by July 7, 2000 0 comments

Stellar 7 is the latest addition to Stellar’s range of data
recovery software. The software comes in two floppies-a Setup disk and a
Recovery disk. The setup disk contains installation programs for DOS and Win 9x.
The Recovery disk contains software for data recovery.

To install the software you need at least 2 MB of hard disk
space. You can install the software either through DOS or Windows. When
installed through DOS, it automatically runs at boot time and saves a copy of
disk image on the hard disk. You can later save this image on floppy disks.
Different images are created for different physical drives, though the logical
drives share a common image file. However, we found the process of saving the
image file in DOS pretty slow.

The Win 9x version is far more convenient and flexible.
Saving the image is much faster and can be done at Windows Startup, daily,
weekly or at a fixed interval. One option common to both platforms is the
Hierarchy count, which lets you specify the number of copies of the disk image
you wish to save. The default value is three, which means that three distinct
copies of the image can be saved on the hard disk, for three different days, and
on the fourth day, the oldest image will be replaced by the new image.

We conducted three types of tests. In the first case, we
formatted the hard disk and ran the recovery software. It found a saved image of
the disk on the formatted disk, which was then used to restore the disk to its
pre-formatted state. The software also offers facilities for recovering data
from floppy disks.

We also tried to restore deleted files. We deleted all the
files from our disk and ran defrag on it. On running the recovery software, we
got an option of restoring all or selected files, and we could successfully
recover all our deleted files using the image stored on the hard disk.

Shield 7

Data recovery software. Rs 1,490


Restores formatted hard drives and floppies;
recovers deleted files; stores multiple copies of disk image.


Easy to install and use; affordable price.


New images created on same day, replace each
other-may lead to data loss; recovery from images stored on
floppies sometimes partially unsuccessful; absence of detailed
printed manual.


Stellar Information Systems, 205 Skipper Corner, 88
Nehru Place, New Delhi 19. 
Tel: 11-6418809, 6418810 

RQS# E23

After the recovery process was complete, we deleted the files
once more, defragmented the hard disk, and rebooted the machine. But this time,
recovery failed. This is because when the machine was restarted, another image
of the disk (defragmented) was created which replaced our old image
(fragmented). This is a limitation of the software, as images of the disk
created on the same day replace each other. So, it’s quite possible that, if
you defrag your disk and restart the machine, you may be unable to recover a
file which you might have deleted just 10 minutes ago.

Another important thing to note is that recovered files
can’t be saved to the disk from which recovery is being attempted. Thus when
recovering files from a hard disk, files can only be saved to a floppy disk or
another hard disk. You can’t save them even on a different partition on the
same drive.

Finally, we tested the software by removing all disk
partitions. Upon running the recovery software, a previously saved image was
found on the hard disk and the disk was restored to its previous state. However,
in this case when we tried restoring files from the disk image stored on floppy
diskettes, the recovery wasn’t completely successful. Some of the files were
missing and even Windows didn’t run properly. So you have to be careful when
storing the image on a floppy. Ensure that you store several copies of the image
on multiple floppies.

Nevertheless, Stellar Shield 7 provides a fast, efficient and
reliable method of data recovery. The fact that it provides insurance against
invaluable data at an attractive price of Rs 1,490 makes it an ideal buy.

Kunal Dua at PCQ Labs

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