Thursday, January 17, 2008

CD Recovery Toolbox Free

I was sure that I'd made a backup of my emails from my college years way back when, and I scoured through my spindle of burned but not well-catalogued CD's and DVD's yesterday hoping to find it and merge them into my Google-Apps enabled email address (I currently have two years of incoming mail and three of outgoing archived in gmail). Unfortunately, no such luck finding it but I did find a CD of old backed-up files that I'd forgotten I had. Among them were older instant messenger conversations from 2002 to 2003 that weren't part of my big mass of IM conversations that went from 2003 to the present.

Seeing that the CD wasn't in the greatest shape, I resolved to move everything out of that CD and into my hard drive for proper archiving before the CD itself went belly up. Unfortunately, my drive was already having issues reading everything, and simply selecting all and pasting it to my hard drive resulted in repeated cyclic redundancy errors.

So I decided to use CD Recovery Toolbox Free, a freeware app I'd seen featured on Lifehacker months ago. I actually downloaded it a while back but uninstalled it after it unsuccessfully tried to take some large movie files off some semi-scratched discs (more on that later).

Anyway, CD Recovery Toolbox comprehensively reads the CD and tries to recover as many files as it can, skipping ones it can't. How comprehensive is it? Well, I started the recovery process before I went to bed, and by the time I woke up, it still had another 10 minutes to go. Thank god it was a CD and not a DVD.

Despite the fact that it took forever, it was able to recover 99% of the files on the CD, and luckily none of the unrecoverables were critical. The recovered files are now back in my hard drive.

As I mentioned earlier, the big downside of CD Recovery Toolbox is that if you have a CD that's taken up by one large file (say, a DivX movie from your old file-sharing days), even if only a tiny part of the CD is scratched, CD Recovery Toolbox won't be able to recover the file at all - it's all or nothing on a per-file basis. Much more reasonable though when recovering a CD with lots of files-- you're bound to get a good portion of it back.

In all, a great product for the price (freeware!). I may not keep it installed all the time, but I'll be keeping the install file handy in case I need to use it again.

The images in this article were taken from the official product website, which also contains the download link and a useful online help guide (the program itself takes no effort to use, but it gives you a better idea if you're considering downloading it for the first time).

Related Posts by Categories

Widget by Hoctro | Jack Book

No comments: