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Asking for HELP!


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I use an external drive for storing my pictures. Sometime between 11pm last night and 9am this morning, I lost a folder that contained 10s of thousands of pictures. Many of those I have already uploaded to this site, and more I wanted to. I am looking for anyone with the tech savvy who might know what could have happened or how I can get them back. I did a file search, with negative results. I checked the Recycle bin and it's not there. All the other folders are still on the drive and accessible, just not that one. Please, if anyone can help I would be most appreciative! 

With Love, Terry

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You can try two things. Make sure the files are not in hidden mode.  Control panel, Appearance and Personalization, Show Hidden Files and Folders.

Another thing to try that someone suggested in one of the forums I belong to is Open Start and typing CMD to open Command Prompt Window; Type “chkdsk g:/f” (if the external hard drive is Driver g:), click Enter; 
Now, it will start repairing damaged files, it will ask if you want to save lost chains into another location. Click "Yes".

Edited by Steve
  • Like 2
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Thank you for the suggestions, Wes and Steve. I tried both of your options and neither worked.  It wouldn't do a system restore, saying there were no previous saved versions. The Recuva recovered a lot of pictures, but they were all ones I had discarded. 

  • Like 1
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Did you happen to accidentally move the folder to another folder? That's happened to me before when I go fast.  

You can right click on the drive to see the # of files and size.  


  • Like 1
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Were all of these images and folders in one master folder?  Or were they spread out among multiple folders in multiple locations?  

Did you happen to remember a unique filename that you can use in Windows Explorer to search?  (By the way, you can also use the filters in search for images or photos).  

Did you have a chance to right click the drive and see the overall size?  If you've truly lost or deleted the photos, then the size will have gone down.  

Did you double check other folders that you were working on, that perhaps weren't on the external drive?  I often shift batches of photos in between my PC and external.  

Also, I don't suppose you have one of those fancy machines with a virtual desktop and you can flip through different desktops, right?  I know this is an edge case and probably unlikely, but still want to ask.  

If Recuva didn't recover any of the recent photos, my educated guess is that the photos might still be available but perhaps in another location.  

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1. Yes

2. Yes

3. I'm not sure what the original File size was, so I don't know if it is still counting it. The overall size seems to be consistent with what was on there.

4. Yes

5. No

6. I used Recuva, but it didn't find the folder. I also tried another program and it couldn't either. 

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Try to search for a filename that you remember.  Or try to recreate your steps and see if you maybe accidentally dragged the folder somewhere.

If I think of anything else, I'll ping you.  

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Howdy Warrior69 ...

Either of these may be a long shot, but have you checked to see if there is a new folder on your desktop you don't recognize (when people have many desktop shortcuts, they tend to get lost over time) OR if (especially if using Windows 10 any flavor) OneDrive (aka SkyDrive) storage is always turned ON by default, however the further option to "Make (OneDrive or SkyDrive) stored files available offline' (creating a duplicate copy on your HD as well) is not always activated. Another possibility if you have ever had OneDrive Sync active, that either the files were moved to the Cloud (only) and/or OneDrive support is no longer loading at Windows launch (meaning you are not 'seeing' your files listed any more). My suggestion would have been what Joel already asked you about the possibility of the master folder being 'drug' into another area of your directory structure by accident, but you already answered that in the negative.

I will peak in the dustier areas of one of my ~8 TB expansion drives for some really quite good recovery programs to try. It may take me a while as I have literally 1000s of software utilities I have archived over the years. Could you advise us of what you OS is (32 or64-bit Windows v8.* or 10.* for example or Mac OS fr example). It will help me narrow my search.

Bob Hare aka Animated GIF Man


Edited by animatedgifman
minor spelling errors
  • Like 1
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I am not familiar with "One Drive" or "SkyDrive" , so I don't know how to search that. I am currently using Windows 10 64-bit.

Thanks for your help!

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