Ontrack EasyRecovery FAQ

General FAQs

Click on the links below to see answers to some of our most common questions regarding Ontrack EasyRecovery file recovery software. If you have a question that isn’t answered in the information below, please contact Kroll Ontrack on 0508 872 259 or tech@ontrack.com.

Are Upgrades for EasyRecovery 10 Free?

Upgrades for EasyRecovery 10 are free for the two or three modifications planned each year as long as the license purchased is still in effect. Upgrades do not modify the license term.

Upgrades from previous (legacy) versions of EasyRecovery to ER 10 are chargable, but may have the option for a discount – you can contact tech@ontrack.com to find out if a discount is applicable to your situation.

Can I purchase one license and use the software on two or more computers?

The software is designed to be installed on one computer and used on that one computer for the duration of the license. You should purchase one license for each computer that you want to activate EasyRecovery on.

We do understand that due to systems crashing, systems being moved out of production or being upgraded, or personnel changes within the company, a transfer of a license from one PC to another might become necessary. If it does become necessary, EasyRecovery offers a process to facilitate that transfer for you. Transfers are described as a choice in the Menu of EasyRecovery. The quantity of transfers allowed is limited.

I see EasyRecovery has a one-year license. What does this mean?

One year after the software is activated, the license expires. At that point, the software reverts to Demo Mode, meaning that it can’t copy out (save) files any more. To re-activate the software, you will need to purchase a new license.

Having a one-year license is necessary to ensure that your data recovery software stays up to date with all of the latest operating systems. During the one-year license you can use the software to perform an unlimited amount of data recoveries.

Ontrack Software Technical Support Contact Information

Kroll Ontrack’s software techical support team is based in the US:

Hours: 8:00am – 5:00pm Monday – Friday Central Time
(952) 937-2121

Service is provided in English language(s) during Ontrack normal business hours, (8:00am – 5:00pm Monday – Friday CT), excluding holidays. Support may be reached by telephone or email tech@ontrack.com. Telephone and email responses are prioritized for the most recent major version of the software only. Free Tech Support response time for email is typically one business day or less, but can be more in some cases.

What are the limitations of the EasyRecovery trial?

There are two basic concept areas of the EasyRecovery family: File Recovery, and File Repair.

File Recovery

File Recovery is designed for circumstances when you do not have the files you need because they have been deleted, or the drive has been formatted, or for any other reason you cannot locate the files.

The Trial edition of EasyRecovery has the ability show you the files that could be recovered with the full edition, and allows you to view a portion of those files that can be recovered with a full edition of EasyRecovery.

File Repair

File Repair is used when you have access to the files you need but you cannot open them, with or without association of a data recovery situation.

For example, if you attempt to open a file and you receive an error message, this can occur when the file is corrupt (damaged) and in need of repair. File repair capability is included in EasyRecovery FileRepair, EasyRecovery EmailRepair, and as a portion of EasyRecovery Professional. The Trial edition of EasyRecovery Professional can be use to test all of the offerings listed, and will repair the following:

  • WordRepair- Will recover 500 characters of text. Summary will list total characters found.
  • ExcelRepair – Will recover 50 cells. Summary will list worksheet(s) found with number of cells recovered of total cells. (I.e. Worksheet test recovered 50 of 200 cells).
  • PowerPointRepair – Will give a slide count in the summary. Recovers the Master slide and two actual slides.
  • AccessRepair – Will recover all tables, and other objects. Will recover 10 rows per table. Summary will state recovered 10 of X number of rows (similar to ExcelRepair solution).
  • ZipRepair – fully functional
  • OutlookRepair & OutlookExpressRepair – 5 message limit

As an added benefit, the Zip repair component is fully functional within the trial versions and allows you to recover and repair deleted or corrupt Zip files.

What devices can EasyRecovery copy recovered data to?

EasyRecovery can copy data to any device that presents a valid drive letter. This includes another local drive, another partition on the same drive, a network volume or a removable device such as a IDE style or parallel port Zip drive or a diskette. EasyRecovery can also copy data to an FTP server to which you have access and authorization to copy data to.

Please note the copy destination cannot be the source from which you are recovering data. You must copy your recovered data to a safe location, not to the damaged partition you are recovering from, to protect your data.

What version of EasyRecovery should I purchase after running an EasyRecovery trial?

To determine which version to purchase after running EasyRecovery Trial use the following data recovery process criteria:

1) All hardware problems are best resolved through the In-lab Services of Ontrack Data Recovery. RAID systems and Servers are not supported by EasyRecovery software.

2) When running EasyRecovery Professional Trial, if you do not need to use RawRecovery or advanced modifcation options within AdvancedRecovery, EasyRecovery DataRecovery may suit your needs. Note that RawRecovery, a signature search process, is used as a “last resort” option for getting data and is only available within EasyRecovery Professional and EasyRecovery Professional trial.

Call 0508 872 259 for Tech support/help – even on trial version of software.

What versions of Microsoft Word or Access will EasyRecovery support?

EasyRecovery FileRepair and the same modules in EasyRecovery Professional will repair and restore files created using:

  • Word 2010 with MS Word 2007 libraries
  • Word 2008
  • Word 2007
  • Word 2003
  • Word XP
  • Word 2000
  • Word 97
  • Word 95
  • and Word 6.0.
  • Access 2010 with MS Access 2007 libraries
  • Access 2007
  • Access 2003
  • Access XP
  • Access 97
  • Access 95

Note: Although EasyRecovery FileRepair can repair corrupt Access 2.0 files, it requires Access 95 (v7.x) or a more recent version.

Will EasyRecovery recover a hard drive using an NTFS partition?

EasyRecovery supports recovery from drives originating from DOS, Windows 3.x, 95, 98, Me, 2000, and XP, VISTA, or Windows 7, (both 32 bit and 64-bit) operating systems running on FAT and/or NTFS partitions. It is best used with any of these devices connected to a working Windows system as a secondary device, so the download and/or installation would not overwrite data on the problem drive.

It also recovers data from IDE/ATA/EIDE hard drives, SATA, SCSI drives, USB, Firewire, and eSATA connections, floppy diskettes, Zip, and Jaz removable media, and digital media (CompactFlash, SmartMedia, flash memory, memory sticks).


Operational FAQs

Click on the links below to see answers to some of the most common operational questions we are frequently asked. These questions cover topics and problems that might be encounted while using Ontrack EasyRecovery to recover data.

If you are experiencing a problem that is not outlined below please contact our tech support on tech@ontrack.com or 0508 872 259.

A window keeps popping up that says 'Bad blocks have been detected'

The error message “Bad blocks have been detected. WARNING: Continuing to operate your system may damage your hard drive beyond repair or cause irretrievable data loss…” is an indication that some sort of hardware failure is preventing EasyRecovery from reading the drive. It can be due to a kind of defect on the drive which can cause an increasing amount of damage on the drive as long as it is powered on. The software has no abiltiy to switch off the message.

If you continue using this drive, you risk permanent loss of any data that might be recoverable. The only safe way to proceed is to shut off the power to this computer, remove the hard drive and send it to us for in-lab recovery. We have special methods and tools for extracting data without damaging it in the process.

EasyRecovery crashes or hangs while scanning the drive

If the drive is not a RAID and you’re selecting the correct media type, this generally indicates a hardware failure.

In the case of a hardware failure, the safe way to proceed is to shut off the power to this computer, remove the hard drive and send it to us for in-lab recovery services. We have special methods and tools for extracting data without damaging it in the process.

If the drive is a RAID, and you’re using any scan option other than RAID Recovery (which is only available in the Enterprise version), this can cause crashes. Only the RAID Recovery option is supported for use with RAIDs, including mirrored, striped, spanned and any other type of RAID.

How can new File Signatures be added for unlisted file types when using RAW Recovery?

Easy Recovery has an area in the RAW Recovery scan options to look for about 400 file signatures (file headers) common to a variety of file types. There is also an area to input your own information to create additional signatures.

This is a very technical portion of our software and is not designed for casual users. Technical Support at Ontrack is not currently capable of providing file signatures for file types, although they can help with any questions for general use of this process within the product.

There are a variety of websites on the internet that have details about file signatures, often these are programmers references and can be very technical. File headers often have variants and multiple file type versions. (There are at least 5 types of MP3 files, for instance).

Customers are urged to expect this portion of our Do-It-Yourself Data Recovery Software to require software understanding near the level of a programmer to utilize this feature.

How do I find ER 10 logfiles?

For Windows:

The primary default logfiles – dependent upon the version – Enterprise, Professional, or Home:
Erent_log.txt, Erpro_log.txt, or Erhom_log.txt

These are located on an XP computer in the default software installation folder:
C:\Program Files\Kroll Ontrack\Ontrack EasyRecovery10 (version name)

On a Windows Vista or Windows 7 computer, you would find them by the default location:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Kroll Ontrack\Ontrack EasyRecovery10 Enterprise

For Macintosh:

The default log file will be named and located according to whether you’re using EasyRecovery Enterprise, EasyRecovery Professional or EasyRecovery Home.

If you’re running EasyRecovery Home:
The log will be named erhom_log.txt and will be in the following folder (where “username” is your actual user name)

If you’re running EasyRecovery Professional:
The log will be named erpro_log.txt and will be in the following folder (where “username” is your actual user name)

If you’re running EasyRecovery Enterprise:
The log will be named erent_log.txt and will be in the following folder (where “username” is your actual user name)

How do I recover data that was deleted from folders in Microsoft Outlook?

You can use the trial version of EasyRecovery Professional to determine if one of the full versions would recover this information. EasyRecovery Professional contains the Outlook repair component you would need.

When you run EasyRecovery, select Email Repair from the main menu and then Outlook Repair. Browse to the location of the .PST file you’re repairing, and then press Properties. In order to get back the deleted contents, select “Repair Both” under Message Option. Press Apply, then OK, select a destination for the repaired file and press Next.

The trial version will run through the repair process and inform you if any errors occurred. It will also give a listing of each folder, and the number of messages within each. It should be easy to tell from this whether the deleted items were found — if not, the message count will be the same as in your current .PST file. If everything checks out, you can return to our website to purchase the full version of the product. The trial will NOT produce a repaired .PST file.

I'm having trouble activating a purchased version of EasyRecovery from the e-Commerce site

Please try these instructions for EasyRecovery 10 activation. If you do not find success or if you have other questions, please reply back to us ASAP.

1) Insure that the trial software is on the computer you intend to use. Our software will interrogate that machine for its unique identity and be linked to that machine. License migration is an option later. Please make sure that the version you have pruchased and the version installed are the same. Purchasing Professional and using the Home installation will not activate.

2) Please click on step #1 of the software screen, where it has a link that says “Click Here for Activation Code.” Then fill out the form. It requires the serial number above – delivered in the purchase receipt from an eCommerce purchase or as delivered via email with a direct sale.

3) When you submit the form, you will receive the Activation code to be used in step 2 of the software screen. You will receive the activation code after submitting.

4) Then return to the software screen second step, and enter that activation code the instructions in that area.

My computer locks up when I try to save files from a scan with EasyRecovery 10

We have seen rare occasions in which this happens when recovering from a USB drive or device and saving the recovered files to another USB device.

If this is the case, please trythe following:

  • Use an internal, non-USB device such as the C: drive as a destination.
  • Try to copy as many files as possible without filtering
  • Send us details of the process via the logs

Recovering messages after running the MS Inbox Repair Tool

After I ran Inbox Repair Tool (Scanpst.exe) on my personal folder (.pst) file, I noticed some of my email messages are missing. Can EasyRecovery FileRepair, Microsoft Outlook component, recover the missing messages?

Yes. EasyRecovery Professional, Microsoft Outlook component can the recover missing messages.

What can I do if the FileRepair componant of EasyRecovery is unable to recover my files?

The FileRepair componant of EasyRecovery Professional is designed to try several methods of recovery on your files.
However, in some rare cases the file damage may be so severe that EasyRecovery FileRepair cannot repair a file. This generally is an indication that the file has been completely or mostly overwritten.
While EasyRecovery FileRepair is a group of very powerful tools, there may be cases where the file damage is so severe that EasyRecovery FileRepair cannot repair the file.

For those cases, Ontrack provides other solutions, including our patented Remote Data Recovery services and traditional in-lab services. If your data corruption situation does require data recovery services, you may apply the price of EasyRecovery Professonal software toward the cost of service if you purchased EasyRecovery Professional within the last 30 days. (Customers that have taken a refund on software are not eligible.)

What is the most inclusive method of searching and finding data with EasyRecovery?

Utilizing the AdvancedRecovery module:

1) Select the partition again

2) Choose the Advanced Options button under the pie chart on the right-hand side

3) Modify the start sector to be the equivalent of the end of the current data area of the new OS installation so that the software can examine only the data area of the drive beyond the new installation files. To do this, first find out how much data is currently used on the drive (look in the main area of My computer to see the used area size). multiply the size in GB X 2,000,000. Add that number to the start sector currently displayed in EasyRecovery.

4) Choose the second tab and select Complete Scan. Insure that the correct filesystem is selected. If FAT or NTFS does not work the first time, choose the other option on the second atttempt. Since EasyRecovery is passive to the data area multiple attempts change nothing on the selected drive.

5) Go to the third tab, Partition Settings and modify the choice to Ignore MFT for NTFS partitions or Ignore FAT for FAT partitions

6) Click OK to start the scan looking for any filesystem structures within the new range.

If structures are located after determining the parameters and asking you if this is the correct filesystem you should agree and click the box to start the data scan process.

If there is no success locating structures then use the RawRecovery module to get all files using the file signature search process. This is the last resort recovery procedure within the software.
Be sure to examine the contents of the LostFiles folder.

Finally, if none of these processes are satisfactory, we have more capable In-Lab recovery services available by sending in the hard drive.

When I run EasyRecovery FileRepair a message appears stating 'EasyRecovery FileRepair has had a critical error' - why?

This could be due to one of a number of factors:

  • One or more of the Microsoft® Office, or a portion of one of the modules being used – Access, Word, Excel, PowerPoint or Outlook components cannot be found
  • The destination (drive, network volume, etc.) may be ‘read-only’
  • The destination may not have enough free space
  • The file selected to repair may be in use by another application
  • The file selected to repair may be from a later version of Microsoft® Office than is installed on the system with EasyRecovery

If this error message appears, make sure that Microsoft the application for Windows Office 95 (v7.0) or later is installed on the system and functioning properly. Also, check to make sure that the source and/or destination file path is correct, the destination file path can be written to, and the files are not in use (currently open) by Microsoft Access or any other application. It is recommended you have free space that is equal to or more than the size of the file(s) being recovered and you are not simultaneously running Microsoft Access and EasyRecovery FileRepair, Microsoft Access component.

Where can I find my deleted files?

If you deleted the file in the Recycle Bin or emptied the Recycle Bin, refer to File System Issues for more information.

If your file cannot be found during find operation, the deleted file/directory may be still on disk but is no longer referenced by an existing folder.

In this case you will need to run the ‘Find lost data’ search. In the case this process does not find your file you may need to run the ‘Find lost drives’ search.

See the User Guide for more information.

If all search operations were performed but you did not find your file, the file may be overwritten in parts or completely. In that situation, Easy Recovery may not locate the file.

Which data recovery tool will be most effective for recovering from a corrupted partition?

The EasyRecovery (RawRecovery tool) allows you to scan severely corrupted partitions for files using a file signature search algorithm. This tool will help you recover files from a partition with damaged directory structures and will read all sectors on the disk sequentially (sector-by-sector) looking for specific file header signatures.

The RawRecovery tool will typically recover small files that are stored in one cluster or larger files stored in consecutive clusters on the disk, and the degree of fragmentation present on the partition before the corruption occurred will compromise the effectiveness of the tool.

Why does EasyRecovery exit during the file repair process?

While EasyRecovery FileRepair, Microsoft Access component is a very powerful tool, there may be cases where the file damage is so severe that EasyRecovery FileRepair cannot repair the file. In these instances EasyRecovery may not show results or may exit during the file repair process.

Being a technological and innovative world leader in data recovery, Ontrack has developed proprietary hardware and software tools and techniques specifically for performing Access recoveries involving severe damage as an in-lab or Remote Data Recovery service. This goes far beyond what the EasyRecovery software can provide.

If your data corruption situation does require data recovery services, you may apply the price of EasyRecovery FileRepair software towards the cost of service if you purchased EasyRecovery FileRepair within the last 30 days. (Customers that have taken a refund on software are not eligible.)

Why doesn't EasyRecovery install when I run or open it from the download page?

When downloading any edition of EasyRecovery Professional 6.2 or EasyRecovery DataRecovery 6.2 (ERDRT.EXE, ERDR.EXE, ERPRO.EXE or ERPROT.EXE) and the option to “run” or “open” the file is chosen instead of the “save” option, nothing appears to happen.

The download file for EasyRecovery (ERDRT.EXE, ERDR.EXE, ERPRO.EXE or ERPROT.EXE) is a compressed file program that silently extracts five PDF user guides (one for each language the program can be installed in) and the installation executable to the default download temporary directory. If you don’t see these new files, they might be present but not noticeable amongst other files.

If you do not know the default temporary location to which your version of Windows downloads files that you have instructed it to run, the best process for you would be to select “Save” instead of “Run” as the download option. It is recommended that you download the file to a new folder on your desktop so that you can easily find the setup.exe file after you have run the downloaded file.

The Extracted files are named:
EasyRecovery62 User Guide_DE.pdf
EasyRecovery62 User Guide_EN.pdf
EasyRecovery62 User Guide_FR.pdf
EasyRecovery62 User Guide_IT.pdf
EasyRecovery62 User Guide_SP.pdf

Applies to:
EasyRecovery DataRecovery 6.2 all editions
EasyRecovery Professional 6.2 all editions

EasyRecovery is not detecting my drive

EasyRecovery is designed to be able to see your hard drive even if the drive does not show up in My Computer due to a missing or corrupted partition. However, the drive must be detectable by the BIOS or Disk Management in order for EasyRecovery to see it. If neither the BIOS nor Disk Management can see the drive, then it will most likely require our in-lab service to recover the data from the drive as the hardware problem is too severe for any software to recover the data.

Some antivirus products can also prevent access to the drives. Temporarily disable the antivirus software while running EasyRecovery in those cases.

Drive size limitations can prevent access depending on the connections to the system. USB is not as capable as eSATA or direct connection. This seems to apply to the range of 1 – 2 TB drives. If possible, move the problem drive as a secondary device as a direct connection on the motherboard of a working 32 bit Windows system.

EasyRecovery supports MBR (Master Boot Record) style drive formats only. GUID (GPT) is not supported.

Why won't EasyRecovery let me copy files to a destination drive?

It says the other drive is the same as my drive being recovered.

EasyRecovery allows our only method of recovery – copying – to some other drive destination other than the drive being recovered. We do not ‘fix’ data on the drive being recovered, nor will we copy to that same drive partition.

Sometimes our software can become confused about the area of the drive (when attempting to copy to a different partition on the same drive).

Occasionally, EasyRecovery will become confused under other hardware configurations. For instance, when copying from one USB device to another, the identification method that distinguishes the identity of the second USB may cause the software to believe that an attempt to copy to the same device is being made. We then will report that you cannot copy to the same device as the area being recovered in those cases.
One workaround to attempt for this situation is to map a drive letter for the destination drive and attempt the copy out of data again using the Browse button to find that mapped drive letter.

Similar situations sometimes happen with Firewire or other external drives, and rarely with some SATA or RAID configurations.

If you are using a DOS based version of EasyRecovery, the destination must be a device and partition style DOS understands. No USB, network or NTFS partitions are allowed under the DOS platform. Use the Windows version of EasyRecovery to overcome those limitations.

If your question was not listed above then please contact our technical support team at tech@ontrack.com or 0508 872 259.