Data Recovery Will Set You Free

July 20, 2014
July 20, 2014 Jimi AA
Mark Zuckerberg

Move fast and break things. Unless you are breaking stuff, you are not moving fast enough.

Mark Zuckerberg


I have never corrupted a compact flash (CF) card before. Not to say that it isn’t possible, I just had never been faced with the misfortune. Perhaps my staunch, external-media ejecting practices, have lead me down the straight and narrow of file transferring. Even on the 10’s of thousands of frames and hundreds of hours, this card had always held up as a mission critical device. Even though some people will sass me about the manufacturer (Centon) this little lady had always delivered the goods!


The culprit!

After shooting an event like the one Dave Matthews puts on, your entire body is a bit drained, but in the back of your mind you know you still have a few hours of editing to do, after the show. (Photojournalism requires, fast, sometimes instant, turnaround time without too much availability for recouping & relaxing before shifting gears in the workflow)

Recently I got home from a show at about 3am and after browsing the frames in camera I began the file transfer process, ingesting my photos photos from the day to my hard drive. I used 3 cards for the day but when I inserted the final card (shown above) my computer told me that the disk was not recognized nor could it be read. I immediately clicked the prompted “eject” button and put the card back into my camera only to realize there were no viewable photos. I had corrupted my first CF card at 3:32am after the shit show that is DMB. It was nerve wracking feeling. I had to just bite the bullet and deal with it; so I edited several photos from the cards and tried to go to sleep knowing I lost my best work of the night.

The morning brought me some anxiety but I was motivated to find a solution. And did I ever!!! After intense googling and forum scouring, I quickly realized CG Security’s  Photorec is top-notch data recovery software. I hadn’t touched the card since I realized the corruption and was now time recover some files. Photorec is command prompted which can be very intimidating for even the most savvy users. Luckily, “I get by with a little help from my friends.” My good buddy is a computer programmer and is not phased by Terminal (for Mac users) at all. Via Google hangout he walked me through the necessary commands to make this very power software operate. Then 8 minutes later POOF! Every single file lost had been recovered to a directory of my choosing with only 2 of the 165 files experiencing degradation. Pretty spectaular, seeing as how I almost threw the card at the wall only hours earlier.

AMAZING software

Big thanks to CG Security!!!


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