How to Recover Accidentally Formatted Hard Drive?

How to recover accidentally formatted hard drive? Check this tutorial for help if you need to recover files from formatted hard drive.


By Lora / Updated on March 29, 2024

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Can a formatted hard drive be recovered?

Disk formatting is a process to initialize, configure, prepare, or organize the hard disk for usage. A new hard drive or device requires to be formatted before use.

Also, when the device goes corrupted, a disk formatting will be a nice try to bring it back to normal.

But, during use, accidental formatting would be dangerous and disastrous.


Recover from Formatted Drive


Need some help, Are there any ways to recover data from a formatted drive? I tried so many software recovery and deep scans but there is nothing has been found in scanning. Any of you are experiencing this, hope you share with me how to solve it.


- Question from TechForum


Quite a lot of people have experienced this, and now they are wondering if it is possible to recover formatted hard drive, and, how to recover accidentally formatted hard drives.

In the first place, let’s talk about the 2 kinds of disk formatting: quick format/full format.

Quick format vs. full format

To answer the question of whether a formatted hard drive is recoverable, you need to figure out how you formatted your device: quick format or full format.

Some users might be curious about the question “Does quick format delete files?”. Check the explanation below.

Quick Format A quick format simply deletes the data from the hard drive while simultaneously creating a new filesystem.
Full Format This operation creates a file system, deletes all files, and also checks the hard drive for bad sectors. Most crucially, it overwrites any existing data on the disk by writing 0 to the hard drive.


So clearly, if you have checked the option “Perform a quick format”, congratulations, it is feasible to recover files from formatted hard drive, because it just deletes the files and no overwriting occurs.

If not, sorry, there is no luck. It is suggested to send the hard drive to an in-lab data recovery service.

How to recover accidentally formatted hard drive?

In this part, we will walk you through the methods to recover data from formatted hard drives with and without backups.

1. Recover files from formatted hard drive using the Windows backup feature

If you have formed a good habit of backing up important data, you don’t need to panic when unexpected accidents happen.

Windows has offered a built-in data backup feature – Backup and Restore. It supports data backup from any local hard drive to anywhere you like (also a local drive).

If you have formatted a local hard disk, this feature is a good option.

If you have accidentally formatted external hard disk, e.g., accidentally formatted Seagate external hard drive, please seek help from the tutorial.

Step 1. Go to Control Panel > System and Security > Backup and Restore (Windows 7).


Step 2. Click Restore my files.


Step 3. Click Browse for files/folders > select backup > select the files you want > Next.


Step 4. Choose a target place > click Restore. Specifying another place will be preferable.


Using this feature, it will be also easy to recover large permanently deleted files.

2. Recover formatted hard drive even without backup

Indeed, with a backup, things would be smoother. But in fact, considerable users won’t back up their important data because they thought that the disaster won’t exactly all on them.

However, unexpected accidents always attack those who made no preparation at all. So many users want to know how to recover accidentally formatted hard drives without backups.

Fortunately, there are data rescue tools you could utilize. An efficient tool could help you recover files from formatted hard drive without any difficulties.

Among seas of utilities, MyRecover will be your second to none choice.

Formatted hard drive data recovery software
  • Offer all-inclusive solutions, applying to data loss situations: disk formatting, deletion, system crash, virus, etc.
  • Restore deleted/missing files from healthy/formatted hard drive, including HDD/SSD/USB/SD card, etc.
  • 200+ kinds of recoverable data, including photos, videos, compressed files, office files, etc.
  • Compatible with Windows operating systems: 11/10/8/7/Server, etc.
  • Support File Systems: NTFS/exFAT/FAT32/ReFS, etc.
Download SoftwareWin 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Now start to recover formatted hard drive quickly.

Step 1. Install and run the software > Hover the mouse over the drive and click Scan to scan.


Step 2. Detected data can be searched and sorted by extension, type, size, path, etc.


Step 3. Go to Other missing files > select certain types to restore, e.g., Images > click Recover x files.


Using a powerful app saves your precious time. You could also use it to restore deleted photos from Recycle Bin after empty.

Extra suggestions: minimize future risk

Users who want to learn how to recover accidentally formatted hard drives could check this tutorial and follow the detailed steps.

To minimize the potential data loss risk in the future, some related extra suggestions are ready for you as well.

  • When managing the hard drives in Disk Management, be careful to make any operations.
  • Do not readily perform a full format to hard drives in case the data on them becomes irreversible.
  • Please cease using the disk as soon as possible after deletion or disk formatting, and do not write data onto it again.
  • Back up your crucial information with an external storage device. Choosing professional data backup software for windows can help you a lot.
  • Save backups or copies of your data in many locations for further security.
Lora · Editor
Lora is an editor of AOMEI Technology. She is also a tester and editor of AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. -- "Keep testing, write the most useful tutorials for helping people recover the lost data for Windows and phones" is the most meaningful thing for her. Dedicated to creating helpful tutorials, she hopes her tutorial can assist users to effortlessly solve data loss problems on their personal computers and mobile phones.