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RE: Any ways to recover a broken file?

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg49741] RE: [mg49685] Any ways to recover a broken file?
  • From: "Dr A.H. Harker" <a.harker at>
  • Date: Thu, 29 Jul 2004 07:46:07 -0400 (EDT)
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

Dear Toshi,

          There is a function called RestoreNotebook in the AuthorTools
add-on package. Other people may have had success with it, but it's
never done the business for me.

  I have, on the other hand, managed to recover corrupted notebooks for
students taking my course. In most cases what had happened was that a
file had been corrupted by trying to save a large amount of graphics
information using a Windows Terminal Server system with a disk quota
system in operation: the WTS server seems not to send an appropriate
'insufficient disk space' message to Mathematica, or Mathematica doesn't
interpret it properly, and the graphics overwrites the end of the file.

  As long as you can open the file in a plain vanilla text editor
(Mathematica files are, thank goodness, plain ASCII), you can cut your

(i.e. Cell[BoxData[{......}], "Input"] )

a cell at a time out of the corrupt file and paste it into a new
Mathematica notebook. It's a bit tedious, but it works. Don't
cut-and-paste the output -- just run the new notebook when you've
recovered the input.

  Of course, if you can't open the file in a text editor you need to go
a level deeper with file utilities such as Norton or an equivalent to
recover a readable form. 

  Good luck!


 Dr A.H. Harker
 Director of Postgraduate Studies
 Deputy Head, Condensed Matter and Materials Physics Group
 Department of Physics and Astronomy
 University College London
 Gower Street
 WC1E  6BT
 (44)(0)207 679 3404
 a.harker at

]->-----Original Message-----
]->From: Toshiyuki (Toshi) Meshii [mailto:meshii at]
To: mathgroup at
]->Sent: 27 July 2004 12:02
]->To: mathgroup at
]->Subject: [mg49741] [mg49685] Any ways to recover a broken file?
]->I just found out that my Mathematica 5.1 notebook (size 40MB, WinXP)
]->be opened.
]->Every time I try to open it, Mathematica is shut down.
]->As you can guess from it's size, it has all the data I have been
]->with recently.
]->Unfortunately, I have no backup file of it since the end of May.
]->Does anyone know some way to recover or open the notebook?

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