Best file recovery software of 2018

Best file recovery software

In today’s interconnected world, data loss is one of the most damaging things that can happen to a business. Whether it’s through a cyber-attack, natural disaster or human error, losing crucial company files and information can be costly.

When data loss occurs, companies not only have to spend large sums of money, resources and time on fixing holes in security defenses, but they also face reputational damage. This is especially true when personal information is leaked onto the internet or misplaced by firms.

According to a survey from software firm StorageCraft, 31% of IT professionals said that data loss is caused by hardware and system failures, with 29% citing cases of lost data due to human error, and a further 29% pinning the blame on malware.

The question is: what can you actually do when your business is hit by data loss? Luckily, there are ways to recover business files, and it needn’t be a lengthy or costly process. With good file recovery software, firms can retrieve data with a minimum of fuss. Here’s our pick of the best data recovery tools out there.

1. Recuva

A file recovery tool from a big-name software firm

Multi-platform support
Easy-to-use
Works with a range of media including DVDs

Over the years, CCleaner has launched a range of solutions to help Windows and Mac users speed up and optimize their devices. The company also offers a popular file recovery package which is aptly named Recuva.

This software allows you to recover files stored on system drives, external drives and memory sticks, as well as DVDs and CDs, all via an easy-to-use interface. You’re also able to retrieve both damaged and recently formatted data, and the advanced scan mode should help you find deleted and missing files quickly.

Recuva uses military-standard detection techniques to process files, so you don’t have to worry about company information ending up in the wrong hands. What’s more, the software automatically updates itself, another useful touch.

The premium version currently costs £19.95 ($28) and gives you access to regular updates. There’s a free version too, but it doesn't come with customer support.

2. OnTrack EasyRecovery

A comprehensive data recovery platform

Impressive recovery capabilities
Ability to pause the recovery process
Free version available

If you’re looking for a file recovery service that works on both Windows and Mac computers, it’s worth checking out OnTrack EasyRecovery. Described as “comprehensive” and “do-it-yourself” data recovery software, it provides you with the tools to swiftly retrieve data from a range of devices, from hard drives or SSDs (local or external) through to the likes of USB sticks, optical media and RAID volumes.

With the software, you can recover intentionally or accidentally deleted files, and you can rescue corrupt files if your computer has been targeted by a virus or cyber-attack. There’s an in-depth scan feature which can handle more challenging files, too.

Another nifty feature is that EasyRecovery can locate and rebuild corrupt, damaged or deleted volumes across HFS, HFS+, FAT, NTFS or ExFAT-formatted drives. If you’re looking to recover several files at the same time and find that the process is taking too long, you can pause the recovery, and resume it at a later stage.

There’s a free version of the product, with the Home Edition retailing at $79 (£55) and the Professional Edition costing $139 (£98) – that’s for a one-year licence.

3. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard

A highly organized recovery solution

Powerful file search tool
Free version
Windows-only

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard allows you to recover lost, deleted, and corrupt files quickly and easily. It’s described as an effective and “non-destructive” data recovery tool for hard drive retrieval, format retrieval, raw retrieval and partition retrieval.

The program operates a three-step data recovery process, and as for its capabilities, you can search for specific file types to save time, pause and restart the scanning process at a later date, and sort results by file name, file type and date. There’s also the ability to preview files to find out more details about any particular file and its potential recoverability.

The software is Windows-only, and is compatible with Windows XP and Vista, along with Windows 7, 8 and 10 devices at a price of £45 ($63). There’s also a free version, allowing you to try it out before spending any cash.

4. CleverFiles Disk Drill

Recovery software which copes with a vast range of files

Support for 200 file types
Quick and easy-to-use
iOS and Android compatibility

CleverFiles has created a comprehensive data recovery tool for both Windows and Mac. Disk Drill provides you with a quick way to recover critical business documents, music, photos and videos, but will also track files and whole partitions that may have been misplaced on your computer.

The software can recover and reconstruct more than 200 file types using multiple recovery methods. It only takes a few minutes to hook up a storage device and recover lost data. There’s also compatibility with iOS and Android devices, so you can easily recover files on smartphones and tablets.

Indeed, Disk Drill will scan and recover data across a range of devices, including external hard drives, cameras, iPhones, iPads, iPods, Android smartphones and tablets, USB flash drives, e-readers and memory cards. The pro version will set you back $89 (£62) for three devices, but you can also download a free version.

5. Active File Recovery

A wallet-friendly solution for when everything goes wrong

Affordably priced
Still has very solid recovery capabilities 
Only available on Windows

Starting at $30 (£21), Active File Recovery is one of the most affordable data retrieval tools available on the market. Although it’s not expensive, the software certainly doesn’t compromise on features. It’s capable of recovering deleted or lost files and damaged or reformatted volumes, even if your computer isn’t able to boot up.

If you’ve accidentally sent important files to your recycle bin and have emptied it since, you can use this software to retrieve them quickly. Active File Recovery can also restore and repair files damaged by cyber-attacks, malware and power failure.

You can retrieve data from a USB stick, or from a damaged or deleted disk partition or volume. It’s also possible to recover files and media from memory cards and digital cameras.

The software works with Windows XP and Vista, plus Windows 7, 8 and 10, as well as Windows Server 2003, 2008, 2012, 2016.