Recovering Corrupted Files from an SD Card

One of the biggest fears any photographer or videographer has is going to import their images from an SD card and not seeing them or finding them and discovering the files have been corrupted. This isn’t the end of the road, there are tools out there that can help you recover some or maybe even all of the files.

This can be a lifesaver and something you should always have in your pocket. Filmmaker Josh Morgan of Momentum Productions shows off some good techniques on how to care for your media and does a demonstration of Recoverit Data Recovery software that might be a good last resort when all else fails.

The best way to recover corrupted files is to not have them get corrupted in the first place. There are some steps you can take to minimize risk. One good place to start is with the SD card it self. Not all memory is created equal and sticking with a reliable brand like Sandisk or Lexar or ProGrade Digital is going to be better than some no name brand off Amazon.

Another good practice is to use more smaller cards instead of one big one. In the event you do lose a card or have corruption you will only lose a part of your shoot instead of all of it. Ideally you can just shoot directly to a backup with your camera if it has dual slots. During use you’ll want to make sure the cards are clean and the slots are clear to avoid any damage from debris or something getting stuck.

Image Credit: SanDisk

If you do end up with a corrupted card there are some software options, like the Recoverit software mentioned earlier. In the example, Josh shows off the simplicity of the software. It actually has specific options for advanced video recovery and corrupted video repair. Select the option that best fits your situation and select your card. Then you select the formats you are working with. For Sony cameras you will likely pick MP4 and MOV.

The software will do a deep scan of the entire card and begin to locate and populate the files as it finds them. You can even preview some of the files as it finds them. When it finished up you can select the files you need and hit recover to save them in a new location where hopefully they now work properly.

Corrupted files, maybe an unexpected loss of power resulted in an improper save, can use the corrupted file recovery setting in a similar way.

Have you ever lost files because of a card gone bad? What solutions did you use?

[source: Momentum Productions]

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