10 Replies Latest reply: Sep 19, 2005 4:49 AM by Mickeymac
James Johnson15 Level 1 Level 1
How can I retrieve files which I took to the trash, and then clicked on Empty Trash? However, I have never clicked on Secure Empty Trash. See my first
post on August 13.

Thanks, James Johnson
  • QuickTimeKirk Level 9 Level 9
    When you delete a file the actual data is not destroyed until new data is written to that location on the hard drive. Secure delete immediately writes random data over the space occupied by the files.
    Recovering deleted files is a job for experts and could cost hundreds of dollars. Consider it a learning experience and back up your data often.
  • Flippo Level 2 Level 2
    Try tu use data recovery X from prosoft engineering.


    Altough Prosoft claim that no guarantee that the software could recover data from deleted trash but I've try it few times and about 4 out of 6 I could find the deleted files from emptied trash as long as it does not use secure empty trash.
  • James Johnson15 Level 1 Level 1
    Another respondent stated that in OS X, based on Unix, deleted trash files are
    written over instantly, so they can not be recovered in any way. If this is so,
    then why does my G4 offer the options of: Empty Trash, and also Secure Empty Trash? There would seem to be no difference.

    However, let me explain more about what happened. I intended to save these
    files to a disc, and following the poor advice of a Staples salesmen, I inserted
    a Staples 2 hours video, 4.7.GB Data DVD+R disc. I then copied the master folder with al the other folders and files within, to the disc. Without removing the disc, I then successfully referenced all the files FROM THE DISC, rather than from the original master folder. Then I took the master folder to the trash, and emptied the trash.

    I left the disc in the computer for several days, and continued to access the
    files just as if they were on the desktop. At some point I noticed that the CD icon had changed to the Finder Face icon, with the title of the folder, "STUFF" still below the icon.

    After a few days, when I wanted to burn an
    audio CD, I ejected the DVD+R disc. It was several more days before I wanted to access those files again. When I reinserted the disc, it first appeared as a CD icon, but when I clicked on it there was no response. Then
    the CD icon changed to what looked like an Appleworks document page icon,
    but a blurry rather than clear image!

    After fiddling around for a while, I could not eject the disc. So I called Apple
    tech, and the guy told be to shut down the computer. When I restarted, there
    was a message saying that there was a disc in the computer whose data could
    not be read by OS X, and gave me the option of ejecting it.

    Of course I have the disc. Is there any possibility of retrieving the date from
    the disc?

    Thanks, James Johnson
  • QuickTimeKirk Level 9 Level 9
    Man, am I confused.
    First. Did you successfully burn to the DVD+R disk? Older Mac with the Superdrive don't normally write except to DVD-R disks.
    Try the disk on a supported computer and see if any data is actually on it. If it has data you'll need to copy it back to your laptop via an ethernet or Firewire connection between the two machines.
    All of this has nothing at all to do with the Trash. Either the files are on the DVD or they're not. They are certainly not available on your laptop.
  • Robert Smith Level 2 Level 2
    I'v read some where... that you can retrive emptied trash as long as you didn't use secure empty trash and you dont wait to long you can access in terminal or maybe with an app. like Coctail there is a hidden file called "emptied trash" or "trashes" but personaly I don't play in there as it's just too easy to really screw things up...Just a thought. Robert
  • Mickeymac Level 1 Level 1
    How long does this generally take? I've got a PB 15 that Data Rescue is spinning on going on 50+ hours now, to a lacie hard drive over firewire. It's in "Purging True duplicate nodes' stage and showing time left of 1072:02... any suggestions? My brother (pc head) said it could take several days, but I thought it should be a lot quicker than this.

    I'm trying to recover my Entourage email in my documents folder that I inadvertently trashed and cleaned out the trash (also not Secure Empty)

    And yes, I back up, but once a month and have critical files that have come in since the last back-up.
  • QuickTimeKirk Level 9 Level 9
    Mickeymac, welcome to these discussions.
    Is your brother younger or older than you?
    If he's older, trust his comments (he may have already tried it). If he is younger you owe it to yourself to try what you are already doing.
    If the files were only available on your Mac (no back-up versions available) and you deleted them (empty Trash) you should consider it a lesson learned and move on.
    OS X "Secure Delete" is just that. The data is gone and even the F.B.I. probably couldn't recover it.
    If you've used the same Powerbook to compose your post above (and view the Web in the process) you're even less likely to be able to "recover" data.
    Sorry. There are only two types of computer users. Those that have lost data and those that will lose data.
    Your dilemma may not be as bad as it could be. If the email was sent to you by other users maybe you could ask them to send it again?
  • Mickeymac Level 1 Level 1
    Thanks for the welcome, QTKirk! I'm using my G5 - the powerbook is still spinning. I've got an arsenal here, 20+ year mac user. I stopped using my powerbook as soon as I discovered the problem. I tried Disk Warrior, but got a disk error immediately (the version I have doesn't seem to like Tiger) and took right off to the Genius desk, who recommended Data Rescue, which I've not used before. I asked my brother (younger, unfortunately, but runs an IT department and frequently recovers data) but he's not mac experienced and am used to a much quicker turn on issues that arise compared to his on a pc.

    The files were only available on my mac; it's my Entourage files, and it's hundreds of transmissions. I have my back-up from 8/30, but I've covered a lot of ground since then, hence my desparate attempt to recover. I did not 'Secure Delete" just emptied the trash. The Genius was hopeful and said he had recovered from my situation before, I'm just stunned that it's going on Day 3 and my computer is still spinning.
  • QuickTimeKirk Level 9 Level 9
    Yep. A messed up situation that never had to occur. A shame if the files can't be "re-created".
    Thankfully they're mostly "text" files. A bit easier for the software and you to interpret.
    Many can be "viewed" (even if you can never save them the same, again) using a text editor application. Most email is just text.
    I (sorry) don't have anything to add to this thread. I've also been a Mac user for many years. I have back-ups.
    I know this isn't what you want to hear. I've never used "Data Rescue" and I couldn't comment about how long it may take to run and conclude that your files may be lost (at least to their software).
    I used to back up to cassette tape (45 baud). Timely backups is part of all I do with my Mac.
    I've lost some files (stuff happens) and I've had only two hard drive failures during the years hard drives were available.
    I hope you can recover your files. I promise you'll never lose them again.
  • Mickeymac Level 1 Level 1
    Just a quick update. Data Rescue DID retrieve all folders and files, but the data in the Entourage files is unreadable. Entourage did a 'repair' and said it was successful, but I still cannot read them. Everything else came back perfect. It took 110 hours for the total Data Rescue time for my hard drive.