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How to Recover Lost Images

How-To-Recover-Lost-Images.jpgThe following post explores how to recover lost images – it’s by Peter Carey.

There are few things worse in this modern age of photography than reading “Card Corrupt” or a similar message on your camera’s LCD.  A lot of us have been there and for those that haven’t, yet, I’m hoping a little knowledge will help dissolve the pit that forms in your stomach after realizing something is wrong with your media.  I’m not going to try to give a step by step process for every camera and operating system, that’s well beyond the scope of this one post.  Instead, I plan to give some general piece of mind to know you stand good odds of recovering those lost images.  If you do have a favorite photo recovery program, please let others know by posting in the comments section at the bottom of the post, we all benefit from the breadth of user experiences on this site.

Don’t Freak Out

First off, DON’T FREAK OUT!!  This is easier said than done, but it’s a very important step.  If you freak out now and start clicking randomly, there is a good chance the images will become more damaged.  So let out a shriek if you must, but then take a deep breath and slow down.

Next, take the card out of the camera and try it in another camera (if there is one handy).  You may find the images are readable by another camera, helping you relax a bit, but chances are they won’t be.  Either way, the next thing to do is to set your card aside until you can get it to your main computer at home for some forensics.  Think CSI without all the cameras.  And no one is dead.  But you still have some calculated work to do, so don’t mess it up by attempting to fix the problem in the field.  Just set the card aside and do not use it until you’re home again. (more…)

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Peter West Carey
Peter West Carey

leads photo tours and workshops in Nepal, Bhutan, Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles and beyond. He is also the creator of Photography Basics – A 43 Day Adventure & 40 Photography Experiments, web-based tutorials taking curious photographers on a fun ride through the basics of learning photography.

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