• In the modern technology age, it seems like there is data floating around everywhere. However, even with the growing popularity of virtualization and cloud computing, there are certain points where data can (and will) disappear – for good.
     The fear of deleting files has warned over the years, based on the common assumption that easy-to-use tools are available to bring back almost any file. Many “tools” seem more capable than they actually are.

    Find below 10 common myths about recovering deleted files:

    Myth #1: The Microsoft Windows Recycle Bin saves every deleted file and folder
    What the Recycle Bin actually does is take files or folders that are deleted within Windows Explorer and, rather than delete them, puts them into the Recycle Bin. However, large files, files that have been deleted from a command line or remotely, and earlier versions of modified files, aren’t saved in the Recycle Bin for later data recovery.

    Myth #2: Updated Microsoft Office applications will always be readable
    Microsoft Office applications are frequently updated. However, the new programs often require new data formats, and the documents created with earlier versions of an Office program will be saved in the new format. The Recycle Bin doesn’t save these earlier, overwritten versions of Office documents in its data backup.

    Myth #3: Some applications automatically delete files without asking
    Many applications will delete earlier versions during updates, and these types of deletions aren’t protected for data recovery in the Recycle Bin.

    Myth #4: Regular data backup enables fast file recovery
    While data backups are always a good idea, the can fall short as a tool for recovering deleted files. This is true for two reasons:

    1.) Files that are created, edited, or deleted after the last backup aren’t actually on the backup media, and

    2.) For the files that were on the data backup device, restoring the file would involve reading the index of the backup, locating the file on the backup media, and copying it to a target location. This could be carried out quickly, or it could take several hours.

    Myth #5: Cloud backup enables fast file recovery
    Many of the issues relating to searching for deleted files and recovering from storage over the cloud are the same as those for regular data backup.

    Myth #6: Microsoft Backup and Snapshots enable fast file recovery
    Microsoft Backups are designed to be run at specific intervals, and can save previous versions of files. However, the data recovery doesn’t address files that were changed after the backup was made.
    Snapshots, on the other hand, capture the system state and the changes made at pre-set intervals or when certain events occur. But recovering files from Snapshots may be time-consuming and may involve rebuilding files from multiple, earlier snapshots.

    Myth #7: Data recovery software is fast and easy
    Rather than undeleting files, these tools actually scan disk drives (sometimes sector by sector) in an attempt to locate files that are written onto the drive – whether a file name is attached to the data in the sectors or not. This can be very time-consuming, however, and success will be limited.

    Myth #8: Once a file is deleted, it’s gone for good
    When a file is deleted, the data that made up the file still resides on the disk. What is “deleted” is the locations where the data resides, which are now marked free for other files to overwrite data onto. However, the data for these deleted files may still reside on the disk – whether the file has been overwritten or not.

    Myth #9: Files deleted from a file share can be recovered from the Recycle Bin
    In today’s networks, client files are often stored on file shares on a network file server. Although it may look to the user as if a file is stored on a local drive, this “drive” is actually a virtual drive that is physically located elsewhere. A file that is deleted from such a “local” drive is actually removed from a file share – and is not stored in the Recycle Bin or available for data recovery.

    Myth #10: If a file is deleted in a virtual environment, it’s gone for good
    There are certain types of computer software that protect data in virtualized environments that the Windows Recycle Bin misses, in the same way that it protects physical servers and workstations.
    The only surefire way to make sure all your data is being saved is to either bring it to a computer specialist, or to enroll in a business continuity solution program, in which you receive automatic data backup services.

  • Thanks to the ever-expanding trove of Android apps for IT admins, you no longer need to jump out of bed for late-night trips to the office to fix stalled servers, troubleshoot a cloud app, or help your boss's boss find the earnings report he accidentally put in the wrong folder. Following is a dozen samples of Android applications geared toward helping IT admins monitor, manage, and maintain critical hardware, database, applications, and services.

    1.            AWS Console
    Though not the best-designed app out there, the AWS Console for Android is still useful for IT admins who rely on the cloud service and can't always be at their desk. It lets you view and manage existing EC2 instances and CloudWatch alarms, look at your total service charges, and access AWS Service Health status. Other features include the ability to stop or reboot EC2 instances and change regions to view your resources worldwide.

    2.             Celica Database
    Celica Database lets you read and write to your desktop-side database over 3G, GPRS, EDGE, or Wi-Fi. Add, edit, or delete data on your phone or tablet, and the changes sync up with the database immediately. It lets you apply SQL select queries and filters, as well as sort fields. Data is secured with 128-bit AES encryption. Supported databases include Microsoft Access, Excel, Oracle, SQL Server, DB2, MySQL, PostgreSQL, FoxPro, dBase, R:BASE, Sybase, and any ODBC-compliant database.

    3.           CopperEgg
    A companion to CopperEgg's monitoring service, this app lets admins call up critical website- and server-performance information in real time. Features include the ability to view system metrics like CPU usage, memory, and disk IO; website health, uptime, and response time; and historical graphs of system performance. Admins can also set up push alert notifications, which beats waiting to hear a phone call from a user that something's not working.

    4.            Cura SysAdmin
    This bundle o' administration tools for remote servers lets you configure and maintain your Unix/Linux servers. It delivers a personalized Terminal emulator for direct interaction with servers, letting you pull stats on vitals, mounted file systems, memory, process, and such. There's a module for reading logs and another for generating graphs on CPU and RAM usage. You can also receive notifications when others log into the server.

    5.          Fing
    Fing -- a play on "ping" -- has almost every common network quick test you could want. Features include network discovery capabilities, TCP port scanning, DNS lookup, MAC address and vendor gathering, and the ability to launch third-party apps for a host of protocols, including SSH, Telnet, FTP, and SAMBA.

    6.          JuiceDefender
    If you use your Android device as a mobile lifeline to your organization's systems, you don't want to risk a drained battery. The JuiceDefender Battery Saver from Latedroid is an easy-to-configure app that helps extend the battery life of your Android device by managing the most battery-draining components and apps. Choose a profile (balanced, aggressive, or extreme savings) and let JuiceDefender use the best battery-saving options for your device.

    7.         PC Monitor
    PC Monitor is a securely encrypted mobile application for monitoring and managing computers, applications, and servers. The feature list is expansive: You can track hardware uptime and dig into metrics like CPU usage, available memory, and system temperature. You also can track service responsive, send commands, start or stop processes, or log off users, as well as too much more to list here. There are optional server modules for Exchange, Active Directory, Hyper-V, VMware, and IIS.

    8.          PocketCloud Remote RDP / VNC
    This application from Wyse lets you access files and run apps via remote Windows and Mac machines and promises speedy performance on Wi-Fi, 3G, and 4G. Beyond providing 24/7 access to important files on your machines, it's handy for giving remote support to end-users. Connection options include RDP, VNC, and Auto-Discovery via Google. The Pro version offers support for multiple PCs, includes 256-bit NLA/TLS encryption, and supports VMware View and Microsoft RD Gateway.

    9.          Remote DB
    Remote DB serves up access to Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, PostgreSQL, and Sybase ASE database environments, letting you run queries, view data, make updates and schema changes, and otherwise execute database commands. Among its features, you can create SQL statements using templates and save them for repeated execution.

    10.          SSH Tunnel
    When you don't have an SSL-VPN or IPSec VPN already set up, SSH tunnels will do the job -- and they just work. SSH Tunnel allows you to tunnel just about any app to your destination, such as a Linux machine at the office. You could point your app at port 12000 and pop out from the Linux box to hit your IIS-based WebDAV server at on port 80, for example. Unlocking advanced features requires root access.

    11.          SysMonitor for SAP
    SysMonitor for SAP lets you monitor important data on your SAP systems from the convenience of your Android device. You can view all users connected to your SAP system and corresponding connection details, such as transaction, terminal, and connection time. You also can check out which jobs are running or in the queue. Finally, you can track what dumps have occurred and when.

    12.          Xtralogic Remote Desktop Client
    A handy tool, Xtralogic Remote Desktop Client uses Microsoft Remote Desktop Protocol to securely connect to any Windows computer, take control of the mouse and keyboard, and see exactly what's happing on the system's screen. It's useful not only for accessing your own files, apps, and email when you're away from your desk, but also for remote desktop support for users. Out of the box, it supports most versions of Windows -- including Windows 8 -- though not the Home editions.