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sincx
Jul 13, 2012

furiously masturbating to anime titties

I've noticed that it's fairly easy to recover accidentally deleted files from spinning hard drives using any decent recovery software (for example, Recuva or Testdisk/Photorec), as long as I don't wait too long after deletion.

But recovering accidentally deleted files from flash drives, SD cards, or SSDs in the same way seems impossible, even if I try to do it right after deletion. The recovery programs can see the files names and meta data, but the recovered files are gibberish. Opening them up in a hex editor shows random bytes.

Why does this happen? Does flash storage do something weird with unallocated sectors or wear leveling that prevents standard data recovery programs from working? I thought that wear leveling, etc. happen only on write, so theoretically recovering deleted files should work in the same way.

Anyone have any ideas?

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sincx
Jul 13, 2012

furiously masturbating to anime titties

Don Lapre posted:

Have you tried photorec/testdisk

Unfortunately yes, as I mentioned in the OP. Testdisk has the same behavior as Recuva (sees filenames and metadata, but recovered files are gibberish), and PhotoRec scans but doesn't find files.

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