I accidentally deleted my photos from my Nokia Lumia 520. How do i retrieve them?


WPCentral Question

I have down loaded Asoftech Data Recovery and paid for the full version. Please advise how to proceed.Thank you

Windows Central Question

Please reply in full as i am a complete novice. I just need step by step instructions how to recover them. As stated previously, i have the full Asoftech Data recovery installed.

If i try to reply directly to questions asked, it tells me i have to register with Microsoft or Google????
***** proof answer would be appreciated to avoid registering anywhere. Thanks
I don't have any back up systems that i am aware of


Oct 10, 2013
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The data recovery tool you bought is for Windows desktop computers, not Windows Phone. If you didn't have your phone set to backup your photos to OneDrive, I'm afraid they may not be recoverable.


New member
Nov 12, 2012
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The forum is advising you you can link your log-in here to a Microsoft or Google account. You don't have to. You just need a valid email address to join this forum and get the privilege of a reply button in threads (plus oh, so much more goodness).

Continuing to make new threads is not going to help you... It scatters the advice and now you have to track multiple threads.

If you don't want to register here, that is fine also. Please be advised, however, to get the best help certain questions might have to be answered. That means you do have to register to reply to a thread. You may want to keep making new threads to "answer" the old thread... But we are volunteering here and not many will want to track all your threads to keep up to date with your progress. Remember: this is a fan based News and Discussion site. It is not run by Microsoft, Lumia or any entity responsible for the manufacture, instruction or warranty related to your phone.

I didn't answer the first thread because you have not put in enough information.

Let me make a couple of assumptions and guesses anyway to try and help you out and keep you from creating more threads to get lost here in this overcrowded space. Also, by keeping all the info in one thread it may help someone else with the same problem who may read this later...

If the information you deleted was on your phone... You probably will not get it back via a desktop data recovery program. It's Windows Phone, separate from Windows and the software may corrupt vital files.

If the information was on a microSD: unmount the card via Storage Sense, power down the phone and remove the card. Put the microSD card in an adapter and plug it into a card reader attached to your PC. Make a folder and copy over all the files on the card for safekeeping. Run the data recovery software you got and point it at the card reader as the drive to recover. Follow the documentation for that program. I never used that one. Read about how it works and follow the instructions. If it screws up your microSD card that is way better than having it screw up your phone...

If you can recover the files, great. Copy them to your computer. Format your memory card for a fresh start (FAT32 format) and then copy over anything you want back on there.

Set your phone to always upload your pics to OneDrive from now on. It is free and easy. It will only upload them over WiFi so it won't eat up your cellular data.

Your other alternative is to not mess with it yourself and hire a data forensics firm to try and recover the data. That is an expensive option. Depending on how vital the pictures are to you it may or may not be worth the expense.


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Jan 30, 2013
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I agree with rumorednow. you cannot expect people to hunt down every bit of your issue. you want a full and complete answer? Write down EVERY bit of info... from your issue to phone model to what you did. Your best bet.... just register to get help from people. If not, then you will ge incomplete answers or assumptions based on the 1 portion of the issue mentioned. If you are hellbent on not registering, then it's time for you to call microsoft directly.


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Dec 1, 2004
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Isn't backup to Onedrive set up by default on Windows Phone? Even so, if people have important photos on their phone, why don't they consider that the phone may go bad or get lost or get destroyed. Always have a backup and know where it is.


Ambassador Team Leader
Nov 4, 2013
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Quite a dilemma and a bit of confusion here.
I merged the askers threads.

To the asker:

If you look in your applist by swiping left.
Do you see the above tile?

If your phone is on wifi or data by tapping this you may find your pictures.
This is "One Drive" and can be downloaded from the store if it isn't on your phone.

As said hopefully your 520 has an active Microsoft account.
You'll need that set up in order to access your pictures from "One Drive" if those were uploaded.

Remember files on One Drive aren't physically on your phone.

Keith McGregor

New member
Nov 21, 2014
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Hi Guys & Gals,

Thank you all for assisting this novice to see the light. As the Photos were not automatially uploaded to One Drive, I have lost them.
Account now opened and One Drive app installed. Lesson learnt. I may yet still try and recover from the card in my Lumia 520.
Thanks again

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