Is there any kind way (and chance) to recover deleted files on a samba share?

We're using Ubuntu Server 10.04 and a user accidentally deleted all his files. He used (I don't think it's useful anyway) Windows 7 to access the share and delete files.

ps I'll try to be clearer: no backup has been done and I'd just need any kind of deleted file recovery working tool on Ubuntu (like easyrecovery pro & co. for windows)

  • Did you check the recycle bin on the Windows 7 box?
    – jftuga
    Mar 31, 2011 at 15:30
  • Sadly it's empty :(
    – Pitto
    Mar 31, 2011 at 16:01
  • You can set up recycle bins for Samba shares use the VFS module - this answer gives some good details about doing so.
    – Andrew
    Apr 11, 2011 at 23:22

3 Answers 3


There is a possibility, and a way, depending on the filesystem used to store the files. Here is how one person was able to recover files from an ext3 filesystem: http://www.xs4all.nl/~carlo17/howto/undelete_ext3.html

Of course, if you have backups, that would be preferable. You DO have backups right? If not...now might be a great time to start, while the motivation is fresh in your mind.

Checkout BackupPC, Bacula, or just plain tar.

  • 1
    I'm just the luckiest guy around... I've found a working backup (thank god).
    – Pitto
    Apr 4, 2011 at 9:55

You're pretty much stuck with recovering from backup unless you can get it back from the server side somehow (filesystem tricks, etc). That's pretty unlikely, though, as the physical location on disk where the files were stored have probably already been overwritten by other server activity. Windows only puts things in the recycle bin when deleting from local volumes. Items on network shares are just straight-up deleted.


Assuming this thread is very old, I got here today trying to recover some files. As explained, if like in our case, the samba server is on a Linux server the only options is to recover files there. We've only sometimes had luck with photorec. Requires the testdisk package (apt install testdisk).

Alternatively, we will now be implementing a Network Recycle bin in Samba using the samba-vfs module, which requires assigning a directory on the server en editing the samba.conf

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