Sunday, August 28, 2005

GDBN Saved My Bacon

One of the tough things about having just started my company is that I've had to make hard choices about what to spend capital on. One of the things I was waiting on a paying job before buying was an external hard disk for backups. Unfortunately, I ran into a lousy situation where one would have been helpful: my new 300GB disk lost its partition mind while trying to install a fresh copy of Win2K on the first partition of a two-partitioned disk. The data and VS projects I had weren't irreplacable, and it's not like I was under any deadline pressure (I'm still not officially on a contract, so I'm not doing any "real" work yet), but the idea of having to lose some work I'd done was still irritating. Winternal's ERD Commander 2005 is a cool tool, but it didn't recognize the second partition I had my data and projects on. Had I paid more attention to their download page I would have read that their disk commander tool isn't included in their ERD Emergency Download. What a bunch of crap. Why wouldn't they include that, or at least make it available as an option? Yeesh. A quick Google pointed me to Runtime Software's GetDataBack for NTFS. Wow, what a great tool! It did a lengthy scan of my crashed partition and built a complete tree listing all my files on both partitions. I got back all my lost files, and could have recovered a bunch of deleted things as well. The interface isn't perfect, but the bottom line is that it saved me a lot of work reconstructing projects, data, etc. This tool's a steal for $80, and would have been a real lifesaver had I been on paying work. (But then I would have had a backup device had that been the case!)

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