Unable to preview video files which shows black screen in R-Studio - trying to recover accidentally deleted video files

Questions on file recovery and disk unformat using the R-Undelete program.
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Unable to preview video files which shows black screen in R-Studio - trying to recover accidentally deleted video files

Post by knotslanding » Fri Jan 29, 2021 7:09 pm


I am writing for some help. Any help is most appreciated. Thanks in advance. Sorry in advance for the length of my message but I didn't want to leave anything out.

I had accidentally deleted files on my external 5 TB hard drive (not a solid-state drive). The file system is NTFS. There is no physical damage to the hard drive and it is working perfectly. Since the accidental file deletions, I have stopped using it which was back in November 2020.

I am using R-Studio on a Windows 10 64-bit PC. As a safe precaution, I first created an image (compressed image) using R-Studio and saved it to another external 5 TB hard drive (not a solid-state drive). The original hard drive from which I am trying to recover accidentally deleted files from was also an external 5 TB hard drive. I kept the default settings. This took about 1 day and 14 hours if I am not mistaken to create the image.

I then opened the image in R-Studio and mounted it as drive X. Afterwards, I ran a detailed scan of the entire drive with "extra search for known file types" checked. The scan took about 5 hours and 57 minutes to complete.

Next, after clicking the show files button, the scan displayed a list of the deleted files. There was a red X on all the files.

Here is an attached a jpg picture showing what I am seeing.
Deleted Files with Red Cross Attempting to Recover.jpg

These are the accidentally deleted files I would like to recover. The file icon has a red cross or X.

I then tried to preview several files, but none of the files could be played using the built-in preview video player. All I see is a black screen. No sound or picture can be seen or heard. Just a black screen. Pushing the play button also doesn't do anything.

To show you what I am seeing, here is an attached jpg picture of a screen shot of one test video file named "A Christmas Carol Goes Wrong - 2017" that I am trying to preview. You will notice the screen is black and nothing plays.

Previewing video shows black screen and does not play.jpg

Does this mean that this file and all the files won't be able to be recovered? I tried to preview other video files (with extensions. mp4, .mkv, and .ts) but none would play back in the built-in preview player which is disappointing.

I plan to buy a license to the software but I wanted to make sure I can recover the files. If all my files are black and don't play, then it would be a waste of money. I just hope at least some of my files are recoverable but it is beginning to look like none of them are as I can't preview them. It is my understanding that R-Undelete and R-Studio use the same technology only that R-Undelete is a lighter version.

Does anyone know if a file can't be previewed does that mean it can't be recovered? I wasn't sure. Or does anyone know what to do when the preview screen is black and nothing plays and how to solve this issue?

I also noticed the recovery chances for my files is listed as "Undetermined". Please see the next attached jpg picture of a screen shot which shows what I am seeing. I am not sure why is says "Undetermined". The good news is that I see the correct file name, file size, created date, and modified date columns.
Recovery chances Undetermined for sample video2.jpg
On the other hand, if I were to buy a license, and attempt to recover my accidentally deleted files, I suspect they might be corrupted. This is just a guess though. Can corrupted files be corrected?

I would like to point out that all of my deleted video files were playable before they were accidentally deleted. So again, I hope they can be recovered.

On a different matter:

Since I made a compressed image file, would making a byte to byte image make any difference? I wasn't sure. I chose the compressed image option since it doesn't need to be compatible with earlier versions of R-Studio and saves space. However, if anyone thinks it is better I could try a byte to byte image as well. In some cases, some software that create an image do not include or copy free space (where my accidentally files may be located). But I wasn't sure if R-Studio's compressed image did the same by not copying free space. if so, that may explain why I can't preview any of my accidentally deleted video files which may reside in the free space, but this is just a guess.

If you can help, that would be great. I thank you for your time and I appreciate it.

By the way, R-Studio looks like a great program. Hopefully this program can help me.

Anyway, if anyone can help me resolve my issue of unable to preview videos which show a black screen, any help is most appreciated.

Thanks again.
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