recently we had a power surge, and the next morning when we came in we realized that all the filemaker databases had been wiped out. I know this isnt much to work with but im not sure where to start in recovering it. any advice?

Pick up a UPS immediately :)

I am a home user and I run an APC 1000VA which retails at around 200 bucks at most stores.

Then see about attaining some data recovery software. If you're linux savvy, try Helix Linux which works on just about any filesystem and is free. If you're only a Windows person...try VirtualLab Data Recovery which retails at around 99 bucks.

Also, be weary about hooking up hardware that has been involved in the surge without visually checking it for scorch marks or burning of any kind (smell) because if it has been shorted in any can blow a power supply or motherboard that you are using to recover with it. Just give it a good visual and if you are MultiMeter experienced...give it a continuity and voltage check. Good Luck!

alright thanks a lot! its actually just something im supposed to be working on for my school...i was setting up the databases and then they all got shot to hell, so i dont have the budget for a UPS.

but i'll see who I can pursuade to buy some recovery software. thanks again.