So, long story short... My brother wanted to play the pc technician and went on and formatted our main computer. I had Ubuntu 14.04 LTS on a ext4 partition running there, hoping he wouldnt be so eager to mess with it since it would be more difficult. It wasn't hard for him, and he formatted it first to ext4 again, and when he couldn't get linux installed formatted it to fat32. Then he formatted again (im not sure why at this point) to ntfs. So, I lost some data (most of it I had backups for) buut, I lost some videos of a very important moment for me...

Is there any way to get my files back? I had a .7z file with all the videos inside, and every single video uncompressed as well.

Looking forward to your answers, and already grateful,

PS: Would that still work if the formatting was done by replacing all data with 0's? Could I possibly know if so? I haven't touched that drive since the formatting. Bismund

  • 1
    possible duplicate of How to recover deleted files?
    – JoKeR
    May 23, 2015 at 23:01
  • By default the format command replaces the disk's indexing, but does NOT erase (write zeros) the content. So doing this three times may be no worse than just once. However, if you (or younger brother) chose the non-quick format (eg. overwrite / erase all data), then this repeated three times may actually remove much of the data. You have not provided enough detail to be sure. If is critical that you recover the data, take the drive to a professional.
    – david6
    May 24, 2015 at 4:36
  • Did you read this answer? It worked for me on a dead LVM volume w/o backup (worse situation that yours)
    – 0x2b3bfa0
    May 24, 2015 at 12:11
  • Well I do not understand too much as well, so maybe I'll take it to a professional!
    – Bismund
    May 24, 2015 at 18:59

2 Answers 2


it still may be possible to recover. Checkout the wiki here:

TestDisk is my go to app for such things:

I would boot into a live ubuntu cd / usb drive and install testdisk.

sudo apt-get install testdisk

There are two ways. If you have an NTFS hard drive, testdisk may be the solution. You can get it by typing sudo apt-get install testdisk and run it with sudo testdisk.

However, if Testdisk fails to undelete, photorec is the more advanced option. You can install it with the command above, but with photorec instead of testdisk. When using photorec, you can set it to exclusively filter video files. This makes recovery easier.

(I myself had deleted an important project by mistake, so this is what happened to me. :)

Photorec Documentation

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