15 Best Free Data Recovery Software (Windows Computer)

15 Best Free Data Recovery Software (Windows Computer)

Do you want to recover files for free? If yes, you'll love this article. Because today I'm going to show you a list of best free data recovery tools in the world. 

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Before diving into the list, let's talk about the science of data recovery tools.

To understand how a data recovery program works, first, you need to understand what happens when you delete a file from the memory. In simplest terms, when you delete a file, the operating system marks the sectors containing the data as "unused". So that the file appears to be gone from the memory. 

Yes, deletion never actually destroys the files, it just hides them. You can recover the lost data very easily by using a professional recovery software until someone overwrites the same space with something else.

The data recovery tools look for the sectors marked as "unused" to find any recoverable data, and then the software tries to combine them back together in a readable format.

I hope now you got a pretty good idea about the recovery tools and their science. Now let's dive into the list....

  • Recuva

Recuva is probably the most popular recovery tool on this list. This tool can recover any file from any rewriteable media you have: external hard drives, memory cards, USB sticks, and etc. It is also very efficient at recovering data from damaged drives.

It comes in two flavors, a normal one, and a portable one. I'm using the portable version, if you have a USB drive or external hard disk, you should only use the portable version because that way you don't overwrite any of the free space on your hard drive that may contain exactly the data that you're trying to recover.

Recuva also has a feature that does the opposite of recovering files - a file shredder. 

Note: If the basic scanning is not finding your files, use the "deep scan" option.

It supports every modern version of Windows and 37+ languages.

  • Puran File Recovery

Puran File Recovery is a simple tool with a powerful recovery engine. This program can literally restore any file back to where it was. The quick scan can list the deleted files within seconds but a full scan may take more time and resources.

It displays the condition of the file along with the filename, size, and path, so you can actually identify the files that can be successfully recovered.

The program also allows you to sort the deleted file results based on the file type.

  • Glary Undelete

It is a simple program that has a clean UI, and an efficient recovery engine. Glary Undelete also has an advanced filter that allows you to search the deleted file results by date, size, creation date of each file, wild cards, and the level of corruption.

It can even recover compressed or fragmented or encrypted files.

  • Pandora Recovery

This tool is specially designed to recover deleted files from NTFS and FAT-formatted volumes. Unlike above-mentioned tools, it allows you to preview deleted files of certain type (images and text files) without performing recovery.

Pandora Recovery implements the surface (cluster) scan of targeted media, which allows you to recover files whose MFT record has been reused by OS, from reformatted media, discs with damaged or missing file allocation table.

  • SoftPerfect File Recovery

SoftPerfect File Recovery supports popular file systems such as FAT12, FAT16, FAT32, NTFS and NTFS5 with compression and encryption. This program is very easy to use, and you don't need to install this program to recover files, it's a portable software.

  • Wise Data Recovery

It is very fast and efficient at finding deleted files. The program shows the possibility of recovering each file so that you can easily identify the files that can be fully recovered.

Wise Data Recovery also has the portable version, like I told you before, it is always better to use the portable version of a recovery software because that way you don't accidentally overwrite any of the deleted files.

  • Restoration

Restoration is a simple portable tool that can recover any file you want. It also allows you to delete the files beyond recovery.

This tool also has a simple but unique feature that allows you to scan for specific files. As you can see in the above image, the software has a very old user interface.

  • FreeUndelete

This recovery tool supports NTFS 1.0, NTFS 2.0, FAT12, FAT16 and FAT32 file systems. FreeUndelete displays the filename, type, size, status, path, date modified, and date created along the with the deleted file results.

If you only have one disk (C:), use a USB flash drive as FreeUndelete download and install destination.

  • ADRC Data Recovery Tools

ADRC Data Recovery Tools is not just a simple recovery software, it gives you full control to undelete files, disk image backup, restore a backup image, copy files from hard disk with bad sectors, disk cloning, backup, edit and restore your boot parameters.

Now you may think this tool pretty heavy, but it is not, it is 132 KB only.

  • UndeleteMyFiles Pro

UndeleteMyFiles Pro is a free professional tool to recover any file you want. It can recover videos, images, documents, audios, and emails.

This program also allows you to delete any files permanently without any chances of recovery.

  • TOKIWA DataRecovery

TOKIWA DataRecovery doesn't require installation, that means you can place this tool on any removable device and directly run this program on any computer.

If the quick scan is not able to find the file you want, then you can start the deep scan, but it will take more time.

Note: You need administrator privileges to run TOKIWA DataRecovery.

  • PC Inspector File Recovery

I don't think this tool is a well designed one, but it works. Unlike some recovery tools, PC Inspector File Recovery can recover files with the original time and date stamp.

It can recover files even when a header entry is no longer available.

  • PhotoRec

PhotoRec is an open source multi-platform application that is designed to recover lost files including audio, video, documents, images, and archives from any rewritable media.

Since this program ignores the file system and goes after the underlying data, you can use this to recover files from severely damaged or reformatted media. If this program helps you, feel free to donate some money to the developers.

  • LazeSoft Data Recovery Free

LazeSoft Data Recovery can locate and recover any deleted file from any mountable media in just a few minutes. It also allows you to preview files before recovery.

And, it also allows you to filter the deleted file results by location, size, modified date, and state.

  • Undelete 360

It has a fast and efficient algorithm that can recover any file from almost any rewritable media. The user interface of this program looks a lot similar to the MS word 2007.

You can preview files before recovery and this feature can really help you to find target files in short time. The filter feature allows the users to perform a search for certain files instead of scanning the entire disk.

That's all. I hope you liked this list. If you did, please share this article. Because sharing is caring....

Peace out...

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