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Cellular Phones/photos "lost" on Razr M - are they gone forever?

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Forgive the length of the question, but I am trying to be detailed so you can help me more easily (I'm an Expert here, too!)

I have two kinds of pix on my phone:  the ones I transferred from my computer onto the phone, these are grouped in a folder with default name "gallery;" and the ones I've taken with the phone.  They seem to be contained in a separate "folder," although I didn't group them that way.

I've wanted to transfer some of the latter to my computer and have been texting them, one at a time.  The 'one at a time' is not the problem, but that the picture often 'chokes' the text, and it doesn't leave my phone.

Then I got the bright idea to plug in my phone to my computer and treat it as a removable drive.  Boom!  There they were (both folders).

I began transferring them with drag and drop.  What I should have done was make a folder on my computer for the complete download and dragged them all.  I did not.  I always do this when getting photos off my camera, so I don't know why it didn't occur to me to do this.

I began transferring, deleting the photos that I had moved because many were very similar.  The images of the ones on the phone showed up on the computer as about the size (literally) of your pinkie nail.  Blowing each one up by opening the file seemed tedious, and I didn't do that unless I was undecided whether I wanted to transfer that specific pic (I several shots of the same thing & wanted to transfer only the best one).   
As you can now guess, somehow, I deleted all of them.

I closed the 'phone drive' on my computer and re-opened. No joy.  I did a computer cold boot.  No joy.

Then I decided that the pix were likely still somewhere on the phone.

I figured there had to be an app out there that would recover my pix for me.  Went to the app store on Google and didn't find much ('recover pictures Android phone').  Went to Google to search.  I also went to YouTube to see how easy they were to use - and how to use them.  What I did find, I checked for reviews.  Many of them seemed to be Trojan horses and other unpleasant things.  Still no joy of any kind.

My questions to you:  
•do you think the pix are still on my phone?
•if so, do you know of a [safe] app that will find them so I can take them off?  

I have not taken any more pictures with the phone now, for fear that if there is a recovery possible I might mess things up!

Thanks so much!
Beth

Answer
Though I would absolutely love to tell you that those pictures are somewhere that you can retrieve them, unfortunately, a cell phone does not have the same abilities as a computer. You can't retrieve something from a cell phone that you have deleted. Once it's deleted, unfortunately, it is gone for good. If you copied these photos to your computer and saw them there, they should still be there, however. If you saw them on your computer when you were just viewing your phone, that's a different story, but if you actually transferred them to the computer, they are there. I feel horrible that you have lost your pictures. I understand how bad that feels. My advice for the future is that you save your pictures on an SD card in your device. When saved to an SD card, they can be moved from phone to phone and transferred easily to your computer. I wish that I had better news for you.  

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DebiN

Expertise

I can answer questions on cellular phones, the physical device, the network, contracts, billing, ordering, porting and what to look for when purchasing cell phones. I am located in the United States. I am an expert on BlackBerrys, Treos, HTC devices and iPhones as well as cellphones and aircards. I have over 15 years of experience in both the wireless and wireline world with the carriers. I have a lot of knowledge regarding the wireless providers - their services, prices and policies, both GSM AT&T and T-Mobile) and CDMA (Verizon, Sprint/Nextel). I am very familiar with the individual devices and their specifications. I can also answer questions regarding BlackBerrys, iPhones and other PDAs, both Palm-based and Windows-based. I can troubleshoot most any problem someone is having with their cellular device or with the provider.

Experience

Over 20 years in the Telecom industry working for the carriers with individuals, small business, medium business and large corporations(Fortune 500). Also worked as a professor in Maryland for 10 years teaching telecommunications.

Organizations
I belong to several organizations

Education/Credentials
Master's in Telecommunications

Awards and Honors
Received several awards for papers that I have published over the years

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