I just installed Ubuntu 13.04 on my desktop.While installing i selected an option "Replace Windows 7 with Ubuntu " thinking it remove all the files of win 7 in C drive but it deleted all the files and all the partitions.I just had 2 partitions C and D. On the C drive Win 7 was loaded and I had lots of important data on the D drive.It was a 500Gb hard disk. It was split into 60Gb in C and rest 420gb in D.

These data are very valuable to me. I am currently stuck here.Someone please help me to get the data back.

Any suggestion and help is really truly appreciated.

  • I would advise you to try and find a local data recovery professional if the data was indeed valuable. There might be a chance to recover some of it. – DrA7 Aug 10 '13 at 14:12

If I'm not mistaken, the installer has a well said warning that it will delete all your Windows programs, documents, photos, music, and any other files. The correct method of installation is using Something else, then manually deleting and creating the partitions yourself. Also, you should had a backup! The installer did what it was supposed to do, delete everything and install Ubuntu.

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  • I thought replacing it with win 7 will only remove stuffs from the C drive where win 7 was installed.I had no idea it would remove data from the entire hard disk :( – user182938 Aug 10 '13 at 13:37

As others have said, a professional data recovery service is your best bet for recovery; however, if you can't afford such services (they are pricey), you can try it yourself with a couple of tools:

  • TestDisk -- This program can recover whole filesystems. If you're VERY lucky, it might be able to recover your D: partition more-or-less intact. (You'll need to delete your Linux partitions first, though.)
  • PhotoRec -- This program recovers individual files rather than whole partitions. It's more likely to work in your case than TestDisk, but the last I checked, it couldn't recover file names, just their contents. This means you're likely to spend hours sifting through the files it recovers.

There are Windows tools that do the same thing as these Linux programs, and I believe that there are Windows file-recovery tools that can recover filenames, so you might want to search for such a tool before using PhotoRec. I don't have recommendations for specific Windows programs, though.

In either case, you should do a low-level backup of the disk to another disk before attempting any recovery. That way, if your recovery attempt makes matters worse, you can go back to your current state. In Linux, the dd tool can do a low-level backup, as in sudo dd if=/dev/sda of=~/sda-backup.img. This example backs up /dev/sda to a file called sda-backup.img in your home directory. You must have a big enough hard disk partition mounted at /home to hold the backup in this example (you can mount the backup disk elsewhere or even back up to the whole disk rather than to a file -- but you must be very careful to get the disks straight when backing up to a whole disk).


I would advise you to try and find a local data recovery professional if the data was indeed valuable since the partition has likely been erased and the data overwritten.

There might be a chance to recover some of your data.

If you feel confident in your own skills there is a general data recovery guideline in the Ubuntu Community Help Wiki to start you off. Good luck.

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