Retrieving lost files

Is it possible to retrieve files that were lost after a hard drive is formatted (NTFS)? And if it is possible,...

how so and what software do I use?

Not unless they were backed up, no. Unless you plan for it in advance, you can't even recover files that were deleted from an NTFS drive. (You can do this with FAT drives, since a deleted file on a FAT drive just clears the name out of the table but leaves the bytes. Utilities can scan for the orphaned bytes and recover the file.) With NTFS, you've got to use something like Norton's utility that preserves the files in a special recycle bin when you delete them. I don't know of any way to do what you're asking.

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This was first published in June 2002

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