Recovering deleted data

  shaduf 12:19 09 May 2009

A year ago I loaned my brother-in-law my old computer when he took over a small newsagents shop. I deleted all my personal and non relevant files and handed it over with the proviso that if he ever replaced it, I would have it back.

He has since put all his shop accounts on it and specific software relevant to the business. Unfortunately, he now has to sell the business and the purchaser has made it a condition that the computer with its systems on be part of the deal. Quite reasonable.

I wonder now if any information personal to me could be recovered from the drive? I really should have reformatted and reinstalled but because it was to my B-I-L I didn’t worry.

My question(s) is: Might any of my info have survived the frequent use in 12 months?
If I was to clone the drive does it also clone the deleted items or just the current files?
Does any of the imaging software only copy actual files? Any recommendations for software?

I have access to the machine but would have to be extremely careful not to destroy any current information on it.

I should say, nothing could be on it which would cause me any embarrassment but in the past it would have stored letters and personal financial information. I needn’t lose any sleep over it but if there was an easy answer I’d be obliged.

  mgmcc 12:32 09 May 2009

If you were to use a program such as "Acronis True Image" to create an image of the hard disk in separate media (external hard drive, CDs, DVDs etc) and then restore that backup image to a *NEW* hard drive, the new drive should only have the current files on it and not those that you had previously deleted.

Restoring the image to the existing hard drive wouldn't necessarily prevent deleted files from being recovered by someone knowledgeable and with the right software.

  mfletch 12:33 09 May 2009

You can just erase the free space thus over writing any possible recovery

Use this its free,

Just remember to delete everything you dont want first then erase the free space

click here

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