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How to get back my data from a RAW USB flash drive?

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I have two USB flash drives, 8 and 16 gigs that I bought on eBay from Hong Kong. They worked fine for months then suddenly I got corrupt data and could not access it , but my important files were still there and I also suddenly found that I had not made a back up. It seems they are now somehow in RAW format .How can I get the raw data into FAT32 or NTFS? I am assuming they are still physically good. I tried googling a solution and found there were many recovery programs. Many people on the internet recommended me to apply some freeware to recover my data and then tried to format my drive such as iCare Data Recovery Free and Recuva and their links: http://www.piriform.com/recuva

http://download.cnet.com/iCare-Data-Recovery-Free/3000-2248_4-75628752.html Any help would be appreciated. But I have no any idea of them, what should I do? Any help would be appreciated.

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I have two USB flash drives, 8 and 16 gigs that I bought on eBay from Hong Kong. They worked fine for months then suddenly I got corrupt data and could not access it , but my important files were still there and I also suddenly found that I had not made a back up. It seems they are now somehow in RAW format .How can I get the raw data into FAT32 or NTFS? I am assuming they are still physically good. I tried googling a solution and found there were many recovery programs. Many people on the internet recommended me to apply some freeware to recover my data and then tried to format my drive such as iCare Data Recovery Free and Recuva and their links: http://www.piriform.com/recuva

http://download.cnet.com/iCare-Data-Recovery-Free/3000-2248_4-75628752.html Any help would be appreciated. But I have no any idea of them, what should I do? Any help would be appreciated.

First thing you need to make a RAW copy of the stick (if possible).

Typically there are two possible "family" of issues:

  1. partition/filesystem level issues (even a single byte with the wrong value may turn a working stick in a "RAW" one)
  2. actual hardware/controller/memory issues (these cannot be solved easily with "common" software, in some cases they may using "special" tools)

The first are normally fixable.

Which OS are you using?

I will assume a NT based system, then use datarescuedd to make a RAW (or dd-like) image of those sticks, see:

http://www.datarescue.com/photorescue/v3/drdd.htm

What often happens (no way to know if this is what happened to you, but the fact that it happened to TWO sticks - I presume coming from the same source might be a symptom that you got a couple "fakes").

There are ways to set the stick in such a way that an OS will see a larger size than what is really in the flash of the stick.

The unsuspecting user uses the stick "normally" until, a certain day, the amount of the "real" flash in the stick is reached and data simply "wrap arounds", overwriting the beginning of the flash.

JFYI, (for the future) whenever you buy a USB flash stick you must check it with one of the available testing programs to make sure that the "label capacity" is actually there.

For the moment just choose one of the two sticks and make the image with datarescuedd (once you have done it post the EXACT size in bytes).

Then post the results of the tests on the actual stick as in here:

jaclaz

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i do not really know what you are talking about. i really have no any idea about the computer things. can't i just use these recovery programs, iCare Data Recovery Free or Recuva?

Sure you can :), but then what is the point then to ask for help/advice?

Doing another thing from what is suggested?

The same thing that you posted how you don't know how to do?

The idea - just for the record - is that BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE you make a clone or dd-like copy of the failed stick (better if two).

This way you can try several different programs/approaches and have always a "way back".

Besides in some cases the actual media may be damaged in such a way that sequential reading (like a dd-like copy does) can get the data while "random access" (which most recovery app use) cannot.

You have been suggested EXACTLY what you are advised to do:

Which OS are you using?

I will assume a NT based system, then use datarescuedd to make a RAW (or dd-like) image of those sticks, see:

http://www.datarescue.com/photorescue/v3/drdd.htm

For the moment just choose one of the two sticks and make the image with datarescuedd (once you have done it post the EXACT size in bytes).
Then post the results of the tests on the actual stick as in here:

Now, if you don't understand the above three suggestions, you are very welcome to ask about them :) and I will gladly try to explain/expand of them but what do you expect that I reply, after havng suggested you to do something if you ask me if you can do something completely different?

Here it is:

NO, DO NOT use those programs on those USB sticks! :no:

Mind you it is perfectly possible that any of them will be able to recover your data :thumbup , but the point is are they the "best" or the "suggested" procedure? :unsure:

NO, they are NOT (if they were I would have probably suggested them instead ;))

jaclaz

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Now for the news thats really going to upset you:

I am betting (Due to the fact were they came from) and the fact they both went out pretty quickly that:

  1. You found these two flash drives that were an AMAZING price,
  2. They probably are not a regular name brand,
  3. If they are it is probably misspelled - i.e. Kincston instead of Kingston or Scandisk instead of Sandisk,
  4. They went out when writing to them.

This is not uncommon. What happened was you got spoofed. They sold you 2gig drives that have been hacked to show as a much greater capacity. What happened was when it got past 2 gigs the bata wrapped around and over-wrote the partition table.

Edit, Now that I read jaclaz's first post I am retarded...

Edited by Kelsenellenelvian
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Now for the news thats really going to upset you:

News? :w00t:

What often happens (no way to know if this is what happened to you, but the fact that it happened to TWO sticks - I presume coming from the same source might be a symptom that you got a couple "fakes").

There are ways to set the stick in such a way that an OS will see a larger size than what is really in the flash of the stick.

The unsuspecting user uses the stick "normally" until, a certain day, the amount of the "real" flash in the stick is reached and data simply "wrap arounds", overwriting the beginning of the flash.

JFYI, (for the future) whenever you buy a USB flash stick you must check it with one of the available testing programs to make sure that the "label capacity" is actually there.

:whistle:

jaclaz

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Edit, Now that I read jaclaz's first post I am retarded...

At least jaclaz was waay faster than you (TWICE) ;)

:lol:

jaclaz

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Kel, don't stop trying. Sometimes it is possible. ;)

Yep, it can happen :thumbup.

Kel should try harder ;).

I know what you're thinking, punk. You're thinking “did he fire six posts or only five?” Now to tell you the truth I forgot myself in all this excitement. But being this ...

:lol:

jaclaz

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