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fickwalker
23rd September 2008, 09:20 PM
I am such an idiot. I am only hoping there's some way to fix my massive fuck-up. I have accidentally deleted the 'Pictures' folder on my MacBook. iPhoto no longer works and I have seem to have lost an absolute metric buttload of personal and professional photos.

Is there a free way to recover them? I've seen File Salvage, but I don't have $100 to throw towards it right now. Any and all help will be greatly appreciated.

cosmichobo
23rd September 2008, 09:22 PM
My understanding is there basically is no freeware solution to this... but more importantly, the more you use the computer, the less you'll be able to recover...

Got another computer handy in the meantime.... ?

fickwalker
23rd September 2008, 09:26 PM
My other MB just died. Bah. I'll pinch the gf's MBP or use my iPhone instead. Absolutely no freeware solution? Sucky. :(

cmrn
23rd September 2008, 09:26 PM
It is not in the trash? And you don't use time machine?

If no to both of the above, I would reccomend shutting down the machine immediatly and getting them proffesionally recovered (if they are worth a lot to you).

If I may ask, how'd you do it?!

cosmichobo
23rd September 2008, 09:28 PM
The other bad news, is most recover software actually need to be pre-installed to have the best chance of recovering files...

Kinda silly really that there's no little built-in app to undo emptying the trash, but I guess it's not an easy process really...

Jaali
23rd September 2008, 09:32 PM
I have seem to have lost an absolute metric buttload of personal and professional photos.

It's the first and last time you will do it! Backup, backup, BACKUP!!! Even if its on a cheap arse 50c DVD-R.

Time to invest in an external HDD and run time machine!

james the 2nd
23rd September 2008, 09:33 PM
DATA Rescue II works well.. costs around $100 buck though.. :(

the_doctor
23rd September 2008, 09:33 PM
That sucks to hear mate. From first hand experience I can never stress to people how important data backup is.

Reubania
23rd September 2008, 09:34 PM
But it's not like CTL-Delete on Windows that permanently delete the file by by-passing the trash can/recycle bin on Macs no?

If you "accidently" deleted a file, it should be in your "Trash"....and hope it serves a reminder to everyone to regularly backup your files!!!

purana
23rd September 2008, 09:37 PM
My understanding is there basically is no freeware solution to this... but more importantly, the more you use the computer, the less you'll be able to recover...

Got another computer handy in the meantime.... ?

I wouldn't exactly say that, although who knows, maybe this suite might assist user who is in distress.

TestDisk Suite (http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/27683/testdisk) - has two utilities, one of them is for photo, file, folder recovery. It might work, it might not.

OP should seriously consider some backup methods to prevent this in future.

El Guardo
23rd September 2008, 09:50 PM
Depends on whether you've gone with 'empty trash' or 'secure empty trash'.

If it's the former then everything is still there but, as noted earlier, the more you use your computer, the greater the likelihood some of your photos will disappear. If it's the latter then you're starting to get yourself in trouble.

Best course of action is to clone your hard drive to an external (with FireWire), boot from the external and install Data Rescue II (I don't know of anything freeware that does half as good a job), then recover your MacBook's HDD to either your existing external (assuming sufficient space) or yet another external.

Note that recovery can be as simple as identifying the folder structure, selecting the old folder and clicking recover (this is when 'empty trash' is used) or, if unsuccessful, literally recovering the entire drive and hoping for the best (this is when 'secure empty trash' is used). In this instance folder and file structures tend not to be preserved and the software just grabs everything it can and sticks it all into some arbitrarily numbered folder schema.

As for required hard drive space, if you go the latter router and recover the entire drive you'll probably need more capacity than is listed as being used because Data Rescue II can pull back some stuff deleted a long time ago, moved around or multiple versions of the same file - and in the case of photos, the capacities required soon add up (especially if your photos are RAW).

For the record I mixed up my backups and ended up secure deleting and then writing over all of the images I wanted to protect - and Data Rescue got them all back about two months later. But it took me at least a fortnight to sort three the five copies of some images it created.

So, the question is now - how much are your photos worth?

fickwalker
23rd September 2008, 09:56 PM
Yes, I realize how stupid it was for me not to have a back up. I've got PhotoRec running at the moment and I'm not currently using the MB in question.

Many thanks for the advice, I am currently saving for a Leopard upgrade and a Time Capsule. I'm sure I'll be kicking myself over this for a long time to come.

the_doctor
23rd September 2008, 10:03 PM
Yes, I realize how stupid it was for me not to have a back up. I've got PhotoRec running at the moment and I'm not currently using the MB in question.

I hope it works out well for you. Let us know how you go. Hopefully we get a :thumbup: from you soon.


Many thanks for the advice, I am currently saving for a Leopard upgrade and a Time Capsule. I'm sure I'll be kicking myself over this for a long time to come.

Once you get this you won't know how you ever managed without it.

fickwalker
23rd September 2008, 10:06 PM
Depends on whether you've gone with 'empty trash' or 'secure empty...

El Guardo, many thanks for the advice. I've never had a reason to try and fix problems like this before, so I'm pretty lost. I'm not running Leopard and I only hit 'Empty Trash'. As I said, I know how completely stupid I am - I actually thought I was deleting a shortcut. *headdesk*

fickwalker
24th September 2008, 08:03 AM
Quick update: PhotoRec seems to be working pretty good. I'm recovering stuff to an external hard drive and once PhotoRec is done, I'll try another program I got my hands on and see if that does any better. So far I've seen a big chunk of pictures be recovered, it's just going to be a laborious task working through the million and one files.

Many thanks to anyone who offered help and suggestions, I really appreciate it.

Reubania
25th September 2008, 08:05 AM
Good luck mate...at least it's a step in the right direction.

chrism238
25th September 2008, 08:17 AM
Kinda silly really that there's no little built-in app to undo emptying the trash ...The Trash is already a hand-holding mechanism so that users can 'recover' files that haven't yet been deleted - hairy chested Unix users are at ease with their ability to issue the rm command. Are you proposing a mechanism that holds your hand in the event that the exisiting hand holding mechanism doesn't hold your hand enough? And, then, another application to actually remove the files that weren't really removed when a hand-holding mechanism protected you from actually removing the files?

hiredgoon
25th September 2008, 08:54 AM
Ok, so how do you delete files permanently? What if you're about to sell the machine? Or bring it in for service? Or anything... How do you delete files and keep them deleted?

By the way, I learnt about backing up the hard way too! Worst ever.

Good luck.

elnewb
25th September 2008, 08:57 AM
Ok, so how do you delete files permanently? What if you're about to sell the machine? Or bring it in for service? Or anything... How do you delete files and keep them deleted?

By the way, I learnt about backing up the hard way too! Worst ever.

Good luck.

You will need to zero out the disk which is an option in Disk Utility.

chrism238
25th September 2008, 08:58 AM
Ok, so how do you delete files permanently? What if you're about to sell the machine? Or bring it in for service? Or anything... How do you delete files and keep them deleted?OSX's srm (http://developer.apple.com/documentation/Darwin/Reference/ManPages/man1/srm.1.html) is a good start.

fickwalker
25th September 2008, 09:01 AM
Still working on the whole recovery thing. PhotoRec was good, but ended up recovering over 40gb of data. So much, that I ran out of space to store it all. I've run another program which looks like it worked pretty well.. Just have to sort through about 9,000 files now and see what's mine and what's random tiny jpg's that can be deleted.

thanks to everyone for the help. I really appreciate it.

xpv43
19th November 2008, 07:30 PM
Time to restart an old thread... My mum deleted a whole bunch of photos off her camera, but now wants them back...
I've downloaded PhotoRec, but am a bit of a tard with anything that doesn't have a shiny GUI, so was wondering if anyone could help me figure it out? Or point me in the right direction of some info?
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

the_doctor
19th November 2008, 08:14 PM
Did she delete them off her camera or off her computer?

Not sure if you can recover them from the camera.

xpv43
19th November 2008, 08:21 PM
Deleted off her camera. I'm trying Exif Untrasher at the moment... Not sure how it will go.
I don't know what I'm doing wrong with PhotoRec. I just can't open it. I keep finding guides that say double click will open it in terminal, but that's not happening for me. Can't seem to execute it within terminal either.
Hopefully Exif Untrasher does the trick.