Stellar Data Recovery software is, in our opinion, one of the best data recovery software for PC, but it’s also available for Mac users. Some of the things that automatically lend Stellar legitimacy and trust is that the company has been in the data recovery field since 1993. With that in mind, their software can effortlessly recover data from a wide variety of sources, and even remotely, using advanced file recovering mechanisms. We’ll discuss the features that separate it from the competition in a little while. Without any further ado, here is the Stellar Data Recovery software review.
The interface of Stellar Data Recovery is surprisingly simple – much simpler than you would expect. But is very functional and intuitive – users won’t need anything more than common sense to fully utilize its potential. We think simplicity is key, and this one isn’t cluttered with needless options. In fact, with this software, it is only a matter of two to three clicks before you are on your way to previewing scan results.
Operating System Compatibility
Officially, Stellar Data Recovery works with Windows (XP and later) and Mac. However, should you decide to shell out $299 for a Toolkit license, you will gain the ability to retrieve data from Linux-formatted hard drives. Keep in mind, you will have to install the software on your Windows or Mac computer, and plug the drive containing Linux as an external drive to begin scanning.
File Type and File System
Except for commonly used file systems for Windows (NTFS, FAT (FAT16/FAT32)), Stellar’s software supports HFS and HFS+ on Mac, and ext2, ext3, and ext4, which are the most common file systems for Linux. This is where the potential of restoring from virtual drives lies. But the virtual drives also expand the capabilities to include retrieving files such as VMDK, VDI, VHDX, and VHD. This is not something you’ll encounter often, if at all.
As for file type, almost nothing is off-limits. Pictures, videos, audio files, documents, e-mails, etc. And, besides your internal drives (SSD, HDD, M.2, NVME), you can also scan external HDDs, flash drives, SD cards, optical media, create disk images, and repair lost or deleted partitions, unbootable systems, and corrupted images and videos.
The time it takes for the scan is subjective and is dependent on many factors. Some of those are the type of scan, the type of your drive, and thus the reading/writing speed of your drive, and amount of background processes. With that said, in our subjective testing, Stellar Data Recovery took approximately the same time to scan our external USB drive as EaseUS and Disk Drill. And if all you want is your files back, we think you’d suffer a minute more or less for the search to finish.
Restoring From Raid Arrays
Something you don’t come across every day is Stellar Data Recovery’s ability to securely restore data from RAID 0, RAID 5, and RAID 6 arrays. Those are configured for home or work servers using multiple drives in combination to achieve greater speeds. But they are notorious for one bad consequence – if one of the hard drives fails, the files on all of them are gone. Oh, and did we mention the ability to restore data from drives that are BitLocker locked and possibly encrypted drives. And the ability to clone your HDD and monitor your drive health so that you know when the end is near?
Remote data recovery
Another neat feature that is unique to the software is to be able to perform data recovery remotely. This means you can hire one of their technicians if your hard drive has failed mechanically or electronically. Or, you can run the software from thousands of miles away if a friend or a family member accidentally formatted their hard drive and isn’t tech-savvy. There’s no doubt this is a marvelous feature and can have a wide variety of uses.
We would rate this software somewhere in the middle, but striving toward the upper echelon when it comes to limitations. This is because you are free to scan and preview results, but can only retrieve up to 1 GB of files on Windows for free. On Mac, you can only scan and preview before you have to pay. This isn’t unheard of, others offer 100 MB or 500 MB for free, while EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard allows up to 2 GB of restored data for free. Others, such as Recuva, allow their users unlimited recovery free of charge. Granted, Recuva is far less advanced and won’t come up with nearly as many search results.
We like that they didn’t discriminate. Both the Free and Standard licenses have an identical number of features. The latter can restore an unlimited number of files and costs $49.99, though. Professional license at $79.99 adds the abilities for optical media, disk imaging, creating bootable system recovery USB drives. Premium ($99) is reserved for lovers of digital media, and the advanced repair of photos and videos. We don’t think you need the Technician license ($199) unless you work with RAID drives extensively or have a business of your own. Finally, Toolkit license, at $299, allows the creation of virtual drives we mentioned above.
- Officially supports Windows and Mac, but can restore files from Linux through Windows
- Very simple and user-friendly interface
- The company that created the software has decades of experience in data restoration
- Unique ability to retrieve files remotely, through a network, and from RAID arrays
- A very high success rate in file retrieval
- Advanced corrupt video and photo restoration and repair, useful for digital cameras
- Ability to specifically scan by file type, eliminating the need for a time-consuming Deep Scan
- Requires a paid license after 1 GB of data restoration on Windows
- Licenses can get quite expensive based on users’ needs
An advantage that Stellar Data Recovery has over its competitors is quite surprising. The simple ability to choose the file type before you start scanning is astonishingly rare. We’re not sure why this isn’t a thing – not everyone wants a full scan. It saves its users a huge chunk of time and allows them to retrieve only files they want. Of course, a full scan is an option if you ever need it. The prices are also competitive. The Standard and Professional licenses grant their users a few additional features that you wouldn’t find in others. Not at that price point, at least.
Stellar Data Recovery Software
Stellar Data Recovery is one of those rare tools with extremely good success rates in recovering your favorite data which you thought gone forever. The software is easy to use and doesn’t come with any complexities and also boasts a ton of features to accomplish any recovery tasks.