Possible to recover EFS Key from formatted Windows installation?


  1. Posts : 2
    Win10
       #1

    Possible to recover EFS Key from formatted Windows installation?


    I know this is a long shot but...

    I had to reinstall Windows on my SSD. Then discovered I have work on another disk encrypted using Window's normal EFS. Since it might be possible to recover some files from the old Windows installation, is there any way I could somehow recover the key(s)?

    Thanks.
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 25,026
    10 Home x64 (21H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #2

    Welcome to TenForums @vinhos3,

    If you still have the Windows.old can't you just roll back to your previous version for a while? Or was it so badly damaged that you can't use it, even in Safe Mode?
      My Computers


  3. Posts : 2
    Win10
    Thread Starter
       #3

    Bree said:
    Welcome to TenForums @vinhos3,

    If you still have the Windows.old can't you just roll back to your previous version for a while? Or was it so badly damaged that you can't use it, even in Safe Mode?
    I formatted the SSD first, so no Window.old. But I could recover individual files easily with a data recovery program.
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 1,620
    Windows 10 Home
       #4

    vinhos3 said:
    I formatted the SSD first, so no Window.old. But I could recover individual files easily with a data recovery program.
    And, how will the data recovery program be able to de-encrypt each recovered file?
      My Computer


  5. Posts : 16,278
    W10Prox64
       #5

    I'm not sure, but I think the certificate needs to be "exported" and then "imported", so you may be out of luck.
      My Computer


  6. Posts : 2
    win10
       #6

    Hey,

    I have the same problem like you.My data on the external hard drive is encrypted.
    PC disk drive was fos formated and the reinstalled windows has a new id etc...
    Did you find a way how to decrypt the data without the certificate ?
    Or any other solutions...
      My Computer


  7. Posts : 13,669
    Windows10
       #7

    dalvik said:
    Hey,

    I have the same problem like you.My data on the external hard drive is encrypted.
    PC disk drive was fos formated and the reinstalled windows has a new id etc...
    Did you find a way how to decrypt the data without the certificate ?
    Or any other solutions...
    Whole point of encryption is to prevent people doing what you ask!

    There may be dodgy or even outright illegal methods to do this but we are not permitted to discuss such things on this forum.
      My Computer


  8. Posts : 2
    win10
       #8

    cereberus said:
    Whole point of encryption is to prevent people doing what you ask!

    There may be dodgy or even outright illegal methods to do this but we are not permitted to discuss such things on this forum.
    Sorry and yes you're right.I did not express myself well.Just wanted to know if there is a way how to get the certificate.But it doesnt seems like that and my data is gone :/
      My Computer


  9. Posts : 12,461
    Win10 Version 21H2 Pro and Home, Win11 Pro
       #9

    The problem with encryption is some important feature is saved in the Registry, reinstalling Windows can write a new Registry causing problems. The Registry is made up of 5 text files called Hives, problems in any one of them can have dire consequences.
      My Computers


 

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