Pandora Recovery Freeware Review

File recovery has been much more easier when Pandora Recovery -- a free file recover utility for Windows. The step by step wizard makes it more attractive even compared with Recuva. The three scanning modes (Browse, Search, Surface Scan) make it really convenient for users of all levels to perform do it yourself data recovery.

Here's more:

  • Interface: Pretty clean and easy to use. With image toolbar listed on the top, you can easily find functions or links you want to achieve. Moreover, the unique User Manual make the program more like a data recovery knowledge book than a tutorial. 
  • Commercial Use: unknown 
  • Download Size: 3.12 MB (version 2.1.1)
  • Supported Languages on Interface: currently 4 (English, Spanish, Serbian, and Russian) 
  • Official site: 
  • Tutorial: see here

Pros: Very user friendly as have said. 3 scanning modes make the app more complete. Able to recover deleted files from NTFS and FAT-formatted volumes, regardless of their type - you can recover pictures, songs, movies or documents and emails (MS Outlook). Preview functions are more powerful than Recuva. It can preview image files far beyond JPEG (also support preview PNG, GIF, TIF etc), and text files such as txt and word documents (shown as text only).

Cons: The files Surface(Deep) Scan mode supported are limited, such as media files can only find .mp3 format. Can’t preview video or audio files. Also it left files that had to be manually deleted during un-installation. Overall Rating: I give 8.5/10 for Pandora Recovery. Kind of surprising considering this is just its second version. See below with detailed comparison.

Recovery Capability Part

Rating: Excellent

Recovered all my test files with no problem at all. Scanning process is very quick generally (unless you choose Surface Scan, it may take quite a while). It claims able to recover images & photos, Archived Files, Music & Sounds and documents. Also MS Outlook .pst files. Should meet basic needs for most users.

Preview Effectiveness Part

Rating: Excellent

Capable of previewing photos with almost existing formats, and text files. Should be satisfactory for a data recovery freeware.

Ease of Use Part

Rating: Excellent

I don’t want to repeat its easy-to-use character, give it excellent option directly.

Help/Wizard/Documentation Part

Rating: Excellent

With very detailed start Wizard and User Manual.

TestDisk & PhotoRec Review 2016: The Most Powerful yet Free Data Recovery Tool (for PC & Mac)

TestDisk as the name indicates was primarily designed to fix system partition and file system problems. So it's the best choice to recover data from disks with partition problems.  

PhotoRec is the little brother of TestDisk. It can be used to recover those deleted or formatted files. 

You can download both of them or learn more from its official site here:

Here's my review:
  • Interface: The command line tool is without graphic interface. You have to rely on your keyboard to finish the whole recovery process. But there are corresponding texts showing you what to do next. Quite intuitive.
  • Commercial Use: Allowed. the issue is not addressed on their site, therefore it is safe to assume that commercial use is ok. 
  • Download Size: 1.7 MB (version 7.0)
  • Supported Languages on Interface: English

What I like: Solid recovery capabilities to deal with different data lose scenaries. Supported multi-platforms from Windows, Macintosh to Linux etc. From technical errors to humar errors that caused files lost, it can recover files with almost existing formats. Also TestDisk can fix file system and partition errors. PhotoRec allows you to select certain types of file formats to scan like Recuva does. It should be a perfect tool for those advanced users. 

What I don't like: Not suitable to those general who don't like command line as there is no GUI. Not applicable to recover RAW disk or files. Also you have to scan the whole disk for the lost files instead of a folder, making it quite time intensive. Sometimes you may need to wait several hours to see the results. One more shortcoming, it automatically reocvered all the found files to its assigned folder. You can’t choose what to recover and what need not. 

Recovery Capability Part:
It succeeded in recovering my deleted test files without problem though cost me nearly 2 hours to see the end (I used PhotoRec to do this). I have to use "Super Powerful" to describe its recovery capability as it also recovered so many files (beyond your imagination) that were deleted several months ago.

Preview Effectiveness Part:
It’s a command line tool, so without preview functions definitely.

Ease of Use Part:
More suitable for advanced tech users. For those general computer users who are also comfortable with command line, the guide text should be enough and easy to get things done. But I can’t give it an Excellent praise.

Help/Wizard/Documentation Part:
No, I didn’t see such information while testing. 

Note: this post was last updated on May 29, 2016