No one wants to face the unfortunate situation of data loss. Data loss can occur due to various factors, including file corruption and power outages. On the other hand, open-source data recovery software is there to help you in this stressful scenario. We'll go over everything you need to know about open-source data recovery and introduce you to the best open-source software.

What Is Open Source Data Recovery Software

Open-source data recovery software is free to use and enables users to recover all their deleted, corrupted, or inaccessible data. They scan, review, extract, identify, and copy your data by digging into your storage device. Compared to other recovery software, open-source data recovery software fosters incredible benefits for users. For instance:

  • Free to use
  • Deep scan search down all the deleted or corrupted files
  • Provide a preview before recovery
  • Recover any sort of files or data

Although several open-source data recovery software is available, we've compiled a list of the 5 best open source data recovery software after reviewing most of them. Read to the last to find your best one!

Top 5 Best Open Source Data Recovery for Windows, Mac, and Linux

Data recovery software has become an essential need of digital users. Read on if you are looking for the best open source data recovery software.

We've tested the five best open source data recovery software as below:

  1. 1. PhotoRec
  2. 2. TestDisk
  3. 3. FreeRecover
  4. 4. Kickass Undelete
  5. 5. Scrounge NTFS

The test data are shown in the following table:

📌Software quantity 5
⏳ How long do we test 1 month
💾File systems FAT, NTFS
💻Operating system compatibility Windows, Mac, Linux

Let's discuss each in detail:

1. PhotoRec (For Windows, Mac & Linux)

PhotoRec is open-source recovery software that can help you recover deleted files from pictures, videos, and many other files. The software can recover files from all storage devices, including hard disks, digital cameras, and CDs.

photorec open source data recovery main interface


  • Over 480 file recovery formats to choose from
  • Support a variety of file systems
  • Provide custom file recovery


  • The interface is confusing for many users.

User Experience:

I used PhotoRec, and I would say that it's a free-to-use data recovery software compatible with every storage device. You can recover your documents, photos, videos, and many other files quickly and simply with PhotoRec. The software performs well, but it's difficult to understand if the user is a beginner.

2. TestDisk  (For Windows, Mac & Linux)

TestDisk is a free data recovery software that helps you retrieve the disk's data and make it bootable again. It is mainly used to recover partitions lost due to malware or specific human errors.

testdisk open source data recovery main interface


  • Quickly recover partition tables
  • Repair MFT and FAT tables
  • No need to install anything
  • The majority of popular file systems are supported


  • The interface is quite tricky to use.

User Experience:

TestDisk is an entirely free recovery tool that requires no installation, yet the whole recovery process is streamlined. Alternatively, the command-line interface may seem challenging, making partition recovery simpler. It fosters the recovery of hundreds of file types; hence you don't need to worry about the file format. Whatever file you lost, you can get it back quickly with the TestDisk.

3. FreeRecover (For Windows)

FreeRecover was released in 2013 as an open-source data recovery program that supports the NTFS file system. The user-friendly interface of the program fosters simpler and easier recovery. The software scans the locations deeply and searches for the deleted files.

freerecover open source data recovery main scree


  • Preview your deleted files 
  • Advanced and easy-to-use interface 


  • To run this program, you'll need the .NET framework.

User Experience:

As per my experience, the software is extremely simple and easy to use. It comes with a user interface that is both simple to learn and enjoyable to use. It can also recover the original file paths of lost or corrupted files and provide integrity estimations.

Overall, if you want to get the best recovery for free, I'd recommend using it. But keep in mind that it can come with certain restrictions!

4. Kickass Undelete (For Windows)

Kickass Undelete makes your file recovery process easier. This open-source software is only compatible with Windows to recover files that have been corrupted or deleted. It can recover deleted files from SD cards, flash drives, and hard drives.

kickass undelete main user interface


  • The interface is simple to use
  • Filter out your files and extensions
  • Compatible with FAT and NTFS file systems


  • Occasionally crashes
  • Only Windows platforms are supported

User Experience:

After using the software recovery, I found that the program occasionally crashes after file recovery. This may be due to some errors, but it still made us conclude that the software might crash as you recover your file. 

Its simple and user-friendly design makes it an appealing file recovery choice for newbies. Instead of manually searching through files, you may quickly sort them by name and extension to find critical documents, but if it crashes, it may be difficult to complete the recovery process. 

5. Scrounge NTFS (For Windows and Linux)

Scrounge NTFS is a free, open-source data recovery tool with Windows systems. Later versions were adapted to Linux and included support for highly fragmented MFTs.

scrounge ntfs open source data recovery main screen


  • Partition recovery is available
  • Work on the NTFS file system


  • The interface of the software is tough to understand
  • Not updated yet after the last update in 2014

User experience: 

At first, the program was confusing for me. It might recover partition files or support NTF files, but I think the software lacks major updates per the user's requirements.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Open Source Data Recovery Software

No one would recommend buying the software when they can get the same thing with the free one available. Still, when there are advantages to using free data recovery software, some disadvantages might lead to buying trustable data recovery software.

We've listed some of the advantages and disadvantages of the open-source data recovery software below.


  • It is entirely free to use. 
  • Most of the open-source data recovery software is created by experts. That means there are very few chances that there would be flaws in the software. 
  • They are flexible to use and edit. If a user doesn't want to use any feature, it can be removed.
  • All types of data can be recovered.


  • Malicious users are a threat.
  • Some tools can be challenging to use because of a difficult user interface.
  • There isn't a lot of support available.
  • Sometimes, the software doesn't support the user's operating systems. 
  • Normally, the tools are free to use. But, in some cases, there are hidden charges. Some tools also ask for the charges to recover the data. 

Most users' concern is their data security, and open-source recovery software might not provide it. Therefore, we've gathered the 10 best data recovery software to help our readers find the perfect and secure solution to their recovery problems. 

If you find this post helpful, share it on your Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram to help more people.


Top 10 Best Free Data Recovery Software for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android

Compared to open-source data recovery software, free recovery software is more reliable for your data privacy protection. To help you find the best free alternative of open source recovery software, we've gathered the top 10 Best free data recovery software.

  1. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Free
  2. 2. Stellar Data Recovery
  3. 3. Recuva
  4. 4. Disk Drill Data Recovery
  5. 5. Recover My Files
  6. 6. Puran Data Recovery
  7. 7. Windows File Recovery
  8. 8. EaseUS MobiSaver for Android Free
  9. 9. DiskDigger
  10. 10. Apeaksoft Android Data Recovery

Below, we've explained each of the software in detail:

1. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Free

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Free

EaseUS free data recovery software tool is the leading data recovery software that never fails to impress its users with its accessible and simple data recovery. It has incredible data recovery performance and can recover large numbers of files from various storage devices. It can easily recover data from Windows and laptops.

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Free can do the following:

  • Recovery of the lost data
  • Storage Media Recovery
  • Formatted File Recovery
  • Partition Recovery
  • Nas Data Recovery

System Compatibility:

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Free is compatible with Windows and Mac. It also has applications for Android and iOS devices.


  • Advanced Scanning Algorithm: Their advanced algorithm checks the files and then shares the list of data that can be restored. They have 2 scanning options. You can either use a quick scan or an advanced scan. Advanced scanning goes for an in-depth search and takes some extra time, whereas quick scans go for a quick and fast scan. 
  • Preview and Recover: Instead of recovering all the hard drive data, you can preview your desired files. If they are needed, you can recover them using a single button. 
  • Tag Option: Using this unique feature, you can tag your same file type to a single tag. E.g., if you want to recover photos, tag the photos with a specific name. This helps make your process easier. You can only recover the files that are required.
  • 3 Steps Recovery: Files can be restored in 3 simple steps. You have to Scan > Preview > Recover the files.

You can follow the steps listed below to recover data with EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Free:

Step 1. Select a drive and start scanning

Launch EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard and hover over the partition where you lost data. This could be an internal hard disk, external disk, USB, or SD card. Then, click "Search for Lost Data".

select a location to scan

Step 2. Check and preview scanned files

Use the file format filter on the left or upper right corner to narrow the scan results until you find the files you need. Then, you can click the "Preview" button or double-click a file to preview its content, if you'd like. 

Choose files to recover

Step 3. Recover lost data to a secure location

Click the checkbox next to the file and click "Recover" to restore the lost data to your local storage or Cloud drive. We recommend that you do not store the recovered data on the disk where you lost it earlier.

Recover lost data

2. Stellar Data Recovery

stellar data recovery best free data recovery software

Stellar Data Recovery is a high-end, user-friendly data recovery software available in various editions. From scanning to previewing and recovering data, the user encounters an extraordinary recovery process that appears to be streamlined and uncomplicated. It helps data recovery from DSLR, SD cards, and iPhones. 

System Compatibility:

Compatible with Windows and macOS operating systems.


  • Simple and user-friendly interface
  • High-end scanning and file preview
  • Foster disk cloning

3. Recuva

recuva best free data recovery software user interface

Recuva is a simple data recovery program that can handle all the recovery tasks. It can recover an endless amount of data for free is its main advantage. Even if the data is deleted from the recycle bin of your device, it can still be restored.

System Compatibility:

It is compatible with Windows only.


  • Provide a preview before recovery
  • An unlimited amount of data is recoverable at the same time
  • Data deleted a long time ago can also be restored

4. Disk Drill Data Recovery

disk drill data recovery software user interface

Disk Drill Data Recovery is the most powerful disk recovery tool with a good reputation in the IT market. It is designed specifically to recover disk files, but still, it supports the recovery of other storage devices like SD cards and USB drives.

System Compatibility:

It is specially designed for Windows and MAC.


  • Introduce an advanced and modern interface
  • The free version can recover more than 500 MB of data
  • Lightning-fast scanning with the option to resume and stop
  • A variety of file formats are supported
  • Recover data from the corrupted cards as well

5. RecoverMyFiles

recovermyfiles data recovery software main user screen

RecoverMyFiles interface should be enough to warn you that it's out of date. Despite its age, it still performs admirably, particularly when recovering basic file formats from Windows discs. It can perform disk data recovery after a hard disk crash. It can also easily recover data from RAW drives.

System Compatibility:

It is only compatible with Windows and HFS+ (MAC).


  • The performance is great
  • The interface is efficient to use
  • Recover all types of files admirably

6. Puran Data Recovery

purana data recovery user interface

Puran File Recovery is a tool that can help you recover your data from DVDs, CDs, damaged pen drives, and memory cards. It supports all window systems; however, it does not appear or feel like recent Windows software because it was last updated in 2013. You should still look at it because it works well on older PCs and provides satisfactory data recovery results.

System Compatibility:

The Puran data recovery is introduced for Windows users. It works well with all types of Windows operating systems.


  • Perfect solution for older PCs
  • Specially designed to recover data from windows
  • Provide easy and satisfactory recovery

7. Windows File Recovery

windows file recovery user interface

Windows File Recovery is the amazing recovery tool introduced by Microsoft that can recover all lost files from local storage devices that are deleted or can't be restored. It's explicitly the best free solution for Windows users. However, it does not support recovering files from iCloud storage or Linux. But, based on the interface, this is not recommended for a beginner. 

System Compatibility:

It's only compatible with Windows.


  • Available for all data recovery from Windows
  • Recover all types of data from a variety of storage devices
  • Completely free to use

8. EaseUS MobiSaver for Android Free

easeus mobisaver for android free main user interface

EaseUS MobiSaver for Android Free is a trustworthy program for recovering files from your Android device. It's the first tool that can recover your photos, messages, and music for free. You can recover the data in 3 steps. You've to simply connect your devices with the system, scan the device and recover the files. It can also recover data from your Memory and SD cards. 

It includes a user-friendly interface that makes it simple. This remarkable tool can recover the majority of lost files. Hence it's highly recommended if you want to recover data from your Android devices.

System Compatibility:

It is compatible with Windows.


  • Preview all the required SMS, documents, and photos and then recover them instead of downloading the complete data
  • Export your contacts in CSV, HTML, and VCF formats
  • Recover all lost files, whether it is photos, videos, or any other important documents
  • Recover your data in 3 simple steps
  • Support more than 6000 Android phones and tablets

9. DiskDigger

DiskDigger can recover almost any file type. Both internal and external storage devices operate admirably with this program. It can easily recover data from Hard disks, USB flash drives, and memory cards. Even if the device is corrupted, it can still recover the data.

diskdigger main user interface

System Compatibility:

It's available for Windows and Linux.


  • User-friendly interface
  • Retrieve almost every type of file
  • Performs well in portable storage devices
  • Its Android app works more efficiently if the phone is not rooted

10. Apeaksoft Android Data Recovery 

Apeaksoft Android Data Recovery is the Android-oriented software introduced to recover videos, photos, files, and other documents within your Android. It's the best recovery solution for Android users. It is quick and safe to use. If there's a rooting error, then it can help you restore the files.

apeaksoft android data recover main screen

System Compatibility:

It can recover all types of files from Windows and MAC.


  • Provide deep scanning before recovery
  • It supports more than 5,000 devices
  • The free preview is available
  • It can recover data from SIM cards, internal memory, and SD card

Tips for Preventing Data Loss in the First Place

Data is always important. Sometimes, because of our busy schedules, we don't take precautions to avoid data loss. Below are some tips to prevent your data from getting lost:

  • Maintain a dust-free and clean computer. 
  • If your computer gets too hot, disassemble it and clean it.
  • Regularly save and backup your files to multiple locations, encrypting them.
  • Create a backup image before you notice any indicators of hard drive failure.
  • Maintain the most recent version of your anti-virus software.

To error is human, but you can avoid the depressing data loss scenario if one has already taken preventive steps. That's why you should come up with a backup solution to every problem before it happens.

The same applies to your data; you should back up your data regularly if you don't want to come ahead to the unfortunate situation of losing your data.

FAQs About Open Source Data Recovery

People have specific questions to which they want a detailed answer regarding open source recovery. Below we've compiled the frequently asked questions; let's look at their solutions.

1. Is Recuva open source?

Recuva is an award-winning freeware software that is not open-source. Although it can recover files from nearly any storage device, it is not classified as open-source data recovery software.

2. How to use open-source data recovery software?

The interface of every open-source data software is different from each other. Open-source data recovery software uses its powerful algorithm to retrieve the data whenever it comes to recovery. It digs out the deleted files from the location and scans them to ensure that the file is ready to go. At last, the software recovers files, and it's up to you where you want to save your restored or recovered file. 

3. What is the open-source data recovery software for Android? 

There is no open-source data recovery software for Android. However, you can recover your data from your Android devices while using open-source data recovery software for Windows like:

  1. 1. EaseUS MobiSaver for Android Free
  2. 2. TestDisk
  3. 3. Kickass Undelete


After reviewing the variety of open-source and accessible data recovery software, we've concluded that free data recovery software is more accessible than open-source recovery software. Still, these are more secure and more accessible to use. Among our top open-source data recovery software and free data recovery software list, we found EaseUS data recovery Wizard Free and EaseUS Android Data Recovery Free the best. These tools are very helpful and easy to use. They can save your time and money.

The free recovery that these tools provide really helps many individuals and businesses restore their important data. 

Along with providing recovery solutions, these tools also don't compromise the privacy protection of their users. Of course, everything will go in vain if the software does not give you a Malware-protected recovery. There's nothing else to think about; download these free tools now.

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Updated by Cedric

Cedric Grantham is a senior editor and data recovery specialist of EaseUS. He mainly writes articles and how-to tips about data recovery on PC and Mac. He has handled 10,000+ data recovery cases and is good at data recovery of NTFS, FAT (FAT32 and ExFAT) file systems, and RAID structure reorganization.

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Approved by Evan Galasso

Evan Galasso is a digital forensics and data recovery engineer with over 10 years of experience in the field. He presents opinions on the current state of storage media, reverse engineering of storage systems and firmware, and electro-mechanical systems of SSDs and HDDs.

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