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I accidentally erased a 2 TB harddisk while trying to create ubuntu startup disk on my 2GB pendrive. Instead of erasing the 2 GB pendrive I think I erased the 2TB external hardisk using the Startup Disk Creator. It took only less than 5 seconds for the startup disk creator to erase my 2TB external harddisk. Also when I open the affected external 2TB drive there are no files visible, but the properties of the disk shows 1.2TB of the space as used (same as the size of the data I had stored in it previously before accident). Please see this image.
So I believe that the original data is somewhere in broken/invisible formats inside the disk. That is my only hope. I don't have a alternate 2TB harddisk to take a backup or to perform testing. I can neither avail or afford one right now in my place. So I don't want to mess up further by choosing a wrong recovery method on the original affected disk. My clients would be mad to listen to these stories for delays in my current deliverable, but getting fired or loosing business is the least of my problems now. This external hardisk is more important and is everything I had in my life and career.
To recover the data, I have already gathered ideas about testdisk and photorec from this posting and several others in google. I didn't try any of them on the affected hard disk. But I did try both testdisk and photorec on other portable devices for testing purpose. For instance, I tested them on a pendrive and retrieved files like a broken pieces from postmortem. It will be of no use, if that is what the recovery tools can provide it will be too impossible for me to rearrange, rename and understand the data/files of total size which is around 1.5 TB. The data involves most possible formats of images, sounds, videos, scripts, programs, codes, design files etc.. Isn't there a way to just undo this accident (that took only 5 seconds) and get back all my files as it is? Because the properties of the external drive still shows 1.2 Tb as used and only 800 GB out of 2 TB as free.
I would loose 10 years of my life's work, designs, programs, all critical files, projects and priceless family memories. I am a living dead if I can't get back my data. Most of the post with similar issues are dated 2012 or before, so I believe there should have been some technology improvements to undo this by now. I know I am foolish to have something that I considered worth more than my life in one single external Hard disk. But it had been that way ever since I started computing and I never faced any single issue so far. I was using windows and only recently I switched to ubuntu. And I made this mess while using ubuntu's in-built Startup disk creator. Infact the hard-disk was only my backup and I used to have the working copies in my laptop. But my bad time, I had also crashed my laptop recently while I was trying to render an animation using Blender and this week I lost the main backup data in hard-disk too. I can never recover from this tragedy and I request that if anyone knows a solution to recover data and files from the 2Tb hard-disk data, please share me.
Please help! Should I run testdisk or photorec on my external Hard disk? Can it restore all the files as it is? Or do we have any other solution to resolve this, as my hard-disk is not totally empty and it's properties shows 1.2Tb as used space?