ntfsundelete - recover a deleted file from an NTFS volume.


   ntfsundelete [options] device


   ntfsundelete has three modes of operation: scan, undelete and copy.

   The  default mode, scan simply reads an NTFS Volume and looks for files
   that have been deleted.  Then it will print a  list  giving  the  inode
   number, name and size.

   The   undelete  mode  takes  the  files  either  matching  the  regular
   expression (option -m)  or   specified  by  the  inode-expressions  and
   recovers  as  much  of  the  data as possible.   It saves the result to
   another location.  Partly for safety, but  mostly  because  NTFS  write
   support isn't finished.

   This  is  a  wizard's  option.   It will save a portion of the MFT to a
   file.  This probably only be useful when debugging ntfsundelete

   ntfsundelete only ever reads from the NTFS Volume.   ntfsundelete  will
   never change the volume.


   ntfsundelete cannot perform the impossible.

   When  a  file is deleted the MFT Record is marked as not in use and the
   bitmap representing the disk usage is  updated.   If  the  power  isn't
   turned  off  immediately,  the free space, where the file used to live,
   may become overwritten.  Worse,  the  MFT  Record  may  be  reused  for
   another  file.  If this happens it is impossible to tell where the file
   was on disk.

   Even if all the clusters of  a  file  are  not  in  use,  there  is  no
   guarantee that they haven't been overwritten by some short-lived file.

   In  NTFS  all  the  filenames  are  stored  as  Unicode.   They will be
   converted into the current locale for  display  by  ntfsundelete.   The
   utility has successfully displayed some Chinese pictogram filenames and
   then correctly recovered them.

   Extended MFT Records
   In rare circumstances, a single MFT Record will not be large enough  to
   hold  the  metadata  describing  a  file  (a  file  would have to be in
   hundreds of fragments for this to happen).   In  these  cases  one  MFT
   record  may  hold  the  filename, but another will hold the information
   about the data.  ntfsundelete will not  try  and  piece  together  such
   records.  It will simply show unnamed files with data.

   Compressed and Encrypted Files
   ntfsundelete  cannot  recover  compressed  or  encrypted  files.   When
   scanning for them, it will display as being 0% recoverable.

   The Recovered File's Size and Date
   To recover a  file  ntfsundelete  has  to  read  the  file's  metadata.
   Unfortunately,  this  isn't always intact.  When a file is deleted, the
   metadata can be left in an inconsistent state. e.g.  the file size  may
   be  zero;  the dates of the file may be set to the time it was deleted,
   or random.
   To be safe ntfsundelete will pick the largest file size  it  finds  and
   write  that  to  disk.  It will also try and set the file's date to the
   last modified date.  This date may be the correct last  modified  date,
   or something unexpected.


   Below  is  a  summary  of  all  the  options that ntfsundelete accepts.
   Nearly all options have  two  equivalent  names.   The  short  name  is
   preceded  by  - and the long name is preceded by --.  Any single letter
   options, that don't take an argument, can be  combined  into  a  single
   command,  e.g.   -fv is equivalent to -f -v.  Long named options can be
   abbreviated to any unique prefix of their name.

   -b, --byte NUM
          If any clusters of the file cannot  be  recovered,  the  missing
          parts will be filled with this byte.  The default is zeros.

   -C, --case
          When  scanning  an NTFS volume, any filename matching (using the
          --match option) is  case-insensitive.   This  option  makes  the
          matching case-sensitive.

   -c, --copy RANGE
          This wizard's option will write a block of MFT FILE records to a
          file.  The default file is mft which  will  be  created  in  the
          current  directory.   This  option  can  be  combined  with  the
          --output and --destination options.

   -d, --destination DIR
          This option controls  where  to  put  the  output  file  of  the
          --undelete and --copy options.

   -f, --force
          This   will   override  some  sensible  defaults,  such  as  not
          overwriting an existing file.  Use this option with caution.

   -h, --help
          Show a list of options with a brief description of each one.

   -i, --inodes RANGE
          Recover the files with these inode  numbers.   RANGE  can  be  a
          single  inode number, several numbers separated by commas "," or
          a range separated by a dash "-".

   -m, --match PATTERN
          Filter the output by only looking for matching  filenames.   The
          pattern  can  include  the  wildcards  '?',  match  exactly  one
          character or '*', match zero or more characters.  By default the
          matching   is   case-insensitive.    To  make  the  search  case
          sensitive, use the --case option.

   -O, --optimistic
          Recover parts of the file even if they are currently  marked  as
          in use.

   -o, --output FILE
          Use  this  option  to set name of output file that --undelete or
          --copy will create.

   -P, --parent
          Display the parent directory of a deleted file.

   -p, --percentage NUM
          Filter the output of the --scan option, by only  matching  files
          with  a  certain amount of recoverable content.  Please read the
          caveats section for more details.

   -q, --quiet
          Reduce the amount of output to a minimum.  Naturally, it doesn't
          make sense to combine this option with --scan.

   -s, --scan
          Search  through  an  NTFS  volume and print a list of files that
          could be recovered.  This is the default action of ntfsundelete.
          This   list  can  be  filtered  by  filename,  size,  percentage
          recoverable  or  last  modification  time,  using  the  --match,
          --size, --percent and --time options, respectively.

          The output of scan will be:

          Inode  Flags  %age     Date    Time    Size  Filename
           6038  FN..    93%  2002-07-17 13:42  26629  thesis.doc

          Flag   Description                      
          F/D    File/Directory                   
          N/R    (Non-)Resident data stream       
          C/E    Compressed/Encrypted data stream 
          !      Missing attributes               

          The  percentage field shows how much of the file can potentially
          be recovered.

   -S, --size RANGE
          Filter the output  of  the  --scan  option,  by  looking  for  a
          particular  range  of file sizes.  The range may be specified as
          two numbers separated by a '-'.  The sizes  may  be  abbreviated
          using  the  suffixes  k,  m,  g,  t,  for  kilobytes, megabytes,
          gigabytes and terabytes respectively.

   -t, --time SINCE
          Filter the output of the --scan option.  Only match  files  that
          have  been  altered  since this time.  The time must be given as
          number using a suffix of d, w, m, y for days, weeks,  months  or
          years ago.

   -T, --truncate
          If  ntfsundelete  is confident about the size of a deleted file,
          then it will restore the file to exactly that size.  The default
          behaviour  is to round up the size to the nearest cluster (which
          will be a multiple of 512 bytes).

   -u, --undelete
          Select undelete mode.  You can specify the files to be recovered
          using  by using --match or --inodes options.  This option can be
          combined with --output, --destination, and --byte.

          When the file is recovered it will be given its  original  name,
          unless the --output option is used.

   -v, --verbose
          Increase the amount of output that ntfsundelete prints.

   -V, --version
          Show the version number, copyright and license for ntfsundelete.


   Look for deleted files on /dev/hda1.

          ntfsundelete /dev/hda1

   Look for deleted documents on /dev/hda1.

          ntfsundelete /dev/hda1 -s -m '*.doc'

   Look  for  deleted  files between 5000 and 6000000 bytes, with at least
   90% of the data recoverable, on /dev/hda1.

          ntfsundelete /dev/hda1 -S 5k-6m -p 90

   Look for deleted files altered in the last two days

          ntfsundelete /dev/hda1 -t 2d

   Undelete inodes 2, 5 and 100 to 131 of device /dev/sda1

          ntfsundelete /dev/sda1 -u -i 2,5,100-131

   Undelete inode number  3689,  call  the  file  'work.doc',  set  it  to
   recovered size and put it in the user's home directory.

          ntfsundelete /dev/hda1 -u -T -i 3689 -o work.doc -d ~

   Save MFT Records 3689 to 3690 to a file 'debug'

          ntfsundelete /dev/hda1 -c 3689-3690 -o debug


   There  are  some  small  limitations  to ntfsundelete, but currently no
   known bugs.  If you find a bug please  send  an  email  describing  the
   problem to the development team:


   ntfsundelete  was  written  by  Richard Russon and Holger Ohmacht, with
   contributions from Anton Altaparmakov.  It was  ported  to  ntfs-3g  by
   Erik Larsson and Jean-Pierre Andre.


   ntfsundelete is part of the ntfs-3g package and is available from:


   ntfsinfo(8), ntfsprogs(8)

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