In August, Tom Mighell wrote on his blog, Inter Alia, about a free utility, called Restoration, that can restore deleted files on your computer. As Tom explained: “It searches your hard drive for sectors containing files marked for deletion and provides a mechanism for recovering the files.”

I recently downloaded the program and tried it on my computer, with mixed results. It quickly generated a list of more than 4,000 deleted files and displayed their names and locations in the main window. But on multiple attempts to restore files, I was successful in a full restore only twice. Other times, I got either nothing or mangled or partial files. I tried to restore Word documents, image files, text files, XML files and HTML files. I was not able to restore any of the Word files I tried and only one of the image files. I had the best results — but not consistent results — with HTML files.

If you’ve accidentally deleted a file, this utility is worth a try. You may also want it for its other function, which is to wipe clean permanently all the deleted files it finds on your computer.

Photo of Bob Ambrogi Bob Ambrogi

Bob is a lawyer, veteran legal journalist, and award-winning blogger and podcaster. In 2011, he was named to the inaugural Fastcase 50, honoring “the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries and leaders.” Earlier in his career, he was editor-in-chief of several legal publications, including The National Law Journal, and editorial director of ALM’s Litigation Services Division.