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May 6, 2014
Android Stuff / Recovering Deleted Files from Android Phone

First off, before reading any further, note that the following solution was used mainly for my Android phone (Samsung Galaxy Ace II x - GT-S7560M) which had been ROOTED awhile back, and which files are usually stored on an EXTERNAL SD CARD by default. I believe the recommended software only supports recovery from FAT-formatted SD Cards, *not* phone storage. Without any further ado, on to my sad tale with a happy ending...

And so, my first ever nightmare with my Android phone came to fruition today. See, I had downloaded a bunch of photos off my Android phone the other day, and organized them neatly into their very own special folders on my computer hard drive. All fine and dandy, right? Yep. Or so I thought. I was about to get materials ready for a dim sum place I had planned to review, and thought I had downloaded all the photos the other day. As it turns out, the dim sum photos were the only ones which were NOT downloaded!!!

Of course, this realization just had to happen *after* I had happily condemned the files to extinction. Oh, if only I had simply checked the folders on my computer to make sure. Yes, I got lazy and sloppy. Yes, I could smack myself the whole day and wallow in misery, but self-pity solves nothing. And so, being the type of person that I am who never seems to understand the meaning of the word "can't", I GOOGLED!

And boy did I Google for solutions, hoping upon hope that maybe there was a folder or something hidden somewhere deep within the root of the Android system I could access. Nope. If there was, it wasn't gonna be easy, so next I scoured F-Droid to see if there was any open-source software that could restore a deleted file. None. Nada. Zilch. Then I tried Googling and came up with Asoftech Data Recovery. Installed it, and it detected my computer drives including the external drives. Unfortunately, it couldn't detect my phone even though it was directly connected to the computer. Yeah, you guessed it right. An uninstall was coming. Sorry Asoftech.

With my pool drying up fast, and the fact that I didn't want to spend the entire day figuring this out, I found myself left with that one other option I dread most - Google Play! *shudder* Nothing wrong with Google Play, but I just simply HATE signing in to anywhere. But, left with little choice, I sucked it up and played along. A quick keyword search for Undelete, and a ton of results presented themselves. So, which to pick? I narrowed down my choices to anything that said Free, and finally decided on Undelete for Root Users by Fahrbot. Reviews were mixed, but come on, it was free. So I gave it a try.

Installation was a breeze like most .apks I had installed. Started it up, and it immediately showed that my external SD Card was detected. Well, that and along with an advertisement bar at the bottom (is anything ever really free?!?!?!), which didn't really bother me much since I was planning to uninstall it anyway once I was done.

In any case, I then clicked Scan Storage, and after awhile a list of deleted items (some of which were pretty old) presented itself... including the items I had accidentally deleted!!! (woohoo!). I clicked Restore on the selected ones, exited the program and after a bit of searching found them restored to a folder named Undelete in my phone (NOT the external card). Exact path from my Computer was GT-S7560M/Phone/Undelete. Good luck! :)

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