Recovered .Mov files won't play-please help!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by sofaclese, Jan 20, 2014.

  1. sofaclese macrumors newbie

    Jan 20, 2014
    Hey all, new to these forums but in pretty desperate need of help after an all mighty mess up! I'll try to be as detailed as possible.
    working on my macbook pro early 2011 version 10.7.5.

    Basically I spent 4 hours filming footage on my canon dslr yesterday to promote a guys dance class... Afterwards in discussions with the client I had removed my Lexar SD card from the camera as he wanted to see some footage. In a mix up with another SD card that he had another project on- he asked me to trash the footage on his card... in one moment of madness it turned out he had placed my card into my mac and I promptly dragged and dropped all of the footage from my card into my trash on my mac. Then emptied the trash immediately only to then discover what had happened to my dismay!
    So I immediately downloaded some software from here:

    and began searching the SD card for deleted files. After doing a "deep scan" of my SD card which was listed in the program as "No Name (RAW Files)" Joyfully at the time it appeared that it had found every single file I had recently deleted on it and so I restored and saved them to a folder on my Mac Desktop.

    However....Once I had restored these files, all listed as .MOV files of seemingly appropriately varying sizes...I tried to open them in both quicktime and VLC but all that appears is a black screen, no visuals...the very beginning of the audio from what was being recorded plays but then after 1/2 seconds it cuts to that white noise/distortion sound and stays that way for the rest of the clip.

    Have I lost/corrupted these files forever or is there some way that I can recover them?!
    Any help would be much appreciated! Any questions or more details you need just let me know and I'll do my best to answer with what very limited tech knowledge I have!!

    All the best!
  2. sofaclese thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 20, 2014
  3. AcesHigh87, Jan 22, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2014

    AcesHigh87 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 11, 2009
    New Brunswick, Canada
    Your best bet might be approaching the company that makes that software and asking if perhaps something had been missed.

    In general once the trash on your mac is emptied the trash on anything plugged in (external drives, Thumb drives, SD cards, etc) gets emptied as well. Anything left might not have been actual video files, just components to them: timecode, colour information, etc.

    How large are the files it recovered? Do they appear to be sized like regular movie files from your camera?

    Corruption after something like that would unfortunately not be uncommon. What is strange is the files opening at all.

    Lastly, not to sound rude, but this is why proper backup practices are key; especially when working in film. I work for a post studio and we do not remove anything from any SD card until we know it has been completely backed up twice. If the footage is in fact useless we can delete it later but you never want to risk losing footage.
  4. Switchfoot macrumors member

    Oct 8, 2004
    I'm no expert, but I realize it's frustrating not to receive a reply so here are a couple of thoughts:

    As I understand it, .MOV is just a container for the video file. Many times corrupt files behaving like you are describing weren't allowed to finish encoding at the end of their recording-- there's some index type file that encodes at the very end that is absolutely necessary or the entire file is kaput. In your case, however, it seems like that file would have been written when you originally recorded, so it seems to just have not been recovered with the video files.

    Some options might be to try recovery on the SD card with another program. I've had good results with DataRescue II (I think they're on version III now) and another program called MediaRecover. Again, it all depends on how valuable the info is to determine what you want to purchase/attempt to recover it.

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