How to recover/restore deleted files in Windows 10.
Have you accidentally deleted a file or folder on your computer? Or did you change your mind after deliberately pressing the Delete key?
We cannot promise anything. But first, you must stop doing anything else that might cause the disk to write new data. This alone reduces the chances of a successful recovery of deleted files in Windows 10.
There are several data recovery methods. They may or may not end up working for you. But if you acted fast enough or you had multiple backups, there is no reason you can’t get your files back.
Start with the most obvious one – the basket.
Tip: If you want to recover deleted system files in Windows 10, your best bet is to perform a system reset.
Dig Around the Recycle Bin
If you haven’t deleted files or folders permanently, you can almost always find them in the Trash. You can navigate to it by selecting the trash can icon on the Windows 10 desktop.
There is usually a lot of rubbish in the basket. If you cannot find the item you want to recover, try searching for it using the Search Trash box in the upper right corner of the window.
To make things easier, select the View tab and select Details. You can then use the Original Location and Deleted Date columns to sort items by storage location and date.
When you find the file or folder you want to recover, right-click and select â€œRecoverâ€. This should return it to its original location.
If you cannot find the deleted item in the trash, here are some reasons:
- You have deleted it permanently.
- It was too big to fit in the Trash.
- Storage Sense or a third party maintenance tool emptied the recycle bin.
Restore Using File History
Have file history backups set up on your Windows 10 computer? In this case, you can easily recover deleted files and folders if they were included in a previous backup.
Start by connecting an external drive containing a file history backup. Then open File Explorer, navigate to the location of the deleted file or folder, and select the History icon on the Home tab.
This should open a file history window. You can view the snapshots of the catalog using the arrows at the bottom of the screen.
When you find a deleted item, select it and use the green Recover icon to restore it. Rinse and repeat for any other files or folders you want to get back.
Restore Using â€œBackup and Restoreâ€
Windows 10 also allows you to recover deleted files and folders that were included in backups created with the older backup and restore tool from Windows 7. However, unlike File History, data recovery takes a little effort.
First, connect your external backup drive and open Control Panel by searching for Control Panel in the Start menu. Then select the option “Backup and Restore” (Windows 7) and select “Restore my files”.
In the “Restore Files” window that opens, you can use the “Search” button to find and add to the backup the files and folders that you want to restore. Or you can select the Browse Files or Browse Folders buttons to dig into the backup and add them manually.
When finished, click Next and choose between restoring the files to their original location or to a different directory. Finally, select “Restore”.
Check Cloud Storage Trash
Are you using a cloud storage like OneDrive or Google Drive to sync files and folders? Most services tend to delete the server copies whenever you delete the originals on your PC, but you can still use the trash can function in their respective web apps to get them back.
For example, if you’ve permanently deleted any file or folder in a directory that was configured to sync with OneDrive, you can sign in to OneDrive.com and select Trash to find and recover the deleted copies on the server side. This is usually given 30 days.
Use a File Recovery Tool
If the deleted files were on your hard drive or hard drive, you can use a file recovery tool to get them back. However, this will only work if you have not performed any heavy disk operations that might overwrite the corresponding file clusters.
But here’s the catch; installing only the file recovery tool can permanently erase the data you want to recover. If the deleted files are too important to be lost, you should seriously consider removing the hard drive and connecting it as an additional drive on another computer before scanning it with the recovery tool. Get professional help if you haven’t done this before.
However, we recommend using Recuva for your current job. It is free to use, it allows you to scan different types of files in specific directories, comes with a deep scan function (which takes time but gives more results) and notifies you of the status of the deleted item to recover. Then you can select the file or files you want to recover and use the â€œRecoverâ€ option to recover them.
Alternatively, you can use Windows File Recovery if you prefer a team approach to recover deleted files. However, our tests did not give good results, so you can skip it.
Solid state drives (SSDs), on the other hand, work differently. Windows 10 uses TRIM feature (which improves SSD performance) to permanently delete deleted files and folders. This alone makes it pointless to use a file recovery tool, but you can try.
Restore a System Image
A Windows 10 system image can contain a complete snapshot of the system partition or the entire disk. If it was created some time ago, restoring it can help you recover deleted files, provided that they were part of it.
However, the system image is usually backed up to troubleshoot serious disk-related problems and often takes a long time to complete, so only proceed as needed. Plus, you will lose any files that were not there when you created them, so be sure to back them up before proceeding.
To restore the system image, select Start> Settings> Update & Security> Recovery and select Restart Now to load Windows Recovery Environment. Then select Troubleshoot> Advanced Options> System Image Recovery and select the system image from the external drive to begin the recovery process.
If none of the above methods helped, and you also don’t have third-party file backups to use, it’s time to contact a file recovery specialist. There is no guarantee that you will be able to get your data back, but if recovering these deleted files is extremely important, this is the only option you have left. To maximize your chances, stop using your computer immediately until you do so.
How to recover/restore deleted files in Windows 10
How to recover/restore deleted files in Windows 10.
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