Can TestDisk recover rare, non-standard partition types?

How to use TestDisk to recover lost partition
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Joined: 21 Apr 2014, 04:31

Can TestDisk recover rare, non-standard partition types?

#1 Post by Phred »

Although TestDisk is so powerful it can recover approximately 25 different partition types (here's the list from Wikipedia), that list doesn't include any rarely-used partition types (see, for example, List of all partition IDs)

But is there any practical way of using TestDisk to recover some of those weird partition types, say, for example, Type 2Ah, 47h, 74h, etc? Or is there any other tool that can recover more-or-less arbitrary partition types? Assume that the data in the partitions themselves are uncorrupted.

Am I correct in thinking that all that really needs to be done is to create a new partition table pointing to the partitions (easier said than done, I realize)? Or are there other things that need to be done as well?

As a last resort, can someone estimate roughly how difficult it would be to modify TestDisk to be able to recover one or more of these rare partition types?


PS - FYI: (1) The disk I accidentally deleted the partition table(s) from is a Seagate GPT-formatted 3TB disk. (2): The partitions to be recovered have NOT been overwritten or corrupted. (3): I'm running 64-bit Windows 7 Pro/SP1, but I'll happily run whatever tool from, say, a Linux-based Live CD if it won't run under Windows.

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Re: Can TestDisk recover rare, non-standard partition types?

#2 Post by cgrenier »

You are correct, to recover a partition, you need a partition entry pointing to the partition location with the correct size.
For a filesystem TestDisk doesn't know, it's possible to manually add these information (press 'a' after Quick Search and/or Deeper Search). If your partitions were contiguous, it's usually not too hard to find the correct values.

It's always possible to submit some documentation about the missing filesystem and a few filesystem images, so this filesystem detection can be added to TestDisk