Recovering pictures from a damaged memory card

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You (and virtually everyone else that uses a computer) know that if your hard drive crashes, there is a good possibility of not being able to access the data on that drive afterward. That’s why you need a backup.

There’s another place where important data might be stored: your digital camera. What would you do if:

1. the pictures accidentally get deleted before you copy them to your computer
2. the memory card in the camera accidentally gets formatted
3. your camera fails, and you can no longer access the images on the memory card

First, don’t panic. There is a good chance that the pictures can still be recovered. You need to get a program that does just that. There is a free one called ZAR, which stands for Zero Assumption Recovery. You can get it here.

The link above also includes detailed, step-by-step instructions for using the program to recover the images from your memory card. Just follow those steps and everything will probably work out fine.

I recommend bookmarking today’s blog (or printing it) – then keep it in a handy place for whenever disaster strikes your digital camera’s memory card.

This week’s video is a news anchor who needs to pause just a bit between topics:

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April 20th, 2009

OK, but what if your computer and your digital camera break down and there’s only one (1) computer in the household? Then how will you save the pictures? Of course, your hard drive failed and there’s really a 15% chance it can be revived, but the hard drive is practically the computer’s core. So how can you revive the digital pictures if your only computer has broken down? BTW, funny 15 second video. It took me a while to get the joke, but great video.

Scott Johnson
April 20th, 2009

If your digital camera memory card fails and your computer crashes at the same time, you have a serious run of bad luck going there.

I am assuming that going the rest of your life without a computer is not an option, so you would most likely be considering either getting the computer fixed or replacing it. Once the computer is fixed, you can use it to run the software that recovers the digital pictures from the faulty memory card.

John B
April 27th, 2009

ZAR works pretty good- my sister-in-law had a memory card with over a hundred pics from a trip she had taken that somehow got deleted (possibly one of the kids messing around with it) and she was able to get them all back, plus some she had deleted herself prior to that. I’d definitely recommend it.