What Is a DNG File and How to Recover DNG Files?

Learn to recover DNG files from camera SD cards with professional SD card photo recovery software in this article. Besides, there’s a recommended backup tool for you to prevent photo loss.


By Penny / Updated on April 3, 2024

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What is a DNG file?

Developed by Adobe Systems, the DNG file format is primarily used for storing camera RAW images. It serves as a Digital Negative, preserving the uncompressed image data captured by a wide range of popular camera models such as Hasselblad and Pentax.

DNG files have gained popularity among professional photographers due to their ability to retain exceptional image quality.


The DNG format was released in September 2004, with the intention of encouraging widespread adoption among camera manufacturers and image-editing software.

By offering a more efficient way for digital photographers, DNG has become a valuable asset in the world of photography and image processing.

How to open DNG files?

Windows users can open DNG camera RAW images using various image-editing such as Microsoft Photos, File Viewer Plus, Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop 2023, Adobe Photoshop Elements, ACD Systems ACDSee Photo Studio, or CyberLink PhotoDirector 365.

Let’s show how to open DNG files created by Sigma cameras via Microsoft Photos.

» Please connect your camera SD card to Windows > open the saved path of your DNG images > right-click on one DNG file > select Open with > Photos.


» For Mac operating systems:

  • Apple Preview
  • Apple Photos
  • Adobe Photoshop 2023
  • Adobe Photoshop Elements
  • Adobe Lightroom
  • MacPhun ColorStrokes
  • CyberLink PhotoDirector 365

How to recover deleted DNG files without backups?

Sometimes, accidental deletion is unavoidable while you’re organizing your DNG files. Precisely, the SD card doesn’t provide a temporary storage place like Windows Recycle Bin to keep accidentally deleted files.

Considering that deletion stands as the most prevalent data loss reason, let’s depict how to recover deleted DNG images from camera SD cards.

Without file backups, powerful SD card photo recovery software can be the most effort-saving approach. Supported by AOMEI Tech, MyRecover excels in recovering deleted & missing images (JPG, PNG, BMP, ICO, TIFF, etc.) from different SD cards such as SDHC and SDXC cards.

Moreover, it’s also good at recovering deleted images created by different cameras such as Sigma X3F, and DNG, Sony ARW, Nikon NEF, Fuji RAF, and Olympus ORF.

SD Card Recovery Software: 

✐ High-efficiency: Recover about 50 types of images, videos (MP4, MOV, AVI, WMV, MKV, RMVB, ASF, etc.) MS Office files, WPS files, folders, compressed files, audio, songs, and websites from SD cards, HDDs, USB drives, etc.

✐ Advanced scanning method: MyRecover runs Quick Scan & Deep Scan automatically to search all the recoverable files. Specify the filename, saved path, date, or size to filter your needed files.

✐ Convenience: Retain the original filename, path, and format for the deleted files.

✐ Excellent compatibility: Support NTFS, FAT32, exFAT, and ReFS file systems and be compatible with Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, or Sever PC.

Download Software Windows 11/10/8/7/Server
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Please remember to save recovered DNG files in a new path instead of the original camera SD card. 
Please consider upgrading MyRecover to recover a large number of deleted/missing photos from local drives if you prefer a more cost-effective plan. 

Step 1. Connect the camera SD card to your Windows via a card reader > launch MyRecover > hover the mouse over your connected SD card > click Scan.


Step 2. MyRecover can automatically scan your SD card and display all the recoverable files.

To save time and quickly locate your wanted DNG images, please preview and filter them according to Document Type, Filename, Path, Date, Size, etc.

  • Name: Enter the filenames of your desired files to narrow the search area. 
  • Date modified: Set the date (today, yesterday, last 7/30 days, etc.)
  • Size: Filter the file size (<128KB, 128KB~1MB, 1MB~ 512MB, etc.)


Step 3. Under the Other Missing Files folder, select your desired DNG photos > click Recover x files to start DNG file recovery.


Related suggestions

What is a DNG files? How to open DNG files? And how to open deleted DNG images? After reading this passage, you can find the corresponding answers.

To reduce the risk of losing your precious DNG images and protecting your data, please refer to the following preventive measures.

  • Keep a reliable network connection and utilize a UPS (Uninterrupted Power Source) to prevent data loss during critical situations.
  • Invest in a trustworthy and proven antivirus to protect your files.
  • Consider utilizing Cloud or other online storage services for an additional layer of file backup.
  • Adhere to the manufacturer’s standards when storing your storage devices.
  • Please don’t eject your camera SD card as it reads or transfers data.
  • Make file backups regularly using this free AOMEI Backupper Standard as an integral part of your workflow.
Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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Key features of AOMEI Backupper Standard:✎...   
Enable to back up files, folders, partitions, disks, or systems to an internal/external hard drive, USB stick, Network, or Cloud drive.  
Implementing intelligent backup strategies allows you to create daily incremental backups, effectively conserving storage space.
By scheduling backups, you can ensure the continuous protection of your valuable data.   

Step 1. Launch AOMEI Backupper on your Windows PC. Under the Backup tab, select the “File Backup” option.


Step 2. Click “Add Folder/Add File” to add the folder or DNG files you intend to back up.


Step 3. Click “Schedule Backup” to enable Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Event triggers or USB plug based on your needs. Then click the “Start Backup” button.


Penny · Editor
Penny works as an editor at AOMEI Technology, while she's a tester and editor for AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. She enjoys helping users with data recovery issues on Windows and iPhones using simple and practical solutions. Outside of work, she has a strong affection for pets, particularly giant pandas.