At a Glance
- Effective, easy to use, affordable
This affordable sector-based file recovery utility is tried and true, though it’s for Windows files systems only.
Active@ File Recovery Standard is one of the more effective and
affordable sector-based file recovery utilities on the market. At
only about $35, it’s considerably cheaper than R-Studio Data
Recovery, though it lacks that product’s support for
non-Windows file systems. However, like R-Studio, it will deal with
Active@ File Recovery is easy to use and offers both a quick
scan mode for simple undelete operations, and sector-based “super”
scan that will pull up virtually everything that’s ever been
written to a partition, or the entire disk if the partition
structure is wonky. The interface is a bit technical in its
language, but so is the task you’re trying to perform. Still, it’s
not as easy for beginners as Piriform’s free Recuva.
The $65 Professional
version of Active@ File Recovery–the best bargain–comes with
a partition recovery utility. That’s a nice feature to have,
because sometimes by simply restoring a partition you can get your
OS back or recover files using standard copy methods. Like the
Standard version, it installs under Windows only, so you’ll need to
attach the drives you’ll be recovering data from to a working
system. The $100 Enterprise version comes with a boot disk so you
can work directly on a system with a bad drive.
I’ve used Active@ File Recovery several times to good effect: It
recovered all possible data. The demo is fully functional with the
exception that you can pull off files of only 64KB or less in size.
That’s enough for many word processing documents, but forget photos
–Jon L. Jacobi