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deleted clips from EX1

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Fred Casanova
deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 1, 2010 at 3:39:40 pm

We accidentally deleted all clips from a SDHC card in a MxR adapter in our EX1. We immediatley removed the card, did not write anything over it and did not format. Tried one program from Pendriverecovery that let us see the folders are still there, but the recovery didn't work. Although this seems like it should be a simple recovery, it seems Sony's methods in storing the data are complicating, if not preventing, the whole recovery process.

Has anyone actually gone thru this to a total recovery?



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Clint Fleckenstein
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 1, 2010 at 6:44:02 pm

Well, one nice thing about it being an SDHC card and not an SxS card is that you can throw it into a garden-variety card reader and try a number of recovery utilities. On a SxS card you're hosed that way, at least in my experience in playing with a few "what if" scenarios.

My guess is that even if a file recovery utility was able to find and recover the files on the card, it will NEVER make sense of the cryptic nature of all the folders, subfolders, and other little files associated with the metadata. That's because the directory information is gone, and these utilities actually look for orphaned files on the card. So just try to get the MP4's restored. Then see if you can use Clip Browser to rescue those into a new BPAV folder on your hard drive of a new card. You may lose metadata but recover the footage, which at this point seems like a best case scenario.

Cf


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Craig Seeman
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 1, 2010 at 7:07:38 pm

If you're on Mac you might try the free "Treasured" app
http://www.aeroquartet.com/movierepair/download.html
and if all else fails
http://www.aeroquartet.com/movierepair/xdcam.html



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Fred Casanova
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 1, 2010 at 8:02:03 pm

Thanks, Craig, for the reference. I'll try that very soon, however I was under the impression that the .MP4 file, as it sits under BPAV, is not a true MP4, but a Sony version of MP4. Indeed, I have tried to view MP4s from a good card and QuickTime says it is not a valid file.


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Craig Seeman
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 1, 2010 at 8:21:11 pm

I'm not sure what you mean by "true" MP4. MP4 is an extension. In this case it holds and MPEG2 "essence."
The recovery site I pointed to handles XDCAM EX MP4 recovery. That's one of the things their free Mac utility does. If it can't then they will do it by hand (at a price of course).

Quicktime can not play MPEG2 in MP4 extension. VLC can though. Quicktime can if you get CalibratedSoftware plugin BTW.





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Fred Casanova
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 1, 2010 at 7:57:49 pm

Tried Clint's idea of importing to Clip Browser, however file will not import. Of course, it doesn't tell me why. I tried a known good file and it imports OK. So, it appears the program I used to recover either corrupted the files or something else is stopping it.
After the initial run of the recovery program (Pendriverecovery.org) and trying to read BPAV in Clip Browser, it said there were incomplete clips and to copy to new SxS card, put in camera and execute salvage operations. Sure. All I could find in the EX1 was UPDATE. Well, that allowed me to see the clip thumbnails, but clips will not play in camera or Clip Browser. No video and just buzz on audio.


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Rafael Amador
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 2, 2010 at 3:38:39 pm

Hi Fred,
As Clint points, sometimes is possible to recover the MP4 from the SDHC without problems (Data Rescue II, FileSalvage, Rescue Pro,..). No so from the SxS.
On my experience, once the Clip Browser doesn't accept the MP4, the only solution is Treasured.
Rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Fred Casanova
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 2, 2010 at 6:16:11 pm

Thanks, Rafael. I downloaded Treasured and started the process late in the day and had to cut it short. It seems to take a very long time. I may resume today.
However, I have talked with one Sony tech at Sony Media Services and one independent restoration expert in NYC who have led me to the conclusion that the file management for XDCAM format is very much massaged by Sony. That is, a generic recovery of corrupted data might be easier than recovering a operator deleted file. I am trying to recover from a Sony written operation that does not act like a simple deletion of files off a hard drive. It's a different animal and Sony made it that way. That seems to be the core problem in the recovery. If I had a corrupted file that I wanted restored back to before the corruption, that could actually be an easier process. I may be over-simplifying, but the point is that Sony does not provide an UNDELETE function in the camera (which cannot be a difficult process to provide) and apparently doesn't supply a utility program to their service centers to undelete either. So to recover from this simple problem may take a very complex solution, hours of work by very skilled people with knowledge in a range of high tech that eludes most of us...mostly because...why?


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Craig Seeman
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 2, 2010 at 6:51:26 pm

Aero Quartet, the link I provided previously, has expertise in recovering files from XDCAM EX. Please contact him. There's a reasonable chance he can do this. It may be expensive though but you're not going to find out unless you contact him.



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Rafael Amador
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 3, 2010 at 2:43:47 pm

Hi Fred,
When you delete a file, the file remains untouched as long as you don't write on top.
I have recovered QT movies from failed HDs that were trashed many months before.
No much problem.
The problem it only happens with these MP4. Somehow they get modified when recovered so Clip Browser do not want them.
The picture information is untouched but no application is able to read the file (not true, ffmpgx can but the export options are really crappy).
You need to edit the file and repair whatever needed.
This is what Aeroquarter (Treasured is the same guy) does.

[Fred Casanova] "So to recover from this simple problem may take a very complex solution, hours of work by very skilled people with knowledge in a range of high tech that eludes most of us...mostly because...why?"
They can fix it in minutes.
rafael



http://www.nagavideo.com


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Fred Casanova
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 5, 2010 at 7:44:52 pm

Thanks for that, Rafael. Actually, we were so pressed for time, I couldn't wait on the Treasured utility to examine all my clips. However, you got my curiosity up enough, that I will try the utility once I get my chip back. We had to make a decision and sent it off to Sony to see if they can extract it. Hopefully, we won't ever do this again, but who can say. So, your suggestion is welcomed.
It is just odd, to me, that this kind of a problem takes this amount of effort to recover. Like you said, it is hardly a problem with hard drives. If Sony needs to have its own file management method, I understand. But to leave it there and not provide their own service centers, not to mention their customers, a clean and sure method to recover is inexcusable.


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Rafael Amador
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 5, 2010 at 7:59:01 pm

Hi fred,
I'm not partner in Treasured, but believe me, it may probably the easiest and cheapest way to repair your clips. You do it in minutes from your house. If its works you pay.
rafael

http://www.nagavideo.com


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Fred Casanova
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 13, 2010 at 6:28:21 pm

The chip came back from Sony. Unfortunately, they were unable to fix it. We are getting a similar response from Sony engineers at NAB. While my brother is there talking this issue up with Sony and others, I will be slugging away back home and will try the Treasured method recommended by Rafael. Even the Sony people at NAB are interested in what happens with this, since they seem to have run across this issue several times.
So far, the big lessoned learned here is this: If you intend to do any file management in the camera, PULL THE OTHER CARD OUT. The foul-up occurs when you view the clips in MEDIA mode then switch to CAMERA to delete. During that switch, the camera defaults to Card 1. And then you say DELETE. If you were intending to do the DELETE to Card 2, you probably won't notice it, but you just jumped off the cliff. You WILL notice when you hit bottom.


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Fred Casanova
Re: deleted clips from EX1
on Apr 19, 2010 at 4:29:08 am

Thanks to Rafael for the suggestion to try Aero Quartet. We got back very acceptable video and the price was very reasonable. The "Very acceptable" comes only because there were a few places where the video had some artifacts or the program could not recover small sections. One method to resolve this is to try again in small sections. I have yet to do this. Other than that, the video quality was excellent and is like it came right out of the camera. I imported the video and audio files to FCP in order to review and check if there are any sync issues. This process is not finished, but we are happy, so far, with the amount and quality of the video recovered. I will try to have more specifics on the process and results later.
Rafael, thanks again.


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