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How to recover files deleted from Linux

Accidental file deletion is one of the most common reasons of data loss. Yet, in most cases this issue can be solved by an efficient data recovery tool. A valuable file deleted from Linux can be successfully restored and the chances for success depend on the file system used.

Note: Like in any other data loss case, recovery of deleted files is possible as long as the deleted files are not overwritten with some other information. For this reason, it is highly recommended to stop all operations with the storage you have accidentally deleted data from and immediately start data recovery.

A file system determines the way data is saved, stored and deleted on the device. Linux as an open-source software operating system provides its users with a wide choice of file systems, including Ext2, Ext3 and Ext4, XFS, ReiserFS, JFS (JFS2), etc. These systems are interchangeable within the majority of Linux operating systems.

Note: If you are interested in the mechanism used by the Linux file systems to store data, have a look at the article Understanding file systems.

To restore files deleted from the Linux file systems, SysDev Laboratories offers UFS Explorer Standard Recovery. Despite the difference between these file systems, the steps you should perform to recover deleted files from them are the same.

  1. Download, install and launch UFS Explorer.

Note: For successful recovery never download anything (including data recovery software) to the disk that contains the files you want to recover. Otherwise, the files will be overwritten, which will lead to permanent data loss.

  1. Choose a partition with the needed Linux file system (Ext2, Ext3 and Ext4, XFS, ReiserFS, JFS (JFS2), etc.) or a local disk if you are not sure which partition you have lost data from.

UFS Explorer automatically detects the file system of a partition and shows it in the list. If a user chooses a logical disk, UFS Explorer performs data recovery of one selected file system at a time.

  1. Press Recover to start scanning. Specify general scan parameters if needed and press Start.

  2. After the scanning process is over, browse through the found files and folders, choose the needed ones and save them to a secure storage.

Note: never save the recovered data to the storage you lost it from, this can lead to irreversible data loss.

Last update: 05.07.2018