By: Stellar Information Technology Pvt. Ltd.
How many of us have used storage devices for daily usage? Is that a joke? Well, off course, many of us have used these devices and are still doing the same.
But, what if suddenly all my data gets deleted in a system crash or say in a drive failure? Well, who knows you might have accidentally deleted entire partition while formatting your system!
In such tragic scenarios, we would like to do everything to restore our system back to normal, isn’t it?
For doing that, we will need the help of a data recovery application. So, how will this recovery application help me in recovering my damaged or lost files?
Data recovery tool is a type of computer application that is used to recover lost data from storage devices under different scenarios like accidental deletions, deleted partitions, etc. These tools often come with support for various file systems and are also available on mobile devices.
Such a tool is given by Stellar Information Technology Pvt. Ltd. Headquartered in Gurugram, India, this data recovery tool from land of Yoga has quickly risen to top since it was launched in April 2000.
As per data presented by them, they claim to have served 3 million happy customers, across 190+ countries. However, there are only three offices located in India, USA, and the Netherlands.
It is armed with some of the most sophisticated tools to help its customers recover data from any storage device. Not only that, it can recover data from RAID storages too.
For our review, we are using the Technician Edition Of Stellar to conduct thorough testing and see how well this product does in recovering data. The version is 6.3 windows edition for this review.
Before jumping on the bed that all your data is going to come back, it is important for you to understand the process of using the tool. There are many deciding factors to see if your data is capable of recovery or not.
The main step before pressing the recovery button is to know what storage device you are going to use and also to see if application supports the file system and storage device.
For this, we tried to check things for free version first. Unfortunately for free users, you can only view data after scan results. This means you cannot recover data in the trial version. This is a very sneaky attempt by most products in this category.
Even products like EaseUS, MiniTool, etc. have used same technique. This is a type of frustrating practice. What if I want to try the software and see if can restore my big sized old files or not?
We would expect Stellar to take a new step and provide at least a 3-day trial version with no restrictions. This will allow many potential customers to review the product on hand.
Nevertheless, since we had the technician version, we did not have to worry about any restrictions. Users can recover unlimited data beyond pro versions.
To begin scanning procedure, first decide what you want to recover. Select recovery file type and then select folders that you want to recover. Hit the scan drive button, and here starts your recovery train.
Once the results after scanning process are displayed, you can select either individual folders or files to be restored. The entire process takes some time, depending on your hardware setup.
One thing that you will notice here is that you cannot restore data in same drive the one being scanned for. This feature is annoying, as well as useful too. This is because saving and recovering files on same drive can potentially corrupt the data or entire process itself.
It will feel annoying because other products like EaseUS have come up with ways to cope this up. You can recover files in same drive as the one being scanned in EaseUS but not in Stellar. This is something they can work on in future to prevent storage space issues.
Overall, this was all about its operation in brief. As we can deduct from above, the entire process is very novice friendly. Let us now measure various features equipped in this version of Stellar Data Recovery.
Before you begin looking for the scan results or start that long hours scan for your drives, it is necessary for you to see what factors influence the results and what is the end limit for this software.
Sometimes, the deleted data may recover, and sometimes it may not. All this highly depends on way the data got lost, the type of storage device, and other such factors.
One of them is deletion scenario. When it comes to deletion of data from your device, there can be many factors like accidental deletion, hard drive crashed, OS failure, partition issues, etc.
Now, it is important for you to get a brief idea on working of these tools and how data is stored in your devices, and how Stellar Data Recovery can restore this data.
For most storage devices nowadays, data is typically stored in form of memory blocks. Out of these blocks, each block has memory stored in it.
Now, what happens when you delete memory from your device? Do these blocks store in any other memory?
When you remove a file from a block, that block does not delete files from system. Consider these memory blocks as letters on a page and the page as a storage device.
Just for example, when you add something to that blank page, it is assigned a read value 1, means the files are accessible on that block. When you delete something, that block is assigned a value of 0, means the file is not deleted, but its accessibility is zero unless you access that file using special tools.
When data recovery software accesses these blocks, they look for such blocks with a value of 0. Once they access them, they try to recover the data stored in these blocks.
However, there is one big catch here. The thing is that these blocks only store deleted data temporarily. This means that memory stored in them can be replaced or removed.
You must have heard of drive-wiping tools. They are explicitly designed to format not only drives but also clear cache memory stored in these blocks. Once this memory is removed, there is no possible way to recover that data.
Another scenario is that when you use a system for a long time, the deleted cache in these blocks will get replaced over time with new ones. And for this reason, under normal usage of device, it can become extremely tough to restore files from four/five years ago.
Of course, there are many other factors for non-recoverable memory like fried drives, microwave, etc. Also, some partition tools can remove cache memory when you reset a partition.
Overall, you hardly need to be concerned too much of these factors except some very old files, or you are a hacker on run. Now that you know how recovery process works, and how chances of data recovery are affected, it will be easier for you.
Now it is time for exploring the entire process of scanning and recovery, after which we can review if the scan results are on par with other products like EaseUS.
SDR has designed entire procedure very smoothly. If you visit main dashboard on its recovery window, you can see multiple options for it. Choose the recover my files option to begin the process.
There are two different scanning criteria given by Stellar here. One is a normal file scan, and another is a deep file scan. Under normal file scan, it will detect most recent deleted or lost files, and usually, this process takes a few minutes only.
The next scanning option is Deep Scan. As the name itself suggests, this type of scan involves a thorough scanning of all sectors of storage drive and find all recoverable file data.
Now, depth of scanning is more or less dependent on factors as mentioned before. It also depends on the software’s capability and efficiency for finding these files.
When we used deep scanning tool, the results were quite mediocre. By this, we mean that it was not able to detect very old files. Compared to this, EaseUS was able to detect files older than 7 years and in one instance gave us some files from 2009.
Regardless of this, Stellar was able to recover a huge amount of files from last 4 years. We should now review results tab and see if they have added some good stuff in there.
The Results Tab in Stellar has three main sections. In these sections, you can see the files to be restored. They are given in their form along with a file preview to see files before recovering.
The best use of file preview is to check the files, especially for photos and videos. If you are recovering files from a big directory of photography or such sources, entire process can take much time.
In some cases, it can be very hectic to find out relevant files from a list of 1000s of images. For this reason, we can use the preview button and sort out files we need to recover.
The first section given in results menu is File Types. In this section, they have divided scanned files as per their format. As you can see, there are different file types viz. Photos, Audio and Videos, Documents, Archive, Application files, and Miscellaneous files.
In all these sections, users can see file system and navigation points for them. The users can sort file systems based on name, type, size, and its date of creation/modification.
The preview function was mediocre in it. Although it supported many files like doc, HTML, text, etc., in the preview section, it was unstable at times and would not have a preview for huge files. We tested it out, and large Blu-ray files in mp4 and mkv format did not show any preview.
The file tree formation was in traditional style. You can click on any of the folders from left side navigation pane and select files using checkbox button.
One thing that we found a bit confusing was binary files of same attributes while navigating through scan results. Among these clone files, if the files were larger, no preview will load for one of them, and one of them will be corrupted.
In case where both files were too large for preview, it became difficult to find workable file. Developers can find the reason for duplication and patch it, but it was very frustrating. Most of the files which had recent deletion were recovered very smoothly.
We now move on to next section in scan results. It has a option Tree View. So, what exactly is this tree view anyways?
For this, users can get an idea on their own, if they scan the drive and compare first two tabs. Contrary to first tab, where you can directly jump into a particular file using the category, tree view shows the listing of these files in standard hierarchy form.
This list will include files based on their attributes. This means that it takes into account file name, size, location, date of creation/modification, and other such file properties.
Here, even hidden folders of system will be visible. You can also see the $Recycle Bin folder here. There is also a raw files folder here.
It will contain the files that are among the dark zone category. This means that while scanning, Stellar was unable to find out complete details of these files and so they were assigned random names and grouped into this folder.
This feature is given in other data recovery software too. If you go through the raw file section for other recovery tools too, the info about the file attributes is likely to be missing. In this section too, Stellar performed as expected.
The files recovered properly expect the one that we tried to recover earlier. The file duplication was still there, and it would be expected from Stellar to do something about it. Maybe they can put some checks to see if the scanned files are cloned or not, e.g., their size, name, etc.
Lastly, there is a section for Deleted List. Well, do you what this means? This section is reserved for files that were deleted using delete button of OS.
It will include files deleted by you or from recycle bin or during the format of that hard drive while system is on. This is the most accessible section to use and most probably first place to check if you just deleted that important presentation a few moments ago.
You can also see a raw file section for unsorted files. There was one more thing that needed improvement here. There was no filter option after scan results were displayed.
You may say that the filter option was given earlier, so why repeat it now? Well, there are times when you cannot remember certain files except their single attributes like name, type, or even vague details like their size, date, etc.
In this scenario, it will be difficult to sort files, e.g., if I remember only file size and I let the scan go on for an hour only to find that there is no way I can find it by size attribute.
EaseUS has given a filter in the scan results for this reason only although you cannot filter the stuff before scanning, i.e., when you know the file attributes.
To be honest, the lack of filter after scan results is a big downer. They need to add a separate file filter like in EaseUS which contains filters based on file types, file size, modification dates, and name initials.
This can be very helpful for a scenario where we remember files only by one of its attributes and want to sort them after the scan is done.
Overall, the scanning results were same as what we got for other recovery products. Only big issue we found was with preview and filter section. In preview section, large files were not working.
Files like HTML showed that they are supported, but only a blank preview was generated. For document files like MS Word, we experienced frequent crashes while Stellar previewed some doc files.
The filter section after scan results is a must add a feature, and this will increase product usability where users can sort their files both before and after the scan. Other than this, Stellar performed very well, and both, scan time and recovery time were appropriate.
Going through all the content above, you certainly might be interested in getting all your lost stuff back as soon as possible. However, before that, who knows that this recovery won’t work on some of your devices.
Before starting the entire recovery process, it is essential to learn that the recovery tool will work for your device or not. Also, it is essential to know what storage device and what file systems Stellar will support.
Primarily, this tool is used to recover lost or deleted files from a system. This comes under Normal File Deletion.
Another is Partition Recovery. This means that files that were deleted while resetting partition table or were formatted while installation of OS, can be restored by using this tool.
One interesting recovery support we found here is the Optical media recovery. This section is very useful to recover data from damaged disks, or corrupt ones. They have given support for various optical media like CD, DVD, HD DVD, Blu-ray, which come with CDFS, HFS+, etc. file system.
Now, while doing process of data recovery, the software may come across many hurdles. These hurdles are typically bad sectors, damaged drive, or any other issue while scanning the drives.
Among these, Stellar has given support for recovery from bad sectors. So, how do they recover the files from bad sectors?
Well, they use a method of image forming. The tool makes an image of entire drive in case it sees any bad sectors. Once this image is formed, the tool reads those files from ISO image and recovers using it. This helps to avoid any discrepancies in case drive crashes.
They claim to recover data from individual storages bigger than 2 TB and from RAID drives too.
Now, the biggest advantage of Stellar technician edition is using it to recover RAID drives. Many of us are not aware of RAID systems. Let us have a very brief introduction to them.
RAID, also known as Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks, uses a combined storage architecture, made of multiple physical drives, to enhance the storage capabilities, and performance.
SDR’s technician edition mainly focuses on RAID recovery. There are some very useful features for RAID systems. These are used to detect RAID factors, software and hardware RAID recovery, and recovery from virtual RAID.
SDR supports RAID system like RAID 0,5 and 6. The entire system for RAID recovery is quite complicated if you have very less knowledge of working of this system.
Now, all three RAID drives here work very differently. RAID 0 is the most basic one and lacks any fault acceptance. This means that any failure in a single disk will destroy data entirely. And so, this is the riskiest RAID system.
The second system supported here is the RAID 5. Unlike RAID 0, it will not have a data loss when one of the disks fail and needs at least three drives.
Similarly, RAID 6 is an improvised version of above and needs 4 hard drives and can accommodate 2 drives failure. This is one of the most advanced RAID systems used today.
When it comes to doing recovery from them, the first task for you, is to decide the RAID architecture. This means that you must be knowing the order of disks, initial sectors of all drives, block sizes, parity order, and delay.
Feeling stressed? Well, the entire process is for advanced users, and so it will require a person with sound technical knowledge.
Worry not, Stellar has also provided support for people if they forget the above factors. This is a good sign for all users.
Now, if the partition factors are known, users just need to select RAID Reconstruction. In this, users must select the order of hard drives. You can directly move one drive either up/down.
Once it is done, select block size, parity order, and its repetition/delay. Now you must click Build RAID button. This will build a final RAID for recovery. If for some reasons, it is not able to find these drives, you can select Virtual RAID and try to recover from lost partitions.
Just as we told earlier, the process for unknown recovery is also simple. If users do not know the order, there is an option ‘Drive order not known, show suggestions.’ This button allows Stellar to recover drive order. Similarly, there is same option for all other unknown parameters.
In case multiple parameters are unknown, it will show you a list of possible RAID drives. From this, you can select one and choose to continue the recovery process.
Once the drive for recovery is decided, choose the options to Scan existing volume or Deep Scan. This will begin scanning process, and then you can recover the data you want from scan results.
When it comes to recovery, not all types of file formats or file system are supported. However, most of the format and file system used in our daily lives are readily supported in this tool.
Here is a short list of file formats supported by SDR:
Graphics: JPEG, PNG, TIFF, MNG, XCF, PAT, etc. They have given support for many camera formats files for Nikon, Kodak, Canon, etc. Apart from this, there is additional support for graphics software files like Adobe Photoshop, AutoCAD, Animator Pro, Corel, etc.
Media Files: When it comes to media files, they have given support for audio files like AAC, MP3, M4A, AIFF, CDA, M4V, MPEG, etc. For video files, support for MP4, FLV, MPEG4, AVI, MXF, MOV, etc. are given.
Other than this, support for Vector Files, Simple Animation, NEOchrome animations, etc. are given too. This shows such a vast list of supported formats.
Documents: In documents category, they can recover many file types viz. DBF, RTF, TXT, PDF, doc/docx, XML, xls/xlsx, MDB, QBB, and all MS office files. Adobe postscript, Lotus, QXD, and Word perfect document are also supported.
Archive Files: ZIP, RAR, ARJ, BZ2, TAR, MS Cabinet, Binhex Archive, and Linux Archives. There is a catch here though. The thing is that some of the archive files are size limited, i.e., files from 7Zip, ARJ, BZ2, Stuffit, Tape, etc. can only be recovered up to size of 2 GB.
Although you can change the file size in settings but for default users, this may be a big halt. However, 2 GB is more than enough for such files, but you can never know.
Many things on internet like games, media, etc. are mostly in these formats and often bigger than given size. This restriction was not found in other tools like MiniTool Data Recovery, EaseUS, etc.
Standalone Applications: Stellar has gone one step further and allows recovery of files from different apps like AOL webmail, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign, Apple Mail, Flash, and iCalendar, iPhoto, iTunes library.
Some more files types like MHTM/MHTML, CAS, CBK, PHP, TAX, HLP, etc. can also be restored using SDR.
One thing is clear from this lengthy list that Stellar exceeds other recovery tools in having such a rich database for file recovery. It has an added advantage against EaseUS and MiniTool in this matter.
Finally, Stellar has extended its support on a variety of file systems like NTFS, FAT, FAT32, ExFAT, CDFS, UDF, HFS+, HD-MOV, and other such formats. This makes the reach of the scanning tool very broad, and so it is easier to use it over many devices.
In our testing, we used it to recover files from a hard drive, a USB device, and a memory card. It also worked fine with the RAID system.
Judging from the recovery quality and process, Stellar still comes after EaseUS. However, among file support and scan customization, it is better than EaseUS, MiniTool, and Recuva.
One of the big issues while using data recovery tools is using them. The main reason here is that many people do not know how to use them, and many do not need them every day.
For this reason, it is very important for developers of such tools to make a click only based UI. This means that users must only need to click on certain buttons one by one, and entire process must be automated.
Unlike other software, the scope of complexity is also very low in this software. In this matter, Stellar has done an amazing work by providing a very sleek and robust UI.
SDR is available for desktop in the form of standalone application on both Windows and MacOS. Sadly, it is not provided for Linux users. And honestly, there are more than enough free tools on a Linux platform.
SDR on desktop comes in a minimal setup. Once you have installed the product, just insert activation key and voila! You can now use the tool to recover your lost data.
Once you get to main dashboard, you will see four main tabs in technician version of SDR. These tabs are Recover Data, Monitor Drive, Repair Video, and Repair Photo.
Let us now review them one by one. In this section, these functions will be evaluated by us, and then we can say if they are user-friendly or not.
When you hit on this button, you will be redirected to the recovery zone. In this recovery zone, the first option for you is to choose file format that you want to recover. This is one of the features that is not given in another tool like EaseUS.
After you have filtered the file format you need, you will now be redirected to drive selection screen. In this screen, you can see the list of all the connected drive on the current system.
One thing that you’ll notice here is that you can see hidden drives as well as unallocated drives. Such drives are not visible in local windows explorer unless you create new drive and format that partition.
Keep in mind that other drives like USB, floppy and Disk drives can be seen in the connected drives section too. Now on the top of screen, you can see some general locations like desktop, my documents, and an option to choose a manual folder.
There is an option at last to choose named Other Locations. It contains options like lost drive, recover from a disk image, and RAID recovery. As we know that most common options people choose is the connected drives.
In the lost drive section, it happens that we accidentally delete partitions of the drive, or while reinstallation of OS, we delete the partition table cache, which resets entire drive. Other than this, it can happen that we forget to create remaining partitions which become unallocated drives.
These are not seen in connected drives system, and so we need to recover these partitions first and then use the recovery button. When you click on lost partition, you will be redirected to a new window.
In this section, you will see core drive without any partition. Click on it and then hit search button. This will list out all partitions, be it allocated or unallocated in menu below. If you do not find your partition here, click on the deep scan button.
The entire process is very detailed now, and it will scan each and every sector of entire drive. Once the scan is over, it will list out the possible partition, and then you can proceed with scan button to recover files from that partition.
Such a detailed UI and operation is rarely seen even in top products like EaseUS. This feature can come in very handy in drive partition issues.
Now comes one of the most interesting features that Stellar has to offer. This feature is unique and only provided by Stellar.
This feature involves ISO image creation from drives and then doing recovery from these images. Sounds fishy, ehhh!
Well, there is nothing fishy here. In fact, entire process is very simple and one of the safest to use. So, what exactly this image creation thing is? Will it harm my disk drive, or do I need some CD/DVD for it?
Do not get confused by the word image here. You have used the image mechanism for CDs and DVDs. But the concept is very similar here too.
SDR forms an image of an entire drive or partition and then scan that image file for recovery. This ensures that if original drive is corrupt or inaccessible or can be damaged by such scans and recovery, we can use the image file to restore it.
One added advantage is that you can take this image to another computer system and restore the files separately to safe space. Amazing, isn’t it?
While creating the image of the file section, Stellar scans each and every section of drive and notes them in the image file. Users can manually select save location for image file.
When it comes to doing a recovery from an image file, it is very easy to do so. The entire process is made very stress free. On the disk selection tab in recovery menu, select the option Recover from Image.
Once done, you will be asked if you already have image file or to make a new one. If you already have the image file, you just need to select location of file and Stellar will start the recovery.
In case you want to make an image for safe recovery or use it to recover data on another drive, use the Create New Image button. After this, you will be asked to select the drive that you want to make an image of.
In this menu, you will not only see the partitions of your drive but also the parent drive. One thing that you need to keep in mind here that the storage location must have enough space.
This means that say the drive to be recovered is of 300 GB, so the location that you’ll save image file in, must have at least 300 GB for image file to be saved. Otherwise, it won’t work.
There is one more detailed aspect given by Stellar here. In the drive selection menu, you can select a drive and also select sectors that you want to copy using advanced options. Such detailed customization, isn’t it?
Once the image file has been made, just use the scan button, and it will show files that can be recovered from that file. The entire UI for scan results is same as we have discussed before.
Lastly, in general data recovery, there is an option to select RAID drives. We have already discussed them in detail earlier.
In our review, Stellar has definitely made entire process of data recovery very easy. Even a non-technical person with least knowledge can recover data using it, with just some basic instructions. There are certain things we mentioned earlier that need to be added in the UI for a better experience.
One of them is the filter button after scan results. Filter before scan is an innovative idea to sort files beforehand, but filter after the scan results is what is more important. We have already stated the reason before and so it would be better if developers look forward to it.
Stellar has just added some more extra perks in this edition, which can turn out to be pretty useful. One of these features is Drive Monitor function.
What does a drive monitor have to do with data recovery tool? Do I really need it? Well, you may think it is unnecessary, but it is an indeed helpful feature. Let us show you how it works.
The drive monitor is an extra tool by Stellar to check the condition of your drive, its health status, etc. In the first tab, you will get information about temperature, performance, and health of drive.
It will also show disk details like disk number, model number, firmware number, interface, serial number, and entire sectors. Quite a detailed log here they have provided, isn’t it?
The second tab is Smart Status of the drive. It will display logs related to drive like read error rates, spin counts, power cycles count, temperature details, and other such details. It will evaluate some critical areas of drive and then show a passed status on top.
The third tab merely shows partition details. It will show both allocated and unallocated space along with the health status.
The consecutive tab has an option to scan entire drive along with each and every sector and show their health status. In this, you can see total sectors in the drive, their division or block size, bad sectors, and time for scan. The red sectors are bad sectors and usually are meant to be repaired.
The last section here is the Clone Drive Section. As the name suggests, the clone drive function is very useful in case you want to backup an entire drive along with the sector info. It will also copy the drive ‘s log and product details into another clone drive. Fantastic feature, isn’t it?
Woah wait a sec! You are telling me that now this tool can repair my video files too? Are you serious or just trolling around?
We knew you wouldn’t believe that Stellar is providing so many tools in a single package, and that’s why we will help you show you that it indeed does.
As we have mentioned earlier, when you recover files from a lost partition or a very old file, or any big file; like a Blu-ray rip file, there are high chances that it will be corrupted even though entire packet of that file is recovered.
Now, all you can do is making sad faces after such a long scan time, then recovery time and then this file doesn’t work. It is same feeling when you get 99% download and somehow cannot resume it and have to start again.
To help in such scenarios, Stellar has a repair tool inside its recovery package. Now you realize why they have given the repair tool. The repair tool can repair both audio and video files in popular formats like mp4, mp3, avi, wav, etc.
Now, the thing to be tested is to see if repair works ok. For testing it, we had a sample audio file and sample video file. We used an online tool to corrupt both. This corrupt tool uses same data corruption that happens under recovery scenarios.
Operators just need to select files they want to repair and start the repair function. Depending on the file size, repair may take some time. However, there is a clasp here too. The users need to select a sample file too for repair to work.
So, what does this sample file does in helping repair that corrupted file? The file uses this tool to attempt repairs on bad files. Now comes the time to test both these files.
We tested a 35 MB file and a 2.35 GB file, both of them were corrupted differently. Sadly, Stellar wasn’t able to recover either of them. It got some part of the smaller file correct but ultimately failed in its task.
Similarly, file with audio was also tested by us. In this, one file of 10 MB was easily recovered after we corrupted it via an online tool. We got some discrepancy in a bigger file of 255 MB. And so, the audio repair worked whereas the video repair did not work for us.
This was a big disappointment for us. So, we tried to contact the customer support on how we can repair these two files. They told us that highly corrupt files cannot be repaired and that we would have to submit files to them for repair.
The main issue here was that they would charge for manual repair after two free trials. This was a bit shocking for us since they are literally adding the value of video repair tool in their technician edition and now they say we’d need to pay for manual repairs too. This was really a big disappointment for us.
Overall, the entire UI experience was good for us. Apart from the repair tool for audio and video files, we hardly had any trouble using the services. Even something complicated like RAID recovery was easy to configure. Stellar has done a decent work, but they need to ramp up this repair tool up.
Also, there was one more annoying thing. The window of the desktop interface couldn’t be resized manually. This means that either you maximize it or have it in regular size. Not that it hinders the functions anyhow, but this thing is fundamental, and generally people prefer it to resize the window as per their needs.
Other than this, we used the recovery tool over a number of tests, and it worked perfectly. That part is certainly stain-free.
There is also a mobile version as Stellar Mobile Data recovery, which also helped to recover some files from Android and iOS devices. Android version needs rooting, but it can recover many things like photos, WhatsApp files, contacts, etc.
Now, after going through each feature and function of this tool, we can now decide whether it stood by on our tests. In the right way, Stellar performed very well in our tests when it comes to doing its core job, i.e., data recovery.
It got on our nerves with the repair tool, but the customer support did help us to restore that file. Regardless, if we would recommend Stellar to someone, the data recovery feature is unquestionably worth the subscription. It also has some extra features as we have discussed earlier.
Finally, let us know how you feel about the tool? Have you used it, and how was your experience?