We constitute the millennial population that is interlocked in the Information Age or the Digital Age. The access, management and power of information make for a major feature of the 21st century. The surplus of information that is at our disposal today has taken both information outflow and inflow and therefore knowledge base to new heights.
Unlike physical data, digital data is less vulnerable to physical agents of damage; however, data loss is still unavoidable and has always been a major concern for the techies and digital users around the globe. But, be it due to the vicious bane of virus/malware, or due to accidental deletion of files or a directory, or a full-blown crash of the operating system, i.e., irrespective of the cause and extent of data loss, the volley of data recovery software coming up in the market are slowly and steadily strengthening the data recovery solution plans.
Furthermore, data differs from one application to another in terms of volume and on an individual user front, in terms of how crucial it is for us, for whatever purpose that might be, on a professional or a personal basis. This further intensifies the need of an appropriate data recovery solution to fill up the chasm of the lost data from failed or infected hardware systems, hard drives, CDs, DVDs, USB drives, external drives and so on.
And, set in this context, Stellar Data Recovery breaks the clutter of the other data recovery software as it offers a well-rounded gamut of features, to reverse the loss and bring back the precious lost data. Not only this, it can also create full backups of the drives as a safeguard against data loss in future, recover data from deleted folders etc.
After the hassle-free installation and download of the Stellar Data Recovery setup file, some easy-to-follow steps will lead the user to enter the license key and that’s all that is to be done to unlock the features of the software. The desktop shortcut will prop up the go-to for the software, and clicking on that will lead to a menu screen just like the windows explorer search engine. The menu has 3 sections: “All Files”, “Documents-Folders-Emails” and “Multimedia-Files”, and all of these are selected by default, but the user can select the specific file types for data recovery.
Easy User Interface
Coming to the interface, it is visually appealing, with a simple configuration comprising menu buttons to guide the user through. After choosing the file type, the next screen appears to choose the file location, which includes the common folders found in the partitions of the user’s storage device such as “My Documents”,” Desktop” etc and so on. From here, the user is good to go as per his/her particular data loss situation.
Let’s have a look at the product features in a nutshell.
Features at a glance:
With the V7 update, Stellar provides an interface that is user-friendly, with multiple options like selecting the desired types of files from a particular location, thus saving time spent in running the usual hard disk scan. The much more advanced search engine also helps recover FAT, NTFS, exFAT partitions with no redundancy. Files deleted unintentionally from the Recycle Bin can be taken back too.
Deep scan is an impressive attribute of Stellar Phoenix Data Recovery software as it performs a thorough scan of a particular location, or even the entire drive as specified (to dig deeper in order to recover more data that is often not tracked by a quick or basic scan). Although the space of scan might lengthen the time entailed, Deep scan can even retrieve raw data and increases the data recovery chances by 5 times more than the former versions, which is remarkable.
Moreover, Stellar provides this feature directly, meaning that it exempts the user from the need to run a primary scan first. The automatic switch to deep scan, if the quick scan is ineffective, is a lifesaver as it mitigates data corruption to a considerable extent.
For a lost partition, Stellar can help recover it through the “Can’t find Drive” option under “Other locations”, which props up after choosing what type of file to recover. Once it gets to work, the option tracks the missing partition by scanning the hard drive to get back the particular data. Deep scan can be done to recover the missing partitions that cannot be retrieved by a quick scan.
For bad sectors in the hard drives, the “Recovery from Disk Images” enables data recovery after the user takes a full image backup of that drive and uses the image to retrieve the data from it. All one needs to do is select the specific drive, create an image or even the whole hard disk for it. As for the advanced users, Start and Ending sectors is offered by Stellar from where the image can be created to recover the data. This ghost-image-creating feature is quite effective.
The software settings provide for custom file extension which can help recover these files too, other than the 200+ file extensions supported by Stellar which include files, folder, videos, photos etc. What is to be done by the user is to just go to settings, and click on ‘Add header’, fill in the details of the desired file extension, and that’s about it. Stellar is compatible with all major file extensions, which is quite something!
The time extension of the Trial data recovery results is another huge positive as a sample data discovery of 1GB brought back most of the files that were deleted quite some months back, and what’s more, in usable condition for future use. In all probability, the capacity of this software is to recover data from huge storage drives even beyond, say 5 TB.
The “Add New File Type” feature that creates new file formats creates huge possibilities or number of recoverable files. Office documents or folder recovery have distinct options made out exclusively for them and the software can also retrieve deleted outlook emails.
The Automatic storage detection can track just added external storage like USB drives, as and when they are connected and the “ File Tree View” can locate and display the retrieved data smoothly by tracking the file extension, the file type of location. Additionally, the user can preview the files during the scan and this feature can be turned off too.
Resuming recovery at some later point in time is an option too. The recovery information has to be saved in a file created by Stellar and the user can resume the recovery after importing the same the next time. This feature is very useful in today’s age and time, what with the fast-paced lives that we lead, and our busy work schedules.
The money matter
So far so good, but what might be considered as a catch for the product is the cost value pinned to it. In comparison to its rival products, like the Recuva Pro and DMDE Standard, Stellar costs much more. The free trial version can only churn data back up to 1GB, so will not make the cut for large data or even medium volume of lost data. And given that the major chunk of users needs to recover medium to large volumes of data more often, buying the software seems to be the best choice. Stellar is supported in Windows and Mac. The different versions entail different prices. The Stellar Data Recovery Professional Bundle with JPEG Repair and Video Repair cost at a reasonable price of $99.9.
On the whole, as far as the pricing goes, if we consider the positives of the functionalities offered by Stellar, you might just want to go a bit harsh on your pockets for the sake of your data, especially if you’ve lost business data, and this investment won’t let you down on the whole.
Chinks in the software
Although Stellar boasts of a robust Deep Scan feature, its quick scan feature takes the fall for it as it could not recover lost files on a formatted drive ( as opposed to the other hard drive recovery software). Added to this is the fact that an improved version of Stellar Phoenix would have to be purchased to be able to access the update, whereas the other products offer lifetime upgrades.
Now, the customer support is provided by Stellar through a support portal that quips up FAQs and searchable knowledge base for user queries. But the knowledge base itself seems to be a bit disoriented, and rather more like an FAQ space. More in-depth tutorials, such as video sessions could do the trick. But the live chat and email exchange mechanism is quite good, with speedy responses within 24 hours for the emails, friendly and resourceful communications in the live chat, and the user can also speak with a live support technician telephonically or chat during business hours.
Stellar Phoenix Data Recovery provides an interface with features that are time-effective for basic recovery tasks, but the advanced task solutions still need more work. The cost might be a concern for some users too. But all in all, this product still outweighs its cons as it is lined with impressive business features and good file recovery capacity, and is here to stay, with assured ‘stellar’ performance in the long run.