How to recover deleted Data from internal memory of an Android Smartphone or Tablet

Yes, despite what you may have heard, it is possible to recover lost or deleted files from the internal storage of an Android mobile device. This is assuming the phone or tablet is operational and you can set it in to Debugging mode.

The following procedure will work with most devices, specifically:

  1. Samsung
  2. HTC
  3. Alcatel
  4. Huawei

Please note it’ll also work for the following Android OS:

  1. Android 1.6. Donut
  2. Android 2.1. Eclair
  3. Android 2.2. Froyo
  4. Android 2.3. Gingerbread
  5. Android 3.0. Honeycomb
  6. Android 4.0. Ice Cream Sandwich
  7. Android 4.4. KitKat

It will not work on Android 4.1. Jelly Bean as UMS (USB Mass Storage) option is not available.

So let’s begin.

How to Recover Data from an Android device – Connect like an External Harddrive

First, you need to set your smartphone to be seen as an external storage device, you need to go into Developer mode and change the Android settings on the phone or tablet.

For Android 2.1-2.3.7 devices, use the following instructions:

  1. Click on Menu
  2. Click on Settings
  3. Click on Applications
  4. Click on Development
  5. Click on USB debugging

For Android 4.0-4.1.2 devices, use the following instructions:

  1. Open Setting
  2. Click on ….
  3. Select USB utilities
  4. Select Connect Storage to PC

For Android 4.0-4.1.2 devices, use the following instructions:

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Click on About Phone/Tablet
  3. Click on Build Number at the end of the Scroll list
  4. Click on Build Number 7 times

Android 4.2 smartphone or tablets do not have an easily available option for USB Debugging option. But it isn’t missing, just well hidden. To get to the Developer mode, use the following instructions:

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Click on About Phone/Tablet
  3. Click on “Build Number” at the end of the Scroll list
  4. Click on “Build Number” repeatedly for 7 times

Good to note at the third tap you’ll be told that you only have 4 more taps to go; so keep tapping until it switches over to developer mode.

Recovery time – My favourite Data Recovery pics

Once you are in Developer mode, then do the following to recover data.

  1. Connect your phone/tablet to your PC via a USB cable
  2. Pull down the status bar
  3. Select USB connected
  4. Select the button which reads Connect storage to PC

Reconnect the USB cable and try again until you see this option. Then once it is detected as a Removable memory with an assigned drive letter, you root the device using Khangoroot.

Then you can launch any recovery software program (Deer, 2013, August 3). My preferred data recovery software choices are:

  1. AnyMP4 Android Data Recovery
  2. File Recovery Ultimate 15.0.5
  3. iLike Android Data Recovery Pro
  4. Active@ File Recovery Ultimate 15.0.5
  5. Wondershare Dr.Fone for Android
  6. Aiseesoft Android Data Recovery
  7. EaseUS MobiSaver for Android
  8. Remo Recover for Android
  9. Recuva Pro
  10. Getdata’s Recover My Files

When recovery is complete, use Safely Remove Hardware and Eject Media option to eject the device and turn off USB Debugging mode on the Android device. Sharing is caring so share this post with as many of your friends as you can.


  1. Deer, L. (2013, August 3). How to recover Data from your Damaged Thumb Drive or ZIP Archive. Retrieved from

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