Despite our efforts to educate everyone in the digital evidence chain on the proper way to label and care for CDs, DVDs, and BDs (see CD and DVD Care and Handling: Stop Destroying Your Evidence!), read errors still happen...a lot. Here are two of my favorite tools for repairing and recovering data from disc-based media.

Disc Repair Machine

Deep scratches, gouges and other surface damage can often be repaired by polishing and buffing a disc properly. Disc repair kits can be spotted at most electronics retailers, as well as video game and movie rental stores (if you can find one). These consumer kits are often enough for doing a handful of repairs, but if doing this regularly you should consider investing in a good disc repair machine. I've used a JFJ Disc Repair machine for years, and it's served me quite well.

Data Recovery From Optical Discs

There are a lot of programs for data recovery, but when it comes to recovering from optical discs my go-to tool has always been IsoBuster. Not only is is IsoBuster a great tool, it's budget friendly. In fact you can try it for free. Can't beat that price.

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