[SOLVED] Help! I accidentally turned my 1TB external hard drive into a 2.85MB mass storage device! Can this be fixed?

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There is a new FAT partition at sectors 756 to 6643. This has overwritten a small part of your original NTFS volume at sector 2048. The Indicators column for your Elements volume is showing "xCF" instead of "BCF", which means that the boot sector has been overwritten. However, the "F" would suggest that the $MFT is intact, which means that we should still be able to recover your files with their original names.

What do you see if you double-click the NTFS volume (Elements) and expand the $Root?
 
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A better site for your images is imgur.com. Post the link here.
I'll have to sign up all from the beginning, can't I just use media fire?
There is a new FAT partition at sectors 756 to 6643. This has overwritten a small part of your original NTFS volume at sector 2048. The Indicators column for your Elements volume is showing "xCF" instead of "BCF", which means that the boot sector has been overwritten. However, the "F" would suggest that the $MFT is intact, which means that we should still be able to recover your files with their original names.

What do you see if you double-click the NTFS volume (Elements) and expand the $Root?
I see my lost data!!!!!!!!!
 
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There is a new FAT partition at sectors 756 to 6643. This has overwritten a small part of your original NTFS volume at sector 2048. The Indicators column for your Elements volume is showing "xCF" instead of "BCF", which means that the boot sector has been overwritten. However, the "F" would suggest that the $MFT is intact, which means that we should still be able to recover your files with their original names.

What do you see if you double-click the NTFS volume (Elements) and expand the $Root?
http://www.mediafire.com/file/p140kzip27hct6y/Screenshot+(85).png/file
 
The free version of DMDE allows you to recover up to 4000 files from any one folder. The full version costs US$20.

Navigate to your desired folder, r-click the desired object and then "Recover" to another drive.

Note that any data that was overwritten will be lost, but that's only 2.35MB at most ( = [6643 - 2048] x 512 ).

Let me know if your recovered files are OK. If so, then we can have a closer look at the damage around sectors 2048 - 6643. It's possible that not all of them we overwritten, in which case there may be a totally free DIY solution.
 
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The free version of DMDE allows you to recover up to 4000 files from any one folder. The full version costs US$20.

Navigate to your desired folder, r-click the desired object and then "Recover" to another drive.

Note that any data that was overwritten will be lost, but that's only 2.35MB at most ( = [6643 - 2048] x 512 ).

Let me know if your recovered files are OK. If so, then we can have a closer look at the damage around sectors 2048 - 6643. It's possible that not all of them we overwritten, in which case there may be a totally free DIY solution.
Thank you so much!!! So you mean I'll have to pick just one folder to recover? Because no folder in there has 4000 files. And what if a folder has subfolders?
 
Just keep drilling down until you get to the bottom of the folder tree, pick any folder, and then recover it. DMDE will recover 1 file, or 2 files, or 4000 files, but not 4001. This exercise will serve as a test to ensure that the file system isn't seriously broken.
 
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Just keep drilling down until you get to the bottom of the folder tree, pick any folder, and then recover it. DMDE will recover 1 file, or 2 files, or 4000 files, but not 4001.
Will they be recovered on the same external drive? Because right now I do not have so much free space in my laptop.
 
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You MUST NOT recover to the same drive, even if that were possible. You must recover to a different drive. Just test a small file and then we'll see if we can fix your file system.
I've checked the files of one folder, how do I recover them?
 
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The safest approach would be to obtain another HDD, buy the standard version of DMDE (16 euros), and recover the entire $Root to your new drive.

Otherwise, we can examine the extent of the file system damage to see if a DIY repair is possible.

Double-click the Metadata files ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/Metadata.jpg

... then d-click $UpCase ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/$UpCase.jpg

... then d-click $Boot ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/$Boot.jpg

... then go to LBA 2049 in the lower right pane by dragging down the scrollbar:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/BOOTMGR.jpg

Show us what you see. If these areas are OK, then we can try to repair the boot sector.
 
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The safest approach would be to obtain another HDD, buy the standard version of DMDE (16 euros), and recover the entire $Root to your new drive.

Otherwise, we can examine the extent of the file system damage to see if a DIY repair is possible.

Double-click the Metadata files ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/Metadata.jpg

... then d-click $UpCase ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/$UpCase.jpg

... then d-click $Boot ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/$Boot.jpg

... then go to LBA 2049 in the lower right pane by dragging down the scrollbar:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/BOOTMGR.jpg

Show us what you see. If these areas are OK, then we can try to repair the boot sector.
I hope I did it right ...
View: https://imgur.com/a/eSWBwQe
 
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The safest approach would be to obtain another HDD, buy the standard version of DMDE (16 euros), and recover the entire $Root to your new drive.

Otherwise, we can examine the extent of the file system damage to see if a DIY repair is possible.

Double-click the Metadata files ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/Metadata.jpg

... then d-click $UpCase ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/$UpCase.jpg

... then d-click $Boot ...
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/$Boot.jpg

... then go to LBA 2049 in the lower right pane by dragging down the scrollbar:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/DMDE/BOOTMGR.jpg

Show us what you see. If these areas are OK, then we can try to repair the boot sector.
Sorry, this is the right snapshot View: https://imgur.com/a/fQ3vvG3
 
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You've shown us the boot sector (LBA 2048). It has been overwritten. If the other sectors (which you haven't yet shown us) have also been overwritten, then a DIY repair would not be feasible, at least not by me.
So could I just recover files up to the total of 4000 ? And if yes, does it have to be all in one DMDE session or could I continue tomorrow?
Sorry, it appears that there is too much damage in that area of the file system. I would recover the $Root to another HDD and then rebuild your file system (ie reinitialise and reformat).
So could I just recover files up to the total of 4000 ? And if yes, does it have to be all in one DMDE session or could I continue tomorrow? And also, do I need another application to reformat or would DMDE do that too?
 
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Windows Disk Management can initialise and format your drive (after you have recovered your data).

You can recover all your files for free if you are prepared to sit through multiple sessions of DMDE.
Ok! I really can't thank you enough, fzabkar!!! I'm really really grateful for your help and your time!!! I wish you the best!!! How can I mark your answer as the best solution?
 
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Thanks, but not necessary. Good luck.
Oh, but I think it is necessary because other people might be helped too! I think I found it. 🙂 And if anyone has the same problem as me, if you go back in the thread you'll find in fzabkar's posts all the steps you have to follow with DMDE. I'm really grateful!
 
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