.PGN File Recovery

Have files been deleted due to a user’s error or software error? Have you formatted a disk by accident and need to know how to recover the files? Read our .PGN file recovery guide for Windows, MacOS, Android and IOS in 2023.

PGN File Recovery

What is a .PGN file?

Text-based file format used to record moves in a chess match; also includes the event name, location, date, round, player names, and result of the game.

What Are Common Causes of ".PGN" Files Lost or Failure?

There are several common causes for ".PGN" file loss or failure:

  1. Accidental deletion: Users may accidentally delete ".PGN" files while organizing or cleaning up their computer or storage devices.
  2. File system corruption: Corruption in the file system can lead to the loss or failure of ".PGN" files. This can occur due to sudden power outages, improper system shutdowns, or hardware issues.
  3. Virus or malware attacks: Infections from viruses or malware can corrupt or delete ".PGN" files, making them inaccessible or unusable.
  4. Software or hardware issues: Errors or glitches in software applications or hardware components can cause ".PGN" files to become lost or fail to open properly.
  5. Formatting or partitioning: Formatting or partitioning a storage device without proper backup can result in the loss of ".PGN" files stored on it.
  6. Operating system updates: Sometimes, during the installation of operating system updates, ".PGN" files may get deleted or become incompatible with the updated system.
  7. Human error: Mistakes made by users, such as accidental overwriting, improper file transfers, or using unreliable file conversion tools, can lead to the loss or failure of ".PGN" files.
  8. Physical damage: Physical damage to storage devices, such as hard drives or memory cards, can result in the loss or corruption of ".PGN" files stored on them.

It is important to regularly back up ".PGN" files to prevent permanent loss and to use reliable data recovery software or services in case of accidental deletion or file failure.

How to recover lost ".PGN" files?

Sometimes while working with a computer, laptop or other stationary or mobile devices, you may encounter various bugs, freezes, hardware or software failures, even in spite of regular updates and junk cleaning. As a result, an important ".PGN" file may be deleted.

Go to view
🧺 How to Recover Files and Folders After Sending Them to the Recycle Bin and Deleting? (Windows 11)

🧺 How to Recover Files and Folders After Sending Them to the Recycle Bin and Deleting? (Windows 11)

By no means should you think that the only way to recover a ".PGN" file is always to create it once more.

Use programs for recovering ".PGN" files if a file was lost after accidental or deliberate deleting, formatting the memory card or the internal storage, cleaning the storage device, after a virus attack or a system failure.

Programs to recover ".PGN" files

Looking for a way to get files back? In cases when files were deleted and they cannot be restored by using standard operating system tools, use Hetman Partition Recovery.

The tool recovers data from any devices, regardless of the cause of data loss.

Follow the directions below:

  1. Download Hetman Partition Recovery, install and start the program.

  2. The program will automatically scan the computer and display all hard disks and removable drives connected to it, as well as physical and local disks.

    File Recovery Software
  3. Double-click on the disk from which you need to recover ".PGN" files, and select analysis type.

    Hetman Partition Recovery - Analysis Type
  4. When the scanning is over, you will be shown the files for recovery.

    Hetman Partition Recovery - Files that Can be Restored
  5. To find a file you need, use the program’s interface to open the folder it was deleted from, or go to the folder "Content-Aware Analysis" and select the required file type.

    Hetman Partition Recovery - Deep Scan
  6. Select the files you have been looking for and click "Recovery".

    File Recovery Software - Files List for Recovery
  7. Choose one of the methods for saving the files and recover them.

    Saving recovered files in Hetman Partition Recovery

How to open file with ".PGN" extension?

Looking for how to open a stereo portable Game Notation File image file file?

Programs that open ".PGN" files

ChessBase Fritz ChessBase Fritz
ChessBase ChessBase

Additional Information

  • File type: Portable Game Notation File

  • File extension: .PGN

  • Developer: N/A

  • Category: Game Files

  • Format: N/A


We will be happy to answer your questions!

Comments (1)

  • Hetman Software: Data Recovery
    Hetman Software: Data Recovery 18.12.2019 15:03 #
    Leave a comment if you have any questions about Recovering lost .PGN files after deleting, cleaning or formatting!
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Vladimir Artiukh

Author: Vladimir Artiukh, Technical Writer

Vladimir Artiukh is a technical writer for Hetman Software, as well as the voice and face of their English-speaking YouTube channel, Hetman Software: Data Recovery for Windows. He handles tutorials, how-tos, and detailed reviews on how the company’s tools work with all kinds of data storage devices.

Oleg Afonin

Editor: Oleg Afonin, Technical Writer

Oleg Afonin is an expert in mobile forensics, data recovery and computer systems. He often attends large data security conferences, and writes several blogs for such resources as xaker.ru, Elcomsoft and Habr. In addition to his online activities, Oleg’s articles are also published in professional magazines. Also, Oleg Afonin is the co-author of a well-known book, Mobile Forensics - Advanced Investigative Strategies.


Questions and answers

  • What are the common issues that can occur in a PGN file that require repair?

    There are several common issues that can occur in a PGN (Portable Game Notation) file that may require repair. Some of these issues include:

    1. Syntax errors: PGN files have a specific syntax, and any deviation from it can result in errors. This includes missing or misplaced tags, incorrect move notation, or improper structure.
    2. Invalid moves: PGN files record chess moves, and if there are any moves that are not valid according to the rules of chess, the file needs to be repaired.
    3. Incomplete or missing information: PGN files often include additional information like game headers, player names, event details, etc. If any of this information is missing or incomplete, it may need to be repaired.
    4. Encoding issues: PGN files can use different character encodings, and if the encoding is not properly specified or if there are encoding errors, it can cause problems in the file.
    5. File corruption: Sometimes, PGN files can get corrupted due to errors during file transfer, storage, or other issues. In such cases, the file needs to be repaired to recover the lost or damaged data.
    6. Version compatibility: PGN files can be written in different versions of the PGN standard, and if the file is not compatible with the software or tool being used, it may require repair to make it compatible.
    7. Inconsistent or incorrect tagging: PGN files use tags to store metadata about the game, and if there are any inconsistencies or errors in these tags, the file may need to be repaired.
    8. Missing or incorrect result: PGN files typically include the result of the game (e.g., 1-0 for white win, 0-1 for black win, or 1/2-1/2 for a draw). If this information is missing or incorrect, it may require repair.

    These are some of the common issues that can occur in a PGN file and may require repair to ensure the file is valid and usable.

  • What are some effective methods or tools available for repairing corrupted or damaged PGN files?

    There are several methods and tools available for repairing corrupted or damaged PGN (Portable Game Notation) files. Here are some effective ones:

    1. PGN File Repair Software: There are specialized software programs designed to repair and recover corrupted PGN files. These tools can scan the damaged file, identify errors, and attempt to fix them. Some popular PGN repair software includes ChessBase, Chess Assistant, and PGN Doctor.
    2. Text Editors: If the corruption in the PGN file is minimal, you can try opening it with a text editor like Notepad++ or Sublime Text. These editors can sometimes remove or fix minor errors, allowing you to save a working version of the file.
    3. Online PGN Repair Services: Various online services are available that can repair damaged PGN files. These services usually involve uploading the corrupted file to their website, and they will attempt to repair it automatically. Examples of such services include lichess.org's PGN Fixer and PGN Chess.
    4. Manual Editing: If you have some knowledge of PGN file structure, you can attempt to repair the file manually using a text editor. This method requires identifying and fixing the specific errors within the file, which can be time-consuming and complex.
    5. Backup Files: If you have a backup of the corrupted PGN file, you can replace the damaged file with the backup copy. This method ensures that you have a working version of the file without the need for repair.

    Remember to always make a backup of your PGN files before attempting any repairs, as some methods may result in data loss or further corruption.

  • How can one prevent or minimize the need for PGN file repair in the first place?

    To prevent or minimize the need for PGN file repair, follow these best practices:

    1. Use reliable software: Ensure you are using a reputable and up-to-date PGN file editor or viewer. This reduces the chances of encountering errors or corrupt files.
    2. Regularly backup files: Create backups of your PGN files on a regular basis. This allows you to restore a previous version if the current one becomes corrupted.
    3. Avoid file modifications during gameplay: It is advisable not to modify PGN files while playing or analyzing a game. Making changes during this process may introduce errors or cause corruption.
    4. Use proper file transfer methods: When transferring PGN files between devices or sharing them with others, use reliable methods like email attachments or cloud storage services. Avoid using unreliable or insecure file transfer methods that can introduce errors.
    5. Verify file integrity: Before using or relying on a PGN file, verify its integrity by opening it with a PGN viewer or editor. If any errors or inconsistencies are detected, try to obtain a clean version of the file.
    6. Keep software updated: Ensure that the software you use to create, edit, or view PGN files is regularly updated. Developers often release updates to fix bugs and improve compatibility, reducing the chances of encountering file corruption issues.
    7. Avoid unnecessary file modifications: Minimize the number of modifications made to PGN files, especially if they are critical or important. Unnecessary modifications increase the risk of introducing errors or corrupting the file.
    8. Follow proper file closing procedures: When finished working with a PGN file, close it properly using the appropriate commands or options within your software. Abruptly closing a file or shutting down the software may lead to file corruption.
    9. Scan for malware: Regularly scan your computer or storage devices for malware. Viruses or other malicious software can corrupt PGN files, so keeping your system clean reduces the risk of file damage.
    10. Maintain file organization: Properly organize your PGN files in a logical folder structure. This helps prevent accidental deletion, modification, or corruption of files.

    By following these guidelines, you can minimize the need for PGN file repair and maintain the integrity of your files.

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