How to Recover Data from Scratched or Corrupted CDs and DVDs

Tuesday, September 15, 2009




Every user has had trouble with a scratched CD. In the case of data CDs (CD-ROM), the drive cannot properly read the CD, giving rise to reading errors. In the case of audio CDs, the CD skips when we play it.
The first thing to do when coming across a CD with a read error is to clean it, to check whether it the error is not being caused by a dirty surface. You can even wash the CD gently with VCD CLEANER. If the error persists, try reading or playing the CD on another drive. If another drive (or CD player, in the case of audio CDs) gives the same result (read error or skipping, in the case of audio CDs), it will mean that the CD is scratched. I have discussed three ways to recover data from scratched or corrupted CDs and DVDs.
Freeware application CD Recovery Toolbox is made specifically to read the portions of a CD that are readable in an effort to rescue as much data as possible from a damaged disc. It finds the possible maximum amount of information. After that, it shows a list of all files and folders available for recovery. Now the user can select the files and folders to be recovered. Those specific objects will be recovered while the others will be ignored. The program recovers the maximum amount of information in the damaged file.


If that doesn't work, you may want to give a look at the 30-day trial of shareware application CDCheck . With CDCheck you can check your CDs and discover which files are corrupted. By using the program proactively, you can insure that your data on CD-ROMs are safe -- before it's too late!
Then again, if scratches are the issue, you may be able to get away with simply fixing your scratched CD or DVD yourself, just polish the CD with toothpaste. I am not making a fun. That’s right, Toothpaste. Polish the scratches with a cotton swab, rubbing gently the paste-imbue swab over the scratches until they disappear or until you notice that you have removed them as far as possible. Sometimes the paste may cause new scratching, but it will be merely superficial and easily removed. After clearing the scratches, wash the CD in water. If there are still scratches that the toothpaste has not managed to removed, use a metal polish (Brasso) in the same way as described above. Finally, rub Vaseline on the CD, very gently (do not press hard), from moving out from the centre to the rim.
The last step will be testing the CD. If it starts working properly, great. If not, repeat the above procedure, looking for the scratch that is causing the error and concentrating your polishing efforts on it.

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