the success rate of recovery. I was thus able to recover some of the missing "parts" from the previous "Copy".
Since my DCIM was fully restored from the previous Copy of the whole microSD card, I tried copying the files again this time, but for the other missing files by targeting the folders individual.
Although it was a partial recovery, I had some important audio logs recovered from the microSD card.
I think by using this method, you will be able to pinpoint down to which files are the culprit that is causing the error.
It also mysteriously recovered a strange folder that started with a ".", and upon examining it, it contained VERY UNUSUAL files, with bizarre symbols and characters, and some with simply impossible dates, such as 1992, and to even 2035! I suspect this is corrupted data, and it is spooking me out, so I've decided to just delete them away.

Finally, I can take a breather, and put this to rest, once and for all. ^-^'"

raccoon
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Joined: 04 Feb 2019, 04:43

Re: (Partially Resolved) Android sudden crash leading to corrupted SD card? Need help!

#8 Post by raccoon » 04 Feb 2019, 05:09

Those Red/Gray Sandisk Ultra 64 microSD cards are under recall. Lifetime warranty. Put in an RMA exchange. Google: Sandisk RMA Request

This huge bad batch of cards have been messing people up for 6 years, especially when the Galaxy S3 came out. Possibly millions of cards in the wild that randomly fritz out twice a year then work again.

Exchange them and save a headache.

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