Q&A: How to recover deleted RAR files?
Last updated: Apr. 24, 2017
I accidentally deleted five .rar files that downloaded from the Internet and they are something I can't afford to lose. Are there any chances to recover them? I heard recovery software might help, but not sure which one I should try.
Yes, it's possible to recover deleted RAR archives though the chance is not a guaranteed 100% because there are several factors that undermine it, especially if you have continued using the storage device where your RAR files were saved — could be your computer hard drive or a USB flash, either way, ideally the moment you realized the files got erased, it's best to stop using the device (storage media) right away.
Why? Because the new data you create or generate may override the disk space that those RAR files originally took. If that happens, then chances of recovering your RAR files are slim if not none. However, the good news is the "data overwritten" action is unable to be evaluated unless you use some recovery tools to test.
RAR File Recovery Software
You are absolutely right about the recovery software part. There are such programs out there in the market, and we have reviewed some too.
- If you use a PC, check out our reviews of best Windows data recovery tools in 2017.
- If you use a Mac, we also have complied a list of best Mac file rescue apps.
Feel free to browse the post to select the right software that supports RAR recovery.
A Quick RAR Recovery Tutorial
In general, there are three steps you'll need to follow: connect, scan and recover.
- Connect. If your lost archives were saved in an external drive, first connect it to a computer (PC or Mac). Make sure your computer can detect the device.
- Scan. Now install a data recovery program (as introduced above) on your computer. Next, follow the instructions on the program to scan your device for recoverable items.
- Recover. Your last step is to check if your deleted RAR files are found after the scan, then recover and save them to another disk.
Due to the nature of data recovery, there are a few things we recommend you keep in mind. First of all, do not use the storage media when you notice your RAR files are lost; Next, when using a .rar file retrieval program, it's best to save recovered files to another disk drive rather than the original device. All these precautions are to avoid data overwriting from happening thus increase your chances of recovery.
[Knowledge] What is an RAR file? It is a native archive format compressed through the WinRAR software. WinRAR enables you to create a standard RAR file by shrinking a few separate files into a smaller package, which can be easily distributed via emails or stored on a flash drive. Those who receive an RAR file can also use WinRAR to unpack the archive and quickly extract all separate files it contains.