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Recovery of Corrupt Sticky Note in Sticky Note App?

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#1 Modem_operandi


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Posted 28 March 2018 - 01:38 PM

Hi All,


Amazingly I could not find a single post about Windows Sticky Notes, so I am not sure whether I should post this question here or in "Software --> Other Applications."


I am running Windows 8.1 on a Toshiba Satellite laptop.


I have a "Sticky Note" whose data became corrupted and will now not open via StikyNot.exe.

I believe it became corrupted when I was switching from another open application to my open Sticky Note, whereby there was a brief system lag/hang-up (I think due to overloaded RAM and/or disc demands at the time); I think I clicked once too many, and then the Sticky Note application crashed.  When I tried to reopen the note, I got an error message that it could not be opened because of corrupted data (see attached image).  (Incidentally, the application itself still works fine as it will open copies of old notes, so the corruption is specific to the current set of notes contained within the StickyNotes.snt file).


I located the corrupt StickyNotes.snt file. Very thankfully It was able to be opened in a variety of other applications like Notepad, Wordpad, etc.


It was a very lengthy note which I did not want to transcribe entirely by hand (due to removal of all extraneous syntax).

So I located an older version of the note (by using Piriform's Recuva software and recovering an older copy of the note from a shadow copy of my C-Drive).

In that way, I only needed to transcribe the last half of the corrupted note by hand (tedious, but doable).


Here are two issues with the hand transcription (e.g. from Notepad) though:

  1. The individual notations contained within a Sticky Note do not appear in their same original order when opened in notepad or other word-processing app, which makes it difficult to sort things out or even know if all notations were recovered.
  2. Images of any kind that were copied to the original Sticky Note are not able to be recovered as they just appear as long "paragraphs" of numerical digits.


Due to these issues, I really desired the Sticky Note to be recoverable in the original StikyNot.exe application if possible.

I suspected that when the application had crashed, it may have caused a syntax error of one or more added, deleted, or changed symbols.  So I thought that by finding an extra, or deleted, bracket, or by overwriting the header or footer from that of the older note, that the problem may be solved (lack of knowledge here though, so guessing). So I systematically and methodically made "corrections" and backtracks and "recorrections," removing what looked like an extra bracket, and then overwrote the entire header, then header and footer (the old note had footer syntax, but the corrupted note did not, so I tried with and without), and eventually I tried replacing the whole first half of the note with the old copy, etc.  I thought that if I covered all bases, it would be fairly easy to eventually correct the offending misplaced character(s), which would then "uncorrupt" the note and restore its functionality, but to no avail.


I must be missing something. And this is where it gets over my head…is there something in the old header or footer that is related specifically only to the old saved note, like the date it was created, or its number of characters, etc., that makes it not work when carried over to the new note?  Is there some other "hidden" attribute that is causing the corruption that I cannot see?  I thought this would be relatively easy to fix by "correcting" or overwriting some bad characters, but that does not appear to be the case.


FYI, there were two individual sticky notes contained within the StickyNotes.snt file, if that makes any difference in all this. The smaller note is contained at the beginning of the file. My concern is of the longer note that follows it.


I'm VERY thankful and lucky that it appears that I recovered the note, albeit out of order and without images, but was wondering if completely restoring it may be possible.  Can anyone shed any light on this?


Thanks so much!!

Edited by Chris Cosgrove, 28 March 2018 - 04:17 PM.
Moved from Win 8/8.1 to 'all other applications'.

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#2 Modem_operandi

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 05:18 PM

Thanks, Chris, for moving my post to the appropriate topic!

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