Lost files on my Android phone

I took some interesting pictures the last few days. All sorts of exciting evidence and the base for a post on coffee πŸ™‚ When earlier today I needed to produce some of that evidence; I discovered that my SD card or whatever was having a hickup. The files (admittedly, nearly 300 pictures) weren’t in the directory and needless to say that didnt make me happy :/

I got the card out of the phone (gotta love the fact that android doesn’t mind the hot swapping) and connected it to a reader and the laptop!

My hope that the files were there but just not being shown when using the phone was quickly squashed; the directory only contained the small amount of files I was able to see when connected to the phone

Android apparently has a LOST.DIR construct (reminiscent of EXT3s lost+found) where they attach files that are on the disk but not attached to some valid directory.

Which is where all my lost pictures were πŸ™‚ (needless to say I cried hot tears of joy – LOL)

This does of course screw up your filenames, timestamps, file extensions, whatnot.. luckily the picture meta data has all the date and in most cases even gps data you might need πŸ™‚

Gotta love android & teh linuxiez πŸ™‚

Published by Gert


6 thoughts on “Lost files on my Android phone

  1. If the files were lost for good, you could use “foremost” (linux) or “photorec” (all platforms)


  2. How would i recover the files. In the lost folder it shows a file and if you open it as a text it shows all the info from the pictures. what would be the procedure for recovery


    1. The lost folder actually just moves the files from their original location to there and renames them to the names you see in there. Simply renaming the files to the appropriate file extension will probably do the trick..


  3. Hi, but they are numbered files like 60032 and it is a mix of all the files like text,images,videos etc.It is strange that i have 339 files here and 3/4 of them has a size 32kb, then few are 64kb, few 96kb, few 128kb and then above 1mb till 9mb the maximum one.Total size 104mb.
    I can’t say which file is what.I opened many files with image viewer but only 2 were images and rest were unreadable texts.Maybe it worked for you. Their sizes are similar and in some order which is confusing.
    LG P500,2.3.3


    1. Any file that gets lost, as in the data is there but there is no reference in the (let’s call it) table of contents, gets put into that folder with a random name. The data is there, not the name nor the extension.
      I use linux and that doesn’t entirely depend on filenames to decide what software to open the files with. That meant I can just click any of those files and have the interesting ones open. That being said, there wasn’t anything in there I needed to keep anyway (although there were a lot less files than you have if I remember correctly)

      Fact is though, there are many files floating around on your phone, pictures, text files, data files, etc.. It’s no big surprise that most of them didn’t turn out to be images.
      The real question is, did you miss any file on your device? If you did, there is a chance it’s in there. If it’s not, you can probably just delete all them.


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