How to Recover Deleted Pictures, Files from Memory Cards

Have you ever accidentally deleted pictures from your cameras memory card? Or pressed the Format button instead of delete button and wiped your card clean? Perform a search on Google for ‘recover photos from memory card’, and you’ll find a ton of programs out there for sale. Most people don’t mind paying to recover some important pictures and that’s why those programs exist.

Recover Deleted Pictures and Files

However, there are also a lot of good open source / freeware apps out there that can usually get the job done. And that’s where the nice people at CONVAR come in – offering a program called PC Inspector Smart Recovery, which can recover lost pictures for free. What’s even better is that it’s extremely easy to use and works well (based on my tests).

Please note that after you’ve lost the picture, DO NOT take any more pictures on the memory card, as writing new data to the card lowers your chances of recovering the picture. Also note, that recovering the picture is not 100% guaranteed, but there’s a good chance your picture will be recovered.

PCinspector Smart Recovery

PC INSPECTOR Smart Recovery is a 100% free program, which can recover lost data from not only memory sticks, but also for any kind of memory device available nowadays (for the most part). If you’ve deleted any kind of file, you can usually rely on the software to recreate and reconstruct the file again, with great accuracy. It  supports all common picture formats : .jpg, .amr, .tif, .bmp, .gif, Canon .crw , Fuji .raf , RICOH .raw, Olympus .orf (E-XX) etc. Video files in .avi, QuickTime .mov format and audio files in .wav, .dss format can also be recovered.

Connect your memory card, either by a little memory card reader, or hook your camera up to the PC via the data cable. Run PC INSPECTOR Smart Recovery and select the drive which is the memory card. Leave the format type as .JPG. Choose a destination for the recovered files. Press ‘Start’.

File Recovery

If you are able to recover the picture, but you can’t view it, you may want to perform a search on how to view damaged or corrupted files.

As a test, I deleted some pictures from my Sony digital camera and ran PC Inspector to see if I could get them back. So far, it’s been able to recover the deleted pictures and videos as long as I don’t take any other pictures after the deletion. Good luck!

This is a guest post by Aseem, a technology enthusiast and lead blogger for You can read more amazing articles on his blog.

Note: This is a guest article and represents opinions of the guest author

62 comments on “How to Recover Deleted Pictures, Files from Memory Cards

  1. Addy says:

    Thanks for sharing a helpful software

  2. Czar says:

    PC Inspector Smart Recovery is indeed one of the most helpful free programs I’ve ever had. I’ve been using it for a year or two now and it really doesn’t disappoint me. Use it, too!

  3. Janet26 says:

    Cool. It took almost a day to find this info. Thanks! Good job. :)

  4. ADOMBROWSKI says:

    I accidentally deleted pictures of my daughter’s first day of school while trying to move them to another drive. My wife and I were devastated! I did a search and found a few other products that claim to recover files….at a cost. I gave PC INSPECTOR Smart Recovery a try, and it worked. I thank you so very much for recommending this software and helping me to recover such important memories.

  5. Bhat says:

    Useful guide.I use recover my files software to do this.

  6. Philip Black says:

    You can find a cheaper alternative at only $20 does the same job and has a free trial

  7. Brian says:

    There are some OK free file recovery tools, I have found however that they will not work in some scenarios, e.g, to get deleted photos back from formatted camera cards. The best photo recovery program is File Restore Professional. It is a commercial product… but then what value do you put on your memories. You can download File Restore Professional here:

  8. Fuschia says:

    what if I accidentally over-write the memory card by taking more pictures afterward. Can I still save my deleted photos? I’ve already tried this software, and I found a lot of files there, but most of them are corrupted and I can’t open them. Can somebody tell me what to do?
    thank you :)

    • nazia says:

      hello. the same thing happened to mw. I was wondering if you ever mananged to recover your photo’s in the end? I am desperate! Thanks so much!

      • silka says:

        I did the same thing :(, I made mistakes deleting some important pics, and I was taking more pictures, before I run the PC Inspector. Currently, I’m trying to recover them. But, can it be successful, because I was taking pics after the deletion?! I’m desperate :(

  9. Roberto says:

    Thank you very much!. I was able to recover all of my pictures on a Sony camera. very useful program.

  10. Gagan says:

    hey its working dear. but there is a problem, when i recovered my images some of my images were corrupted. Then I tried Recuva. It really worked for me. its a freeware. If pc inspector does not work. do try recuva. you can get it from here :

  11. Dave says:

    Wouldn’t run on Vista 64 bit. missing gifxx.dll

  12. Gpics says:

    My friend was devastated after taking more than 1600 photos from china. She came back to states and ask my help. I ran the PC Inspector and it work Great!. Got all those missing photos….Now I’m sure i will get a free dinner out of this when i give her a memory stick of all her photos.

  13. mherz says:

    This was such an awesome tool..I was so hopeless and frustrated then when i lost my daughters memorable pictures,I got a memory card error and tried different things just to recover the pix but no luck in doing so..I tried browsing for software on how to recover pix but it only allowed me to view files,i cant save unless i’ll buy it online.And im not really use to in buying online so tried searching for another luckily i found this PC inspector file recovery,i followed the steps and I almost cried when i saw my daughters precious pictures..Thank you so much for everyone in CONVAR..VERY HELPFUL :)

  14. debbie says:

    I am not able to find the right drive to point to my memory card on my camera. It i’ve downloaded 2 programs now including this pc inspector one and one that I paid for and each one asks to select the correct drive but my camera comes up without a drive letter,or number, just a picture of the camera??? what do I do now?

    • allison says:

      I’m not sure if you ever got help, but maybe instead of plugging your camera into the computer try putting your memory card into a card reader. That is what I used, and my card reader was $12 and works great (never any problems). The drive depends on which USB port you plug it in to, you could just check to see which ones are free.

      Hope that helps!

  15. nesty says:

    wow! i thought i was going to lost the pictures in my digicam. thanks for this. i was able to retrieve the important pictures. thank you!

    God Bless!

  16. Bumblebee says:

    Many, many thanks for this info. After our HDD crashed and died……I just ran PC Inspector and found all my deleted photos from a recent trip to Amsterdam. What a great tool……thanks again for the tip !!!

  17. allison says:

    Thank you so much for this info! I accidentally deleted about 20 pictures and 2 videos of my son walking. I was crushed. So far this has worked and I’m hoping it will come across the videos. THANK YOU!!!

  18. Photo recovery says:

    Nice, report. i really enjoyed throughout the article. This is very useful software (it seems to be). I have also used a photo picture recovery software 4 months ago to recover my marriage photo. Accidentally my brother in law deleted all the file while trying to move from Memory card. Thnks to god, my friend was there at that time and he suggested me a software for recovery. Now i have all my special memorable moments of marriage life.

  19. jess says:

    this program is amazing!! I just recovered 150 pictures that I accidently deleted from a friends camera, now I don’t have to face the wrath!!!

    • Ronald says:

      does this help, i accidentally corrupted my friend’s photo and i tried to find it, but it says no…
      Can i face wrath at my young age?

      • HardySteve says:

        Hello Ronald,
        I haven’t stoped laughing after reading your comment. What has wrath got to do with age? Infact, I really admire your sence of humour. Just try recovering it again. I hope you are successful in oder not toface any wrath at your young age. SO DO YOU EXPECT ONLY THE AGED TO FACE WRATH?????????? LOL

  20. topol says:

    I am on holidays in France and accidentally deleted 300 of my photos! After it happened, I was devastated. I took one more photo but quickly deleted it. I don’t have my USB with me so when I get home, will I still be able to recover my photos?


    • Photo Recovery says:

      You can easily recovery your lost picture.. download the software from here

      Note: do not take any pictures from your till you recover all your pictures…

  21. KIoKIo says:

    please please help me!!i need your guys help!ive deleted some of my important video footage,ive retrieved them using recuva,but when i try to open them it cant be open,its corrupt or something?i try to convert them into mp4,but even the video converter cant read them!please please i need help! ty in advance

  22. arun says:

    thank buddy. by your software, i got mine child 1st day photos… Thank a lot
    gud luck

  23. Uma says:

    wat is this…? I thought that this is a free software but they are asking me money in the name of REGISTER WITH US. I’m totally disappointed.

  24. yj says:

    pls tel me where can i download for nokia memory stick software to recover my photo?emergency…i need to pass up thise photo,but accidentaly deleted…

  25. Imayavan says:

    Pls help me to recover photos, I take photographs in my Nikon camera…..In mistake I delete it but I neeed the photograph…how to get the photograph……..?
    Pls any can HELP ME PLSSSSSS.

  26. melody says:

    does it really works? because my computer just got reformat being attacked by a virus and i lost all my pictures on my birthday and with my boyfriend i am so devastated! :( So i google-ed and found this! :)

  27. Melissa says:

    A friend of mine just came in so upset because she her memory card is blank and all of her Christmas pictures with her family was on that card. I followed these directions and I saved her Christmas (pictures that is)! So yes, it works, very well. I put them back on the memory stick and made her a CD as well. She’s thrilled. Good luck to you!

  28. Pankaj Sisodiya says:

    Nothing is deleted in computer science, till overwritten. By mistake i deleted Photos of very close friend. Thanks to Developers of PC Inspector Smart Recovery, i recovered all using it

    Thanks Again & Cheers,

    Pankaj Sisodiya

  29. Alssi says:

    Dear Bootcat,

    i faced the same problem and asked many it ppl and photographers and tried to recover the info but didnt work,, pls tell me if you were able to recover it after doing a low level format as i did.



    • Morgan says:

      Bootcat & Alssi,

      Were you ever able to recover your photos? I had the same thing happen to my memory card and am looking for anyone who has has success in data recovery.

      Does anyone have any advice?

  30. Pallavi Joshi says:

    thanx dear! dis software z really amazing!!i hv recovered 200 snaps dat i accidently formatted frm ma memory card.thanx to u.

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