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Stellar Data Recovery review

Our Stellar Data Recovery review: A fast, highly customizable file recovery tool

Stellar Data Recovery review
(Image: © Stellar)

Our Verdict

Stellar Data Recovery is one of the best data recovery tools we’ve used, with highly customizable searches, a huge file-type library, and deep scan abilities.

For

  • Powerful advanced tools
  • Efficient, quick scans

Against

  • Quite expensive
  • Deep scans are slow

In this Stellar Data Recovery review, we’ve examined every aspect of one of the best data recovery software programs in the world. In short, Stellar Data Recovery enables users to retrieve deleted, lost, and unavailable objects from a hard drive, USB stick, or almost any other storage device. What’s more, it’s very popular and comes with a suite of high-end tools.


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Stellar Data Recovery: Plans and pricing

There are six Stellar Data Recovery plans available, with prices ranging from free to $299 per year. The free plan includes standard file recovery tools, but users can only retrieve up to 1GB of data. If you need to retrieve large files, you will need to upgrade.

Stellar Data Recovery review

There are six Stellar Data Recovery plans available. (Image credit: Stellar)

Paid subscriptions start from $49.99 per year for a Standard plan, which includes everything in the free plan along with unlimited data recovery. Those with more advanced needs will benefit from one of the four more advanced Stellar Data Recovery subscriptions. 

These include the Professional ($79.99 per year), Premium ($99.99 per year), Technician ($199 per year), and Toolkit ($299 per year) plans. Each option adds more advanced tools than the one before it, including unbootable system recovery, optical media recovery, corrupt file repair, and RAID data recovery, among other things. 

There is also a Mac version of the Stellar Data Recovery software. However, it’s only available with Professional ($79.99 per year), Premium ($99.99), and Technician ($149) plans. 

Stellar Data Recovery: Features

Stellar Data Recovery is available on both Windows and Mac operating systems. As one of the top hard drive data recovery tools available, it includes powerful features to improve the user experience. 

Stellar Data Recovery review

Stellar Data Recovery is backed by powerful features. (Image credit: Stellar)

For starters, Stellar Data Recovery enables the retrieval of all file formats, including custom ones. Data can be recovered from a computer’s hard drive, external drive, memory card, flash drive, and optical media like CDs and DVDs, among others. 

In addition, Stellar Data Recovery works with both non-bootable and encrypted drives. RAID and virtual drive recovery are also supported, and the software can even repair corrupted photo and video files.

Stellar Data Recovery: Client and client setup

Installing Stellar Data Recovery on a Windows laptop only took us a couple of minutes. On the initial user dashboard, you can select what sort of files (photo, video, etc.) you would like to retrieve. This is useful if you’re looking for a specific file or file type. You can also select what drive and location you want to search, further streamlining the process.

Stellar Data Recovery review

The user interface is simple and intuitive. (Image credit: Stellar)

Meanwhile, there are numerous advanced options that can be tweaked to optimize performance. For example, you can specify exactly what file extensions you’re looking for. New file types can be added if necessary, and safe mode can be activated if you’re concerned about security. More advanced tools are available with higher-end plans.

Stellar Data Recovery: Performance

We tried Stellar Data Recovery on a Windows 10 laptop with 8GB of RAM and a 1TB hard drive. A quick scan of our hard drive took less than four minutes. However, it did use 200MB of RAM and approximately 75% CPU. This high CPU usage is not unusual for data recovery software, so we’d suggest you don’t use this type of software alongside other resource-intensive applications.

Stellar Data Recovery review

A full scan took less than four minutes on our set up. (Image credit: Stellar)

The quick scan recovered everything we expected it to, but there is also a deep scan feature available. This used significantly more RAM and a similar amount of CPU and took over 12 hours. However, it did retrieve significantly more data—125GB compared to 88GB with the quick scan.

Stellar Data Recovery: Efficiency

Retrieving lost files can be difficult, but Stellar Data Recovery did a great job. In less than four minutes, it recovered the files we intentionally deleted, along with almost 500,000 others. The app supports all known file types, and custom types can be added with the advanced options menu. The sheer number of files retrieved was a little overwhelming at first, but fortunately, they can be sorted by file type, size, and location. A search bar is also available. 

Stellar Data Recovery review

A quick scan recovered almost 90GB of data from our hard drive. (Image credit: Stellar)

Stellar Data Recovery: Support

Stellar Data Recovery users have access to phone, live chat, and online ticket support. Phone support is available worldwide, but only in English. We tested the live chat briefly and were connected with a friendly, knowledgeable agent within a minute. 

Stellar Data Recovery review

There are numerous support options available. (Image credit: Stellar)

There are also a few different self-help options available. The FAQ section provides simple answers to common questions, and the comprehensive knowledge base contains detailed written and visual documentation. 

Stellar Data Recovery: Final verdict

Overall, Stellar Data Recovery is a great file retrieval tool with powerful advanced options for business. In its simplest form, it enables anyone to retrieve lost data from a computer or external storage device. Paid subscriptions are a little expensive, but the program’s impressive performance and user-friendly interface mean that it gets a thumbs up from us. 

Stellar Data Recovery: The competition

There are numerous alternatives to Stellar Data Recovery which could better fit your needs. For example, the Ashampoo Undeleter is significantly cheaper (just $14.99 for a lifetime license) and is great for simple file recovery. 

Data Rescue 5 is a more expensive alternative (starting at a $99 one-off payment for five recovery drives), but it comes with a selection of powerful features comparable to those of Stellar Data Recovery. 

If you're looking for more info on data recovery apps, then check out our guide to the Best data recovery software.