Whether you’ve accidentally deleted a file or have bigger issues like a corrupted or formatted partition, the right data recovery tool can usually bail you out if you neglected to create a backup. Pick the wrong one, though, and you’re likely looking at a wasted expense.
During this review, we’ll be weighing the pros and cons of GetData Recover My Files. GetData has developed a range of tools designed for users with serious data recovery needs, whether they are consumers, business owners or IT professionals. This has created software with some handy features and strong customization options.
During our review we found that the tool generally gets the job done, but we do have some concerns regarding its ability to recover data from deleted partitions. Additionally, Recover My Files runs much more slowly than other professional favorites and is not able to detect lost partitions, but also does not offer system-startup discs for non-booting machines.
For a big picture look at how the various data recovery options stack up with one another, be sure to check out our best data recovery software roundup. Or, read on to find out exactly what GetData’s take can do to find out if it’s the best data recovery tool for you.
Recover My Files comes only comes in PC flavor. Mac users will need to look elsewhere. While you can download and run scans using Recover My Files for free, to actually recover files you’ll need to buy a license. Pricing is in line with similarly featured tools and comes with three different licensing options.
$ 69 95Lifetime
$ 99 95Lifetime
$ 349 95Lifetime
Basic recovery. License is good for two computers.
Advanced recovery. License is good for two computers.
Advanced recovery. Commercial license aimed at IT professionals.
The following table will give you a quick overview of what you get with a GetData license.
The feature list compares well with most other data recovery options. We especially like that its Professional License edition supports RAID storage recovery, matching services like Prosoft Engineering Data Rescue and EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard.
Still, there are a few things we’d like to see added. These include system startup disc recovery for machines with damaged boot partitions and optical media recovery.
If you’re looking for these features, take a look at Stellar Phoenix Data Recovery Pro, instead. Recover My Files supports all the file systems we’d like to see.
This includes Mac file types, despite not having a Mac client:
- FAT 1, FAT 16, FAT 32 (Windows)
- exFAT (Windows)
- NTFS, NTFS5 (Windows)
- HFS, HFS+ (Mac)
The tool also supports recovery of more than 200 different file types, which is in line with other tools. It would be nice if you could define new file types for the scan. However, the only “top” tools that offer that capability are Stellar Phoenix (PC and Mac versions) and Data Rescue ( Mac version only).
Startup Recover My Files and its wizard will walk you through the recovery process step by step. This in line with its competition, however Recover My Files offers a range of choice when setting up the scan few other services do.
The first thing you’ll need to do is select a recovery type.
You can pick either “recover files” or “recover a drive.” The recover files option will find files deleted by you, a program or even a virus. Recover a drive, and Recover My Files will reconstruct data volumes lost due to formatting, corruption or a system rebuild.
Let’s peek at “recover files,” first. Hit “next” and you’ll be asked to choose a file partition. We picked our data drive, “D.”
There are also buttons to “add image” and “add RAID.” Add image lets you scan from a cloned copy of your partition. Add RAID lets you recover from RAID storage, though you’ll need a professional or technician license to use this feature.
The next step asks if you want to just look for deleted files (ones that you’ve emptied from your recycle bin) or deleted and lost files, which includes files deleted by programs and lost during shutdowns.
The first option mirrors a “quick scan,” which is terminology used by most other data recovery programs. The second option is analogous to a “deep scan” since it scans free space in the volume to reconstruct files based on file-type patterns.
If you decide to scan using the second option, the wizard adds one more step before initiating the scan: it asks you what types of files you want to scan for.
You can check off file categories or feed Recover My Files a specific file extension. We love the addition of this step, as many data recovery tools don’t let you pick what types of files the scan reconstructs.
Narrowing the search will speed the scan up if you’re looking for something specific. This helps, since as we’ll see in our “testing” segment, Recover My Files runs much longer than competing tools like Stellar Phoenix and EaseUS.
Regardless of whether you go with a quick or deep scan, the process after this step behaves similarly: the scan initializes and the waiting begins. A progress bar at the top of the interface gives you some idea of how far along the scan is but that’s all. There’s no “time remaining” counter like you’ll get with most other tools.
Once the scan completes, you can browse recovered files by using navigation panel on the left side of the tool. Recover My Files does a nice job by letting you browse files based on the partition’s file tree or sort content based on file type or deleted status. Many other tools don’t make it so easy to sort through data.
Items you’ve deleted will be located in the “recycle bin” folder if you’re sorting through data by the file tree. As you click on any given folder in the navigation pane, contents of that folder get displayed in the big “file list” pane on the right. Click on any file in this pane, and you may be able to preview its contents in the smaller pane below.
Click the radio button beside any folder or file to tag it for recovery. If you’re not ready to recover data, you can save your scan to reload later by clicking “save.” That way you don’t have to run it all over again.
Before we reveal the results of our testing, let’s go back to the first step in the recovery process and check out the second option, “recover a drive.” By selecting this option and hitting next, you can scan either your full hard drive or a partition.
Lost or deleted partitions don’t necessarily get displayed in this step (ours didn’t), so you’ll need scan the full hard drive to see if it can be recovered. We weren’t impressed by this limitation since other data recovery tools were able to pull our deleted drive information from the partition table for scanning, rather than making us go through a full scan.
The next step asks if you want to recover all files or select files, which will speed your scan up some.
Hit “next” and the scan begins. Once completed, in theory you should be able to select your lost partition drive in the navigation pane. As we’ll discuss next, though, Recover My Files was one of the few tools we tested that couldn’t complete this task.
We walked Recover My Files through its paces thoroughly to see how it compared to other solutions in the data recovery space. Our tests included quick and deep scans of our 518GB data partition and a full hard drive scan.
We created a 10GB test partition, loaded it with data and deleted it to see if we could recover its contents. On our data partition, we also created and deleted three test files: a .jpg image, a .mp4 video and a Word document.
|Quick Scan Time||10 seconds|
|Deep Scan Time||11 hours, 30 minutes|
|Word Doc Recovered|
|Video File Recovered|
|Image File Recovered|
|Full Hard Drive Scan||17 hours|
|Recovered Deleted Partition|
Deep scans with Recover My Files run much longer than scans with most other tools we tested. It should be noted, that longer scans don’t mean more thorough scans in our estimation.
That said, we liked how well Recover My Files performed on certain tasks, like recovering data from intact partitions. That means the tool should work fine for getting data back from inaccessible partitions.
However, the tool didn’t work so well when it came recovering our lost partition. The full hard drive scan required to attempt this operation takes much too long, then didn’t actually succeed in the task.
Support for Recover My Files includes good knowledge resources and three different direct contact methods.
The support site includes a quick start guide, PDF guide and video guides. Multiple support “chapters” present how-to guides, troubleshooting steps and FAQs, too. We admire not only the breadth of GetData’s resources, but how detailed their materials are, too.
If you prefer to talk to GetData directly about your questions or technical issues, you can contact the via email, telephone or live chat. Both telephone and live support are only available during business hours, though. Also, on several occasions we found their live chat offline even in the middle of a weekday.
Their email support turnaround times are very good. We sent them several emails about general questions we had and received a response within 24 hours every time.
GetData Recover My Files has many traits of a superior data recovery services. The wizard is straightforward and provides many scan and sort options. GetData’s support network is also strong.
Unfortunately, the service stumbled on two pretty big counts in our testing: its deep scan algorithms are sluggish and it couldn’t recover our deleted test partition. Given that Recover My Files can’t be used to recover data from non-booting machines due to not having a startup disc recovery, we’d recommend weighing other options.