Have you lost an important file on your PC lately? Maybe you accidentally deleted a project file or experienced a power outage while moving it? Whatever the case, your presence here means you’re looking for a data recovery program to restore your files.
Data recovery software is designed to help you recover your lost data, whether due to accidental deletion, formatting errors, or a whole host of other reasons. They scan your drive for any recoverable data through “file carving,” and allow you to relocate them elsewhere.
Not all data recovery programs are created equal, though. So, to help you decide well, we’ve compiled a list of 2022’s best data recovery software for Windows and Mac, based on extensive testing of over 50 programs.
5 Best Data Recovery Software to Retrieve Lost Data
While data loss is a part of digital life, it doesn’t always have to be permanent. And here are the five best data recovery software to help you out in crucial situations.
|Factors||Disk Drill Data Recovery||EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard||Recuva||Wondershare Recoverit||R-Studio|
|Starting Price of Paid version||$89.00||$69.95||Free||$69.99||$49.99|
|Max Recovery Size with Free Trial||500 MB||2 GB||Unlimited||100 MB||256 KB|
1. Disk Drill Data Recovery – Best Overall
Platforms: Windows (7 and up), macOS (X 10.11.6 and up)
Supported file systems: HFS, NTFS5, APFS, RAW, FAT12/16/32, NTFS, exFAT, HFS+, ext2/3/4
Free Trial: 500 MB
- Basic – Free
- PRO – $89
- Enterprise – $499
Disk Drill is a powerful yet simple data recovery program that allows you to recover data without much effort. Users can perform various types of scans with this highly versatile data recovery tool.
With Quick Scan, you can locate recently deleted files and recover them as they were prior to their deletion. If you require a greater level of recovery, a Deep Scan will take the pieces left behind in your storage and reconstruct the lost files. However, some files often require renaming after a Deep Scan recovery.
A user with a basic understanding of computers will find it easy to retrieve their missing files with Disk Drill’s intuitive interface. But users with more experience will also enjoy its extensive recovery capabilities.
AddSourceitionally, the tool offers free data safety tools to assist you in recovering recently removed files. For example, the Recovery Vault feature guards specific files and folders with an added layer of security. It even lets you create byte-level backups of a drive to restore a failing drive.
- Estimation of recovery chances
- Streamlined interface and file recovery
- Support every disk-based drive
- Advanced algorithms for recovering difficult-to-locate files
- Toolkits for data protection
- Technical support isn’t available by phone
2. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard – Best For Beginners
Platforms: Windows (Vista and up), macOS (12.5 to X 10.9)
Supported file systems: HFS, NTFS5, APFS, RAW, FAT12/16/32, NTFS, exFAT, HFS+, ext2/3, ReFS
Free Trial: Up to 2 GB
- Monthly – $69.95
- Annual – $99.95
- Lifetime – $149.95
EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard offers users an easy way to restore lost or deleted data. With its clear interface, the tool is easy to use even for those with basic computer skills. And surprisingly, you can get back two gigabytes of data using the tool’s free trial version.
To make your job easier, its intuitive interface lets you preview items before restoring them to ensure the restoration of the correct files. Besides, a filter lets you specify what types of files to look for during the scanning process.
But best of all, EaseUS covers a wide range of data loss situations, including partition formatting, inadvertent file deletion, or malware infiltration. And it supports all disk-based storage and recovers thousands of files.
- An intuitive interface takes the stress out of data recovery
- The EaseUs website has a comprehensive knowledge base for data recovery assistance
- Recovers Exchange mailboxes and databases from MS SQL
- Preview option for quicker identification
- 2 GB file recovery with the trial version
- The subscription-based pricing model is pretty expensive
- Larger video file recovery slows down progress
- Doesn’t show an estimated recovery time
3. Recuva – Best For Free Data Recovery
Platforms: Windows (XP and up)
Supported file systems: NTFS, FAT32, exFAT
Free Version: Unlimited Data Recovery
- Basic – Free
- PRO – $19.95
The Recuva data recovery program is designed to be both powerful and easy to use. This tool can undelete files from hard drives, USB flash drives, and memory cards. And all of these come for free.
With Recuva’s deep scan feature, you can search for traces of deleted files in the free space on your hard drive. This is a useful tool if you want to ensure that all recoverable files are found.
Although the process of scanning and recovering data can be slow, the program offers a helpful wizard to guide you through each step. After scanning, you can filter and sort your results by file type, date deleted, or even the estimated probability of successful recovery.
However, the free version lacks some features found in the premium version, such as virtual hard drive support and automatic updates. But for basic data recovery needs, the free version of Recuva is more than enough.
- Unlimited data recovery for free
- Freeware, low-cost Pro version
- Clutter-free design
- Preview screen
- Securely deletes files
- Slow recovery speed, especially the free version
- Not available for Mac
4. Wondershare Recoverit – Best For Mac Data Recovery
Platforms: Windows (7 and up), macOS (10.6 and up)
Supported file systems: APFS, HFS+, FAT12/16/32, exFAT, NTFS
Free Version: 100 MB of Data Recovery
- Essential – $69.99 per year
- Standard – $79.99 per year
- Premium – $99.99 per year
When it comes to Mac data recovery, Wondershare Recoverit is one of the best options available. The software can recover lost or deleted data from your Mac’s hard drive as well as external storage devices far quicker than most of its competitors.
The program exploits Mac’s Time Machine feature to enable you to perform a targeted search for lost files. With its deep scan function, Wondershare Recoverit can find even more deeply hidden files.
Besides its excellent data recovery capabilities, Wondershare Recoverit also offers a user-friendly interface. The program’s intuitive design makes it easy to use, even for those with little computer experience.
And one of the best features of the program is its ability to create a bootable USB drive. This is useful if your Mac is unbootable due to data loss or corruption. With the bootable USB drive, you can recover your data without having to worry about overwriting the lost files.
- Quick and easy data recovery
- Can create a bootable USB drive
- Supports a wide range of file types
- User-friendly interface
- The pricing plans are a bit expensive
- The free version only allows you to recover 100 MB of data
5. R-Studio – Best for Damaged Disks and Storage Networks
Platforms: Windows (2000 and up, also Windows Server), macOS (10.6 and up), Linux
Supported file systems: NTFS, FAT12/16/32, exFAT, ReFS, HFS+, APFS
Free Version: 256 KB
Price: Commercially sold across various formats, starting at $49.99
R-Studio is a powerful data recovery program that can recover lost or deleted data from damaged disks and storage networks. The software supports a wide range of file systems, making it an excellent choice for those with a diverse range of storage needs.
If you have a network of computers, R-Studio can be installed on a server and allow you to recover data from client computers. This is a useful feature if you want to centralize your data recovery efforts.
One of the best features of R-Studio is its ability to create disk images. This is useful if you want to recover data from a disk that is too damaged to be scanned directly. By creating a disk image, you can bypass the damaged areas and still recover your data.
R-Studio also offers a wide range of features for advanced users. With its hex editor, you can directly edit disk sectors. And with its RAID reconstruction feature, you can even recover data from a failed RAID array.
- Can recover data from damaged disks and storage networks
- Supports a wide range of file systems
- Can be installed on a server for centralized data recovery
- Can create disk images
- Doesn’t have a user-friendly interface
- The free version is very limited
- The hex editor and RAID reconstruction features are among the many features only available in the paid version
Related Reading: Do Data Recovery Companies Look At Your Files
How Do Data Recovery Software Work?
All data recovery software works in a similar way. When you remove a file from your PC, the data isn’t actually erased from your hard drive. Instead, the file’s occupied space is just designated as being available for overwriting.
As long as you do not overwrite the space that the deleted file occupied, the data will be recoverable. A data recovery program simply scans your hard drive for these unoccupied spaces and recovers the data that was stored in them by piecing together the fragments.
This is why it is advisable to not use your computer after you have lost data. Any new data that is written to your hard drive will overwrite the space that the lost data occupied and make it unrecoverable.
Do You Really Need Data Recovery Software?
In most cases, you will not need data recovery software. If you have accidentally deleted a file, you can usually recover it from the Recycle Bin. And if you have lost data due to a virus or system crash, you can usually restore it from a restore point or backup.
Data recovery software is only really necessary if you have lost data due to a physical issue with your hard drives, such as a head crash or bad sector. In these cases, the data is not simply marked as being available for overwriting. The data is actually physically damaged and cannot be recovered without special software.
Now, when it comes to paying for data recovery software, there is no need to break the bank right away. Unless you are a power user who needs the advanced features for regular business use, you can get by with a free or low-cost data recovery program.
So, there you have it. We hope you find these insights into the best recovery software helpful in making an informed decision.
Disk Drill ranks as our best pick based on its strong combination of excellent performance and comprehensive support for the widest variety of devices. But if you have to retrieve your files from a damaged drive, R-Studio is definitely your best bet.
On a final note, keep in mind that the best data recovery software is only as good as your last backup. So make sure to create regular backups of your important files to avoid having to use recovery software in the first place.