1. user57's Avatar
    DCMI folder written over/reset on SD card. All pics gone (fowl play)

    Please help. All the pics disappeared from my SD card in the DCMI folder. I checked the lost Dir. Not there.
    I also took out the card and put in the computer. They are not showing.

    Stats:
    New LG X Power phone with marshmallow 6.0.1
    SD card is 32 GB, samsung, high speed card.
    Computer is Win8.1
    Google “photo” app 1.21.0.123444480

    Status:
    Im currently running a data recovery program from my computer, with the SD card in.
    It will take 5 hours. But currently it is only finding pics that I manually deleted 5 months ago, BEFORE I ever put this SD card in this new phone. It is not finding the pics I took from last month, etc.

    How it started:
    1) I edited a photo (from the DCMI folder of my SD card). This edit was saved on the internal storage in it's own folder. But I wanted to copy this new edit INTO a folder already on my SD card.

    2) So I opened the stupid google “photos” app, to copy and paste.
    Im forced to use this because the phone didnt come with a default gallery app. This is a sign of the “suspect” problem below (google forcing us to use their spyware apps by not giving us basic gallery apps anymore).
    At this time, I DO remember the thumbnails from my DCMI pics (on SD card) showing up in the photo app.
    But I couldnt find a basic copy command, which is why I hate the stupid app.

    3) I think I opened another gallery app I have called “A+ gallery.” I tried to copy from internal storage to a folder on my SD card. But the pic wouldnt copy.
    I thought it was some stupid permission error saving to the SD card. (Since Nazi google restricts 3rd party apps from saving to SD, but allows their own apps to do it).

    4) But I checked the permissions of the A+ gallery app, and write was granted.

    5) I also installed another gallery app, to replace google photos. It is called “quickpic.”

    [#6 and #7 might be in the wrong order. I dont remember.]
    6) Then I disabled google's photo app. I never used cloud storage.

    7) Then I tried to take a picture with my camera (using the built in app, and it is set to save to the SD card). When I pressed to take a photo, it said some error about failing to save.

    8) [I forgot the error message], but I googled it. And people said to try ejecting the SD card, then remounting. I did that.

    9) Then I took a test pic and it worked.

    10) But then a day later I noticed all the prior pics were missing from the DCMI folder on the SD card. Only that 1 test pic appeared!

    11) I checked the date on the DCMI folder. And it says it was created 1/30/2017, exactly when I took the new pic after remounting.
    But this folder date is wrong because it should say 2016. This means something replaced my old DCMI folder, and perhaps erased or hid the prior pics.

    So how do I get my pics back? Something hid only the DCMI folder on my SD card. The other folders with pics, show up.
    Something created a new DCMI folder, after I remounted. But before that, the copy command to SD - was not working correctly.
    And these problems started after I started using (opening) the google photo app.

    There was also “quickpic” app that I installed. But I cant find that folder name in the android folder. How do I find the exact date/time that I installed an app, so I can check if it was before or after the time that I took the test pic?

    Suspect:
    I suspect foul play by GOOGLE photo app. I did a search and a lot of people have their DCMI folder suddenly disappear.
    Then other people recommend to enable google's cloud backup.
    I think google purposely did something to people's pics, to spread the word that they need to use their cloud backup. (But then google spies on you).
    01-31-2017 09:30 AM
  2. afazel's Avatar
    It's not "foul play" by Google. You or the new gallery app you used did something wrong.

    If you don't already have a file explorer app, download one and search your phone's storage yourself. I recommend either Amaze or Mixplorer. A while back I would have recommended ES File Explorer, but that's full of Chinese spyware now.

    Most likely your photos are still there. The Google Photos app isn't bad, and if you don't want to use the cloud storage in the app for some reason you can disable that and use it just as a gallery app.

    By the way, QuickPic is also likely full of Chinese spyware since it is also owned by Cheetah Mobile.

    http://forums.androidcentral.com/gen...-bad-news.html
    Popular Photo Gallery App QuickPic Has Been Bought By Cheetah Mobile, And Users Are Pissed
    01-31-2017 09:55 AM
  3. ChromeJob's Avatar
    I've used Quickpic for years, it's my favorite. Never had it lose photos.

    Disabling Google's Photos wasn't necessary. Probably even ill-advised.

    You claim to not want to use cloud storage. OOPS. Using Amazon Photo Drive (or whatever they call it), Dropbox, Google Photos syncing, anything, would have protected your prior photos. Bad choice IMHO.

    Your repeated claims about Google spying on you are belying your bias. Stop being paranoid and trying to outsmart apps. Just use the apps.


    File managers:

    I mourn the descent of ES Explorer into adware hell (I think I bought it). Returned to Total Commander which I've used since Microsoft PocketPC days.

    P.S. "fowl play" LMAO .. bwock, bwock, bwock.
    01-31-2017 10:14 AM
  4. user57's Avatar
    There was a problem saving to SD card before I installed the quickpic app, but after I used the google app.

    The save issue is WHY I installed the quickpic app, I thought the other ones didnt have proper write permission. So I dont believe quickpic caused the SD problem, or my whole folder to disappear - since there was an SD issue before quickpic was ever installed (but I did not know of it yet).

    I already have a file manager and looked thru the folders. I also looked using the computer. The DCMI folder is empty except that new test pic that I took after I remounted the card.

    How do I check the exact time that quickpic was installed? I cant find its folder in android/data.
    01-31-2017 10:20 AM
  5. user57's Avatar
    Your repeated claims about Google spying on you are belying your bias. Stop being paranoid and trying to outsmart apps. Just use the apps.
    Dont mock. There is a real issue. Pics dont just disappear. Something caused it. Either an app (foul play), or corrupted SD card.
    I dont think it is the latter since the other folders still have their images/files.
    Only the DCMI folder was affected, and it was renamed/replaced after I re mounted the card. This shows it is an app/writing issue.

    Repeating the truth is not bias. You know google was started with seedfunding by the CIA?
    You know the US gov passed law saying that corps can sell your info to the gov, without a warrant? This is off topic and I shouldnt need to say it.
    Im looking for critical thinking and looking at the clues. Not to just dismiss that google is harmless.

    Also I am not paranoid. Would you trust strangers going thru your private pics? I dont. Which is why I dont use cloud.

    Cloud and trusting google is not the solution. There are many people with this problem. And it will repeat until people find out what is causing it.
    01-31-2017 10:28 AM
  6. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Let's all keep this discussion civil.

    There are a few things in your description that are a bit puzzling:

    1. In step 1, what did you edit the photo with, and how did you edit it? Are you talking about a photo editor app, or did you just rename the file?

    2. In step 2, how did you try to use Google Photos to copy and paste? Google Photos doesn't have a function for this -- you should use a file manager app. If the phone didn't come with one, try Total Commander or Solid Explorer.

    3. In step 3, you mentioned trying to use this A+ Gallery app to copy a photo from Internal Storage to the SD card. Again, this is something you should use a file manager for, not a gallery app. (And by the way, SD card restrictions were a KitKat thing. In Marshmallow, Google does not forbid 3rd party developers from using the SD card -- but it's up to the developer to include the feature in their apps.)

    4. There can be a DCIM directory on both Internal Storage and the SD card, since the camera app can be set to save to either. Have you used a file manager to look in both DCIM directories?

    BTW, Google doesn't force you to use Google Photos -- you're welcome to install any gallery app you choose from the Play Store. It's true that Photos is preinstalled, but it's the same idea as iPhones having iPhoto preinstalled.
    01-31-2017 11:00 AM
  7. Aquila's Avatar
    6) Then I disabled google's photo app. I never used cloud storage.

    This is the one step that makes this so hard to troubleshoot. Using the automatic, 100% backup gets rid of 99% of these headaches.
    01-31-2017 11:04 AM
  8. user57's Avatar
    Let's all keep this discussion civil.

    There are a few things in your description that are a bit puzzling:

    1. In step 1, what did you edit the photo with, and how did you edit it? Are you talking about a photo editor app, or did you just rename the file?

    2. In step 2, how did you try to use Google Photos to copy and paste? Google Photos doesn't have a function for this -- you should use a file manager app. If the phone didn't come with one, try Total Commander or Solid Explorer.

    3. In step 3, you mentioned trying to use this A+ Gallery app to copy a photo from Internal Storage to the SD card. Again, this is something you should use a file manager for, not a gallery app. (And by the way, SD card restrictions were a KitKat thing. In Marshmallow, Google does not forbid 3rd party developers from using the SD card -- but it's up to the developer to include the feature in their apps.)

    4. There can be a DCIM directory on both Internal Storage and the SD card, since the camera app can be set to save to either. Have you used a file manager to look in both DCIM directories?

    BTW, Google doesn't force you to use Google Photos -- you're welcome to install any gallery app you choose from the Play Store. It's true that Photos is preinstalled, but it's the same idea as iPhones having iPhoto preinstalled.
    Thank you.

    1) I used an art-photo edit app. I edited a pic FROM the SD card, taken with the cam. This pic was in the DCMI folder. After I saved the edit, it saved in [ the folder for that art app ], which is on internal storage. I wanted to put this pic back on my SD card, in a folder for similar pics. (My DCMI folder was not disappeared at this time, because I remember seeing the thumbnails in the folder).

    2) In the google photo app - I tried pressing on the pic to bring up options to copy. I also tried the settings. Im new to google photos, so I didnt know it didnt have a copy feature. Thats why I tried using another app.

    3) I used this other gallery app so that I can VIEW the pic I want to copy. (Faster than using a file manager).
    I recently came from a Kit kat device (restricted SD save). So when the A+ app didnt copy my [edited pic] to the SD card folder, I thought it was something wrong with the A+ app permissions.
    (But I guess it was a problem with the SD card not properly mounted, or folder error. But the folder I was trying to copy to, was not the DCMI folder.)

    4. I looked in both DMCI folders. But I had my cam app set to save pics to the SD card. So all new pics were saving to the DCMI on the SD card.
    When I was using A+ and google BEFORE the disappearance - I did see the thumbnails of my recent pics.
    .
    .
    Yes I used a file manager. Also the computer (SD mount). Also USB view from the computer. I also used A+, but it no longer shows the thumbs for the prior pics. It still opens the DCMI folder. But now it only shows the 1 test pic that I took after remounting the SD card.

    Update:
    My recovery scan finished. It did not find any recent pics (taken with the camera app). It found old pics (from the DCMI folder), that I manually deleted many months ago.
    But, I set the scan to only look for picture files. So maybe I need to redo it and scan for all file types (if my pics had their extension taken off somehow).

    I read someone say that a virus could rename pics with wrong extensions. But I forgot the link of the post. And I cant find any random file names on the card.

    When I mounted the SD on the computer, I also right clicked on the DCMI folder to check its file size. It was very small (only the size of one pic).
    I also made sure hidden folders were showing. But a hundred MB of pics are missing. I checked all folders on the SD card.

    I read that other ppl had their pics disappear, and they said to:
    Cleared data and cache for both "External Storage" and "Media storage". Rebooted, it worked like a charm.

    I didnt try. But this wouldnt explain why the pics are missing when I take the SD out of the phone, and mount on a computer (where no android OS is involved).

    Thanks for trouble shooting.
    01-31-2017 11:38 AM
  9. user57's Avatar
    6) Then I disabled google's photo app. I never used cloud storage.

    This is the one step that makes this so hard to troubleshoot. Using the automatic, 100% backup gets rid of 99% of these headaches.
    I understand. But the reason I disabled is because the app was still loading without me using it. Thus wasting ram. My phone freezes up with low ram. So I disabled it. (Also it didnt have the copy/paste feature I wanted, so I didnt think I needed it running).

    I mentioned that I never use cloud storage - in case someone asked if my pics were not actually saved on my phone - and they disappeared if I turned off google cloud (which isnt the case).

    Also I dont trust google or any company with hosting pics from my camera folder.
    I have a backup drive. But was not able to backup all recent pics this month.

    Regardless, the disappearing DCMI folder is happening to a lot of people. So id like to find out why.

    Also when I put the SD card in my computer, windows popped up saying there is an error on the card. (This happens on other cards I use).
    It scanned but then said it found no errors.

    Is there a program I can use to deep scan for corrupted files?

    Thank you.
    01-31-2017 11:47 AM
  10. B. Diddy's Avatar
    When you mention the card being scanned, are you talking about chkdsk? http://forums.androidcentral.com/amb...d-sd-card.html. If the card became corrupted (which is not uncommon with SD cards, since the quality and reliability of the underlying memory chip is bottom-of-the-barrel, even with top companies -- this comes from someone I know in the industry), that might be why the photos were lost.

    I also wonder if at some point in your process, the entire DCIM folder on the SD card was accidentally overwritten -- like if you accidentally tried copying the entire DCIM folder from Internal Storage to the SD card, instead of just that edited pic.
    01-31-2017 11:57 AM
  11. user57's Avatar
    When you mention the card being scanned, are you talking about chkdsk? http://forums.androidcentral.com/amb...d-sd-card.html. If the card became corrupted (which is not uncommon with SD cards, since the quality and reliability of the underlying memory chip is bottom-of-the-barrel, even with top companies -- this comes from someone I know in the industry), that might be why the photos were lost.

    I also wonder if at some point in your process, the entire DCIM folder on the SD card was accidentally overwritten -- like if you accidentally tried copying the entire DCIM folder from Internal Storage to the SD card, instead of just that edited pic.
    Thank you.
    When I first put the SD card in the computer, windows did popup telling me there's a problem, and to scan the card. But it found no errors.
    Then I used the cmd check disk command too. Still no errors. (And the other folders load fine).

    "the entire DCIM folder on the SD card was accidentally overwritten"

    Yes I think something like this happened. What else would explain why the DCIM folder now had a 2017 date with the exact time that I took the new pic?

    But I didnt copy anything from the DCIM (internal), to DCIM (SD card).
    I was copying from a photo app folder (internal), to my own folder (SD card).
    I didnt replace the DCIM folders myself. And before the disappearance, I saw both DCIM folders in the A+ gallery app previews.
    I didnt notice that the pics were gone, until I dismounted SD, mounted, then took a pic. This pic saved to the DCIM on SD.
    But I didnt notice that the other pics were missing, since the new thumbnail covered the view in the DCIM folder.

    1) I think this is a bug with android OS. (Software issue affecting hardware, or forcing an overwrite of existing folders - but emptying contents).
    2) Foul play (to make people use google +cloud = police can then search your stuff without a warrant. Or hackers can find stuff to blackmail ppl.)
    3) Or an SD hardware issue. (But can anyone explain if it is rational for a folder to disappear, but the others remain - if it was a hardware issue?)

    I think 1 or 2 sound more likely since a lot of people have the problem with DCIM pics disappearing. So there is something in common.
    01-31-2017 12:13 PM
  12. B. Diddy's Avatar
    I don't believe this is an Android bug per se -- I would suspect more of a glitch with either the SD card, the phone or with one of the 3rd party apps. My understanding is that manufacturers have to tweak the base Android firmware to implement SD access. Sometimes bugs crop up in this tweaking -- it was rampant with Samsung phones for a while, back in the S3 and S4 days, where cards would frequently get corrupted. So if it is a system bug, it has more to do with LG's implementation of SD access, rather than Google's base Android code.

    I'm not affiliated with Google, nor am I paid by them, and I would say that it is not foul play.

    I'm on these forums a lot (as you might have guessed already), and I have not seen your specific issue crop up with any regularity, for what it's worth. Of course, there are various posts about missing photos, but there are many different situations that are posted about, with different explanations.
    01-31-2017 12:30 PM
  13. user57's Avatar
    I don't believe this is an Android bug per se -- I would suspect more of a glitch with either the SD card, the phone or with one of the 3rd party apps. My understanding is that manufacturers have to tweak the base Android firmware to implement SD access. Sometimes bugs crop up in this tweaking -- it was rampant with Samsung phones for a while, back in the S3 and S4 days, where cards would frequently get corrupted. So if it is a system bug, it has more to do with LG's implementation of SD access, rather than Google's base Android code.

    I'm not affiliated with Google, nor am I paid by them, and I would say that it is not foul play.

    I'm on these forums a lot (as you might have guessed already), and I have not seen your specific issue crop up with any regularity, for what it's worth. Of course, there are various posts about missing photos, but there are many different situations that are posted about, with different explanations.
    Ty. I searched on google for ten mins before posting the thread. I saw a lot of ppl having pics disapear. But they didnt give details except for dcmi related.

    Could be something wrong with the camera app (writing over the dcmi folder?).
    Because i didnt notice the pics disapear until i remounted and took a pic. Not 100% sure.

    If its a glitch or sd error, then what free program can i use to scan for pic fragments?

    Whatever errased the pics could not have wiped [shredded] the data so fast. So the files should be recoverable.
    I tried a recovery for photos. But it doesnt scan wildcard files.
    01-31-2017 12:49 PM
  14. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Right -- the devil is in the details. Missing/lost photos is a very common issue that gets asked about here, but there are often many different causes and explanations.

    Not sure if this guide will be helpful: http://forums.androidcentral.com/amb...ted-files.html
    01-31-2017 01:10 PM

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