People these days are becoming more dependent on digital devices. For storing the most important data files that we can’t afford losing ever, such as business documents, financial records, project reports, study material or personal data we rely on digital storage devices. What if we lose those files even after being very careful?
That’s very much frustrating. Right?
Do you know what happens to a file when it gets deleted or lost?
The file won’t get removed from your PC by itself. Deleting a file in Windows Explorer will move it to Recycle Bin and mark the file as deleted in the original file location or folder. Even if you delete the file from Recycle Bin, the actual data still remain. That’s why you can recover deleted files from PC or laptop.
Here’s an easy beginner guide to recover those important deleted files from your PC or laptop;
1. Restoring files from the Recycle Bin
If you have accidentally deleted a file or folder from your computer or laptop, you can find it in the folder named Recycle Bin. You’ll find the folder on the desktop only. If you haven’t deleted your files permanently by pressing Shift + delete, you can easily recover by following the below steps:
- Right-click or double click on the Recycle Bin icon to open it.
- Find the deleted file in the folder.
- If it’s there, restore it by right-clicking on the folder.
Note: You can’t restore the permanently deleted files from recycle bin. That doesn’t mean you can’t restore them. To restore those permanently deleted files, you need to make a fast move so that you can recover before the files get overwritten.
2. Recover data without installing any software
You don’t have to install any third-party software to get your lost data back. You can retrieve your data with Command Prompt and series of some dedicated commands. This method is very much effective and easy. Follow the steps:
- Press “Window” key on the keyboard.
- Type “cmd” and open the top match.
- Type command “chkdsk P: /f” and press “Enter” on the keyboard. (Replace “P” with the letter of your hard drive.)
- Type “ATTRIB -H -R -S /S /D P:*.*” and press “Enter“. (Replace “P” with the letter of your hard drive.)
Note: While the recovery process is running, don’t interrupt. It might take a few seconds or minutes to finish it. If possible leave your computer for the time process is running. Remember overwriting the deleted files will make the recovery tough or maybe impossible.
3. Always keep a backup of important data
Accidents happen. Your laptop might get stolen or infected. If you don’t want to lose your important data stored in it, you should always create a backup. Create a copy of the important files and keep them under two different folders. You can also copy the data to an external hard drive, CD/DVD or USB Flash Drive. However, it will take some time and effort but at least your data will be safe. You can always access or recover deleted files from PC or Laptop.
Steps to backup your data to an external storage device:
- Connect the device to your laptop or PC using a USB or directly as other methods of connection.
- Check if your external storage device is working and have enough space.
- Go to “Start” and search for “Control Panel“.
- Under “System and Security” look for “Back up your computer” and click on it.
- Go to “Set up Backup” and click on “Yes” to allow it to make the changes to the system.
- Select the drive to which you would like to save the backup and click “Next“
- You can manually select the data that you want to backup and store to the connected storage device.
- To start the backup process, just hit the “Backup now” button. The process will take up to a few seconds or minutes depending on the type and size of the files.
4. Restore from file history backup
The older version of the Windows operating system had the option for backup and restore that allows user to recover the deleted files from Recycle Bin. It was also able to recover the permanently deleted files. This backup and restore options are now replaced with the option File History.
Here are the steps to recover deleted files from PC or laptop:
- Go to the Start Menu.
- Type “Restore Files” and press “Enter” on the keyboard.
- Find the folder where the deleted files are stored.
- Select Restore to retrieve the files to their original folders.
Note: If you do not find any file here, it means your Windows File History is turned off. In such a scenario, you need to turn it on.
If you are not a computer pro, you can always ask someone for assistance.
Storing files on Cloud will save some space on your system. It will also help you access the files that accidentally got deleted from your computer. One important benefit of using cloud storage service is you can always access your files remotely where you can reach the internet by just logging in to your account. Some popular cloud storage services are Google Drive, iCloud, iDrive, Box, Drop box and One Drive.