My USB flash drive says it has 15.7GB of space used but inside all the folders are empty

photosusb-flash-drive

My USB flash drive says it has 15.7GB of space used but inside all the folders are empty!

I was updating my computer from Vista to Windows 8, so I had to save all my files somewhere so I got this 32GB USB flash drive and put all the pictures and videos on it.

I have put lots of photos on the USB flash drive that are very important to me but when I put the USB flash drive into my computer today the folders were all empty!! There is only one folder (with videos) and one document that are still visible.

I really need to get those photos back.

Best Answer

Ok... First of all your USB (as well as other) drives can show space used that isn't really used, especially if the file system was corrupted. That's the worst case and you won't be able to recover data/pictures from the USB drive that are not there to begin with.

Second, don't try to write or otherwise modify the USB drive until you get a recovery program running. Most of them can non-destructively scan a drive and tell you if there are any files there to be recovered. Some of them do the scan for free and require you to purchase the program to do the actual recovery.

A good free one that works on a variety of storage media including USB drives is recuva. There are other ones that cost a bit but try this one first. If you want to read a comparison of recovery software packages (including recuva) see this article, or google for 'usb recovery programs'