If files and folders get deleted or if a device is formatted, Ontrack EasyRecovery software can be an alternative to an in-house data recovery service. This blog post has been created to answer some common questions about the software and provide advice for the installation, usage and licensing of the tool.
It is important to note: Continuing to use a device after a data loss scenario can cause irreparable damage to data you are trying to recover. Even simple everyday operations can cause your operating system to overwrite the very files you are trying to recover. For this reason, the best course of action would be to remove the affected drive and connect it up to another machine running Ontrack EasyRecovery. This mitigates the risk of further damage occurring to your data. Downloading the software to the drive that has suffered the data loss is not advised.
Q: How does the licensing work?
All Ontrack EasyRecovery licences last for 365 days from first activation and you can perform an unlimited number of recoveries during this time. The software is compatible with Windows and Mac devices and each licence is assigned to one workstation.
Q: What types of files can Ontrack EasyRecovery recover?
Ontrack EasyRecovery recovers any file whether it has been deleted from the command line, from within an application, the file system, or removed from the recycle bin. Ontrack EasyRecovery also recovers formatted or lost drives and drives with logical file system damage.
Q: I suspect that my drive is physically damaged, what do I do?
Ontrack EasyRecovery is designed only to be used on drives that have suffered a logical data loss but are otherwise healthy devices. If your device has a physical problem (e.g: drive is clicking, device not recognised, water/fire damage) an in-house data recovery service would be required.
Q: I am looking to recover files that were deleted some time ago, does this matter?
Using a device further after a data loss has occurred can significantly reduce the chances of a good recovery. This is because continuing to operate a device runs the risk of overwriting the files you are looking for with new information. For this reason EasyRecovery may not be able to recover useable files in this scenario; however the free trial of the software can be used to confirm this.
Q: Where can I download a trial of Ontrack EasyRecovery?
A trial version of Ontrack EasyRecovery can be downloaded for free from our website.
Once you have chosen your desired version of the software, make sure you enter a valid email address and you will be sent a download link to the installation files via email.
Q: What does the free trial allow me to do?
The free trial of Ontrack EasyRecovery will allow you to perform a scan of the affected device and if successful, view a file listing report before committing to a purchase. To test or save files a full license must be purchased.
Q: I have downloaded and installed the software, what do I do next?
Once installed, open Ontrack EasyRecovery and select ‘Run as Evaluation’ to start the software as a free trial. You would then select your media type, data volume and the type of scan you would like to perform depending on your scenario. Depending on the amount of data on your device, the scan could take a few minutes to a few hours to complete. Once this has finished you will be shown a file listing report, detailing all of the files EasyRecovery has found.
Q: How do I purchase a licence?
A licence can be purchased via our online shop.
Once a purchase is made you will be emailed a serial number. You will then need to open Ontrack EasyRecovery and under Step 1 select ‘click here for activation code’. This will bring up a webpage where you simply enter in your serial number and fill out the required details. Your activation code will then be generated, which you then paste into the box in Step 2. Click ‘Activate Now’ and your product will be activated for 365 days.
Q: If I have completed a scan, will I lose the results if I close down the software?
A: Yes. In order to prevent this from occurring, do not close the software down. If you have your scan results and would like to activate the software to retrieve the files, simply click ‘License activation’ icon on the top toolbar and follow the activation process.
Q: During the scan a message appears saying ‘bad blocks have been detected’. Should I continue?
A: In this situation you would need to safely discontinue using the software and your device. Unfortunately the Ontrack EasyRecovery software cannot help in these circumstances and an in-house data recovery service would be required. If you continue to use a drive that has bad blocks this could cause permanent data loss and further damage to your device.
Q: Can I reactivate the software if I replace my computer?
A: Yes, however this can only be performed a limited number of times. Please email your serial number to firstname.lastname@example.org explaining your scenario and that you would like your licence activated for another use.
Mikey has been with Ontrack for 6 years and is the Partner Program Manager, based out of the Epsom, UK office. He is a regular contributor to the Ontrack blog, usually writing about how different types of data storage technologies work. Outside of work you’ll find him either with a guitar in his hands or learning about rocket science.