If you own a Mac, you already know how great and user-friendly the Mac is when compared to other operating systems. However, there could be times when you run into problems even with your Mac. Accidently deleting important files and emptying your Trash Bin could be one of them. Fortunately, you can still recover your lost files provided you act quickly.
How can a deleted file be retrievable?
When you empty your Trash Bin, the Mac operating system does not physically erase the data from the face of the hard disc. The system just erases the file index data that tells the computer where the file is located on the hard drive. It is analogous to going through the table of contents in a book and erasing the page number information that is associated with a particular chapter. So when you look at the table of contents, you would not know which page to turn to since that information is missing, even though the pages are still intact in the book. Likewise, when you empty the Trash Bin, the information about the physical locations of all the files in the Trash Bin are lost.
Even though the files are still intact on the hard drive, the computer no longer has the information to directly access them. In a sense, the computer disowns these files and ignores them as they are no longer useful to the user. However, there are specialized software applications that can scan through the hard drive and find these orphaned files and retrieve them fully or at least partially.
Precautions for Effective Retrieval
How much of the lost file remains retrievable depends on a few crucial factors. You need to understand that even though a file that is orphaned stays intact on the hard drive, it can be eventually lost if left unattended for a long time. This is because the area occupied by a lost file is now available for use to the computer. If the computer needs space to store a new file, it may utilize this space occupied by the lost file to store the new file. In other words, the lost file can be overwritten by the contents of the new file. In effect, you would lose all the information stored in the lost file.
In order to prevent this from happening, you need to immediately stop using your computer as soon as you realize that you had emptied the Trash Bin by mistake. You should then immediately run the file recovery for Mac application to recover deleted files Mac. The sooner you do this, the better your chances of retrieving the lost files intact.