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(Current version is: 13.2, released 05-04-2016)
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DFSee, Disk analysis, maintenance and recovery utility

DFSee USB stick
Award eCs best utility 2009
DFSee12 12cm CDROM

Multiplatform Swiss army knife to examine disks in great detail and fix problems with partition definitions and file systems. Create an exact clone or a compressed imagefile from your whole disk or a single partition. DFSee is a generic disk, partition and filesystem utility for maintenance and data-recovery. It supports partition tables (FDISK, LVM), FAT, FAT32, HPFS, NTFS, JFS and, to some extent, EXT2/3 or REISER filesystems too.
Developed with OpenWatcom

OS2/eCS, DOS, Windows, Mac and Linux version in one package!

DFSee is NOT free software, however a fully functional evaluation version is available without requiring immediate registration. For regular use several licence models are available, starting with a single-user individual registration for just € 49

DFSee can be used in one of several ways:

  1. As a replacement for the classic FDISK and LVM programs, with support for MBR as well as GPT style tables.

    DFSee is a complete replacement for the partitioning tools as found with DOS, OS/2, Win9x, Windows-NT/2000/XP/7/8/9/10 and Linux.
    It is also a replacement for the LVM utility that comes with eComStation, and all OS/2 versions 4.50 or newer.
    Apart from the standard create/delete type of functions there are a lot of special commands to display information and fix all kinds of problems related to partition-tables and LVM information. A fully interactive partition-table editor for MBR or GPT tables is included as well (PTEdit).

    Finally, the FDISK functionality combined with the scripting capabilities is being used by large organisations for automatic (and unattended) roll-out scenarios.

  2. To recover from partition problems and disasters (UNFDISK)

    An often used function here is the DFSDISK script that automates the collection of needed information to 'UNDO' an accidental FDISK operation or other partitioning related disasters (Scripts -> Analyse disks for Support). Another important feature is the ability to save and restore ALL partitioning information in a regular file that you can keep as a backup on a diskette so recovery operations will be MUCH easier.

  3. As a tool to copy whole disks or partitions

    Two main functiones are available:

    IMAGING Whole disks, partitions or parts of partition can be saved to an imagefile, either RAW or in a compressed format. The imagefiles can be restored to the same or a different location resulting in backup or copy functionality.

    For large images, and using removable media to store them, it is possible to limit the size of the generated files and create multiple numbered files for one image. For direct writing to removable media like diskettes, CDR or DVD-R (streaming) it will prompt for media-change too.

    CLONING Cloning can make an exact copy of (part of) a partition or disk to another area on the same or another disk. This can be used as a very fast backup facility (speeds of 30 MB/sec are not uncommon) and to move partitions arround. Check the CLONE, MOVE and COPY commands and menu-items ...

    On the bootable CD, the bootimage uses an Ultra-DMA driver to allow maximum speeds on modern ultra-DMA IDE disks.

    For both imaging and cloning, DFSee can use internal allocation information from the filesystem structures to skip unused areas (SMART clone/image) minimizing imagesize and speeding up the process.

    These DFSee functions are comparable to programs like Norton GHOST and PowerQuest DriveImage

  4. As a tool to 'UNDELETE' files that have been accidentaly deleted or RECOVER files from unaccessible filesystems

    This feature is implemented for FAT, HPFS, JFS and NTFS, but on those filesystems it is a very powerful tool. It works by finding all deleted or normal files (DELFIND/FILEFIND), and then letting the user make a selection based on a wild-card filespecification and a recoverability outlook percentage (DELSHOW). The actual recover operation will copy the matching files to a specified directory, if possible on another disk (RECOVER).

    You can find the file-recover and undelete functions in the menu as well, in the specific 'Mode=...' submenus for the filesystems that support it.

  5. As an analysis and recovery tool for most used filesystems.

    This includes boot-sectors, superblocks and low-level directory structures. For most supported filesystems some specific commands are available that fix common problems with that filesystem.
    To support a large number of possible filesystems, DFSee uses specific modes of operation. Every mode has its own set of of dedicated commands and recognized data formats (sector types). Generic commands (and sector types) are available in all modes. On selecting a data-source (disk, partition, volume) DFSee will try to recognize the involved filesystem and activate support for it automatically.

    The most important modes are:

    FDISK for partitioning work, default active at startup
    HPFS native filesystem on OS/2, eComStation, WSeB ...
    FAT classic PC filesystems including FAT32 and VFAT
    EXFAT fat variant designed for huge removable media
    NTFS native filesystem on Windows-NT -2000 or -XP
    JFS journaled filesystem on OS/2, eCS or WSeB
    EXT2/3 native filesystem on Linux, EXT3 is journaled
    REISER journaled filesystem on Linux by Hans Reiser
    HFS the journalled filesystem HFS+ for MAC OSX
    AUX Auxilary mode for unrecognized data

    Commands specific to a mode are available in that mode only, except for the FDISK commands that are available all the time just as all the generic commands are.

  6. As a powerful binary (or HEX) display and edit tool, including an x86 disasssembler. .

    DFSee can access data on hard-disks, operating-system volumes like diskettes or CDROM and (image) files.


DFSee is NOT a beginners tool!
It was written for system administrators and power-users

Although DFSee has been written with recovery and analysis in mind, and tries to take the safest approach to all operations, I can not give any guarantee regarding use of the DFSee program. The power of the program may lead to unexpected and undesirable results including data-loss in the hands of inexperienced users.

Only use DFSee and any function in it, if you know what you are doing, or when instructed by someone who does!
Really READ warning and confirmation messages, don't just acknowledge them!

Known bugs

No major known bugs at the moment ...

(dfsee page) DFSee, Disk analysis, maintenance and recovery utility
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