Not everybody has the same opinion about the importance of data backup. Keeping the exact same data in two or more different devices is a form redundancy indeed, but a necessary one. In this case, redundancy is more than being superfluous because it does serve a useful purpose. A computer, or more specifically a hard drive, is not invulnerable to damages. The operating system can also crash anytime, preventing you from accessing files or data. The same thing can happen to a tablet, smartphone, and even digital camera; basically any device which utilizes some sort memory card such as hard drive, flash drive, microSD, and miniSD requires data backup as precautionary measure in the event the system malfunction or the device simply breaks.
Losing data from your computer is a terrifying stipulation. Regardless of your professions, chances are you keep important pieces of information in the device; even students make and save assignments on laptops. Some of the most common causes of losing data are accidental deletion and errors in the operating system. Assuming you have a backup, either in the cloud or another computer, there is nothing to worry about since you can still access the data anytime. Without a backup, you need recovery software.
There is a good number of free data recovery software available for download, but some of them are older versions incompatible with newer operating systems. Pay attention to the details of the software before you download and install. Once installed and opened, the software will ask what files you want to restore such as documents, images, videos, photos, programs, and so on. It probably also allows you to choose specific hard drive partition or original location of the deleted data.
If you have never been in this kind of situation before, you may want to try data recovery software free version first instead of spending money on premium version. Even with a free version, you will most likely find all the options you need for examples file types, destination folder, quick scan, deep scan, and preview. As long as you follow the instructions and there is no mechanical damage to the hard drive, the software should find the data. Another thing to mention is that it is not recommended to restore the files to the original folder/directory.
A crash in the operating system requires more complicated procedures. Because the operating system does not allow you to install new software, you cannot recover files using the aforementioned method. The easiest solution is to remove the hard drive and connect it to another computer. You can also try to repair the system by doing fresh install or insert bootable disc; if you are working on a Mac, it is possible to connect two computers with firewire cable.