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Need help with EFS encrypted files!

By thehebrew ·
So I have efs encyption on for my hard drive, then i reformatted. So ibacked up all my videos, music, and 10 years worth of family photos on my external hard drive. I reformat, get all my programs and everything together and then go to my external hard drive to get the files, AND THEY ARE STILL ENCRYPTED!!!!!! windows forgot to take the flippin' encryption off the files. I talk to microsoft and the guy on the phone freakin' tells me to find a good! I have searched ALL of the internet and have found that if i move the files to a hard drive that is formatted to FAT the files lose all encryption. But i can't move the dam files!!!! I have tried all the EFS recovery programs but they only get the original key and that drive has already been formatted. SOMEONE, FOR GOD SAKES PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE HELP ME!!!!! I have years and years of family photos and hundreds of dollars worth of music that i can't access. I can even see all the thumbnails to the pictures, MICROSOFT IS TAUNTING ME!!!!!!!

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tried it

by thehebrew In reply to This is what you're up ag ...

Thats the first tool I used, but what it does (i'm pretty sure) is that it scans the hard drive for any sign of a key. Well, I already formatted that hard drive and data has already been written to it. Do you think deleting that partition and then scanning may work? There prob. a good chance that it has already been written over but would that even work? Thanx for all the help!!!!

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Yo thehebrew!

by Tig2 In reply to tried it

HOW did you format? Quick format? Complete format?

In a complete format, you pretty much clobber everything. Can things be recovered? Yes but generally only fragments and then only with a pretty powerful tool. But it can happen- which is why when you dispose of HDDs, you have to run a kill disk cycle- completely overwrite all of the drive, generally with multipass ones and zeros.

All Quick Format does is wax the Boot Sector and the directory structure. It is entirely possible to use a recovery tool to get at data that may not have been overwritten by the OS footprint.

I hope you used Quick Format...

Edited because I must

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i wish

by thehebrew In reply to Yo thehebrew!

I freakin' wish i did, but i did the complete format. Thanx though.

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Look at the solutions here

by Tig2 In reply to i wish

Google is your friend. Don't just try strings that you think will work, try a variety of strings.

Learn the following mantra, keep it wholly (intentional mis-spelling) "I will back up my keys, I will back up my keys, I will back up my keys". Learn it, Live it, Love it.

If you want to encrypt data and it does not contain credit data, personal data, banking data, ets, burn a copy (unencrypted) to disk and hide it where you can find it.

NEVER toast your box until you have first VERIFIED that your backup is good- preferably on another system.

I know that you know all this. I am just sad for you. Data loss is not good and it sounds like you have been trying hard to get this dealt with.

Good luck!

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This is one of the reasons I partition and built a file server

by DanLM In reply to Look at the solutions her ...

What I do encrypt is my thumb drive. All of the things that I think I need at all costs are stored there. Including keys for ssh. This way, when I'm done with that stuff. I unplug it.
I only put on my main drive programs, the rest goes to partitions or the file server. And that is a UNIX box with UNIX file organization.
But, I know the feeling. I had that box hacked once and they deleted everything on me. Maybe that's why I'm so paranoid about ssh, keys, and stuff.
I hope you get your stuff back.


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This site might prove useful

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Need help with EFS encryp ...

Though from everything that I've read in the Public Domain you need at least the original OS to unlock the encrypted files which in your case no longer exists so I'm not sure if any of these will be of any use to you.

Knoppix STD is very good as a security tool on a non working Windows Install but it relies on the original keys being present so I would rule that one out straight away.

But there may be something else useful on that page or at the very least a possible link to somewhere else that may prove useful.


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I have the same problem.

by awrjunk47 In reply to Need help with EFS encryp ...

Hi, I recently lost 10+ years of data and have been trying to discover a way to recover them. My files were backuped using Ntbackup to an external drive and then encrypted. Lost my original Win 2000 machine and had to reformat and load new OS but didn't realize I would not have access to my encrypted backup! Did you ever find a resolution to your problem because I also need help. Thank you for your quick reply @

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Still waiting

by thehebrew In reply to I have the same problem.

Nope, i still haven't found anything. I'm waiting for some genius to pop up on one of my posts on one of ten forums i have posted on. Or maybe a very nice hacker, which the guy at Microsoft suggested I find. Srry.

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I'm willing to pay

by adiabloa In reply to Still waiting

well same problem happened to me
and the thing is i really need to get these files back, if you know any site that can do this but maybe for a cost or anything plz show me
or if you think you can do it and you do succes to do it i'll pay you 100$ i know its not alot but im a poor student and we students have a hardtime already as it is ... so be a doll and help me out ...

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Same here

by thehebrew In reply to I'm willing to pay

Yea, if no one was clear before, I am definitely willing to pay to get these files decrypted. So, any honest hackers out there?.....

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