|Our Windows version||Windows 11|
|How long we tested||1 week|
|Number of tested tools||19|
Data loss can occur on any operating system but not all data recovery programs support multiple platforms. Make sure the app you choose is fully compatible with the OS you run or, at least, has a version for that platform particularly. Certain programs even allow the recovery of storage media formatted for a different operating system entirely.
While a data recovery program’s retrieval capabilities are certainly its most important aspect, the extra features it brings to the table certainly add a lot of value. For example, some apps come with a drive backup feature while others allow the repair of compromised/damaged files, both of which can come in very handy.
A lot of data recovery solutions out there offer a free trial that only gets you as far as previewing recoverable files. Once you attempt to retrieve them, you’ll get hit with a message asking you to purchase the full version. Check if the software has a free version that allows actual recovery.
Install the program on your Windows or macOS computer
Start the app up and choose a disk that will be used to search for lost files
Hit Recover to initiate the scanning algorithms
Choose the data you want to undelete and click the Recover button to perform the restore
Password protect your machine. If you live in a household with multiple people, then it’s a good idea to put a strong password on your computer or laptop. You never know when a child or another unauthorized person might try to make their way into your machine and fiddle with your files. Better safe than sorry.
Do not mess with unfamiliar files. Operating systems include lots of important files that may not seem familiar to you. These files could be vital to running the platform and tweaking or deleting them could lead to the OS becoming unstable and may cause you to incur data loss. That’s why it’s best to leave unfamiliar system files alone.
Install quality antivirus/antimalware software. Viruses and malware can wreak havoc on your computer and storage media and could lead to some serious loss of data. To prevent that, it’s always a good idea to install quality antivirus and antimalware software to counteract any malicious programs trying to infiltrate your machine.
Data recovery software often saves recovered files in a specified directory which you can then access through Windows File Explorer. Disk Drill, for example, is one of the best data recovery programs around and includes a button at the end of the retrieval process that will open the folder where your recovered CUE files are located.
If you find that CUE files are randomly being deleted from your computer, it’s a good indication that your hard drive is failing. In these cases, it’s a good idea to make a backup image of the drive to avoid further data loss. Another reason is that your computer has been infected by a virus or some form of malware.
Backups are the easiest way to recover CUE files that were saved over. Windows machines also have a built-in feature that allows you to retrieve older versions of X files, as long as you enabled the tool before the overwriting occurred. Mac has a similar feature called Time Machine. Alternatively, you can use Windows System Restore to return your PC to a previous point in time, but you’d need to have created a backup prior.