R-Undelete is intended to recover those files that have been deleted either intentionally or accidentally, as in the case of hardware malfunction, power loss or virus attacks. It can manage not only simple situations, as when you have emptied your recycle bin, but also more complex scenarios, such as reformatted drives and data corruption. The program supports local, dynamic as well as removable drives; however, it does not seem to support mapped drives. Similarly, it works with various file systems, including FAT12, FAT16, FAT32, NTFS and NTFS5. Luckily, for NTFS drives, the application can even recover encrypted files, alternative data streams and security attributes.
The application has a wizard-like interface. Therefore, it is unlikely that you find any difficulty to use it. It offers two modes. On the one hand, you can use fast search, which has the advantage of being very quick but may fail to find some types of files. On the other, a detailed scan is much slower but also more accurate. In addition, this mode allows you to scan for specific file types. Likewise, you can save the results of a detailed scan to an external file, which you can reload later to avoid performing the time-consuming scan process again. Once the scan has finished, you will get results in a tree-like structure. Moreover, you can organize them according to original folder structure, extensions, creation time, modification time and access time. Then, you can pick the files you need to undelete with the possibility to preview files and assess their recovery chances. Similarly, advanced users can benefit from a hexadecimal viewer. The program allows you to set various advanced recovery options. For instance, you can recover the real folder structure. Furthermore, you can specify a pattern to fill irrecoverable sectors with.
A main advantage of this app over other similar programs is that it allows you to create image files for logical drives and hard disks. This can be extremely helpful when a piece of hardware is starting to malfunction because it lets you avoid the risk of total data loss by making an image of the drive. Once a copy of the drive has been made, you can load it instead of the real disk to recover data from it.
In general, R-Undelete is an excellent program. When I tested it, the application successfully found and recovered lost files. Fortunately, it can be installed on a removable drive to allow recovering data from system disks.