1. AC Question's Avatar
    I'm new here and I need major help.
    The Verizon Galaxy S4 is my first smart phone and I really don't know how to use it much. I have taken pictures and when I went to take another picture a message said storage full and it went to my gallery. However I couldn't view my pics. It was in a list format and I had to check off the photos and delete to have more storage. I deleted want to delete any photos so there was a tab that said documents I clicked on it and started to delete a few documents instead. By accident I deleted a file DCIM little did I know when I went back to gallery all my pictures were gone. By all means I am not tech savvy, I mainly speak Spanish. I had no idea DCIM meant pictures from my gallery. I have spent the last 5 hours on google trying to find how to recover my pictures. I have downloaded apps, debugged and still don't know what to do. Apps like diskdigger and others alike cannot locate my device.

    Anyone that has tried this and has had success please help as I have lots many photos of important events as my 1 niece birthday.

    Thanks for in advance.
    10-12-2014 11:37 PM
  2. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Welcome to Android Central! For novices, it really isn't a good idea to be indiscriminately deleting files or folders unless you know exactly what they're used for. The DCIM folder is where the default storage for the Camera is. Photos taken by the camera go to the folder called /DCIM/Camera. Do you know if the folder you deleted was on Internal Storage or the external SD card? If it was on the external SD, you could try unmounting the SD card (in Settings>Storage), removing it, and inserting it into your computer's SD reader. Then use a program like DiskDigger or PhotoRec to try to recover that deleted folder. If the DCIM folder was on Internal Storage, then you're going to have much more trouble trying to recover them.
    10-13-2014 12:03 AM
  3. Rukbat's Avatar
    There's a version of Disk Digger for Android too - but I don't know if it can find files in a deleted folder. (PhotoRec, not depending on the file structure of the storage device, can of course.)
    10-13-2014 01:08 AM
  4. B. Diddy's Avatar
    DiskDigger for Android requires root as well, and I think it's still beta, so it may not work that well.
    10-13-2014 02:03 AM
  5. elychris's Avatar
    Hi, thanks for the response very appreciated. I went to storage and at the button it has SD card: insert sd card so I would like to assume it's in internal storage. Can I still use what you recommended diskdigger or photorec
    10-13-2014 04:59 AM
  6. B. Diddy's Avatar
    You'd need DiskDigger for Android, and the phone would have to be rooted. I'm not sure about PhotoRec.
    10-13-2014 10:26 AM
  7. KeepItReal's Avatar
    First thing, pout the phone I airplane mode as to stop all communications. Receiving text message may write over the space where the deleted DCIM folder resided. Then connect phone to PC, using MTP. Use a file recovery program such as Recuva (from your PC) that can recover files. Hopefully this works.

    Posted via the Android Central App
    10-13-2014 12:04 PM
  8. Rukbat's Avatar
    Recovery programs running on a PC can't recover deleted files internal storage - they need direct physical access to the storage medium. (Going into airplane mode is a great idea for this type of situation, though.) Recuva will recover deleted files on the SD card, if you plug the card directly into the computer, using a USB adapter. But if the file structure is damaged in any way (and deleting a folder will do that, because what a program like Recuva is looking for is in the folder you deleted), PhotoRec will still work. It just looks for pictures, audio files, documents, etc., regardless of any operating system-dependent file structure. (IOW, a block of text is a text file.) Read the website if you want to get some great insight into how files can be recovered. (Even deleted partitions can be recovered with the companion program, TestDisk.)
    10-13-2014 02:47 PM
  9. KeepItReal's Avatar
    When the phone is plugged in, and your PC can see the file structure of the internal memory, you can indeed use a recovery program. However, some manufacturers don't let the internal accessible. If your internal memory of your phone can be seen within Windows, you can recover using a file recovery program like Recuva.

    Posted via the Android Central App
    10-15-2014 10:41 AM
  10. Rukbat's Avatar
    MTP and PTP aren't direct physical access to the storage medium, and that's the only storage access modern phones have via USB, therefore the PC can't see the physical structure of the storage, which is needed to recover deleted files. (The program has to look for the filename in the directory of the storage medium, and the directory isn't accessible via .USB.)

    Programs like PhotoRec, OTOH, have to be able to read the medium sector by sector (since it's blind to the OS file structure), and the only cellphone medium a PC can do that with is the external SD card, when it's mounted in the PC.

    If you know how to write a recovery program that can recover deleted files without finding them (which is the case for USB access to the internal storage of a cellphone), I'd be interested in the algorithm. I'd give you full credit in the programs, right on the splash screens.. I've written many deleted file recovery programs (since the first one was for CP/M 1.4, I may be the first one to have done it, and I did it manually, with a disk editor, for a long time before I got tired of doing it by hand and wrote a program to do it), but I've never thought of any way to do it without physical access to the storage medium, even if the file structure is known - something you can't do via USB on a cellphone.
    10-15-2014 12:10 PM

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