file corruption on photos?

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  • Updated 3 years ago
Hi, everyone, i am fairly new to this, i was told Photoshop can fix errors like this? My external hard drive messed up and i brought it to get transferred to a new hard drive, the guy managed to transfer them but they all look somewhat like this.... ? how can i fix this? he said to use photoshop, so this is why im on this forum , see the photo below . Also When they recovered the files it seems as if they did not maintain the file structure (maybe they could not) so the files are pretty much all bunched up and divided by file types can i change this?

Photo of cynthia


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  • upset and worried

Posted 3 years ago

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Photo of Paul Plak

Paul Plak

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HI, this corrupted photo can indeed be decomposed into 3 parts, one part on the top is OK, nothing to do to it. The left grass and tree part is not in it's correct place, and needs to be moved to the right, it can be done in any graphic editor, photoshop is just a (very sophisticated) image editor, you can even use a more simple one like MS paint, or Irfanview, whatever ... When you'll stick it to the right, you'll notice you miss a few rows of pixels at the bottom. Those are probably lost forever.
Then you can select the bottom of the photograph, including the part you just added on the right, and move it all the way back to the left where it belongs. You'll still be left with this ochre-brown color strip in the middle of your photo. These pixels have somehow replaced the original pixels of your photo, which are most likely lost forever too ...
To finish it off, it is to some extent possible to use a clone stamp tool to replicate parts of your image and clone-paint them on top of the ochre-brown band. You can have some success rebuilding an image like this, but it will be a tedious job, and you will not be able to recreate details like the hand of the person or other missing items. In fact what you have to do is repaint the missing areas of your photo pixel by pixel ...

So, the declaration that Photoshop is a tool that allows in theory to carry out all these steps is correct. As you see, there's in fact a lot of handling involved, and parts of these steps are closer to painting an image pixel by pixel, or small groups of pixels at best.

I do not know of any function that will do this automatically by magic, neither in PhotoShop, nor in any other software. At best, repeated steps can be copied in a macro so you can do them in series. If the horizontal destroyed row of pixels always is in the same place on all your photos, that could be a repetition that can be automated to some extent.

I'd say this was a polite way to tell you your photographs are destroyed for ever, unless you can live with the pixel bar going through them, or you're willing to go through considerable work to salvage a few photographs. At least you can still see most of the image and remember how things were in reality, but to turn them into fully normal pictures again, ahem ... no way I know to do this.

Maybe others with more knowledge will chime in with better proposals, but I think you need a miracle. Even a lot of miracles.