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Recovering SQL Databases
The nature of an SQL database file
A database file is a data storage centre that consists of an organized collection of data for one or multiple users. The size of this data centre grows as the user”s gradually introduce new data into it. When a database file is first created, the operating system will assign an area of the hard disk or RAID large enough to store this file.
Due to the nature of the database, this initial area will not be large enough for the gradually rising amount of data. The operating system will then assign a new area to store the new data belonging to the database. Obviously, this operation will be continued as typically, the user(s) are adding to the database everyday. As a result, file fragments are generated.
Why existing methods of recovery do not work
When a database file is accidentally deleted, the metadata of this file is deleted at the same time. The fragments belonging to this deleted database will become anonymous without the associated metadata. To recover this file, the IT manager/DR technician will typically use a conventional recovery application. However, these applications are designed to retrieve files that have been accidentally deleted – they will be useless when being used to recover fragmented files, especially *.mdf file fragments.
We can recover your data
Our File Defragmentation Technique (FDT) Service has been developed specifically for MS SQL. It allows us to retrieve accidentally deleted MS SQL files (*.mdf files) and/or tables from different scenarios. Our FDT is totally different to conventional SQL Recovery applications which are useful only to repair an existing damaged SQL file (*.mdf file). Unlike our FDT service, these applications are not be able to defragment and to rebuild a lost SQL file. nThere is no need to run any type of undelete program first, simply run our software and scan the location where the deleted database file was stored.
What to do next
If the .mdf file was stored on a single hard drive: disconnect it and connect it to a different PC as a slave drive. Go to download the SQL Fragment Detection software (at the top of this page) and run it. Select the slave drive that contains the deleted SQL file as the Data Source and then click ‘Start’. When it finishes, send the *.dat file to our FTP server, then we will be able to recover the deleted mdf file for you.
If the .mdf file was stored on a DAS (Direct Attached Storage) device on a network
Download the SQL Fragment Detection software(located at the top of this page) and run it. Select the DAS volume that contains the deleted SQL file as the Data Source and then click ‘Start’. When it finishes, send the *.dat file to our FTP server, then we will be able to recover the deleted .mdf file for you.
If *.mdf file was stored on a server such as a RAID 5
You will have to turn the server off and send the disks to us as no retrieval work can be done outside our lab.
If your data has not been overwritten we will be able to recover it.
The success rate depends upon how much data has been overwritten on the storage media since the SQL files were deleted from it. Thus, do not continue to use the storage media containing the deleted data because this will reduce the chance of retrieving the lost data.
- DO NOT continue to use the media where the SQL file was deleted from – ideally switch the machine off
- DO NOT run the software from the same location that you want to recover the data from