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Salvage Data Review

Friday, August 12th

2022 Data Recovery Product Reviews

Salvage Data Review 4.5 Star Rating

Salvage Data

4.5 Star Rating
  • Cost: Free (DIY full version software), $200 to $1,900 for hands-on recovery by technicians
  • If data is not found, there is a "No Data, No Charge" policy
  • 96% of data recovery projects succeed
  • SOC 3 Type III security and privacy protocols to keep your sensitive documents, images, and data from falling into the wrong hands
  • 24/7 emergency recovery and top-notch customer service
  • Straightforward and easy to understand pricing
  • Free estimates and quote

Salvage Data offers free, fully-featured do-it-yourself data recovery software for Windows, Mac, and Linux. If you have the courage to try to recover your own data from your computer and portable storage media, that's a price that can't really be beat.

Easy DIY data recovery

Just download the software, install it, and follow the steps of data recovery that it offers. If you get stuck, you can open a case on the website or call the toll-free phone number for immediate assistance with your problem. The technician will guide you or help you escalate the problem to higher-tier support personnel.

Professional help available too

For data recovery projects that require a more trained hand, you might want to consider their full-service option. You can begin by starting a case at their website. Then, you can drop off or mail your hard drive, SSD drive, USB stick, or other storage device to one of their locations nationwide.

ISO certified = safer data recovery

Salvage Data is ISO 9001 certified, which means that they've met very stringent criteria for industry standards in data recovery technologies and procedures. For example, if your hard drive needs to be opened to be serviced, you don't want that done in an unclean environment where the air is full of dust particles. That should only be done in an ISO-5 "clean room" by technicians who are ISO certified and have the skills to keep the inner workings of the storage device from becoming even more damaged. Because of the ISO certification, Salvage Data is also certified by major data storage manufacturers as a trusted partner.

Best Data Recovery Products

Software Features:

  • Data recovery
  • Drive imaging
  • Drive cloning
  • Complete drive wiping/deletion
  • Supported technologies: MacBook/iMac, HDD, SSD, PC/laptop, External Disk, Video Player, CF/XD/MMC/RAIDCF/SD card, Zip Drive, Pen Drive, USB Drive, Micro Card, iPod, MP3, MP4, Digital Camera, Music Player
  • Supported OSes: MacOS 10.6-10.14, Windows Server 2003-Windows 10.
  • Supported file systems: APFS, HFS+, HFS X, FAT (FAT12, FAT16, FAT32), exFAT, NTFS, NTFS5, ext2/ext3, ReFS, CPU

Reasonable pricing for top-notch services

Salvage Data is really tough to beat on price and quality of service. You get both the option of do-it-yourself data recovery and having highly-qualified technicians do the work for you at a reasonable price (from $200 to $1900, depending on the case).

Some strong positives

Reviews of the service were mostly positive. The Better Business Bureau gives Salvage Data an "A+" rating, and only two complaints had been registered there in the three years leading up to our evaluation.

A few negatives

The negative reviews did highlight some concerns in terms of additional fees charged for already-opened hard drives, or a ship back fee for non-recoverable storage that was not specified on the website nor in the signup process. However, on the website in the pricing and process section, these facts were indeed spelled out.

Great option for hands-on professional help

Salvage Data makes it easy to recover your data, whether you choose the do-it-yourself free version or the expertise of a trusted professional to do it for you. We encourage you to read the terms of service carefully; the company spells everything out very clearly but you should make sure you understand what you're getting and/or paying for. Out of all of the data recovery services we evaluated, Salvage Data is our preferred choice for hands-on professional attention (and their DIY services are solid too).

Where Can You Get the Best Data Recovery Service?

Data recovery is something we don't often think about until it's too late. Let's say you are working on a very important document when you step away for a moment. Suddenly, the cat jumps onto the desk and knocks your laptop on the floor. The computer will no longer turn on and you realized that procrastinating buying that backup drive wasn't a good move. Or, perhaps your spouse was a little overzealous in deleting old files and removed some precious photographs you had intended to organize later.

Maybe that fast new SSD drive failed a lot faster than the manufacturer promised it would. And, sometimes, a computer just will not start because of technical problems or software updates that went badly. Regardless of the scenario, without a backup or recovery plan, losing data can make you feel pretty hopeless.

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Data Recovery Product FAQ

Data recovery is a set of activities or processes that a human professional or automated software package performs on data storage devices to restore data that has been corrupted or deleted. The recovery is considered completed when the file or part of the file containing the data is restored to its original condition prior to the loss or corruption. Partial data recovery, enough to gain access to needed information, also qualifies as data recovery.
Data is lost when the storage media that contains the data is subjected to some kind of damaging event. For example, an electromechanical hard disk drive, which is somewhat akin to a phonograph player, can experience a "head crash" where the electronic "needle" that reads the state of magnetic particles touches the disk it's reading and scratches it. Solid state drives (SSDs), including "flash drives" , don't have the same problem, but can be corrupted by static electricity, excessive heat, or other physical stresses. And, of course, data can be corrupted by viruses, hackers, faulty software, and human error.
Data recovery is a bit like putting together a jigsaw puzzle under certain conditions. The storage media cannot be too damaged physically. Metadata or information about where the files were located still needs to exist somewhere on the media. And, the deleted or corrupted file cannot have been overwritten by new data. If those conditions exist, most data recovery engineers and software tools can read individual "bits" of data and reassemble them in the correct order that represents the original file they came from. In most cases of accidental deletion or logical file corruption, photo, video, and document file types can be quickly restored to their original state.
Physical damage to the storage device or media often causes failure. Hard disks can experience electronics failures due to excessive g-forces (being dropped or bumped), water damage, extreme temperatures, age, and electrical surges that damage sensitive components. SSD and USB drives can be crushed, damaged by moisture, overheated, or exposed to magnetic or electrical disturbances. Optical media can be scratched or cracked. In addition to physical damage, there is logical damage that sometimes occurs. With logical damage, the files are erased or fragmented when impacted by viruses, trojan horse programs, poorly-written software, or operating system bugs that corrupt data or cause it to be written incorrectly. Hackers can steal data and users can accidentally delete files. In worst case scenarios, the metadata required to reconstruct the files is permanently erased or damaged to a degree that data is unrecoverable.
The first thing to always do to prevent data loss is to keep at least two regular backups in several secure locations on different media. Be sure to keep all your passwords secure and security software updated to avoid hackers gaining access to your devices. Put your storage devices in places where they cannot be dropped or bumped, be subjected to temperature extremes, or be subject to theft or tampering by unauthorized individuals. Properly eject and power down electromechanical disks (hard disks) before removing or moving them. When copying, moving, renaming, or deleting files, always check what you're doing twice so that you're working with the correct files in the right or intended ways.
In many cases, a software recovery engineer and even some automated software tools for data recovery can operate on your storage device from a remote location. Several "cloud" services exist that can log into your computer, find the device, and attempt to restore data and files. This can be done with or without assistance from a technical support person. Be sure that you have adequate bandwidth, a stable connection, and that devices with batteries are plugged into power sources during the recovery process.
Prices for data recovery vary widely for three main reasons. Every recovery job is different. Making remote determinations about data recovery is not always accurate. And, companies don't like to provide recovery quotes that are too high or too low to avoid damaging their reputations. Software to recover data is complicated, so it's more expensive to program, publish, and maintain. That said, data recovery prices range from free to several thousand dollars depending on the job type and any technical complications involved. Job types range from accidental deletion (low cost) to logical failure (medium cost) to physical failure (high cost). Other things that add to the price are parts, labor time, facilities, and specialized equipment. If data is stolen by a hacker in a "ransomware" attack, the ransom the hacker will demand can be very high. And paying a ransom won't guarantee recovery of the data or that the hacker will delete their copy and not sell it.
Policies vary by provider. Some offer a 30-day free trial and 100% satisfaction guarantee, while others may not give you your money back under any circumstances. Be sure to read the terms and conditions of any data recovery service you're considering, so that there are no surprises.
Compare the Best Reviews

Continued from above...

However, with the right data recovery service, all is not lost! Just remember that not all data recovery software is the same. Before you purchase your next data recovery utility, you should consider a number of factors. These include:

  • Features. What data recovery features are included in the software? Will they meet all of your needs? How does the list of data recovery features compare to other similar products?
  • Flexibility. Is the data recovery software flexible and user-friendly? Do other customers report struggling to run the file recovery software?
  • Price. How does the data recovery software compare in price to other data recovery products?
  • Reputation. What have other users said about their experiences with the software? Does it get high marks from the average consumer as well as those who are more tech-savvy?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best data recovery services available today. We hope you find this information helpful in restoring your valuable files the next time you encounter a data disaster.

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