Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Tenorshare Data Recovery WinPE - Free as in Freeware Only Today from Bits Du Jour

"Tenorshare Any Data Recovery Pro for Windows at a 80% discount
Tenorshare Data Recovery WinPE ScreenshotTenorshare Data Recovery WinPE ScreenshotTenorshare Data Recovery WinPE ScreenshotTenorshare Data Recovery WinPE 
You thought you backed up all of the important files on your hard drive, until the day that Windows won’t boot and you discover that there’s one directory, filled with critical files, that’s imprisoned on your hard drive. For most people, this is the time to panic! But not you, not since you picked up today’s discount software promotion, Tenorshare Data Recovery WinPE.
Tenorshare Data Recovery WinPE lets you create an emergency boot disk to let you recover files when Windows won’t boot correctly. With Tenorshare Data Recovery WinPE, you’ll be able to recover all types of important files, including photos, videos, documents, music, and more, all without compromising the integrity of the files.
Just burn Tenorshare Data Recovery WinPE as an ISO image to an optical disk or to a USB drive, then wait for that inevitable day when your Windows starts acting up. Then break out that image and get to work getting to your data! You can even use Tenorshare Data Recovery WinPE to rescue data from a formatted, corrupt, or deleted Windows partition! Plus, the data to be recovered doesn’t even have to reside on the hard drive - Tenorshare Data Recovery WinPE works just as well as flash drives, memory cards, external drives, digital cameras, and more!"

Windows PE is an environment older versions of Windows use to install Windows. It's a mini-operating system in itself. Users found I think some technicality which showed that the PE environment had not been protected by Windows copyright or something and so users were free to use it as a vehicle for data recovery programs and routines. Anyway whether it is legal or not, programmers have been using it to create a bootable OS where users can install software from. This program look like it uses that system. It doesn't boot into Windows per se but boots from an OS on a disk that you create. A WinPE OS that is, similar to Linux on a CD/DVD/memory stick. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

MiniTool Power Data Recovery - Personal Edition - Free Today as in Freeware From Bits Du Jour (Also Maybe Tomorrow)

"Uh oh! That critically important file, the one that you keep in that special folder away from all of your other stuff, has managed to disappear! Accidental deletion? Intentional sabotage? Dog with opposable thumbs? No matter what the cause, there’s no need to panic if you have a copy of today’s discount software promotion, MiniTool Power Data Recovery!
MiniTool Power Data Recovery lets anyone, regardless of technical expertise, recover lost data from deletions and damaged/formatted hard drives. With MiniTool Power Data Recovery, you’ll be able to easily rescue deleted data not only from hard disks and RAID devices, but also CDs, DVDs, memory cards, flash drives, and memory sticks.
Five powerful data recovery modules in MiniTool Power Data Recovery are designed to fit every need. Just determine what caused the deletion – partition damage, partition loss, CD/DVD corruption, or accidental deletion – then let MiniTool Power Data Recovery loose. Then sit back and wait as MiniTool Power Data Recovery fetches your missing data and comes back with it for you! You can even use a Data Recovery Boot Disk to recover data if your computer won’t boot!
Don't have Facebook? That's ok, we haven't forgotten about you. When the promotion is live, just click the 'Get it for Free' button and fill out a quick survey to claim your 100% discount!"

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Flash Drive Recovery - Free As In Freeware - Only Today (and Maybe Tomorrow)

"You've taken hundreds of photos on the best vacation in your life, but when you plug your flash drive or memory card into your computer, none of the files are readable because the media is corrupt! Are your precious memories lost forever? Not if you get a copy of today’s discount software promotion, Flash Drive Recovery!
Flash Drive Recovery lets you recover files from damaged and corrupted flash drives and memory cards. With Flash Drive Recovery, you’ll be able to pull information off of USB flash drives and the majority of memory cards in multiple formats, including SD, SDHC, SDXC, CompactFlash, and even proprietary media like Sony Memory Stick. And if you can mount your digital camera or music player as an external drive, you can use Flash Drive Recovery to pull files directly from your gadget.
All of the usual suspects are recoverable from your flash media when you use Flash Drive Recovery, including photos, documents, music files, and more. A handy instant preview lets you see what you’re recovering, letting you pick the least corrupted or latest version of a file from the preview list. Getting started with Flash Drive Recovery is easy – just select the drive and let the program handle everything else from there!"

Friday, June 13, 2014

Disk Recovery Wizard 4.1 - Free as in Freeware - Only Today for Giveaway of the Day

"Disk Recovery Wizard is an effective application that can be used to recover deleted data from a healthy hard drive. In addition, it can be used to recover information from damaged, repartitioned and unreadable volumes. It is an easy to use software and any person can simply run and recover deleted data within a short time period. The product is compatible with FAT, NTFS, ext2 and ext3 recovery."
Has a 52% rating from the notoriously fickle users who comment and rate, which is pretty good for a data recovery tool. Also note that the normal price for this program is over a hundred dollars, which is also unusual for a GiveawayoftheDay program. This is a program for fixing failing disks and might be worth having for the future, just in case.

Sunday, June 08, 2014

Possible Solution to Recovering Binary Files from Opening and Then Saving the Raw Binary Code in NotePad or Other Text Editor (That Alter Binary Code)

I sometimes receive files from clients for my manual repair service, through my online form: http://s2services.com/contact.htm. I charge $22 for the service. Currently the site says it's $22 if I succeed, however, I very rarely do because I'm the last resort. I should really charge money if I succeed or not and I think I did to a customer or two recently by accident. All the other commercial services charge for manual repair and charge more.

Anyway I received a corrupted file which had seemingly a lot of zip structure because the file had a lot of instances of the text "PK" and XML file named nearby which are the indicators of the individually zipped up subfiles that make up  the larger zip structure which constitutes the DOCX file. The only problem was the various parts of code were missing all the Null characters which usually surround the PK marker and the subfile name (PK is a leftover designation from the first zip program PKZip and is the initials I believe of the zip file format developer). See the two screenshots below.

How the file looked.
How the file should have looked.
So anyway I suspected the file was corrupted to begin with, and then someone had opened it up in Notepad or Word as machine code, in an attempt to fix the corruption and then saved the file from within NotePad or some other text editor other than NotePad++. I later did an experiment and indeed NotePad will replace the Nul characters with spaces.

So my question was, is there a way to reliably reverse this? I did find a possible answer in a program I earlier reviewed in this blog called fixgz. So fixgz.exe or it's Linux version can take a gzip file that has been transferred via FTP as text instead of the proper binary format and fix the file. I had high hopes that maybe this was the cause of the corruption. However, the program didn't work for me and clearly either fixgzip only works on gzip files, not ordinary zip ones, or transferring the DOCX via FTP in text format was not the issue.

I then found this interesting post: http://superuser.com/questions/195612/recovering-corrupted-files-uploaded-in-wrong-ftp-mode. So this gave me the idea that I really should open the program in a hex viewer and maybe try to find the instances of 0d 0a hex byte pairs which are indications of Windows line returns possibly added in a text file like fashion instead of a binary one. This may really be wrongheaded and 0d 0a hex byte pairs may be the way all Windows files, both binary and hex indicate line returns. However that notion didn't stop me from trying.

Anyway here are screenshots of the corrupted file and a good one in a the HxD editor:

Corrupted file in hex editor.
Good file in hex editor.
My little notion quickly fell to the ground when I was not able to find a single instance of 0d 0a hex byte pair in either my corrupt file nor a healthy DOCX. So then I decided, well maybe I could fix the file myself by looking at the difference between a healthy and apparently NotePad opened and saved file. Indeed it was pretty obvious looking at the two file that all the 00 hex "null" characters had been replaced by 20 hex "blank space" characters. I was pretty sure there were other substitutions or the 20 character had been substituted for several different characters and the file would then never be recoverable, but it seemed worth trying replacing all the 20 hex characters with 00, then trying to repair the zip structure. The latter is usually the first step in recovering a corrupt DOCX file.

So that's what I did. See below for my screenshots of the original file in ZipRepair Pro and the file with the20 character substituted with 00 characters. The substituted file is the 2nd screenshot.
With the original, ZipRepair Pro wants to skip all the files because it can't recover any.

Contrastingly ZipRepair Pro thinks it can recover some of the
subfiles in the 00 character substituted version of the target file.

So ZipRepair Pro actually was able to recover some of the XML sub-files from the 00 character substituted file, including the all important word/document.xml one where all the text is stored in a normal DOCX file. I then tried to rezip these files, and open the zip repaired version in Word, however it was missing too many parts and Word refused, even with the "Open and Repair" routine. I then made a blank DOCX file and replaced the parts I had from my recovered effort. Again however I came up empty.

However now I could look at the document.xml file and use the trick of changing the extension to html, to see the text. Clearly there was some text recoverable, but not very much. This is typical with DOCX file recoveries. Users are often saving files to external drives and the write operation becomes interrupted prematurely by the yanking out of the drive without "ejecting" it safely or simply turning of the computer first. The document.xml file is the largest subfile often by far, so it is often the one to get corrupted in an interrupted writing routine.

I was however determined now to get this file opened as a full Word file even though I knew that there wasn't really worth it for so little text. So I fired up my new version of Savvy DOCX Recovery, which I haven't released yet, and low and behold, my Frankenstein file combination of the blank file with the recoverable parts opened up and there was some formatting to be had to boot. I blurred out the trxt and file name to protect the privacy of my client. 

I'm not sure whether the current released version of Savvy DOCX recovery would also do the trick, but clearly I have stumbled on a new to me method for recovering corrupt DOCX files. I will incorporate this in my new version of Savvy DOCX recovery. I will as usual first attempt in the program to repair the zip structure, however, if this is unsuccessful, because it might be a sign that the file was opened and saved in NotePad, I'll then try to replace all instances of the hex character 20 with the 00 character.

I may have been correct that some of the subfiles were unrecoverable because the NotePad treatment had substituted other characters with character 20, however it appears to be enough to reverse the treatment to replace all the hex 20 characters with 00 copy the recovered parts to a blank file and then to recover from the original corruption by running a respectable DOCX recovery program against the substituted hybrid file.

Saturday, June 07, 2014

How To Recover A Hacked Microsoft Account & Prevent Future Hacks - MakeUsOf Article

"Microsoft accounts are now used for OneDrive file storage, Outlook.com emails, Skype conversations, and even signing into Windows 8. You’ll want to get that Microsoft account back if it’s ever hacked — and Microsoft provides several ways to recover your account.
Check If Your Account Is Compromised
If you can’t log into your account with your normal password, it’s possible the attacker has compromised the account and changed your password. This is the obvious type of hack — you just won’t be able to access your account anymore..."
Useful article. I think I posted a previous article about what to do if your Facebook account is hacked. 

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Giveaway of the Day - Easy Archive Recovery 2.0

"Easy Archive Recovery serves as a great data recovery program that works specifically with ZIP and RAR archives. It’s capable of restoring all types of RAR and ZIP, created in any known type of compression tools, such as WinRAR, InfoZiP, WinZIP and other.
The program supports SFX and solid archives. The contents of the archive can be previewed before the recovery. The files that were stored on a broken or formatted storage medium can be previewed and recovered as well."
This kind of program can prove useful for recovering corrupt Microsoft Office files as these days the DOCX,XLSX and PPTX formats they use are in reality conventionally zipped collections of mostly XML sub-files. This is not particularly highly rated by the readers at 27% .

Hasleo Data Recovery FreeV3.2 - Free as in Freeware - Permanently from Hasleo Software

https://www.hasleo.com/win-data-recovery/free-data-recovery.html "Hasleo Data Recovery FreeV3.2 100% Free Data Recovery Software...