Posted on December 5th, 2011 at 2:51 PM EST
You have deleted one or more files that you really shouldn’t have, and you don’t have a backup of that data, so you’re freaking out. Everyone’s been there at some point. If that is what has led you here, my advice to you is simple: stop reading right now! Yes, I’m totally serious. Shut down your computer immediately, and do not turn it on again until you have resolved the problem. Find a different computer, iPad, smartphone, anything with a web browser – go to your local public library if necessary – and read the rest of this article. If you keep using the computer, you reduce the chance of being able to recover what you need! I’ll be here when you get back.