Recover files from damaged flash drive?

Using PhotoRec to recover lost data
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Joined: 19 Feb 2013, 05:51

Recover files from damaged flash drive?

#1 Post by expressign »

Hi -

hope you can help me. I'm not an IT/tech person, but I am smart and have good common sense and able to use scientific method to narrow down problems and use most help menus. searched your board for prior post like this but didn't here goes... any answer will be greatly apprreciated and please write simply for a non-techie reader :)

I damaged a usb flash drive. the brand is PNY attache 4G. the metal usb end got bent and in removing it and trying to straighten it out so it would fit back in a usb slot, the small memory card came out of the flash drive. this card has the copper connectors that allow it to be read by the usb port and, after calling tech support at PNY to see whether this part might have data on it (vs. the data being on some other circuit or part still in the flash body, I was assured that whatever data is on the flash is on this card (and not left in the body of the flash)).

when I put the memory card part of the flash drive into a usb drive (I'm on a pc using windows xp), it can't read the card - it knows you are trying to put a flash drive in, but windows gives a message that says "the USB device is not recognized - that it's malfunctioned or not recognized by windows." tried the troubleshooting there and got nowhere.

because windows cannot read the flash memory card, I assume that is the reason that when I ran the photorec_win.exe file this flash/memory card is not listed as one of the "media" (it only lists the two hard drives in this pc). your website step by step guide to photorec seems to tell you to run "photorec device" if it's not seeing your media/drive/disk - but ?!? I don't know what or where that is?

I thought that your program (either photorec or testdisk) was intended for this purpose - to try to get files off a damaged flash/usb. so, maybe I'm just missing a piece you can help me find to see if your software can see the memory card from my flash to even see if anything is recoveable on it. or, if your software cannot work at all in this case, please let me know.

thanks very much for your help!

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Re: Recover files from damaged flash drive?

#2 Post by cgrenier »

Like any software, PhotoRec need to be able to issue low level read operation to the device in order to retrieve data. In your case, the device isn't even detected as USB mass storage.
Unfortunately it means that you need to contact a specialized data recovery.