How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Justin Garrison is a Linux enthusiast and cloud infrastructure engineer for one of the world’s biggest companies. He’s also the co-author of Cloud Native Infrastructure by O’Reilly. Read more.

Windows provides a fail safe way of recovering your entire hard drive with system images, but what if you only need to recover certain files from the image instead of restoring your entire hard drive?

Windows Vista and 7 have a few different options for recovering your computer in case of a catastrophe. System protection will allow you to keep a restore point and backup to an existing known good state, and a system image will allow you to reproduce every bit on your hard drive in case of total failure. A system image is more completed but there is no easy way to recover a single file from a system image.

Create Windows System Image

To get started you first need to make sure you create a Windows system image backup.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Once your backup has been created you will have a series of files on your external hard drive where you saved your backup. The root folder is called WindowsImageBackup with a folder named your username inside. This is where your backup is stored so we are going to use this to get the files back that we need.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Mount VHD

Open your start menu and right click on computer and then open manage.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

In computer management click on disk management on the left side.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Open the action menu and select attach VHD.

Note: It looks like you need Windows Vista Enterprise or Ultimate to have this option available. Check out the link below to mount a VHD in Vista Home or Business. If the attach VHD option is greyed out, click in the blank space where your volumes are listed and it should become selectable.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Browse to the VHD file inside the backup folder that was created earlier. If you have two VHD files look at the file size because the smaller one will be your boot partition, and the larger one will be your system (C:) drive.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

A new drive should show up in disk management using the next available drive letter.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Recover Files

The autoplay prompt will pop up if you have it turned on because we just plugged in a virtual hard drive.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Browse the files and copy any files you need to recover to your C: drive.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Disconnect VHD

When you have the files you need, go back to disk management and right click on the lower window where it says your disk number. Then select detach VHD to unmount your backup file.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image
Make sure you don’t check the box that asks if you want to delete the VHD when you detach it.
How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Mount Virtual Hard Drives the Easy Way

If you think opening disk management is a pain you can instead install VHD attach and open your VHD files directly from your right click menu.

VHD files will be attached to a drive letter just as before and you can recover files the same way.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

We all know, it is very important to back up the data on our hard disk to withstand unexpected disasters. And in Windows, you don’t require any external software to create the backup; as Windows provides an inbuilt feature called System Image.

System images are the complete backups of your computer hard drive. These are like a snapshot of the entire disk, system files and more. It is a simple and handy way of copying the entire hard disk data.

System images are very useful in situations like, for instance, you want to upgrade the computer’s hard drive — may be from a sluggish traditional hard disk to a speedy SSD. At that time, you can create a System Image of the system’s hard drive, upgrade to a Solid State Drive(SSD), and move/copy that image to the SSD.

What if you want to restore specific files from a Windows System Image and not entire backup? Well, there is a misconfiguration regrading Windows System Image. Many people say System Images are not ideal for normal backups of the computer as they are very large and contain files that you don’t need.

But, it is not completely true since System Image is a replica of your entire hard disk that acts a lifesaver at any of data loss instances. And, you find it best suitable not only for scenarios like upgrading HDD. Even if you want to recover specific files from a System Image then it is possible.

Once the System Image backup has been created on your Windows, you can find a series of files on the external hard drive (backup drive) where you saved the System Image. The drive will be having a root folder called WindowsImageBackup having a folder named with username inside. This is where your backup is saved and now, I am going to explain how to use this to restore specific files from a Windows System Image.

Step 1: Mount VHD

A. Connect the backup drive, go to Start menu and right-click on My Computer.How to recover specific files from a windows system imageB. Select Manage from the list.

C. In Computer Management window, opt Disk Management (located at left).How to recover specific files from a windows system imageD. Switch to Action tab and select attach VHD option.How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Note: If need mounts a VHD in Vista Home/Business or get Windows Vista Enterprise/Ultimate to access attach VHD option. In case, if attach VHD option is greyed out, click on the blank space where Windows volumes are listed and then you can access it.

E. Browse the VHD file present inside the backup folder of System Image. If you find two VHD files look for the file having larger size (smaller one will be the boot partition).FHow to recover specific files from a windows system imageF. A new drive will show up in Disk Management.

Step 2: Recover Your Specific Files from System Image

A. The AutoPlay window will pop up (if you have enabled AutoPlay option) on the computer screen.How to recover specific files from a windows system imageB. Browse particular files that you need to restore and copy them (those specific files) to another drive (not onto the backup drive).

Step 3: Unmount VHD

A. After you recovered specific files from Windows System Image, go back to Disk Management.

B. Right-click on the lower window where the disk number is present.

C. select detach VHD option to unmount the image file.How to recover specific files from a windows system imageCaution: Do not enable Delete the virtual hard disk file after removing the disk option when you opted to detach it.How to recover specific files from a windows system image

In case, you fail to restore specific files from a Windows System Image then don’t lose hope. Make use of an efficient file recovery tool like Yodot and recover deleted files from PC in a simple and effortless way.

Finding the process of opening Disk Management to access System Image difficulty? Then, here is the easy way for mounting Virtual Hard Drives.

If you feel opening Disk Management to access System Image is an agony, then you can do it in an easier way. Instead of installing VHD, attach and open the VHD files directly from the right-click menu. Yes! Just right-click on VHD file and select Attach option. And you are done, directly start recovering files the same way you did before.

Need to extract individual files from system image backup in Windows 10/8/7? You can turn to Windows built-in tool and Image Explore of AOMEI Backupper.

By Ivy / Last update May 20, 2022

Need to extract individual files from Windows system image

For the data safety and avoid the trouble of reinstalling the system if some problems occur, computer users often backup the Windows system with Windows tool. There is always a situation that important files or application documents are stored on the system disk.

Sometimes, these files or data are deleted accidentally. In such case, you need to extract the specific data from the system ISO file so that they can restore the lost data. Nevertheless, Windows shows that you are unable to directly extract individual files from the system ISO file.

Do you need to restore the whole system image backup to extract the specific individual files? The answer is negative. You can learn two methods to extract the specific data from Windows system image backup in the following parts.

Method 1. Extract individual files via Disk Management

Although the Windows shows that you can’t extract specific items from the whole backup, you can achieve this goal under the help of Disk Management. Let’s have a look at extracting individual files from a windows 10 system image backup.

PS.: The Windows System Image must be created at first.

Step 1. Run disk management and select “Attach VHD” under “Action”.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Step 2. Click “Browse”.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Notice: Do not tick the box before “Read-only”; otherwise, the individual files will be unable to be extracted.

Choose the drive that you need to attach and click “Open” And the Virtual HDD file will be presented in the form of a new drive.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Step 3. Without drive letter, the partition is unable to be accessed; therefore, there is a need to assign this partition a drive letter to browse it. Right click the partition that you will open and select the option of “Change Drive Letter and Paths…” to add a drive letter to the new drive.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Here name the drive letter “F” as an example.

Thus, you can open the drive F to select the file that you want to extract.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Finally, detach VHD with disk management after extracting the targeted file from system image backup.

Method 2. Extract individual files with AOMEI Backupper Standard

Obviously, the first method is a little bit complicated for users to perform. Whether there is another easy and simple way to extract individual files from system image backup? Fortunately, AOMEI Backupper Professional is a very professional software that can help users extract data from ISO file effectively and safely. Let’s see the specific process with it. Firstly, free download and then install it.

Notice: you should have created a system image backup with AOMEI Backupper at first.

Step 1. Run the software. Select “Explore Image” under “Tools”.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Select a backup task and click “Next”.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Step 2. On page Backup Point, choose a backup file and click “Next”.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Step 3. On page Explore Image, set drive letter for disk or partition and click “Next”. Here assign drive letter for the partition as “M”.

How to recover specific files from a windows system image

Then, you can open disk M to browser the content of the ISO file and extract the individual files that you need.


1. Except for the existing letters, you can assign the letter of the virtual drive as you like.

2. The virtual drive F can be detached by selecting “Utilities” ->”Explore Image”>”Detach” option again after extracting individual files.


AOMEI Backupper Professional saves the trouble of restoring the whole system image backup and enables you directly to extract individual files from a system image backup. With simple procedures and few steps, it can extract data from ISO file in Windows 10 easily. Apart from extracting data from Windows 10 image backup, it is able to extract data from a system image backup in Windows 8.1/8/7/Vista/XP.

In fact, it also provides many other functions such as disk backup, system backup and schedule backup etc. More functions and utilities can be gained through advanced version. With various and practical functions, AOMEI Backupper can help computer users solve a great number of problems about Windows data and system backup and restore.

BitRecover Windows Backup Recovery – Special Features of Software
An Excellent Software to recover data from corrupt Windows Image Backup File.

Extract Data from Windows Image Backup

If Windows machine Backup is done through the Windows Image Backup option, you can extract data from Windows Backup files easily using this tool. Tool is equipped with the ability to extract & view any important Backup files as per requirement. Using Windows Backup Recovery Wizard, you can beat the MS Windows claim that ‘You Cannot Restore Individual Files from Windows Image Backup Files”.

Recover from Windows Backup VHD/ VHDX Files

Windows Image Backup Recovery Wizard is a powerful solution to extract and recover files & folders from inaccessible, corrupt or crashed Windows Backup files with .vhd or .vhdx extension. For the System Admins, it is a highly recommended tool to retrieve & extract data from Windows 10 Backup VHD & VHDX files. It provides the option to extract individual files from a Windows 10 system Image Backup.

View Recovered Data from Windows Backup File

The Windows Image Backup recovery tool makes a deep analysis of each individual VHD and VHDX files/ folders of recoverable data from chosen Windows Image Backup files. It’s very simple to recover data from corrupt Windows Backup file with this tool as you will get the full preview of data. It also shows details like Name, Type, Size, Modified Date, Created Date. All you need to do is to tap on respective file to view its content.

Locate Necessary Files from Windows Backup

The BitRecover Windows Image Backup recovery tool offers a facility to find or search a particular file(s) and folder from chosen Windows Backup VHD or VHDX files. The users can efficiently choose the specific corrupted or damaged files and folders from Windows Backup file and save the same to any storage location on computer.

User Defined Saving Location for Output

The Windows Backup Extractor is a premium application that gives the facility to store the extracted data from Windows Image Backup to any storage location on computer. Windows Image Backup Recovery tool grants users to choose necessary Windows 10 Image Backup VHD or VHDX files which are corrupted or crashed to any user defined saving location on the computer system.

Supports All Windows Image Backup File

The Windows Backup recovery tool supports to restore files from any Windows Image Backup database. With it, you can easily recover files from Windows 10 Image Backup, Windows 8.1 Image Backup Recovery, Windows 8 Image Backup recovery, recover files from Windows 7 Backup Image, etc.

Live Processing of Windows Backup Recovery

The BitRecover Windows Backup restore tool gives a complete overview of the processing. it provides the live data processing with all details like Data Size, Data Copied, Time Elapsed, Recovery Time Left, Folder Name, Current data Copied, Overall Data Copied. During the process to recover files from Windows Image Backup, you can even skip or pause the task in the software panel.

Runs on All MS Windows Operating Systems

This Windows 10 Image Backup recovery tool works absolutely fine on all latest and earlier versions of Microsoft Windows OS. It is compatible with Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2019, Windows Server 2016, etc.

Download Free Windows Image Backup Recovery Tool
Know Minimum System Specifications to Download & Use the App with Ease

Trial Edition of Windows Image Backup Recovery tool will allow to preview data, as saving option is disabled in free version. You have to purchase license of the software to save your recovered data.

Hard Disk Space
2.4 MB of free hard disk space

Minimum 512 MB is required

Intel® Pentium 1 GHz processor(x86,x64) or equivalent

Win 10 & All Below Windows Versions

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Frequently Asked Questions

Commonly Asked User’s Questions and Answers

Yes, Windows Image Backup recovery software will help you to extract individual files from a Windows 7 system Image Backup, saves as .vhd files for every volume.

For this, you need a Data Recovery Wizard tool to recover lost or deleted Windows Backup file.

Yes, you can easily restore your files from Windows 10 backup files. Software allows you to extract files from your Windows 10 backup files and you can selectively extract individual files or restore all files from Windows backup file.

The process to recover data from Windows backup utility after system failure/corruption is known as the process of Backup and Recovery. Data Backup requires copying and archiving computer data, so that it could be accessible in case of any data loss or corruption. But data from backup can only be recovered if it has been backed up timely. Windows backup restore is an inevitable part of Disaster Recovery plans.

Updated technology offers facility to save bulk amount of data in cloud. Now, archiving of local system hard drive or saving data in external drive is slowly losing its importance. Every smartphone now a days comes with the advance Cloud Technologies featuring setup for cloud storage.

People are much worried about Reliability, extensibility, capacity, cost etc. while planning data backup. Thorough understanding about one’s business nature and need of data planning can help to overcome most of the confusions and select the appropriate backup plans.

Most commonly used backup solutions are:

  • Tape Drives
  • Removable disks
  • Magnetic optical drives
  • Digital audio tape (DAT) drives and many more.

    To restore your Windows 10 PC from a system image you created earlier:

    1. Open the Settings app (you can use the Win+I keyboard shortcut).
    2. Click the “Update & Security” tile.
    3. In the list of pages on the left, click “Recovery.”
    4. Click the “Restart now” button under “Advanced start-up.”
    5. When your PC reboots, click the “Troubleshoot” button.
    6. Click “Advanced options” and then “System Image Recovery.” Follow the wizard to recover your PC.

    Disaster recovery might not be the catchiest topic in computing, but it’s certainly something to stay abreast of. We recently showed you how to make a Windows system image, which contains an exact copy of everything on your hard drive. In this guide, we’ll walk you through using the image to recover your PC – even if it’s not starting, or has been encrypted by ransomware.

    If you need help in creating a system image, please read through our dedicated tutorial first. This also describes what system images contain and how they differ from other forms of backup. In short, a system image is a like-for-like replica of your Windows installation. System images hold a copy of every file on your system disk at the time they were made, so you can recover your hard drive with Windows, your apps and your files intact.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    We’ll assume you already have a system image handy on a USB stick, external hard drive or DVD. The first steps in the recovery process depend on whether your PC is still working. If you can boot Windows and get to your desktop, you can start the recovery from within Windows itself – see below. Otherwise, you’ll need to skip to the next section of this guide.

    Recovering when Windows still starts

    Start your PC and open the Settings app (you can use the Win+I keyboard shortcut). From the Settings homepage, click the “Update & Security” tile. Now, click the “Recovery” page in the left navigation menu.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    On this page, press the “Restart now” button under the “Advanced start-up” heading. Windows will reboot and display its recovery screen, illustrated below.

    Recovering when Windows does not start, or you can’t use your desktop

    If Windows won’t start, turn off your PC. Next, restart your PC and repeatedly press the F9 keyboard key until the recovery screen, illustrated below, appears. Alternatively, or if F9 doesn’t work, you should see the recovery menu appear automatically after a few failed startup attempts.

    Using the recovery screen

    Once you’re at Windows’ startup recovery screen, click the “Troubleshoot” button. From here, choose “Advanced options” and then the “System Image Recovery” item.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    At this point, your PC should restart. You’ll need to wait a few moments while Windows prepares the system image recovery environment. You’ll be deposited at a screen which allows you to choose your user account. Click your account name and enter your Windows password at the prompt.

    Next, the System Image Recovery wizard will start. The first stage is to select the system image to recover from, so press the “Next >” button to begin. You can choose from system images saved on your PC and those on external media. Insert your system image DVD or USB drive now, or alternatively click the “Advanced…” button and follow the prompts to use an image on a network share.

    Once you’ve selected your image, press the “Next >” button and follow the wizard’s guidance to restore the image. This may take a long time depending on the size of the image. Remember that existing data on your system disk will be overwritten. After the process completes, you should be able to reboot your PC and find Windows is exactly as you left it when the system image was made.

    Flashing a system image when Windows isn’t installed

    Finally, it’s worth noting you can deploy a system image even when Windows isn’t already installed on your PC, or you can’t reach the F9 recovery environment. To use this option, you’ll need Windows installation or recovery media – we’ll opt for the former, which you can acquire with this guide.

    Burn the Windows installation image to a DVD or USB stick and boot your computer from your device – you may need to refer to your PC’s documentation to confirm how to do this.

    Follow the first few steps in the Windows setup program until you reach the “Install Now” screen. Instead of installing, click the “Repair your computer” link in the bottom-left of the window. This will launch a recovery menu which includes the option to restore a system image.

    By: Waseem Patwegar

    If your computer has crashed, you can easily Restore Windows 10 computer using System Image, even if you are unable to login to your device.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Restore Windows 10 Computer Using System Image

    If your computer crashes, you will have to install Windows 10 from scratch, install back all the programs & Apps, and restore personal files, photos and data from a backup.

    You can totally avoid this dreadful scenario, if a System Image Backup of your computer is available on a USB Drive.

    A System Image Backup includes all your Files, Photos, Programs, Operating system files, Settings and almost everything required to recover your computer and put it back to its normal working condition.

    The steps to Restore Windows 10 Computer Using System Image vary, depending on whether you are able to login to the computer or not.

    1. Recover Computer Using System Image (While Logged In)

    If you are already logged-in or able to login to the computer, you can follow the steps below to Restore your computer using a System Image Backup.

    1. Connect the External Drive containing the System Image Backup to your computer.

    2. Go to Settings > Update & Security and click on Recovery in the side left pane. In the right-pane, scroll down and click on Restart Now button located under “Advanced Startup” section.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    3. Once the computer Restarts, click on Troubleshoot > Advanced options > System Image Recovery .

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    4. Patiently, wait for your Computer to Restart and begin the process of preparing System Image Recovery

    5. When prompted, select your User Account , Enter Password and click on Continue .

    6. Your Computer will automatically locate the latest System Image. Click on Next to move to the next screen.

    7. Click on the Finish button to Restore your computer from the selected System Image Backup.

    2. Recover Computer Using System Image (While Not Logged In)

    If your computer is not starting, you can make use of a bootable Windows 10 USB Drive to boot your computer from the USB drive.

    Once your computer boots up, you will be able to use System Restore to restore your computer.

    Shutdown your computer (if it is ON) and follow the steps below to Boot Windows 10 from USB drive and Restore the computer using System Restore.

    1. Plug the Bootable Windows 10 USB Drive into your computer and Press the Power button to start your computer.

    Note: You may have to Enable USB Boot in BIOS, if your computer is not booting up from USB Drive.

    2. Once your computer boots, click on Repair this computer option located at the bottom left corner of your screen.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    3. Navigate to Troubleshoot > Advanced options and click on System Image Recovery .

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    4. Wait for your Computer to Restart and start the process of preparing System Image Recovery

    5. When prompted, select your User Account , Enter Password and click on Continue .

    6. On the next screen, make sure the latest System Image is selected and click on Next .

    7. Click on the Finish button to Restore your computer from the selected System Image Backup.

    The DISM command lets you fix Windows 10 by resorting the missing or corrupted system files. Here how to use the DISM command to restore Windows image.

    The Windows operating system is complex. Though it works perfectly for a vast majority of people in a vast majority of situations, there will be times when it doesn’t work. There can be any number of reasons for this like system crashes, incompatible software, incompatible hardware, corrupted system files, missing system files, etc. When that happens, Windows has its own built-in tools to fix itself. However, those tools can only do so much. For example, in case of missing or corrupted system files, Windows cannot do much.

    To deal with those kinds of situations, Windows 10 has a built-in tool called DISM (Deployment Image Servicing and Management). Using DISM in combination with the SFC tool, you can restore and fix missing or corrupted system files. Of course, DISM can do much more than that. For instance, developers often use DISM to prepare and modify system images to suit their deployment needs.

    The good thing is, using DISM to fix Windows system image is pretty easy to do. All you have to do is execute a command or two and the tool will take care of everything.

    In this simple and straightforward Windows 10 guide, let me show you how to use the DISM tool to restore missing or corrupted system files to fix Windows operating system.

    Use DISM to restore system image

    There are two major steps to use the DISM command. First, we need to scan the system for any problems. Second, execute the command to fix any problems found by the DISM tool. To learn how to do it, follow the steps below.

    1. Scan system with DISM command

    To scan the system for any corrupted or missing system files, use the below method.

    1. Open the Start menu.
    2. Search for “Command Prompt.”
    3. Right-click on Command Prompt.
    4. Select the “Run as administrator” option.
    5. Type the below command and press Enter.
      DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    The full scan will take some time to complete. If there are any missing or corrupted files or has any other issues, the scan will let you know the same.

    2. Run DISM /RestoreHealth to fix Windows image

    If the DISM /ScanHealth command finds any missing or corrupted files or any other problems, you can restore the system image with /RestoreHealth command. Here is how.

    1. Open the Start menu.
    2. Search for “Command Prompt.”
    3. Right-click on Command Prompt.
    4. Select the “Run as administrator” option.
    5. Type the below command and press Enter.
      DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Just like with the scan command, the restore command will take some time to complete. Once that is done, close the Command Prompt window and restart the system.

    3. (optional) Use DISM with ISO file to fix Windows

    If the DISM command is unable to restore Windows image directly, you can mount the Windows 10 ISO and point the command to use the install.wim file or install.esd file. That way, Windows can simply replace the corrupted or missing system files with the ones in the ISO. Here is how you can do it.

    1. Download Windows 10 ISO.
    2. Double-click on the ISO to mount it in File Explorer.
    3. Open the Start menu.
    4. Search for “Command Prompt.”
    5. Right-click on Command Prompt.
    6. Select the “Run as administrator” option.
    7. Type the below command if you have an install.wim file and press Enter. Replace the drive letter (X) with the actual drive letter of the mounted ISO.
      DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /Source:X:\Sources\install.wim
    8. If you have install.esd file, type the below command. Replace the drive letter with the actual drive letter of the mounted ISO.
      DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /Source:X:\ESD\Windows\sources\install.esd

    That is it. With the above command, Windows will pull the system files from the install.wim or install.esd file and restores them. Once that is it done, you can safely close the Command Prompt window. To make sure everything is applied properly, restart the computer.

    That is all. It is that simple to use DISM to restore Windows 10 system image by replacing missing or corrupted system files.

    I hope that helps. If you are stuck or need some help, comment below and I will try to help as much as possible.

    System Image Backups come in handy if your current Windows 10 or Windows 11 system ever fails.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    If your Windows environment becomes unstable or corrupted, a special backup feature from Microsoft could come to the rescue—if you prepare in advance.

    System Image Backup creates an entire image file of Windows 10 or Windows 11 rather than just the select files and folders preserved in File History. This way, if Windows ever gets corrupted, crashes, or simply stops working, you can get it back on its feet by restoring the entire image.

    This is a better option than a Recovery Drive, which won’t save your personal files, and a Restore Point, which can sometimes fail. The only drawback is that you can’t restore individual files via System Image Backup, only the entire image. So you’ll want to create the image on a fairly regular basis to house the latest version of your Windows environment.

    Before you get started, you’ll need to set up an external source on which to save your image file. You can create the image on DVDs, but the easiest option is to use an external drive, a network drive, or a network-attached storage (NAS) drive. Let’s get started.

    Set Up Backup

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    The quickest way to get to the System Image Backup in Windows 10 or 11 is through the Control Panel. Use the Windows search function from the Taskbar to type Control Panel, then select it from the results. With Control Panel in icon view, select Backup and Restore (Windows 7). Yes, it still says Windows 7, but this feature works just fine in Windows 10 and 11.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Click the Create a system image link, then choose where you want to save the backup—on a drive, DVD, or network location. If you want to use an external drive, make sure it’s formatted using NTFS in order to store the image. Click Next.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Confirm which areas or partitions of your hard drive will be included in the image file, then click the Start Backup button. Windows now creates the image file.

    Create a System Repair Disc

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    You’ll then want to create a system repair disc to use if Windows is ever incapable of booting up on its own. You’ll need a disk drive as this option still doesn’t support USB drives for booting up your PC. If your computer doesn’t have the right drive, you can always buy and connect an external DVD drive.

    Insert a CD or DVD into your drive. Click the Create a system repair disc link at the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) window. Confirm that your DVD drive appears and then click the Create disc button.

    System Image Recovery

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Okay, now let’s say you’re in a jam one day because Windows is misbehaving. Restoring it from the image file may be your only option. Make sure your backup media is available. If you still can, boot up your PC.

    In Windows 10, go to Settings > Update & Security > Recovery. In the Advanced startup section on the right, click the Restart now button under Advanced startup. Windows 11 users should open Settings > System > Recovery and then click the Restart now button next to Advanced startup.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    At the Choose an option window, go to Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > System Image Recovery > See more recovery options. Select System Image Recovery. From there, follow the prompts to restore your image file.

    If Windows won’t boot, start up your PC with the system repair disc. You should be taken to the Choose an option window, where you can follow the same steps to restore Windows to a previous and (hopefully healthy) state.

    This tutorial will show you how to restore the contents of your Windows 8 or 8.1 PC back to how it was at the time a system image was created if your hard disk or entire computer ever stops working.

    1. Boot to the System Recovery Options screen, and click/tap on the System Image Recovery option. (see screenshot below)


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    • Feb 23, 2013
  • #2
  • Another great tutorial (as always)! I just wanted to emphasize that your method (IMHO) is the best way to recover Windows 8 from a failed hard drive situation that forces you to install a new replacement drive. The only limitation (that I can see) is that the new hard drive must be equal to or greater (in size) than the original and, if greater, the unallocated leftover space can be dealt with after the initial recovery installation. Anyway, I just had to try it so I created a system image of my 40GB drive and restored it to a newly formatted 80GB drive using your procedures as described above. It worked perfectly. Thanks a bunch!

    My Computer

    System One


    • Feb 23, 2013
  • #3
  • My Computer

    System One


    • May 8, 2013
  • #4
  • My Acer PC came pre-installed with OEM Win 8 OS Home Edition in dynamic disk . If I convert it to basic disk , will it delete my OS? If so, can I use this tutorial to recover the image I made (from your tutorial also) and reinstall the OS in basic disk ? or should I should use the manufacturer’s recovery media? Thanks in advance.

    My Computer

    System One

    OS Win 8 (64) : Win 7 (64) : Vista (64) : Android JB 4.2 : iOS 6 Computer type PC/Desktop System Manufacturer/Model Acer AX Series & HP i-5 2400s Screen Resolution Main PC – 2x Sony PS3 3D LED Displays + 1x 22″ Philips; HTPC – 47″ HDTV w/ 17″ LCD secondary display Hard Drives Internal- 1TB on each system; 1x120GB SSD on main PC
    External (network attached)- 1x2TB Seagate backup; 1x1TB ext. storage; 1x500GB, Other Info


    • May 8, 2013
  • #5
  • You might see if you may be able to use OPTION ONE or OPTION TWO in the tutorial below to convert the disk back to basic without losing anything. I would still recommend to back up anything you do not want to lose just to be safe.

    Hope this helps.

    My Computer

    System One


    • May 9, 2013
  • #6
  • You might see if you may be able to use OPTION ONE or OPTION TWO in the tutorial below to convert the disk back to basic without losing anything. I would still recommend to back up anything you do not want to lose just to be safe.

    Hope this helps.

    Hi Shawn,
    I took a shot with Easeus as PW doesn’t have the option to convert dynamic disk using the very same version you specified in the tutorial and I declined to the update. Even Easeus have the latest version (I think it’s version 12.x) which didn’t have the dynamic conversion option. So I made a wild guess and downloaded an old version (9.x) which had the conversion option. I followed the tutorial and the disk was succesfully converted to “basic” then this:

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    I was able to boot up to recovery screen using the rescue cd and tried to perform recovery by image. But then I realized, my image file is from dynamic disk so it won’t work anymore. So, I had no choice but to pull out the USB recovery media I created before and perform a complete PC reset. It took about 25mins to reset including re-partition tasks (the disk remained basic after the reset which is what I want). But to install my programs and to setup the PC the way I want it (uninstalled crapwares, etc) took about 3 hrs. Now I have a fresh setup to make a backup image of. But it was painful. urgghh. About my data, I normally save them on a separate harddrive so they are all intact.

    Just, a heads up. You may want to revisit the tutorial and check for 3rd party software versions. But I am okay. No worries. At least I got what I want.

    Ever since Windows ME a feature has been present in Windows that can help recover your system in the event of an error, crash or malfunction. System Restore works by simply backing up all important files on the system at a given point in time, whether it’s before a software install, before installation of drivers or Windows updates, or even manually creating restore points yourself. If things go wrong on your system it can be rolled back to the time the restore point was created by replacing damaged or corrupt files with those that were backed up, hopefully fixing your issues.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Because System Restore can backup registry files, system files, program files and also files from user profiles it can be used to recover specific files using the Previous Versions tab in Explorer. If a personal document or image for example, has become corrupted, you can simply look for a previously backed up version in the System Restore snapshots and recover it.

    If you want to recover several files or folders from a Restore point it becomes more problematic using the previous versions option, and actually running System Restore to restore the point is maybe something you don’t want to do. Another option is viewing the contents of the restore point so you can copy files out without having to restore it, but Windows has no built in ability to do that.

    Thankfully, because Windows uses the built in shadow copying function to create Restore points, their contents can easily be viewed by dedicated third party programs. Here we show you 2 tools that allow you to view all the files contained within Restore points, ready to be copied out if needed.

    1. System Restore Explorer

    System Restore Explorer is a tool that has been designed specifically for the task of viewing and copying files from System Restore points without the requirement of having to restore the whole set of backed up files. If you want to only extract one or two files from the restore point it’s not a problem. The program works by mounting the selected restore point as a virtual folder using the Volume Shadow Copy Service, from which you can then view and copy files. Administrator privileges are required to use System Restore Explorer.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Although the easiest way to use System Restore Explorer is to simply install it from the MSI installer, more advanced users can extract the installer with Universal Extractor and use the program as a portable version. The user interface strongly resembles the Windows System Restore interface and it shows all created restore points. To mount and view the restore point files click and highlight the required point and then click the Mount button. This will create a shortcut to the Restore point in C called HarddiskVolumeShadowCopy and automatically open an Explorer window to view it.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Obviously you cannot edit, move or delete files as they are still part of the protected restore point but can view, copy and paste or drag and drop. When you’re done highlight the same restore point and click Unmount (not highlighting the point first will likely give an unhandled exception error). A useful option is the Delete button which is able to delete unused or unrequired restore points. System Restore Explorer also works on Windows 8/8.1 and 10 although .NET Framework 3.5 will need to be installed from Programs and Features > “Turn Windows features on or off”.

    2. ShadowExplorer

    As the name suggests, ShadowExplorer is a tool specifically designed to view and explore files created by System Restore points which are backed up using the Shadow Copy service. Unlike System Restore Explorer, ShadowExplorer doesn’t need you to mount the Restore point and instead it shows all the files and folders automatically from each selected point in its main window.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Usage is very easy and after running the program (administrator privileges are required), make sure drive C is selected in the drop down, then click the drop down to its right which displays all restore points by date and time. If you are not sure which restore point you want to access because there are no names in this list, run rstrui.exe from Start or the Run box to open the System Restore tool where you can see what names relate to which restore point times and dates.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Navigate using the Explorer style interface to find the files and/or folders you are looking for, right click and select Export. Then browse for the target folder to save everything to. Multi selection is possible with Shift+click or Ctrl+click. ShadowExplorer also works on Windows 8.1 and 10 although you will be prompted to install .NET Framework 3.5 before the program will run. A portable version of ShadowExplorer is also available.

    In previous articles, I had described the way to automatically back up your Windows Server 2016/2012 or 2012R2 by using the Windows Server Backup feature, and the way to restore your server to a previous system state, if needed.

    In this article, I ‘ll show to you, how to restore your data (files or folders), from a previous backup, that has taken with the Windows Server Backup application.

    Related Article:

    How to Recover Files on Server 2016/2012/2012R2 from a previous Windows Server Backup.

    To recover files and folders, with the Windows Server Backup application:

    1. Open Server Manager and from the Tools menu open the Windows Server Backup.
    2. At Windows Server Backup screen, select Local Backup on the left and then click Recover on the right.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    3. Select the backup location and click Next.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    4. Then select the date of the backup that you want to use for recovery and click Next.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    5. At ‘Select Recovery Type’ options select the option you want (e.g. “Files or Folders”) and click Next.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    6. At ‘Select Location for System State Recovery’ leave checked the Original Location and click Next.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    7. Select the files or folders that you want to restore and click Next.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    8. Carefully specify the recovery options and click Next.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    9. Finally click Recover to restore the selected folders/files.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    That’s it! Let me know if this guide has helped you by leaving your comment about your experience. Please like and share this guide to help others.

    Did you accidentally delete an important file? Did you also empty the Recycle Bin? Don’t worry. Microsoft has its own file recovery tool available for Windows 10 and Windows 11.

    Delete a file in Windows, and you can often recover it even if it’s no longer in the Recycle Bin. Third-party data recovery tools are available, but they can be expensive. As an alternative, Microsoft offers a command-line utility called Windows File Recovery that restores deleted files. Available in the Microsoft Store, the app supports Windows 10 with the May 2020 Update or higher as well as Windows 11.

    Windows File Recovery can revive photos, documents, videos, and other types of files on a mechanical hard drive, SSD, USB drive, or memory card. The program supports FAT, NTFS, and exFAT file systems. FAT and exFAT are used for SD cards, flash drives, and USB drives with less than 4GB of storage. NTFS is typically used on mechanical drives, SSDs, external hard drives, flash drives, and USB drives larger than 4GB.

    PCMag-Recommended Windows Accessories

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    File Recovery Modes

    The initial version of Windows File Recovery released in the summer of 2020 offered three different recovery modes: Default, Segment, and Signature, each one geared for specific circumstances. The version launched during the winter of 2021 narrowed your options to two modes as a way to simplify the program:

    Regular mode is designed to recover recently deleted files. It supports drives formatted with NTFS partitions—typically hard drives, solid state drives, external hard drives, USB drives, and flash drives with more than 4GB of space. This mode is quick but may not find the file you want.

    Extensive mode is designed to recover files that were deleted a while ago, after the drive has been reformatted, or if the disk itself has been corrupted. Extensive mode supports NTFS, FAT, and exFAT partitions. This mode takes longer to scan your disk but stands a better chance of tracking down the deleted file.

    If you’re not sure which mode to use, Microsoft recommends that you start with regular mode. The following table may also help you decide:

    As a command-line tool, Windows File Recovery is certainly trickier to use than a traditional GUI application. But if you know the steps and are comfortable working at the command prompt, you can use this utility to revive a file that seems to be permanently gone.

    Install and Open Windows File Recovery

    If you’re using Windows 10, make sure you’re running the May 2020 Update (Windows 10 2004) or higher. To check, go to Settings > System > About and scroll down to the Windows specifications section. If the Version number says 2004 or higher, you’re good to go.

    Otherwise, move to Settings > Update & Security and click Check for Updates to grab the latest update. If you’re using Windows 11, you’re already set up to use the tool.

    Open the Microsoft Store and browse to the Windows File Recovery (Opens in a new window) page. Click the Get button to download the program.

    To recover a deleted file, open Windows File Recovery from its Start menu shortcut. In Windows 11, you may need to click the All Apps link in the Start menu to find the shortcut.

    A command prompt window opens to show you the right syntax to use with the command as well as a few examples. The basic syntax for the command is as follows:

    winfr source-drive: destination-drive: [/mode] [/switches]

    Run a Search in Regular Mode

    As an example, let’s say you wanted to find a recently deleted file named myresume.docx stored in your Documents folder on the C drive and save the recovered version on a USB stick set up as your E drive. If you used Regular Mode, you would type the following command, substituting with your actual username:

    winfr C: E: /regular /n users\ \documents\myresume.docx

    Before you run such a command, there are a few conditions. The source and destination drives must be different. If your PC isn’t outfitted with two drives, just plug in a USB drive and use that as the destination. The tool automatically creates a folder called Recovery_ on the destination drive, which it uses to store the recovered file.

    You can specify a different folder for the file, but let’s stick with the default option. Also, if the folder or filename contains spaces, you’ll need to enclose the entire path in quotes, as in:

    winfr C: E: /regular /n “\users\ \documents\my resume.docx.”

    After you type the command, the tool prompts you to continue. Type Y, and Windows File Recovery scans your drive for the deleted file. If the file is located, the app tries to recover it. If successful, the app places it in the Recovery_ folder on the destination drive. The command ends by asking if you want to view recovered files. Type Y.

    You’ll then see the Recovery folder and a RecoveryLog.txt file on the destination drive. Drill through the folders under Recovery until you find the recovered file. Open the file to make sure that it’s intact and readable.

    If the file fails to turn up in the Recovery folder, you have a few options. You can try again, and this time specify the location without a filename, as in:

    winfr C: E: /regular /n users\ \documents\

    This option will also turn up any other deleted files in that folder. Just make sure to add a backslash at the end of the folder name.

    You can also specify the filename without a location by typing:

    winfr C: E: /regular /n myresume.docx

    This option will search your entire hard drive for the file. Another option is to add a wildcard to replace the filename or extension, for example:

    winfr C: E: /regular /n users\ \documents\myresume.*

    winfr C: E: /regular /n users\ \documents\*.docx

    Run a Search in Extensive Mode

    If you’re still unable to find or recover the file, then it’s time to try extensive mode. Here, you simply replace the /regular switch with /extensive but still use the other options for location and filename, as in:

    winfr C: E: /extensive /n users\ \documents\myresume.docx

    After typing the command, follow the same steps you used with regular mode to recover your file. For more information and details on using the app and its different switches, refer to Microsoft’s support page on recovering lost files (Opens in a new window) with Windows.

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    Free Recovery Tools in Windows

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

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    In This Article

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    The System Recovery Options menu is a group of Windows repair, restore, and diagnostic tools.

    It’s also referred to as Windows Recovery Environment, or WinRE for short.

    Beginning in Windows 8, this menu was replaced by Advanced Startup Options.

    What Is the System Recovery Options Menu Used For?

    The tools available on the System Recovery Options menu can be used to repair Windows files, restore important settings to previous values, test your computer’s memory, and much more.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    System Recovery Options Menu Availability

    The System Recovery Options menu is available in Windows 7, Windows Vista, and in some Windows server operating systems.

    Beginning in Windows 8, it was replaced with a more centralized menu called Advanced Startup Options.

    While Windows XP has no System Recovery Options menu, a Repair Install and the Recovery Console, both available when booting from the Windows XP Setup CD, are similar to a Startup Repair and the Command Prompt, respectively. Also, Windows Memory Diagnostic can be downloaded and used independently on a PC running any operating system.

    How to Access the System Recovery Options Menu

    This menu is available on both the computer’s hard drive and on the Windows installation disc, so it can be accessed three different ways:

    • The easiest is via the Repair Your Computer option on the Advanced Boot Options menu.
    • If for some reason you can’t access that menu or the Repair Your Computer option isn’t available (as in some Windows Vista installations), you can also access System Recovery Options from a Windows Setup disc.
    • Finally, if neither above method works, you can create a system repair disc on a friend’s computer and then start it using that system repair disc on your computer. Unfortunately, this only works if both computers are running Windows 7.

    How to Use the Menu

    The System Recovery Options menu is just a menu, so it doesn’t actually do anything itself aside from offer choices you can click to run a specific tool. Choosing one of the available tools on the menu will start that tool.

    In other words, using System Recovery Options means using one of the recovery tools available on the menu.

    System Recovery Options

    Below are descriptions and links to more detailed information on the five recovery tools you’ll find on the menu in Windows 7 and Windows Vista:

    Startup Repair starts, you guessed it, the Startup Repair tool which can automatically solve many issues that prevent Windows from starting correctly.

    Startup Repair is one of the most valuable system recovery tools available on the System Recovery Options menu.

    The System Restore option starts System Restore, the same tool you might have used before from within Windows.

    Of course, the advantage of having System Restore available from this menu is that you can run it from outside of Windows, a handy feat if you can’t get Windows to start.

    System Image Recovery is a tool you can use to restore to your computer a previously created complete backup of your hard drive.

    It’s a good if-all-else-fails recovery option, assuming, of course, you were proactive and created a system image at some point when your computer was working properly.

    In Windows Vista, it’s referred to as ​Windows Complete PC Restore.

    Windows Memory Diagnostic (WMD) is a memory test program created by Microsoft. Since problems with your memory hardware can cause all sorts of Windows issues, having a means to test RAM from the System Recovery Options menu is incredibly useful.

    It can’t be run directly from the menu. When you select Windows Memory Diagnostic, you’re given the choice to either restart the computer immediately and then have the memory test run automatically, or have the test run automatically whenever you next restart your computer.

    The Command Prompt available from the System Recovery Options menu is essentially the same Command Prompt you may have used while in Windows.

    Most of the commands available from within Windows are also available from this Command Prompt.

    System Recovery Options & Drive Letters

    The drive letter that Windows appears to be installed on while in System Recovery Options may not always be the one you’re familiar with.

    For example, the drive that Windows is installed on might be identified as C: when in Windows, but D: when using the recovery tools in System Recovery Options. This is especially valuable information if you’re working in the Command Prompt.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Like in the screenshot example above, instead of being able to execute a simple dir c: command to list files and folders on the primary hard drive, you might have to replace the “c” in the dir command with another letter (e.g., dir d:) to see the correct data.

    System Recovery Options will report the drive that Windows is installed on under the Choose a recovery tool subheading on the main System Recovery Options menu. It might say, for example, Operating system: Windows 7 on (D:) Local Disk.

    There is a way by which one can browse the contents of a system image and extract individual files in Windows 10. You need not restore an entire system image for getting or extracting few important files. The procedure to extract individual files from the system image is different for Windows 10/8 and Windows 7. Moreover, neither of these will work on Windows Vista, as it does not have the option to attach VHD files nor does it use the wim archive.

    This article will show you how you can extract and restore particular or select or individual files in Windows 10/8, followed by, how to do the same in Windows 7.

    Extract specific files from Windows System Image Backup

    In Windows 10, it is easy to extract specific files from a system image. The system image backup file is saved as a wim archive.

    If you have created a Custom System Image for use, you will be able to browse and copy the files using any file extraction utility.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    You know the location where you have saved the custom image, so simply open the location and use any file extraction tool like 7-Zip to open the archive.

    You will be able to browse the contents and even Copy the file or carry out other operations on the contents.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    To extract any particular file, simply right-click on any file and exercise the Copy To option.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    The context menu also offers other options like Calculate checksum, which can be quite useful to check the integrity of your backed-up files.

    Extract specific files from Windows 7 System Image Backup

    In Windows 7, things are not so easy, but there is a way that has been suggested on TechNet. For that, you will have to know the location where your system backup file has been saved.

    System images are saved at: Drive\WindowsImageBackup\(YourPC Name)\Backup. You will see the files arranged by year-month-day-hours-minutes-seconds. Identify the latest image where your file may be saved and present.

    Now go to the Start Menu and in its search field type Disk Management and hit Enter. Choose the ‘Action’ menu and click on ‘Attach VHD’ option.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Next, a window will pop up on your computer screen. Click on its ‘Browse’ button and search for the system image back up file that has the .VHD file extension. Keep the Read Only box unchecked.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Here, the system images have been saved to drive G:\ so, the backups would be inside G:\WindowsImageBackup\.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Next, click on Open > OK. At this point, do not check the ‘Read Only’ option.

    An AutoPlay window may now appear on your computer screen. You will also notice the VHD file attached as a separate virtual disk having its own drive letter in the Disk Management window.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    You can also open it via your Computer folder. When the dialog appears on your computer screen, choose ‘Open folders to view files’ option.

    You can browse and copy any file/s you want from the attached system image VHD disk.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    When you have finished the copying work, right-click the box that corresponds to VHD in the Disk Management. Doing so, brings up a list of actions to carry out, choose ‘Detach VHD’.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Detaching a virtual hard disk makes it unavailable until it is attached again. Keep the Delete virtual hard disk file box unchecked. Click on OK and exit.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    To follow this complete procedure you will need to have created a system image backup earlier on your Windows computer.

    This article describes a system image restore problem that occurs in Windows 8.1 when you try to recover from a backup that’s stored on a partition on the system disk. A resolution is provided.

    Applies to: В Windows 8.1
    Original KB number: В 2989057


    Consider the following scenario:

    • You’re running Windows 8.1, and you have the Windows 8.1 update (KB2919355) installed.
    • You’ve taken a system image backup and saved it to a partition on the same disk as drive C.
    • The partition that you saved the backup to is much smaller than drive C.

    When you try to recover from the backup by using System Image Recovery, it fails and returns the following error:

    The system image restore failed.
    Error details: The system cannot find the file specified. (0x80070002)

    Additionally, you can’t start Windows after this error occurs.


    The error occurs because the backup image is prematurely dismounted during the restore process.


    When you start the system after this error occurs, it generally goes into Automatic Repair mode. However, this process fails. To recover, follow these steps:

    Click Advanced options.

    Under Choose an option, click Troubleshoot, click Advanced options, and then click Command Prompt.

    Using DISKPART, locate the volume where the OS was installed. After the problem occurs, the volume will be recognized as a RAW volume (drive C in the following example).

    The drive letters may differ in your installation of Windows.

    Format the RAW volume:

    Exit DISKPART, and then close the command prompt:

    Under Choose an option, click Troubleshoot, click Advanced options, and then click System Image Recovery.

    Follow the steps in the Re-image Your Computer Wizard to complete the restore from the backup that you saved.


    Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the “Applies to” section.

    Microsoft regularly releases software updates to address specific bugs. If Microsoft releases a software update to resolve this bug, this article will be updated with additional information.

    This post shows students and new users steps to create a complete system backup in Windows 11. When you create a system image, it takes a complete backup of everything on your PC’s hard drive – similarly to take a snapshot of your entire drive, system files and everything.

    Doing a system image backup is useful in cases where you’ll want to restore your complete PC at a point in time when the image was created. Usually, a complete system image is taken once after the PC has been tested and in full working order.

    Taking a complete system backup isn’t the best solutions for all situations. For most users, simply backing up important documents should be enough.

    If you’re worried about losing important documents that are difficult to replace, then doing a complete system image backup shouldn’t be your backup strategy. A system image backup is ideal for situations where an important PC with critical applications and complicated setup and settings that are difficult and time consuming to rebuild. In this case, doing a complete backup of the system and stored somewhere is a best case in this situation.

    For majority of users, the backup strategy in this post below should be considered.

    For complete image backup, continue below:

    How to create complete system backup in Windows 11

    Windows 11 comes with a built-in backup solution that can backup the operating system, applications and files at a certain point in time, and save to an external hard disk in case of system failure.

    As mentioned above, system image backup isn’t ideal for most situation. System images are very large, and contain many files you really don’t need.

    Windows 11 has a centralized location for majority of its settings. From system configurations to creating new users and updating Windows, all can be done from its System Settings pane.

    To get to System Settings, you can use the Windows key + i shortcut or click on Start ==> Settings as shown in the image below:

    Alternatively, you can use the search box on the taskbar and search for Settings. Then select to open it.

    Windows Settings pane should look similar to the image below. In Windows Settings, click System , select Storage on the right pane of your screen shown in the image below.

    On the Storage settings pane, under Storage management, select Advanced storage settings to expand more storage options.

    Next, select Backup options

    Toggle the button to enable File History backup.

    Then click Add a drive to select the drive to backup the system image to. System image can only be saved on an external drive, CD/DVD disc or network location.

    Next, click the link to go to Backup and Restore (Windows 7). Doing that will open another windows in Control Panel.

    Click on Create a system image.

    Next, select the destination to save the system image. For this post, we’re going to be saving on an external hard disk.

    Finally, click Start backup to begin the backup process.

    Wait for the process to complete. Depending on the size of your hard drive, this could take hours.

    Once the backup is complete, remove the drive and store in a safe place. The image on the drive can be used to restore your PC to the date and time of the creation.


    This post showed you how to create a system image backup in Windows 11. If you find any error above, please use the comment form below to report.

    Published by Richard

    In my spare time, I research topics that are interesting and worthwhile for users and students who want to try something new. I, too, am a student and my focus here is to help other students and new users get started with managing Ubuntu Linux, Windows, Content Management Systems (CMS) and others.

    I try to do my best explaining the topics and detailing the instructions so that anyone can understand. These tutorials may not work in all situations and for all users. However, if you run into trouble, please ask your questions below and I or someone from the community may help you resolve. Thanks for reading and hope you come back.

    1 Comment

    After the image showing file history, it is not clear where the link/tab is, to trigger the system image screen

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    R-Photo is a free utility for non-commercial recovery of photos and video files. The utility supports Windows file systems (FAT, exFAT, NTFS, and even ReFS) and recovers photo and video files from all sources visible to the host Windows system: internal and external HDD/SDD/NVME, external USB memory sticks, SD cards, and other storage devices. It also supports virtual disks, undamaged RAIDs, and Windows Storage Spaces.

    With the same powerful data recovery engine as R-Studio, the program recovers deleted and lost files using both the standard search for photos and videos among file systems and the advanced raw file recovery search for specific file signatures on a device with a severely damaged or unrecognizable file system.

    • October 22, 2019 Iperius Backup Team

    Iperius is a software that allows to perform drive image and cloning of disks in different modes. One of these is the Windows Drive Image, based on wbadmin and compatible with the Windows system image backup software. Iperius therefore supports the drive image of Windows 10 and Windows Server Backup, and the image files created are in VHD or VHDX format.

    In the case of Windows Image Backup, on some systems it is possible that Iperius reports an error in the backup verification, with the following message: “The size of the backup is different from the size of the data transferred. Possible corrupt backup.”. This error is due to the fact that Iperius does some thorough checks on the system logs even when the drive image is apparently completed correctly. This error occurs only in some specific cases, and can indicate the presence of a problem on the disk of which we are performing the image. In some of these cases, the backup could be corrupted, which is why Iperius sees it as a potentially critical error. In other cases, the thing may not be a real problem, and the backup is perfectly intact.

    There are a few things we can do to try to resolve the error, before deciding to replace the disk and proceed to reinstall the system on a new hard disk.

    Let’s try first to run a check disk, using the following statement from the command prompt:

    chkdsk C: /f

    Where C: is the disk to be checked, that is the one you are trying to backup the drive image.

    If no problems have been detected on the disk, proceed to analyze and repair the system files, with the following command:

    sfc /scannow

    Finally, let’s try to delete any shadow copies (make sure that they are not necessary for recovery points or file history), using the following command:

    vssadmin delete shadows /all

    If after these operations the Windows Drive Image backup continues to give the same problem, you can choose to use the Iperius Drive Image mode, which uses a proprietary engine that can overcome this problem automatically. The backup will remain absolutely reliable and the format will always be VHD / VHDX.

    We can choose the way in which to run the drive image from the appropriate configuration window:

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Restore individual files and bare-metal restore (disaster recovery)

    For both types of drive image backups, recovery can be done by mounting the VHD / VHDX files and exploring their contents (if you want to recover individual files), or by performing a bare-metal recovery, even on different hardware, using the Windows installation disc (in the case of Windows Image backup) or with the Iperius boot drive, which contains the Iperius Recovery Environment® system.

    Command Prompt will troubleshoot many problems related to Windows including hard drive recovery, flash drive recovery, and memory cards. It is the most powerful inbuilt utility, which helps a user to retrieve lost files due to accidental deletion and virus attacks. Besides this, Command prompt will help to repair bad sector on hard drive and convert for free Raw file system to NTFS. That is why if you have accidentally deleted files, you can directly use Command prompt to regain it. In the following section, we will discuss a step-by-step guide to recover deleted files using command prompt in Windows 10 OS. Before that, let us understand the following scenario, which has taken from the forum site:

    “I accidentally deleted some important images and excel documents from my Windows 10 computer last night. Now, I want to recover all my deleted pictures back. Is there any solution through which I can easily recover permanently deleted files without any software? If yes, then please suggest how can I get my deleted data back?”

    About File Structure

    Before going any further, first of all, let us try to understand the file structure. A file is categorized into two parts:

    When a single file is removed, only the directory is deleted while the actual block if not changed or overwritten, still contains each file. Thus, all the directory entries can be marked ‘available’ and hidden from the machine. In such cases, users can simply recover their lost files using command prompt. Below you will find step by step guide to recover deleted data from Windows using CMD.

    Best Two Ways to Restore Deleted Files Using Command Prompt

    The most amazing solution to recover lost or deleted files from an external hard drive using Command Prompt. This will execute the command to perform the assigned task. Moreover, there are some other commands, which can retrieve deleted files. Let us have a look on steps to recover deleted files from windows using CMD:

    Method 1:. Recover Deleted Files from External Hard Drive Using CMD

    If users have permanently deleted files from a storage drive like hard drives, flash drives, USB etc. You can follow these commands in the command prompt and easily retrieve deleted files from Windows 10, 8, 7:

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    1) -r stands for Read-only attribute that means files are readable and they cannot be changed

    2) -s assigns ‘System’ attribute of the selected multiple files

    3) -h command means ‘Hidden’ attribute to only selected files

    4) /S indicates to search the particular path including sub folders

    5) /D command involves the process folders

    After completion of the whole process, you can create a new folder on your external drive with all recovered files. Perhaps, the files will be available in .chk format. Change the file extension and save each file at the preferred location. If it doesn’t work then move to method 2 and recover deleted files using CMD in windows.

    Method 2: Retrieve files from Recycle Bin Using Command Prompt

    When the Recycle Bin is full, most Windows users will delete a file to make space for the recently deleted ones. Although, these deleted files are still in a recoverable state until the Recycle Bin gets emptied. Make sure that follow these commands to recover files from the Recycle Bin:

    • Under the command prompt window, enter: start shell:RecycleBinFolder and click Enter (Let’s suppose: C:\> start shell:RecycleBinFolder)
    • After that, choose the files and recover them

    At times, it becomes very difficult for normal users to perform these steps without having good technical knowledge. However, if a single step is performed incorrectly, then it may lead to data loss. Thereby, to prevent data loss it is always recommended to opt a reliable and efficient solution.

    Secure & Easy Way to Recover Permanently Deleted Files from Windows 10

    If files deleted permanently from Windows computer or laptop and you want to recover shift + delete files. The users can use SysTools Windows Data Recovery Software to restore shift deleted data files from Windows OS. The software allows the user to recover all items such as video, audio, PPT, documents, etc. Moreover, the tool supports to detect attached external storage devices without any data loss. The tool is also capable to retrieve both FAT and NTFS file format. This application is compatible with all the versions of Windows Operating system. So, the above methods will recover only normal deleted files. But for permanently deleted data recovery you should use this utility. Simply download and install this utility on your windows computer and recover permanently deleted files from Windows 10, 8, 7 etc. Apart from deleted files recovery, it is capable to recover corrupted formatted files from external and internal windows hard drive.

    Time to Conclude

    After considering the above scenario thus, in this blog, we have discussed all possible ways to recover permanently deleted files using command prompt in Windows OS. But, sometimes these manual ways have some constraints. Thus, in this blog, we have suggested an instant solution to restore accidentally deleted data from Windows 10. It is the best approach that helps to recover formatted and corrupted Windows data files without any risk or data loss.

    Viruses, malware, and spyware often block antivirus and recovery tools from running. Corrupted files or drivers may prevent your desktop from loading correctly. If you can at least boot to a command prompt, you have a good shot of restoring your system with Windows System Restore.

    Booting to safe mode and running System Restore is a trick that will get you out of many problems. Many people have used this technique when I first wrote about it in XP back in 2004. Microsoft has continued this feature, and it still works correctly all the latest versions of Windows including Vista and Windows 7.

    1. Restart your computer.

    2. During the boot process, press F8 to enter Safe Mode.
    Select Safe Mode with Command Prompt. Press Enter.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    3. Select the OS (if multiple boot options are shown). Press Enter.

    4. Select your User Account.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    5. A command prompt window will open.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    6. For Windows 7 type rstrui.exe and press Enter.
    For Windows XP type %systemroot%\system32\restore\rstrui.exe

    7. System Restore will open.
    Select Restore my computer to an earlier time.
    Click the Next button.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    8. Select a date you would like to restore your computer to and click next.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    9. You are done! Windows will prompt you when the process is complete.

    How to perform a System Restore using Command Prompt? (ransomware or virus is blocking Safe Mode)

    The System Restore function restores operating system files to an earlier point in time. System Restore is useful when malicious software infiltrates a computer and damages the system files. Moreover, this function important when dealing with variants of ransomware infections that block computer screens. This tutorial describes the process of performing a System Restore using Command Prompt. In some cases, especially when dealing with ransomware infections, performing a System Restore is a complicated task, since modern fake antivirus programs and ransomware infections are capable of blocking an operating system’s Safe Mode and Safe Mode with networking. This leaves one solution: performing a System Restore using Command Prompt.

    To perform a System Restore using Command Prompt:

    1. Start your computer in Safe Mode with Command Prompt. During the computer start process, press F8 key on your keyboard multiple times until the Windows Advanced Options menu appears, then select Safe mode with Command Prompt from the list and press ENTER.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    2. When Command Prompt Mode loads, enter the following line: cd restore and press ENTER.

    3. Next, type this line: rstrui.exe and press ENTER.

    4. In the opened window, click ‘Next’.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    5. Select one of the available restore points and click ‘Next’ (this will restore your computer system to an earlier time and date).

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    6. In the opened window, click ‘Yes’.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    7. If you are dealing with a ransomware infection, download and scan your PC with recommended malware removal software after restoring your computer to a previous date.

    Note that in some cases, System Restore does not eliminate security infections – malicious programs can hide within restore points. After performing a System Restore, scan your computer with legitimate anti-spyware software.

    To be able to restore critical components related to the OS and start the OS after recovery, you must include in the backup the system volume (volume on which the OS is installed) and the System Reserved/UEFI or other system partitions. To simplify this process, Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows offers you to add the Operating system component to the backup scope. When you select to back up the operating system data, Veeam Agent automatically includes in the backup all data related to the OS. This mechanism differs depending on the backup type: volume-level backup or file-level backup.

    To include the operating system data in the volume-level backup, select Operating system data. When you select to back up the operating system data, Veeam Agent automatically includes in the backup the system volume and the System Reserved partition. If some additional system partitions appear on the Veeam Agent computer in the future, for example, after the OS upgrade, Veeam Agent will add these partitions to the backup scope, too.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Alternatively, you can explicitly select to back up the system volume. When you select to back up the system volume, Veeam Agent automatically includes the System Reserved partition in the backup. However, if additional system partitions appear on the Veeam Agent computer, Veeam Agent may be unable to back up such volumes. Thus, we recommend that you use the Operating system option to create system state data backup.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    To include the operating system data in the file-level backup, select Operating system data. When you select to back up the operating system data, Veeam Agent automatically includes in the backup all data related to the OS: the system volume, personal files and the System Reserved partition.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Alternatively, you can select to back up the system volume and the System Reserved partition.

    In this case, you will be able to exclude specific folders related to the OS from the backup (for example, the Users folder and Documents and Settings folder). When you select to back up the Operating system data, you cannot choose which components related to the OS must be backed up and which must be excluded.

    Windows 10 is the latest version of Windows and most of the user prefer it as it provides many other distinct features which you may skip in the earlier versions. It is smooth and fast but sometimes the file not found error in Windows 10 affects its performance. It makes the system slow and corrupt. The only option left with you is to fix this error as soon as possible otherwise a lot of data would be at risk.

    But before I move further, do you know the reasons for error? I suppose you might not aware of the reasons if you are a non-technical user.

    Reasons for this Error

    • Abrupt System Shutdown in the middle of the closing process.
    • Presence of too many corrupt files on the system.
    • Negligence in the usage of erasure utility.
    • Interruption in the installation process of Windows 10.
    • Corruption in Master Boot Record File.

    Please avoid such activities if you really want to prevent Windows 10 from getting corrupted. But first, fix the error and then continue with the smooth working of Windows.

    But the question arises that how will you fix this error? Either you can use a professional tool or try the manual technique to fix the error. But if the Error is frequent and occurring again and again, then avoid the manual method. It means that some of your windows files are severely corrupted and those were the cause of the error.

    Two Solutions to Resolve File not Found Error in Windows 10

    There are two alternatives for resolving this error. If you have good technical knowledge then only try the manual method. In case if you don’t have any technical knowledge then go with the professional tool to fix this error.

    Reboot the System to Safe Mode and then Run SFC Scan

    • Press the Power button and Start the System.
    • Immediately start pressing Shift+F8 until Advanced Boot option opens.
    • To boot in Safe Mode Navigate to Safe Mode option and Press Enter
    • Press Windows Key and type cmd.
    • Make a Right-Click on Command Prompt and Select Run as Administrator.
    • Type sfc/scannow command and press Enter.

    Wait until the 100% verification completes. The sfc command scans all the files of the system and uses the cached copy of the corrupt file for replacing it. The cached copy of the corrupt file is located at %WINDir%\System32\dllcache.

    In some cases when the cached copy of the corrupt file is missing, then the system may ask you for the Windows installation disc.

    Fix Error Using Windows Data Recovery Software

    • Download and LaunchDRS Windows Data Recovery Software.
    • Select the Drive you want to scan and click on Next Button to Continue. Scanning the drives will resolve file not found error in windows 10.
    • Now select the Recovery mode on the basis of Severity of corruption. Standard mode for Minor Corruption, Advanced Mode for Moderate Corruption and Deep Mode for Severe Corruption, then hit Next button.
    • Once the Scanning Process Completes Click on OK Button and then on Save button.
    • If you want to save the customized data then from the Tree-Structured Preview select the ones you want to save. Then Click on the Save button.
    • Browse to the Desired Location where you want to save the file.
    • After the completion of the whole process, you’ll receive a confirmation message. Click on OK and close the application.

    I hope the above techniques will help you to find the missing files and you’ll not face such errors again.


    That’s all from my side. I hope my tips will help you in resolving the error. In order to prevent this error, you must take some precautionary steps. First of all, install an effective antivirus program to restrict the entry of external computer viruses. Secondly, you must keep an eye on the file system and use a CHKDSK command on a regular basis to avoid corruption of hard drives. By these techniques, you can prevent file not found error in windows 10. I hope you liked this article.

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    After Windows 10 Update 1511 – better known as Windows 10 November Update or Threshold 2 – was released late last year, many people complained about a corrupt opencl.dll file. After further investigation and discussion on the Windows 10 forums, it was determined that it was a fairly common problem, but not a particularly serious one, as a corrupt opencl.dll file does not negatively affect the computer or its graphical functions.

    It was also found that this issue only affects Windows 10 users with NVIDIA GPUs. When an NVIDIA GPU user installs or updates NVIDIA drivers for their graphics card, either through NVIDIA GeForce or Windows Update, the NVIDIA driver installer automatically overwrites the existing Windows opencl.dll file with its own and corrupts it accordingly. Until NVIDIA fixes this problem, it will happen every time you install or update NVIDIA drivers.

    Fortunately, you can determine if your computer’s opencl.dll file is corrupt and then repair/replace it to fix the problem. Even if a corrupted opencl.dll file doesn’t interfere with your computer’s daily operation, prevention is better than cure.

    Table of Contents:

    What causes opencl.dll corruption?

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    • Problems with opencl.dll are usually caused by your video card drivers. If the problem can’t be solved, you should temporarily disable the specific video card.
    • Users have found a problematic directory with opencl.dll. To fix the problem, simply run a DISM and SFC scan.

    How to repair a corrupted opencl.dll?

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Perform an automatic/boot recovery

    1. Insert the Windows 10 bootable installation DVD and restart your computer.
    2. When prompted to press the key to boot from the CD or DVD, press the key to continue.
    3. Select the language setting and click Next. Click Restore Computer in the lower-left corner.
    4. On the Select an Option screen, click Troubleshoot.
    5. On the Troubleshoot screen, click Advanced.
    6. On the Advanced options screen, tap Auto Repair or AutoRun Repair.
    7. Wait for Windows Startup Auto Repair/Repair to complete.
    8. Reboot and you have successfully recovered the corrupted Opencl.dll file in Windows 10, otherwise continue.

    Start DISM (Deployment Image Servicing and Management)

    1. Press the Windows + X key, then select Command Prompt (Admin).
    2. Try running these commands one by one:
      Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanup.
      Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /Restore Health
    3. If the above command does not work, try the following command:
      Dism /Image:C:\offline /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /Source:c:\test\mount\windows.
      Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /Source:c:\test\mount\windows /LimitAccess
    4. Do not run SFC /scannow to check the system integrity, run the DISM command:
      Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth.
    5. Reboot your computer to save your changes.

    Restore Windows 10 installation

    This method is a last resort because if nothing else works, this method will surely solve all your PC problems. Restore installation uses only an in-place update to fix system problems without removing user data from the system.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How to fix a missing OpenCL DLL in Windows 10?

    1. Copy OpenCL.Dll from another computer.
    2. Update your video card driver.
    3. Reinstall the video card driver.
    4. Reinstall the problematic program.
    5. Keep Windows up to date.
    6. Use a Windows ISO file.

    How to repair a corrupted dll file?

    1. Run the built-in system file checker to replace missing or damaged operating system files.
    2. Run the DISM tool and restore a Windows system image and repair damaged Windows component memory.
    3. Repair or reinstall the software if the application is causing this error.

    What is OpenCL dll?

    OpenCL.dll is called the OpenCL Client DLL. It is part of the OpenCL ICD (Installable Client Driver) program developed by Khronos Group. OpenCL.dll is an important file needed by many applications or games.

    What is an OpenCL dll error?

    OpenCL is a system component that is managed by your video card drivers. If there are problems with the drivers, you may see the following error message: “Code execution cannot continue because OpenCL.dll was not found. Reinstalling the program may solve the problem.

    In order to register and activate your copy of Windows operating system you need your product key. Without activation, you will not be able to get remote Windows support services and updates despite your system working. A Windows product key is a 25 character key unique to your PC or your off the shelf windows product.

    If your Windows 7 (or earlier) computer came with a preinstalled OEM (original equipment manufacturer) version of windows, then your product key should be available on a sticker at the back of your PC, or on the inside where you plug your battery. For Windows 8 and 10, the product keys and OEM license model has changed. If you buy a Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 pre-installed computer, you will no longer see a sticker on the back or top of the machine with a product key printed on it. In the cases of Windows 8 and 10 OEMs, the original product key is embedded into the computer’s BIOS. If you bought your version of windows from a retail store, then the product key should be on a sticker inside or on top of your product cover.

    Clean installing a new version of Windows will need you to re-enter your product key in order to activate Windows. If you have lost the physically available copy of your product key, or the sticker is now too old and invisible, there is a way to retrieve your previous product key that you used before upgrading or installing a new operating system. In this article, we will show you how to retrieve your product key from the old files of your previous Windows installation.

    How Windows Product Keys are stored

    When you activate your product, the keys are usually stored in the registry. Your Windows product key was also packed into a file in the windows folder. You can see your product key from the system properties by going to control panel > System and Security > System. The product keys are also stored in the registry hive files located in C:\Windows\System32\config\. The ‘Software’ hive includes information about Windows operating system as well as the product key.

    When you clean install a new version of Windows on a partition with an existing OS, Windows creates a folder that archives your old operating system together with its program files and personal data into a folder named Windows.old. You can therefore be able to retrieve your Windows product keys using the following methods. We will assume that you haven’t deleted your Windows.old folder yet.

    Method 1: Use Nirsoft ProduKey utility to view your product key

    ProduKey lets you scan your system folder or a specific registry hive file to find your product keys. You can then choose to save the results as a text file. You can use this method to retrieve product keys from other hard drives too.

    1. Download ProduKey from here (we recommend downloading the portable zip version that you can easily use without having to install it to your system)
    2. Extract the .zip file or double click to open it
    3. Double click on the produkey.exe application to open it
    4. ProduKey will launch and immediately display your product keys in the current OS including MS Office keys
    5. To get to your old Windows Keys, click on File > Select Source
    6. On the new popup window, choose ‘Load the product keys from external windows directory’
    7. Click ‘browse’ and Navigate to drive C:\Windows.old (navigate only to the main windows folder)
    8. If you want to go directly to invoke your registry hive file click on File > Select Source
    9. Select ‘Load the product keys from external Software Registry hive’
    10. Navigate to C:/Windows.old/Sytem32/Config/Software where software is the name of your file and not a directory. You can also key in this path if you cannot see it.
    11. Click OK. Your old Windows Keys Will load

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Method 2: Use Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder utility to view your product key

    Unlike ProduKey, Keyfinder scans only windows system folder for your hive files and displays your product keys. The system folders must display the correct directory path otherwise your registry hive files won’t be found.

    1. Download and install Keyfinder from here
    2. Launch Keyfinder. From the Tools menu, click Load Hive..
    3. Navigate your offline Windows directory like C:/Windows.old. The directory structure must be intact as KeyFinder doesn’t allow you to select the SOFTWARE registry hive directly.
    4. Click OK and wait for Keyfinder to scan and find your keys

    Method 2: Use ShowKeyPlus utility to view your product key

    ShowKeyPlus scans the entire folder in your system drive and display the keys. Your old Windows product key will be displayed without having to look for it or direct the utility to the registry hive files.

    Is there a command to recover/undelete deleted files by rm ?

    How can I recover myfile ? If there is such a tool how can I use it?

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    13 Answers 13

    The link someone provided in the comments is likely your best chance.

    That write-up though looking a little intimidating is actually fairly straight forward to follow. In general the steps are as follows:

    Use debugfs to view a filesystems log

    At the debugfs prompt

    Run the command in debugfs

    Determine files inode

    With the above inode info run the following commands

    Files been recovered to recovered.file.001 .

    Other options

    If the above isn’t for you I’ve used tools such as photorec to recover files in the past, but it’s geared for image files only. I’ve written about this method extensively on my blog in this article titled:

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    With a bit of chances, sometimes I can recover deleted files with this script or next solution in the answer :

    There’s another useful trick: if you know a pattern in your deleted files, type alt + sys + resuo to reboot+remount in read-only, then with a live-cd, use grep to search in the hard-drive :

    then edit /tmp/recover to keep only what were your file(s) before.

    Hey, if with unix philosophy all is files, it’s time to take advantage of this, no ?

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    What worked for me was given by arch (only applies to text files):

    where /dev/sdXN is the partition containing the lost file (check with mount if unsure).

    Takes a little while, but worked when I accidentally deleted some source code I hadn’t commited yet!

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Recovery Tools – Command Line:

    Recovery Tools – GUI:


    In my personal experience, I get my data back using ufs-explorer and photorec

    (1) = Not open source, not free

    (2) = Not open source, free

    (3) = Open source and free

    (4) = Have NTFS support

    (5) = Have directory structure feature

    Disclosure: I am the owner of

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    Although this Question is solved and a few years old, I want to mention the testdisk utility.

    How to recover files with testdisk is explained well in this tutorial. To recover files run testdisk /dev/sdX and select your partition table type. After this, select [ Advanced ] Filesystem Utils , then choose your partition and select [Undelete] . Now you can browse and select deleted files and copy them to another location in your filesystem.

    An alternative may be using del instead of rm for deleting:

    del has an undelete function and works with any file system.

    Of course it is not a solution if you have already deleted your files with “take no prisoners” rm :->

    How to recover specific files from a windows system image

    I had the same problem last week and I tried a lot of programs, like debugfs, photorec, ext3grep and extundelete. ext3grep was the best program to recover files. The syntax is very easy:

    This video is a mini tutorial that can help you.

    connect drive through external interface

    1. mount
    2. umount /dev/
    3. extundelete –restore-all /dev/
    4. results go to home folder on boot drive
    5. bonus points: write a GUI for this

    Ext4magic is another recovery tool for the ext3 and ext4 file system.

    • you must be in a different location, not in the HDD you are trying to recover. The best way is to make a clone of the HDD you are trying to recover, so you can try with different methods.
    • You should not write anymore in the disc that you want to recover.
    • This method works only for ext3 and ext4 file-systems, so please check what file system you are using before starting.

    Example without cloning the HDD:

    Before beginning, check what file system you have with the above command:

    After you determine that you are using ext3 or ext4, go on and plug an external HDD drive and open the terminal from the external HDD

    To recover all files, deleted in the last 24 hours:

    To recover a directory or file:

    The small R flag -r will only recover complete files, that were not overwritten. To also recover broken files, that were partially overwritten, use the big R flag -R. This will also restore not-deleted files and empty directories.

    The default destination is ./RECOVERDIR which can be changed by adding the option -d path/to/dest/dir.

    If a file exists in the destination directory, the new file is renamed with a trailing hash sign #.

    To recover files deleted after ‘five days ago’: