If a file (photos, videos, music, documents and more) is corrupted and no longer opens, you can try some free tools

Recover corrupted files There are many reasons why files become damaged, become unreadable and therefore can no longer be opened by the default programs used on the computer.

The possible ones causes of a corrupt file include: the effect of a malware or virus that modifies files, unexpected application errors, computer crashes, network errors, or manual tampering with file contents. No program can open a file if it is damaged so this error, especially if it happens to very important files, can bring us close to frustration.

It can recover damaged and corrupted files in a simple and safe way, with some small free programs. Most of the tools offered are capable of recovering every category of files (documents, texts, images, music, videos), but there are also tools dedicated only to the recovery of a specific type of file (for example Word documents).

READ ALSO -> Find the program to open an unknown file not recognized by Windows

1) File Repair

Repair File Repair it’s a suite of free programs for Windows which can repair all these types of corrupt files and thus becomes one of those first aid tools that should never be missing on your computer.

Precisely the program tries to restore access to all files that no longer open on your computer among which.

  • Documenti Word: doc, docx, docm, rtf
  • Excel: xls, xlsx, xla
  • Zip archives, Rar
  • Video: AVI, MP4, MOV, WMV, ASF, MPG
  • Immagini e foto: jpeg, gif, tiff, bmp, png, RAW
  • PDF documents
  • Database di Access: MDB, MDE, accdb, ACCDE
  • PowerPoint presentations: ppt, pps, pptx
  • Musica e file audio: mp3, wav

File Repair should repair the damaged file if it no longer opens with the default program (for example a .doc file with Word); clearly miracles are excluded so it depends a lot on how much the starting file is ruined or compromised; for example, a file with a size of 0 bytes that has lost all its contents will certainly be irreparable.

To use File Repair just Select the right version based on the type of file you want to recover from the main site, start the program and try to open the damaged file, so as to start the correction and recovery attempt. The file will be saved in the same folder with a different file name than the original corrupt file which is left intact. File Repair attempts to read the document and recover the data that is no longer readable.

2) Lazesoft Recovery Suite

Lazesoft Another program that we can use to recover corrupt documents and files is Lazesoft Recovery Suite.

Once installed on the PC, simply select Data Recovery, indicate the folder where the corrupt file is present, select it and let the recovery system start, which will restore the correct functioning and correct opening of the file.

Obviously not all files can be recovered, but the beauty of this program is that it attempts recovery by also reading any “ghost data” present on the disk and which concern the file, so as to restore an outdated but functioning version if possible.

3) MiniTool Power Data Recovery

MiniTool Another program that we can test to recover damaged and corrupted files is MiniTool Power Data Recovery.

Once the program has been downloaded and installed, simply open it to immediately see all the disks and partitions on the PC.

To recover corrupt or damaged files, all we have to do is open the path to the file, select it and finally start the Scan, so as to restore working versions or attempt recovery on the file directly.

4) Recoverit

Recoverit If we are looking for a very effective tool on corrupt and damaged files we can try the program Recoverit.

Once installed, a window will open where you can select the recovery functionality most suited to the type of error generated by the corrupt file.

Normally we will have to use Virus Attack Data Recovery o System Crash Data Recoverybut to be on the safe side we can try to recover the corrupt file with the function All-Around Recovery.

Other programs to recover corrupt files

1) Repair Toolbox is a set of 22 single-purpose utilities, each designed to recover a certain type of file. Therefore, if a Word file is corrupt, you download the tool for Word, if it is a PDF there is another tool and so on, for Excel, Zip, Rar, Photoshop, Illustrator, Outlook, OneNote and many others . Unfortunately, RepairTolbox’s repair tools are not free and although they can be used to understand whether a file is recoverable or not, for the actual restoration it is necessary to purchase the license.

2) Hitman File Repair is a program designed to repair damaged photo and image files, so Jpeg, Tiff and Png files. This is not a program that recovers files from damaged memories or USB sticks, but it only works if you have a JPG file on your computer that you cannot open, to try to view it anyway. This program can also be used to find out if one or more photos can be recovered, but it requires payment of a license to restore the files and save them.

3) System File Checker: we have written a guide about this tool in the article on How to fix “file not found or corrupt” error if Windows is not working. In a nutshell, it only requires to be started from a dos prompt using the command sfc /scannow and let it do all the error recovery work automatically.

Use File History to recover corrupt files

File history The motto says that “prevention is better than cure” and is also valid in the world of information technology: it is better to equip ourselves to save automatic file copies at time intervalsso you can always recover a previous version of the files that is always working.

To use File History on Windows 11 and Windows 10 we connect a portable USB disk o we activate a network drive connected to the modemwe open the Start menu, we search Control Panelportiamoci in System and security and finally click on File history.

If we have already connected the backup unit it will appear ready for use; to use it all we have to do is press the button Activate to immediately start creating versions of any file saved on your PC (in particular all the files present in the Collections It is on Desktopin addition to Contacts and you have Favorites).

To select another unit, press on the left side on Select unit and choose the disk or network drive to use; alternatively we use Exclude folders to remove folders from the backup or press on Advanced settings to change the backup time (every hour) or how long to keep file versions.

If an important file or document already saved in the backup becomes corrupt, we right-click on it and press on Propertyportiamoci in Previous versions and choose an old version of the file (most likely not yet damaged).

Alternatively we can restore the damaged and corrupted files by taking us to the same screen seen for activation File historyby pressing up Restore personal files and selecting the file to recover.

On the same topic we can read our guides on how to backup in windows 11 come on how to activate automatic backup in windows 10 and 11.


To repair damaged and corrupt files you can use and programs intended for file recovery (often decisive in solving the most serious problems) or use File Historyvery useful for recovering a copy of the file prior to the problem and solving it without having to use any third-party program (but only if we had previously activated the backup).

To conclude, I invite you to read our guides on how recover the contents of Word documents and Office files that are no longer readableon how extract files from a damaged Zip or RAR archive and how Recover Deleted Files and Deleted Data on PC (Hard Disk).


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