I did a non destructive system recover of Windows XP. Now all of "my documents" are missing. I know they are on the drive because the space being used by file is the same. Is there a way for me to recover them.
I've had the best data recovery using Get Data Back (runtime software) just used it last month, when a customer did a system recovery without backing up their documents folder. However to see what data will be recovered is a free download, to actually recover the data you will need to buy a license $79.00 for NTFS, and 69.00 for FAT
Check under C:\Documents and Settings to see if your old user profile is there. Double clicking the folder will give an Access Denied error, and properties of the folder will show 0 bytes for the size. You basically have a new Windows install, which means a new Security ID, so you no longer have access to your old files. Because your account can't access them, Windows can't total the size of the contents.
You just need to take ownership of this folder. How to take ownership of a file or folder in Windows XP
There may be one folder for each user account, or you may have a folder named User Data someplace that contains your old files, possibly C:\User Data.
The folder name could be something else though, depends on how the manufacturer does their non-destructive recovery. The trick is finding the folder. Search won't work as you don't have access to the folder. One option that often works is to run Defrag and watch as it defrags the files. You may recognize some of your old files and can see what folder they are in. You can then take ownership and get your files back.
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