Free Hard Drive Recovery Software

Your first reaction may be to panic when you find you have accidentally deleted files from your hard drive. There’s no need to worry if you have effective hard drive recovery software like Disk Drill. This comprehensive application lets you recover files from a hard drive on your Windows system with a few simple clicks. So relax and read on to find out how to quickly and easily recover deleted files.
Free Hard Drive Recovery Software
We are going to show you how Disk Drill can help you get back deleted files from your hard drive for free. This software tool is filled with features that make data recovery easy and help protect your important files. We will talk about what Disk Drill can and can’t do as well as the devices and file formats the app supports. Read on to see how this data recovery solution can help you restore your lost data.

Disk Drill - Powerful Yet Simple Hard Drive Recovery Software

Disk Drill is the creation of the technical team at CleverFiles and has been helping users with hard drive recovery for over ten years. The application combines sophisticated recovery algorithms wrapped in a user-friendly interface that enables any user to recover data that was lost or accidentally deleted.

Disk Drill is packed with features that make it an excellent tool for recovering and protecting your valuable data. Some highlights include:

  • imgIntuitive user interface designed for easy recovery;
  • imgFast scanning capabilities that enable you to quickly recover recently deleted files;
  • imgAdvanced deep scanning algorithms that can identify and reconstruct over 400 different file formats;
  • imgSupport for a wide variety of storage devices in addition to your computer’s main hard drive;
  • imgData protection tools that allow you to secure important files and folders from accidental deletion;
  • imgThe ability to create byte-level backups that can be used for data recovery for additional protection.
hard drive recovery

Disk Drill for Windows offers users a free trial period during which they can recover up to 500 MB of hard drive data before upgrading to the paid version of the application. This allows prospective customers to discover how the app can help them without any financial investment. The free trial includes the ability to use the data protection tools that are part of this excellent hard disk recovery software.

Disk Drill is also available for Mac computers and offers the same high-quality recovery capabilities. It has a slightly different user interface and the free trial allows users to preview recoverable data before purchasing the Pro version of the tool.

Recover Data From a Variety of Devices

Disk Drill can successfully recover data from virtually any type of disk-based storage device, including:
  • Internal Hard Drives
    Internal Hard Drives
    Seagate®, Western Digital®,
  • External Hard Drives
    External Hard Drives
    Adata®, LaCie®, Transcend®, Maxone®
  • SSDs
    Kingston®, Samsung®, PNY®, SanDisk®, Crucial®
See also: Examine our full-fledged guide on how to recover data from a dead external hard drive.

Supported File Formats

Disk Drill can recover files in over 400 different formats. Here’s a sampling of the file types that the tool can restore.
  • Video
    AVI, FLV (Flash video), WMV (Windows Media Video), MOV (Apple QuickTime movie), MP4 (MPEG-4 video), WebM, MKV (Matroska Video)

    3G2 / 3GPP2 / 3GP / 3GPP (Videos for 3G UMTS services), CRM (Canon raw movie file), DIR (Adobe Director Movie), DV (Digital Video), DXR (Protected Adobe Director Movie), FCP (Final Cut Pro), FLA (Editable Adobe Flash movie), MOV (Apple QuickTime movie), MPA (MPEG-2 Audio File), MXF (Material Exchange Format), R3D (Redcode Raw video image), SWF (Flash movie), TS (Video Transport Stream File), WEBM (HTML5 WebM Videos) and more

  • Audio
    MP3 (MPEG Audio Stream, Layer III), OGG, AAC (Advanced Audio Coding), WMA (Windows Media audio files), FLAC

    AA (Audible Audio Book), CDA (CD Audio Track), FLP (FruityLoops Project), M4A (Apple Lossless Audio), MID (MIDI), MP2 (Audio file format used with MPEG Audio Stream; recovered as MPA), MPA (Audio file compressed with MPEG Layer II compression), MPC (Musepack Compressed Audio File), OGA (audio extracted from OGG; recovered as OGG), PTF (Pro Tools Session File), RA (Real Audio), RNS (Reason Song File), SIB (Sibelius Score), VOC (Creative Labs Voice), WAV (DTS-WAV), ZRV (Philips Voice Traver) and more

  • Images
    JPG/JPEG, PNG (Portable Network Graphic), BMP, TIFF (Tagged Image File Format), PSD, EPS, AI (Adobe Illustrator), RAW

    DJVU, TGA, PGM, DNG, PNG, HEIC, WMF, APM, DPX, JNB, JPG, KEY, WEBP, PCX, MPO, AFPHOTO, ALBM, ANI, DXF. Fujifilm: RAF. GoPro: GPR. Leica/Panasonic: RW2, RAW, RWL. Sony: ARW, SRF, SR2. Samsung: SRW. Canon: CR2, CR3. Epson: ERF. Kodak: DCR, KDC. Nikon: NEF, NRW. Olympus: ORF. After Effects Project: AEP. CorelDRAW: CDR. Windows Icon: ICO. ArchiCAD Project: PLA, PLN, TPL. SketchUp: SKP. Scalable Vector Graphics: SVG. Visio Drawing file: VSD and more

  • Document
    DOCX (Microsoft Word), PDF (Portable Document Format), PPTX (Microsoft PowerPoint), XLSX (Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet)

    APK (Android Package), BKF (Windows Backup Utility File), CS (Visual C# Source Code File), CST (Adobe Director External Cast File), DB3 (SQLite3 Database), DGN (MicroStation Design file), DWG (AutoCAD), H (C/C++ Header File), iCash files, JKS (Java KeyStore), LNK (MS Windows Link), MDB (Microsoft Access Database), MSG (Outlook Mail Message), ODG (OpenDocument Graphics), WPS (Microsoft Works Word Processor Document), XML, XMP (Adobe Extensible Metadata Platform) and more

  • Archive
    ZIP (Extended Zip File), RAR (WinRAR Compressed Archive), DMG (Mac OS X Disk Image), 7Z (7-Zip Compressed), CAB (Windows Cabinet File)

    ARJ (ARJ Compressed File Archive), ISO (ISO-9660 CD Disc Image), JAR (Java Archive), MBX (Apple Mail mailbox file), PST (Microsoft Outlook Personal Folders), RDB (Retrospect Backup Set), TAR.XZ (XZ Compressed Tar Archive) and more

  • Other Files
    Other Files
    ACCDB (Microsoft Database), DB (Paradox), SQL (bundled SQL queries), MYO (MYOB Limited Windows File), OTF (OpenType Font)

    RAW (Raw disk images), DD (Forensic DD images), IMG (Sector-by-sector disk images), ISO (Uncompressed disk images), DSK (Byte-to-byte disk images), BIN (Generic disk images), DAT (Legacy binary images), VMDK (Virtual VMWare disks) and more

What Types of Recoveries Does Disk Drill Support?

Disk Drill recovers data in many, but not all situations.
  • supported features


    • Lost partitions
    • Corrupt file systems
    • Files deleted from the hard drive
    • Files from an emptied Recycle Bin
  • not supported features

    Not Supported

    • Physically damaged disks
    • Overwritten files
    • RAID arrays
  • free version

    Free Version

    • Physically damaged disks
    • 500 MB recovery limit
    • Free data protection with Recovery Vault
    • Create byte-level backups of failing disks
    • Intuitive and user-friendly interface
    • Preview files before recovery
    • Wide range of filesystems supported
    • Virtually all disk-based storage devices supported
    • Recovery of over 400 different file types
    • Advanced scanning algorithms with the ability to
      perform quick or deep scans.
  • pro version

    Pro version

    • Physically damaged disks
    • Unlimited data recovery
    • Free data protection with Recovery Vault
    • Create byte-level backups of failing disks
    • Intuitive and user-friendly interface
    • Preview files before recovery
    • Wide range of filesystems supported
    • Virtually all disk-based storage devices supported
    • Recovery of over 400 different file types
    • Advanced scanning algorithms with the ability to
      perform quick or deep scans.
    • Free upgrade for the next version and a 50% discount on
      all subsequent releases.
    • Lifetime upgrades are available at a discounted rate.
    • Up to 3 activations for a single user
5 Easy Steps

How to Recover Deleted Files From Hard Drive

Here’s a guide on how you can use Disk Drill for Windows to recover deleted data from your hard drive.

Download & Install Disk Drill Hard Drive Recovery Software

If the deleted data is on your main hard disk, avoid using it for the download and installation to minimize the chance of files being overwritten. Use a removable storage device instead.
recover hard drive

Launch the App & Select the Drive From the List

Launch the app and select the disk for recovery from the list provided by the application. If the deleted data was on a removable storage device, you should connect it to the machine before launching the program.
recover files from hard drive

Select the Scan Mode & Start Scanning

Choose the scanning mode to be used for the recovery. A quick scan may be sufficient for restoring your data and should usually be tried first. If a quick scan is unsuccessful, Disk Drill’s deep scanning capability can be used for a more complete data recovery. Deep scanning interrogates your drive on a sector-by-sector basis to reconstruct and restore deleted files and file fragments.
hard drive recovery software

Preview the Results & Select the Files

Preview the scan results and select the files that you want to recover. Do not save recovered files to the same device from which they were deleted to prevent accidental file corruption or overwriting the files you wish to save.
hard disk recovery software

Choose the Location & Recover Your Files

Select a safe location to store the recovered data and then perform the recovery of your selected files to their new storage locations. After the process completes, you should verify that the files have been recovered and are usable by the applications that created them in the first place.
hard drive recovery
See also: How to recover data from hard disk which is not detecting.

What to do if nothing helped?

You may encounter situations where none of the previously discussed methods of data recovery are successful. Despite the advanced scanning technology of Disk Drill, it may be impossible for you to restore your valuable data. Perhaps the disk experienced physical damage that cannot be addressed with recovery software. It may be that you have an SSD drive that is damaged and needs another level of expertise to perform a recovery.

Engaging a professional data recovery service is another option you can try that may resolve the problem. Data recovery centers use advanced software and hardware techniques in an attempt to restore the data from broken and damaged storage devices. Here’s a quick rundown of what to do if you need the services of a professional data recovery center.

  1. Search Google for a reliable recovery center. We recommend CleverFiles Data Recovery Center
  2. Contact the recovery center for an initial consultation. You will explain the problem and receive an estimate of recovery costs.
  3. Ship your device to the recovery center. On receipt, technicians will examine the device and give you a firm recovery price. A reputable service will not charge you if they cannot successfully recover your data.
  4. Upon completion of the recovery, your data will be returned to you on a new storage device.
If you have lost valuable data and cannot restore it yourself, a data recovery center may be just what you need. It is a more expensive option than recovery software, so you will have to determine how much your data is worth to you. Using a service is probably your last resort for getting data back from a damaged drive.

Key Points for Successful Hard Drive File Recovery

There are several ways you can increase the probability of successful data recovery with Disk Drill. Following these recommendations gives you a great chance of recovering lost data from your hard drive.
  • Stop using the hard drive
    Stop using the hard drive
    As soon as you realize that data loss has occurred, you should stop using the hard drive. When the Windows operating system deletes a file or folder, it does not physically remove it from your hard drive. It simply marks the space occupied by the item as available for future use by the system. Until the OS reuses this space, the deleted data can be restored with file recovery software.
  • Use a different drive
    Use a different drive
    If the file deletion occurs on your main hard drive, you should download, install and run Disk Drill from a connected USB or thumb drive to preserve the deleted data. In cases where the problem is with a removable drive, you should immediately disconnect it from your computer until you are ready to perform the recovery. These tactics are designed to prevent overwriting or corrupting the data that you wish to recover.
  • Use a reliable recovery tool
    Use a reliable recovery tool
    You might only get one chance to recover your lost data. Don’t risk it with an inferior recovery application. Disk Drill has a proven track record of successful data recovery and should be your first choice when faced with restoring your valuable information.
  • Create a byte-level backup
    Create a byte-level backup
    The byte-level backups that can be generated with Disk Drill include deleted files that are not visible to the operating system. Therefore, they can be used by Disk Drill to recover the lost data.
  • Backup your files
    Backup your files
    You should follow best practices and regularly perform backups of your hard drive for use in the event of data loss. In addition to any other backup tools you use, consider taking advantage of the byte-level backups that can be made with Disk Drill. They offer extra protection and can be used to recover files that were deleted at the time the backup was taken.
  • Recover your data to a new location
    Recover your data to a new location
    Don’t try to recover your data to the same disk or device that experienced the data loss. Doing this runs the risk of overwriting or corrupting files as they are being recovered, making them permanently unrecoverable. It the issue is with your main hard drive, consider using a removable USB drive to ensure a successful recovery.

Don’t Just Recover Files - Protect Them

File Recover is for when files have been deleted or erased by accident. Far better is to protect files in the first place. Disk Drill comes with Recovery Vault, which goes further than Recycle Bin ever has. It monitors important files to protect them from erasure, and files that are deleted get tracked so even if the Recycle Bin is emptied, they can be brought back without delay.
hard drive recovery software

Frequently Asked Questions

Updated on by Disk Drill Team

Hard drives can fail for a variety of reasons. Some of the most common include exposure to excessive heat or moisture, electrical power surges, faulty firmware, and mechanical errors. A hard drive can also fail due to a corrupted file system which can result from a malware or virus attack.

The cost of hard drive data recovery can range anywhere from $0 to hundreds and even thousands of dollars—it all depends on which approach you choose. Professional data recovery services are typically the most expensive option, while backups and free data recovery software don't cost anything.
Data recovery software scans an entire storage device sector by sector, looking for deleted files that haven't yet been overwritten by new data. It then presents the user with a list of all recoverable files.

The broken hard drive must be readable in order to recover its data. If it cannot be read you can’t use data recovery software to restore your lost data. In cases where you cannot achieve access to the drive, you may be forced to send it to a professional hardware recovery service.

You will know if your hard drive has crashed or is about to crash if:

  1. Your computer will not start.
  2. You are experiencing inordinately long wait times when opening files.
  3. Files are missing or corrupt and unusable.
  4. Strange sounds are emanating from your hard drive.

The best data recovery software applications for Windows are:

  1. Disk Drill for Windows;
  2. Recuva;
  3. TestDisk and PhotoRec;
  4. MiniTool Power Data Recovery;
  5. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard;
  6. UnDeleteMyFiles Pro;
  7. Wise Data Recovery;
  8. PC Inspector File Recovery;
  9. Stellar Data Recovery Software.
Disk Drill 4
    Windows 7 SP1+, 44 MB
    Use Disk Drill 2.x for Windows XP & Vista

    4.6 by 110 users
    Submit your review
    Version 4.0.537, released on 24th Sep, 2020
  • 10+ Million
  • 500,000+
    in 150+ countries

How Disk Drill serves other users

  • djsumpter
    Thank you for your great product "Disk Drill." I have it installed on windows xp and have used it to restore data from an accidentally formatted external ntfs drive.
  • «Disk Drill is a practical and intuitive utility that can successfully assist you in regaining access to lost or damaged files from a variety of disk or file system types, making it quite worthy for considering, should you be in the market for such a tool.» by Marina Dan
Used by world famous companies