Help! What happened to the files I was just working on?

What the hell? I was working on a website, so I had dreamweaver and adobe illustrator open, and most of the files related to the website were in one folder, which was open in DW. My computer, which is a bit elderly (3ish years?) but very rarely locks up, locked up. I closed the programs via windows task manager, but the computer completely locked up during the closing down of illustrator and I had to hit the power button.

I turned the computer back on and everything is just fine except all the files related to the website are gone. When I go to “open recent” it shows the files I was working on but can’t find them on the computer when I try to open them. I’ve looked everywhere and can’t find them. No other files appear to be missing, and the computer is running fine right now.

I tried doing a system restore to a time right before the computer locked up but it goes through the process then tells me the restore was incomplete and no changes have been made. Files are still missing. I’ve restarted a couple of times.

Any ideas? A fair amount of work has been lost, but most of it can be recreated.

I don’t think System Restore recovers data files, anyway.

Assuming the missing files were old ones you were editing, or had been properly saved before the crash, it’s worth doing a wildcard Search for the names in case it has tried to recover them and changed the file extension.

Say one of the files was named “mypage.html”, try an “All files and folders” search for “mypage*” and see if it finds anything. Even if the name hasn’t changed, it might find them somewhere obscure.

The files weren’t on an external drive or something, were they?

I normally back up my data onto an external drive, but I’d been working on these files just the last few days and hadn’t gotten around to it yet :smack:

First time I’ve ever lost computer files. I’ll do the search, thanks. They had been saved numerous times before the crash.

Related question: What now? Is my computer unstable or was this just some freak occurrence?

Try installing Google Desktop, allowing it to index everything on your drive, then doing a Desktop search for anything you remember in the files.

That worked!!! Yay; thank you! They were all in some random stupid file that had nothing to do with where I put them. The weird thing to me is that I knew the file names, but the system search couldn’t find them. Fairly useless feature, if you ask me.

Can anyone answer the second part of my question? Is this likely to be a continuing problem with this computer, or was it just some freak thing?

There’s no way for anyone to know.

Glad it worked. Got me out of a hole or two recently, did Google Desktop. Windows search sucks.

One thing you may find is that the problem is with DW - its file management feature is really, really opaque. Like, if I ask it to create a “site” it creates an “images” folder that had no real logical placement in the site file structure. Similarly, none of the auto-updating of links seems to work, either.