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Thread: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

  1. #1
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    Exclamation How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    Hi everyone,

    Might not be the best title of this thread but allow me to explain in details.

    A neighbour with his daughter just visited me a while ago.
    The daughter has an USB Flash Drive (2GB) which she is using at her school. One day, she plugged the USB to her School Computer (which is obviously running Windows) and all the data on that USB Flash Drive AND the Computer are gone. Seems very much like a nasty virus.

    The family needed my help and I convinced them to switch to Linux AND also save the files on the USB Flash Drive because it has important data (school projects, etc).

    When I plugged the USB to my machine, I got this screenshot:

    2014-02-01-062852_1280x1024_scrot.png

    I haven't yet seen a virus just as this. To wipe the entire disk and the partition? that is something new to me.

    My Question is simple:
    How can I save or get the data back? any chance?

    Thank you in advance!

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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk

    Sure this wasn't user error? Just looks like a wiped dongle to me. Anyways, good luck.

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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bucky Ball View Post
    http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk

    Sure this wasn't user error? Just looks like a wiped dongle to me. Anyways, good luck.
    Yes, just chatted with the daughter a while ago and she confirmed it is not a user error as in someone who did that. Of course, this is what she confirmed.

    Thank you, will look into that while I convert her laptop to Linux

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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    well i just had the old drive's partition wiped. but this was done by antivirus it seems while it was removing the malware. testdisk seems might be abel to solve the data if it's still there.SMART test confirmed the disk is still in excelent shape.
    Easy to understand Ubuntu manual with lots of pics: http://ubuntu-manual.org/
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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    Code:
    No Partition found or selected for recovery
    This is what I get after doing quick and deep search

    It doesn't seem as a good sign but I am not sure!

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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    Might produce a lot of broken/corrupt/unusable junk files in random order without their original names or directory structure, but you should still give PhotoRec a shot : http://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/PhotoRec_Step_By_Step

    It is part of TestDisk package, so is already installed if you installed testdisk.
    Varun
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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    can you post the result of command
    sudo sfdisk -l

    to see if the problem is onMBR
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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    Quote Originally Posted by Portaro View Post
    can you post the result of command
    sudo sfdisk -l

    to see if the problem is onMBR
    Hi,

    Code:
     Disk /dev/sdb: 1015 cylinders, 65 heads, 62 sectors/track
    
    sfdisk: ERROR: sector 0 does not have an msdos signature
     /dev/sdb: unrecognized partition table type
    No partitions found
    Is it a hopeless case?

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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    Quote Originally Posted by amjjawad View Post
    Is it a hopeless case?
    I'm guessing yes as that dongle is completely wiped and just looks like free space, but I would wait for wiser heads before taking my word ...

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    Re: How can I restore the data on an USB Flash Drive that got wiped by a virus?

    Quote Originally Posted by amjjawad View Post
    Is it a hopeless case?
    Unless the previous data is physically overwritten, there is always hope, just make sure to give testdisk/photorec correct information about the previously existing partition(s) (usually just the partition table type (intel), or in rare cases disk geometry). Or use a software that is smarter than these tools and can 'guess' the correct parameters itself.

    You can find many such (free) tools (including testdisk) on HBCD, or you may try some commercial solutions (trial mode is free, in which they will just list the recoverable files, won't actually recover them). Although based on my personal experience with many 'reputed' commercial tools (Runtime's Get Data Back, R-Tools's various tools, some others that I don't remember now), I trust testdisk/photorec the most. They are, in my personal experience so far, fastest and most capable. But I also remember one particular case where Get Data Back was more successful than TestDisk.
    Varun
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