I'm trying to help a friend of mine recover data from a harddrive that had its partition table corrupted. I have very little experience in this field (when it happens to me, I just start over from scratch) and would like to know if any of you could recommend any software that would work well for retrieving the data. Software that could actually rebuild the partition structure would be great. Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

chrisbliss18,

GETDATABACK. I've used it many times and I love it. Set up the corrupt HDD as a slave in a working computer, install, and run the utility. When finished (could be a while) the program opens a "windows explorer" like interface. DON'T CLOSE THIS WINDOW! Or you will have to re-scan.

As far as the partition table, I don't even know what that is, so I'm not much help.

J_

commented: Excellent advice +1

Thanks for the recommendation J_Search. My friend says that it is a life saver.

I suggest you use DataRecoveryWizard to recover your data.

DataRecoveryWizard is a complete range of data recovery software
for all Windows operating system platforms and supports various file
systems on various storage media. DataRecoveryWizard provides very
useful functions for data recovery: "DeleteRecovery", "FormatRecovery",
"AdvancedRecovery", "RawRecovery". This program ensures safe and
precise file recovery against numerous threats like accidental file
deletion and disk formatting and so on.

You can input “DataRecoveryWizard on Google.

chrisbliss18,

As far as the partition table, I don't even know what that is, so I'm not much help.

J_

The partition table is the different allocations on your drive. say you have an 80 gig hard drive, and you have all 80 allocated to a single windows install (it's gonna be less, there's always a small amount set aside for other things) then there will be one partition on the drive. (really two)

it gets slightly more complicated as you go on, but for the most part, it's straightforward. for an example, here's the breakdown of my partition table:

~40gig NTFS (my WinXP pro install, and space for games, and other windows programs)

~39gig EXT3 (my linux install, with PLENTY of space for senseless backups and whatnot.)

>.5gig SWAP (swap memory for linux install. i don't really need this, but i made it out of habit, and the fact that i just could.)

>.5gig other stuff (i'm not exactly positive, but there's always a small amount of 'unallocated' space on each of my drives. i believe it might be some sort of protected space for something, but don't quote me, i just don't know, and it's not really that important)

~80gig FAT32 (this is my storage drive. i made it fat32 so that i can read and write with both windows and linux, because linux has problems writing to NTFS at the moment.)

if i showed you a copy of my actual table, it would have adresses for each partition, so that the OS can recognize them. in linux, these are represented as thier actual partition names (hda2, hdb5, etc) but in windows, you can always find them with drive letters. (C, D, etc)

the one thing to always realize when working with a dual boot system is, you need to make sure you have seperate partitions, and a proper boot loader, because operating systems don't usually play well with each other (what am i saying 'usually' i don't know of a single successful case of someone running two OS's on the same partition.)

ok, i've rambled enough. I hope that helps your understanding of partitions at least a bit!