How do I recover files from ReFS?

On many tech sites, ReFS is described as a new file system from Windows. In 2023, this statement is no longer relevant, since ReFS became available to a wide range of consumers already in 2017, that is, 6 years ago.

There is no official confirmation, but there is an opinion that Microsoft completely wanted to replace NTFS with ReFS. But so far this has not happened. Moreover, you will not be able to format the system disk in ReFS and create a ReFS volume on an external data storage device.

Even though ReFS is more resistant to various errors and corruption than NTFS, failures leading to data loss still occur. A common symptom of a damaged ReFS volume is the following error:

Location is not available. X:\ is not accessible. The volume repair was not successful.

This error, typically, appears after ReFS tried to repair itself based on the checksum data, but it failed.

To recover data in case of ReFS failures, you need to use a special ReFS recovery software - ReclaiMe. Note that, the process may take a long time. This is due to the peculiarities of organizing data storage on ReFS, namely the use of B-tree structures. Unlike data recovery from NTFS, where usually 2-3% scanning is enough, to obtain all the data, in the case of ReFS, you need to scan the entire volume.

ReFS recovery with ReclaiMe

  1. Download, install and launch the ReclaiMe software.
  2. Select the ReFS volume in the list of ReclaiMe devices and click Start.
  3. Wait for the scan to finish. Since the process can take a long time, it is recommended to “Save State” at least once every couple of hours.
  4. Estimate the recovery result using the Preview function.
  5. ReFS recovery
  6. If the data is displayed correctly, buy a Standard license key and copy the recovered data to a safe place.

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