Computer Help forum

General discussion

System recover data loss question

by mcintosh00 / September 14, 2008 12:55 AM PDT

I downloaded a virus yesterday and after unsuccessfully trying to remove it manually and through system restore, I preformed a system recovery. While going through the recovery screen, much of the wait time was spent "copying files". After recovery, the system seems to be reset to all of its defaults (which is fine) but all of my music and pictures are missing. However, a few programs I had previously installed such as Google Earth are still available. Question is, were my media files copied to a folder somewhere that needs to be unzipped or something or are they lost for good?

Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: System recover data loss question
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: System recover data loss question
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
System info
by mcintosh00 / September 14, 2008 12:58 AM PDT

Sorry I forgot. I don't know what all info you may need. I have a Compaq PC that is about 4 years old running Windows XP.

Collapse -
Re: system recovery
by Kees Bakker / September 14, 2008 1:20 AM PDT

System recovery should have told you if you were to lose your data. So maybe they are still there. Go and search for them.

The first thing to check: the used disc space. Does that look like containing your data? Or is it so much smaller than it was that that's unlikely?
Then download a tool like CLDUW or TREESIZE and analyze the size of all folders. If there's one (other than Program Files and Windows) that contains a lot of data, that might be it.
Or search for *.jpg (assuming it were jpg's). It helps to set a few settings in Control Panel>Folder Options: "show hidden and system files" and "do not hide extensions of known filetypes".

There could be a whole new folder (something like old_contents) below the root folder. There could be a new subfolder in Documents and Settings created by the system recovery with all your data still in the old subfolder. But just as well it's possible that everything is deleted.

If you new what was on your PC (using Windows Explorer or My Computer) you should be able to find any file left. If you considered the PC as just a black box without looking to the details, it's more difficult.

Anyway, the files should still be on your backup. No backup? Better do from now on.

Kees

Collapse -
"System Recovery"?
by Soul Raven / September 14, 2008 11:17 PM PDT

I'm not sure if you were referring to System Restore, or an OEM Factory Restore. The two items are very different in how they function, and one results in "complete" data loss typically.

Windows System Restore is simply a rollback to a particular date. It doesn't mess with your personal data or other files. You can access this from within Windows, from the F8 boot menu, or while booting from the Windows Setup disc.

If you performed an OEM Factory Restore or more simply an "out-of-box" recovery your data is most likely gone. This restore is a format and reinstall of the operating system which will revert your system to like when you initially purchased it. As you have described "the system seems to be reset to all of its defaults" this leads me to believe this is the option you performed.

If you did a Factory Restore the data is most likely gone, unless your computer manufacture had some special option. However, I would believe that to be rare. As the previous posters have suggested simply attempt performing a search of your entire system for the data. If you are unable to locate any files they are most likely gone.

Thanks,
SoulRaven

Collapse -
The computer came with instructions for ...
by Edward ODaniel / September 15, 2008 12:42 AM PDT

using the system recovery that explains the options and what will or will not happen with each option.

The recovery options vary by manufacturer and even within models by the same manufacturer. The instructions, if not on a printed user manual are normally available in a PDF file or Help file available either on the desktop as an icon or on the Start menu.

Popular Forums
icon
Computer Newbies 10,686 discussions
icon
Computer Help 54,365 discussions
icon
Laptops 21,181 discussions
icon
Networking & Wireless 16,313 discussions
icon
Phones 17,137 discussions
icon
Security 31,287 discussions
icon
TVs & Home Theaters 22,101 discussions
icon
Windows 7 8,164 discussions
icon
Windows 10 2,657 discussions

CNET FORUMS TOP DISCUSSION

Help, my PC with Windows 10 won't shut down properly

Since upgrading to Windows 10 my computer won't shut down properly. I use the menu button shutdown and the screen goes blank, but the system does not fully shut down. The only way to get it to shut down is to hold the physical power button down till it shuts down. Any suggestions?