Formatted over top of exFAT - need to recover .nef photos

How to use TestDisk to recover lost partition
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Posts: 2
Joined: 07 Jun 2015, 18:55

Formatted over top of exFAT - need to recover .nef photos

#1 Post by quedeg »

Hello, I would appreciate anyone's help to execute the steps necessary to try and recover the .nef files on a hard drive that was formatted overtop of the data. TestDisk isn't user friendly from a novice's position, and that is basically what I am.
I had an exFAT file structure that contained 7,000 .nef photos. My computer randomly reformatted the drive and now I am left with an UNTITLED volume and the original files obviously can not be seen.
I feel comfortable following whatever steps necessary as long as the steps are explained clearly.
The drive is a 500 gb SSD.
I would like to attempt to recover the .nef files AND I would love to retain the file structure if possible. What would the proper steps be, or could anyone please forward me on towards a quality step-by-step instructions on the best way to recover the lost partition. Thank you very much.

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Re: Formatted over top of exFAT - need to recover .nef photo

#2 Post by Fiona »

Did you format another file system like FAT or NTFS over top of your-exFAT partition?
In case, TestDisk could find your exfat-partition and if testdisk can list your data, you could copy/backup them to another disk or partition.
Otherwise you can try PhtotoRec to recover your photos.
You can improve the result if you use PhotoRec / FileOpt and pressing s to deselect all file types.
Nef belongs to the tif file family.
You can select tif and PhotoRec will only search for your photos.


Posts: 2
Joined: 07 Jun 2015, 18:55

Re: Formatted over top of exFAT - need to recover .nef photo

#3 Post by quedeg »

Fiona, thank you so much for the reply.

I was unsure of how long TestDisk needed to run or if I was running it correctly, so I canceled the initial test and did use PhotoRec to successfully recover the data. :D That is good news. However, most of the edits of the images are useless without the file structure, so I am still desiring to have TestDisk Recovery the partition.
BTW, The disk was formatted with fat or NTFS over top of my ex-fat partition.

I am having TestDisk run the Deeper Search at the moment on my disk as the quick search did not reveal the lost partition.
After an hour, still not at 1%. Is this normal?
After an hour, still not at 1%. Is this normal?
Screenshot 2015-06-09 09.48.51.png (65.4 KiB) Viewed 1472 times
It has been running for an hour and still not at 1%. Is this normal? Is my best bet waiting until this runs all the way through? What is the next step after it finishes running?

Also, for some reason test disk said that the hard drive was not writable, but the permissions were never changed and it shows that my admin privileges allow me to write to the drive. I don't know what that is about...
Thank you very much for the help