Photos are a symbol of many good memories. In modern society, people have been used to using photos to record the good things and unforgettable moments in their lives. If precious photos are lost, people would be pretty sad, especially when the lost photos records some unrepeatable moments. That’s why I’m writing this post.

In today’s post, I will mainly teach you the way to recover lost photos with a third-party tool. And I will compare the famous Stellar Photo Recovery 5 with MiniTool Power Data Recovery and then give you advice.

The Necessity of Photo Recovery

In the early and the middle stage of last century, black and white photos are very popular since color print technology is not so well developed. At that time, even taking a black and white photo is a very laborious thing. Not only that, it also takes a long time to wait for the photos printing out. After all such work, people can finally see the photos they took.

Then, years later, color photo shoots up and gradually replaces the traditional black and white photo. And afterwards, digital camera appears and becomes smaller and smaller in size, but more powerful in function. Now, you can see the photos you took immediately in digital camera and you can also choose to print them out right away.

With the increasing popularity of digital camera, lots of people start to form the habit of taking photos wherever and whenever they want. If encountering some special occasions, they must be sure to take some photos to record the wonderful and unforgettable moments which may vanish in a flash.

take photos with digital camera

Top Causes of Photo Loss

But when users are taking a look at the photos, they may delete needed photos by mistake (pressing the wrong button or taking the useful photos as useless). Or they may set about transferring photos from digital camera to computer internal hard drive/ mobile hard drive after they found the memory is (almost full; in this case, the photos may be lost during transferring due to some unexpected problems. Those 2 reasons explain the main causes for the loss of photos.

In addition, there’re also other possible causes :

  • Accidental formatting of digital camera
  • Memory card getting attacked by virus (when connecting to computer for photo exchange)
  • Sudden power outage
  • Unexpected OS crash
  • Etc.

How to recover data deleted by virus attack?

Stellar Photo Recovery 5 vs. MiniTool Power Data Recovery

Stellar photo recovery 5 (now it's updated to v9) , basically refers to Stellar Phoenix Photo Recovery, maybe not strange to you. In fact, if you search the term “ Stellar photo recovery 5 ” in Google, you’ll get over 1 million results just within less than one second.

Stellar Phoenix Photo Recovery

According to its introduction on official website, I know, Stellar Phoenix Photo Recovery 5 is a piece of digital photo recovery software which aims at helping users restore photos, music & video files. It supports the photo recovery from various data storage devices, such as digital camera memory cards (like SD card), USB sticks and internal & external hard drives.

After looking at one review of this tool, I found that it is mainly designed to help users recover accidentally deleted photos, videos and audios . Of course, it can also be used to recover other kinds of multimedia files lost due to formatting .

The most obvious advantages of this software are:

  • Be able to recover most multimedia files from memory cards and hard drives.
  • Easy to use.

But, its main focus is photo, or I can say multimedia file.  In view of this, I’d like to offer a better choice – a more comprehensive and powerful data recovery software called MiniTool Power Data Recovery .

Free Download

It provides both trail edition/free edition and different paid editions (Personal License, Commercial License, Enterprise License and Technician License) to satisfy people’s various needs.

Here’s also a review of MiniTool Power Data Recovery 6.8 (the old version; now the program has been upgraded to version 8.1). After reading this, you may be willing to choose this digital photo recovery software trustingly.

Note: The trial edition only allows you to scan and preview lost photos. As for the free edition, there’re only 2 differences between it and the paid editions. One is that the free edition can only help you recover 1GB of data while the other is that the Load recovery result function is not available in free edition.

Load recovery result function is not supported

Why Choose MiniTool Power Data Recovery

Yes, whether you’re an experienced or inexperienced user, you’re highly suggested to choose MiniTool Power Data Recovery over Stellar Photo Recovery 5. The following points are enough to make you understand why.

  • All Stellar Phoenix Photo Recovery can do, MiniTool Power Data Recovery can also do: restore deleted photos, audios or videos from SD card, internal hard drive and external hard drive.
  • MiniTool Power Data Recovery is able to recover both multimedia files and other kinds of data from almost all storage devices that can be recognized by Windows. Besides, it’s capable of completing deleted file recovery from missing drives and CD/DVD.
  • MiniTool Power Data Recovery Free Edition is powerful and totally free : you shouldn’t worry even if you don’t know how to recover deleted photos since it is made up of user-friendly interfaces (with instructions on each window).
  • Power Data Recovery is able to help you restore mistakenly deleted photos, music & video files in just 3 steps. Even the photos stored on a CD/DVD can be recovered.

recover files in just 3 steps

All in all, just as Jon L. Jacobi – a Freelance Writer at PCWorld said, “ Free and effective data recovery is nothing to sneeze at ”, MiniTool Power Data Recovery V8.1 is a piece of free photo recovery software you can’t miss since 2015.

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How to Recover Photos from SD Card

Preparations for Photo Recovery on SD Card

Before you start to recover photos from your SD card with our recommended free photo recovery software, you should notice the following things.

recover photos from your SD card

  1. Inferior card reader and improper operations could damage your SD card waiting to be recovered, so please choose high-quality card reader and be careful enough when you move SD card from digital camera and connect it to computer.
  2. Please check the power supply and cable connection between your SD card and computer to make sure that your card can be recognized for sure.
  3. Please don’t hurry to save your recovered photos back to SD card since you may only get back the directory structure and it is unreliable if you only check the thumbnails.
  4. Never try to format the SD card as suggested if you see a message like this – “ You need to format the disk in drive * before you can use it. Do you want to format it? ”.

Now, please take out your SD card from digital camera and put it into card reader carefully. Make sure write-protection is disabled if your SD card has such function. Then, connect the SD card to USB interface of computer and install MiniTool Power Data Recovery to be well prepared for SD card recovery .

Look here to see how to disable write-protection.

Once you find your SD card can be recognized by computer after it was connected, you could install and launch the free edition of MiniTool Power Data Recovery to start restoring photos, music or video files you need.

Free Download

Now, take a look at the following steps to know how to recover deleted pictures from SD card in detail.

Step 1 : select a model and the target drive that contains the deleted photos, from software main interface based on actual situation.

To get back accidentally deleted photos, you could just click on This PC or Removable Disk Drive to achieve quick file recovery.

select the target drive

Step 2 : press Scan button in the lower right corner to search for missing photos, audios, videos or other types of files.

Step 3 : look through the found files listed in software interface, pick out what you need and then click Save to set a storage path for the files needing to be recovered. At last, click on the OK button to confirm.

save needed files to appointed place

If you found the total size of files selected in step 3 exceeds 1GB, please buy a license to upgrade your software so as to break the 1GB free recovery limit.

How to Recover from Formatted SD Card

If you lose photos because you have accidentally formatted your SD card , you will see a system prompt saying that your SD card needs to be formatted for further use after you connected SD card to computer properly.

Or if the SD card has been infected with virus somehow, the same situation could happen. And you shouldn’t hurry to kill virus first before you complete deleted file recovery to regain all needed files from virus deletion.

In both cases, you should select Removable Disk Drive from software main window. And then, you also need to perform the following operations: select the SD card from partition list -> press Scan to detect photos -> check needed photos -> click on Save to set a location.

select Removable Disk Drive and press Scan

How to Recover Photos from Computer Hard Drive

Imagine this: the photos have been transferred to computer internal hard drive already due to digital camera memory card capacity limit, but them some of them or all of them are lost due to certain reasons, what you should do?

Of course, the answer is also using MiniTool Power Data Recovery (choose free edition or paid editions according to your actual needs). And the process to recover files from hard drive is similar to that of SD card photo recovery .

The only difference is that instead of choosing SD card, you need to select This PC or Hard Disk Drive to specify the partition which was used to save transferred photos.

Note: Please note that if your lost photos are saved in system partition , you can’t install the recovery software there or perform any other unnecessary operations; otherwise, secondary damage may be brought to make your photos unrecoverable.

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Function 1: Extra search for known file types.

By making use of this function, you are able to narrow the scan result to specified range so as to detect certain file types quickly and accurately. Just click on Settings button next to the Scan button and then check a few file types and press OK to continue.

Extra search for known file types

Function 2: Find.

While the scan is processing, the found files will be listed in order in the software. During the scan or when the scan is over, you can just click on Find from the menu bar and enter the file name of photo to find files quickly (click Find Next to find more files whose name include panda).

make use of Find feature

Function 3: Filter.

This could also help you to find needed files quickly by setting Filename/Extension , Size and Date (creation date or modification date) separately or together.

use Filter feature to find files

As a result, you can easily find that MiniTool Power Data Recovery is a wonderful alternative to Stellar Photo Recovery tool. What’s more, the former is more powerful and professional in function; you can experience it now.

Tip: As for Mac users, whether they need to recover photos or other kinds of files from internal hard drive/movable disk, MiniTool Mac Data Recovery is a good choice.

3 Ways to Avoid Precious Photo Loss Effectively

You should adopt the following ways to avoid photo loss as much as possible.

  1. Backup valuable photos to local drives and keep the backup upgrading as well each time when you make changes to your photos.
  2. Take advantage of internet and online photo album service to backup digital photos in the meantime.
  3. Get prepared with powerful photo recovery software right now so that you’re able to start restoring photos immediately when photo loss really takes place.

Last Words

You may think of Stellar photo recovery first when you need to recover lost photos on a SD card, external hard drive, or computer/laptop. However, here is a better option for you: MiniTool Power Recovery. Please get a free version and experience its bravo performance now. You won’t be disappointed!

Stellar Photo Recovery FAQ

Is Stellar Photo Recovery safe?
Of course, it is safe for users to use Stellar Phoenix Photo Recovery to recover deleted and lost photos. Why? When the software scans the drive with lost photos, it will only interact with the file system (won’t edit it) and it won’t delete files.
Which is the best photo recovery software?
  1. MiniTool Photo Recovery for Windows
  2. Recuva (Android) tool
  3. Wondershare Dr Fone
  4. DiskDigger app for Android
  5. Photorec
  6. Dumpster software
  7. EaseUS MobiSaver for Android
Can formatted SD card be recovered?
Yes, it is possible to recover files from a formatted SD card yourself. The two necessary prerequisites are: first, the lost files have not been overwritten by the new data yet; second, you have a good file recovery software at hand.
Can you recover files from a corrupted SD card?
There is a big chance to recover data from corrupted memory card when it is only corrupted logically (the file system is damaged; the card becomes inaccessible; etc.) In contrast, if the SD card has been broken physically and the damage is severe, you can’t recover files.
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