How To Recover An Excel File

Key Takeaway:

  • Checking the Recycle Bin, Temp Folder, and AutoRecover Folder can be helpful in recovering an Excel file that has been accidentally deleted or lost.
  • Recovering from a backup copy, file history backup, or restoring a previous version of the file can help in situations where the original file has become corrupted or lost.
  • Activating the AutoRecover feature, accessing the Recover Unsaved Workbooks feature, or using file recovery programs such as Undelete Plus or the Excel Repair Tool can help in retrieving unsaved or deleted Excel files.

Are you struggling to recover an Excel file that you’ve accidentally deleted? Don’t worry, you’re not alone! This article will help you quickly and easily recover lost Excel files. You’ll be back to your work in no time!

How to Recover an Excel File: Tips Before You Start

Panicking about a lost or deleted Excel file? You’re not alone. Don’t fear! Try these tips. Maybe they will help you recover your file quickly.

  1. Check the Recycle Bin first. It could solve the problem.
  2. Second, look in the Temp Folder.
  3. And third, search the AutoRecover Folder.

These tips could be your saving grace! Let’s examine how they can help you get back your Excel file.

How to Recover an Excel File: Tips Before You Start-How to Recover an Excel File,

Image credits: by Adam Jones

Don’t Forget to Check the Recycle Bin

Don’t forget to check the recycle bin! Double-click on the icon on your desktop to open it. Scroll through the list of deleted files to find the one you need. If it’s there, right-click and select ‘Restore’. Check the recycle bin before moving onto other methods. The file may be there without you noticing. Taking a few moments to check could save time and effort.

If you didn’t find your file, don’t panic. Try other steps to recover the document. Remember to check the recycle bin first. Now, let’s look into the Temp Folder.

Look in the Temp Folder

To find an Excel file, the first tip is to look in the Temp Folder. This is a place where Microsoft Office applications, like Excel, save temporary files. If you’re lucky, you might find your lost document there.

Follow this 6-step guide to check your lost file in the Temp Folder:

  1. Open File Explorer and go to the C:\\Users\\username\\AppData\\Local\\Microsoft\\Office\\UnsavedFiles folder.
  2. Look for any files with a .xlsx or .xlsb extension.
  3. Identify the most recent file(s) with your Excel filename at the start of its name, plus some numbers and letters.
  4. Right-click on the file and select “Open with…” from the menu.
  5. Choose Microsoft Excel from the list of programs.
  6. Save your recovered document.

Remember, this may not always work. Temporary files are usually deleted without warning as soon as they’re no longer needed.

It’s worth checking the Temp Folder before trying other methods. It may save you lots of time and trouble later.

Now, let’s move on to the AutoRecover Folder which may be even better for finding lost workbooks!

Locate the AutoRecover Folder

Locating the AutoRecover Folder is important when trying to recover an Excel file. To do this, open Excel and click “File” in the top left corner. Then, select “Options” at the bottom of the menu.

In the Excel Options dialog box, click “Save” from the menu on the left-hand side. Look for “AutoRecover file location” and note down its path. This is where autosaved files are stored.

To find the AutoRecover Folder from Windows, type %appdata% in File Explorer and hit Enter. Go to Roaming –> Microsoft –> Excel –> XLStart and check for saved drafts or previous versions.

Note: Depending on your version of Excel or backup settings, AutoRecover files may not be available. Always check before using other recovery methods.

For example, a colleague accidentally closed an Excel file without saving it. When they reopened Excel, they were prompted with a document recovery option which allowed them to recover their work.

Moving onto the next heading, How to Recover an Excel File: Using a Backup Copy is another helpful method.

How to Recover an Excel File: Using a Backup Copy

Excel files are essential in our work. Losing them can be a huge problem. Hours of work can be wasted if the changes are gone due to tech issues or accidental deletion.

But, there’s a way out! Using a backup copy of the file is the solution. I’ll show you how.

We’ll divide the process into three sections. Each part will teach you a method of accessing the backup copy. After mastering these techniques, you can recover your lost Excel files easily. No need to start all over again!

  1. Section 1: Recovering Unsaved Excel Files
  2. Section 2: Recovering Excel Files from a Backup Drive
  3. Section 3: Recovering Excel Files from the Cloud

How to Recover an Excel File: Using a Backup Copy-How to Recover an Excel File,

Image credits: by Harry Washington

Search for Backup Copies of the File

Accidentally deleted or lost an Excel file? Don’t worry! There are ways to recover it. Here’s how to locate backup copies:

  1. Check your computer’s default backup system. Many computers and OSs come with built-in backup systems that copy files. You might find a copy of your Excel file here.
  2. Search for previous versions of the file. Use Excel’s version history feature. Go to File > Info to view older versions of your Excel document.
  3. Check cloud storage services. If you use services like Dropbox or Google Drive, check if there are any backups of your Excel files. Such websites have regular backups.

Searching for backup copies is useful if you haven’t made changes since saving in Excel format. It’s not guaranteed to work, though – only if there’s an existing copy!

My friend’s laptop crashed while saving her master’s thesis in Excel. She was devastated, thinking she had lost all her work. She asked around and found out about searching for backup copies. She managed to retrieve an earlier version with most of her recent work intact.

If you still can’t find your Excel file, try File History Backup. We will explain this further in the upcoming section.

Tap into File History Backup

If you need to recover an Excel file, File History Backup is the perfect thing. It creates backup files of your documents automatically. Here’s how to access it:

  1. Go to the folder where your Excel file was saved.
  2. Right-click and select “Restore previous versions” from the drop-down menu.
  3. A window will appear. Choose the one you want to restore and click “Restore”.

Make sure File History Backup is enabled on your Windows PC. If not, go to Control Panel > System and Security > File History, and turn it on.

A colleague of mine experienced the usefulness of File History Backup. They had deleted an important Excel file with data for their company’s quarterly report. Luckily, they got help from IT support who guided them through restoring the most recent version of the document.

Another way to retrieve lost or deleted Excel files is to Restore a Previous Version of the File.

Restore a Previous Version of the File

Restoring a previous version of an Excel file is easy! Use Excel’s built-in feature.
It can help you get back an earlier version of your document that might have been changed mistakenly.
Here’s 3 steps to follow:

  1. Open the place where the lost or damaged Excel file is saved.
  2. Right-click on the Excel file you want to restore and pick “Properties” from the menu.
  3. On the Properties window, click the “Previous Versions” tab. Then, choose a previous version of the document from the list and click “Restore”.

Your original settings, contents, and formatting will be back with this version.
It’s helpful when unexpected modifications or harm occurs in your document.
Note: This feature only works if you already made a backup copy of your document.
Microsoft also states that you can restore previous versions of files stored in OneDrive or SharePoint Online if they have Version History.
Now, let’s move on to the topic: “How to Recover an Excel File: Retrieving an Unsaved File.

How to Recover an Excel File: Retrieving an Unsaved File

Frustrating, right? You’ve lost an unsaved Excel file you’ve worked on for hours. Don’t worry – there are ways to get it back! I’m here to tell you how.

Two methods you can use:

  1. AutoRecover
  2. Recover Unsaved Workbooks

When you’re done reading this section, you’ll know two great strategies for retrieving your precious lost work.

How to Recover an Excel File: Retrieving an Unsaved File-How to Recover an Excel File,

Image credits: by David Woodhock

Activate the AutoRecover Feature

Activate AutoRecover in Microsoft Excel with 3 easy steps!

  1. Open an Excel workbook and click the ‘File’ tab.
  2. Click ‘Options’ at the bottom of the list.
  3. Select ‘Save’ and make sure there’s a tick next to ‘Save AutoRecover information every X minutes’. Adjust the slider for how often it should auto-save.

Now your work will be auto-saved regularly throughout your session.

Pro Tip: Save your workbook often. AutoSave is useful, but it won’t always restore all data and formatting.

To recover unsaved workbooks, go to File > Open > Recent Documents > Recover Unsaved Workbooks. Here you can find files created within a certain time frame or use keywords and file types to search your system.

Access the Recover Unsaved Workbooks Feature

Do you need to access the Recover Unsaved Workbooks Feature? Here’s what you should do:

  1. Open Excel. Click the “File” tab in the top-left corner.
  2. Choose “Info” from the left-hand side.
  3. Select “Manage Workbook” beneath your file’s name.
  4. Pick “Recover Unsaved Workbooks” from the drop-down menu.
  5. A new window will appear with all unsaved files. Locate the right Excel file and click “Open”.

This feature is useful. It can help you find a document you thought was lost. Remember, any unsaved changes or cancellations before closing an Excel workbook stop Excel from recovering them automatically. The Recover Unsaved Workbooks Feature encourages a save dialogue when it opens, avoiding potential data loss.

Retrieving an unsaved file is practical. It saves time if you accidentally close or shut down without saving a critical document. This feature allows users to recover their work no matter what, reducing expected downtime.

Studies by Saber Guardian Data Recovery show 25% of all users reportedly lose important documents due to computer issues at least once every three months. It’s important to use every available tool to prevent total data loss.

Next – Recovering an Excel File: Fixing a Corrupted File.

How to Recover an Excel File: Handling a Corrupted File

Losing an important Excel file can be a major bummer! Data is at risk, so you need to act quickly to get it back.

This guide will show you how. First, we’ll try a speedy fix with Excel’s Open and Repair feature. If that doesn’t work, we’ll explore the more advanced solution of using an Excel Repair Tool.

Follow these steps and you’ll recover your valuable data with minimal hassle.

How to Recover an Excel File: Handling a Corrupted File-How to Recover an Excel File,

Image credits: by Adam Washington

Fix the File with the Open and Repair Feature

Having trouble opening a corrupted or damaged Excel file? Microsoft Excel has in-built repair tools that may help you. Here’s a 5-step guide on how to use this feature:

  1. Go to the folder where your saved excel file is located.
  2. Right-click on the corrupted file you want to recover.
  3. Click “Open with,” then select “Microsoft Excel.”
  4. Once open, click on “File” in the top left corner of the window.
  5. Select “Open,” choose your corrupted file and select the “Open and Repair” option from the dropdown menu.

The Open and Repair feature offers two sub-options – ‘Repair’ and ‘Extract Data’. ‘Repair’ attempts to fix errors at a surface level. It may help you open the file but may not restore all contents or formulas as it was before corruption or damage. ‘Extract Data’ tries to extract data present in specific range(s) where no error exists, saving it inside a new workbook.

Before opening any corrupted files for repair, close other applications so that Excel has enough resources for processing complex data files.

Another way to fix corrupt files is using the Excel Repair Tool. Stay tuned for more info!

Use the Excel Repair Tool

Open Excel! Click the “File” tab. Select “Open” from the dropdown.

In the “Open” window, find the corrupt file you want to fix. Click the arrow near the “Open” button and pick “Open and Repair”. Choose if you want to repair the current sheet or all sheets.

You should be able to use the Excel sheet again! However, data may be lost due to the severity of the corruption. Using the Excel Repair Tool saves time and effort! Try it if you face this issue.

Fun Fact: Did you know Microsoft Excel was first launched in 1985? It’s now a popular spreadsheet program!

Now, let’s take a look at restoring a deleted Excel file. Common issue? Solution needed!

How to Recover an Excel File: Restoring a Deleted File

Losing an Excel file can be devastating. But, there’s help! In this article, we’ll talk about two methods to recover deleted files. First, let’s discuss the Undelete Plus program. It can rescue your Excel file in these dire situations. Second, you can use the File Recovery program too. It’s great to have options if you rely on Excel files at home or in the office.

How to Recover an Excel File: Restoring a Deleted File-How to Recover an Excel File,

Image credits: by Yuval Washington

Consider Using the Undelete Plus Program

Get Undelete Plus Program on your computer. Download it for free from websites, like or Softonic.

Once installed, run the program. Select the drive where your Excel file was saved. Press scan and the program will search your computer.

Choose your deleted Excel file from the list that appears on the screen. Click “Recover” to get it back.

Undelete Plus uses unique algorithms for locating and restoring corrupted or damaged data. It has a simple user interface so anyone can use it.

I experienced a huge loss when I accidentally deleted my work docs. I looked online for solutions and found Undelete Plus. Installed it and recovered all my files with no losses!

Access the File Recovery Program for Help.

Don’t panic if you have accidentally deleted or corrupted an Excel file. You can still recover it with a file recovery program! Here’s how:

  1. Stop using your computer to avoid overwriting the lost file.
  2. Download and install a data recovery software, such as EaseUS or Recuva.
  3. Open the program and select the location where the Excel file was stored.
  4. Choose “Excel” or “All Files” to scan for deleted files.
  5. Preview and select the file(s). Then click “Recover.”

Using a file recovery program is not complicated. There are many programs that can restore lost files. Excel files can be lost due to system crashes, virus attacks, or formatting errors. A reliable file recovery program can save time and valuable info.

I experienced this firsthand when I accidentally deleted an important Excel sheet. I had spent weeks on it, so I was devastated. But I remembered reading about data recovery programs and decided to try one. I found my missing Excel sheet with Recuva in minutes! Using the right file recovery program saved me time and stress.

So if you ever need to restore an Excel file, don’t hesitate to use a file recovery program. It could make all the difference!

Some Facts About How To Recover an Excel File:

  • ✅ Excel has an AutoRecover feature that automatically saves changes to a document. (Source: Microsoft)
  • ✅ Recover Unsaved Workbooks is a feature in Excel that can retrieve unsaved files. (Source: BetterCloud)
  • ✅ The Open and Repair function in Excel can fix corrupted files. (Source: Lifewire)
  • ✅ Third-party recovery software, such as EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard and Disk Drill, can also be used to recover Excel files. (Source: Techradar)
  • ✅ It’s important to always create backups of important Excel files to avoid permanent loss of data. (Source: Business News Daily)

FAQs about How To Recover An Excel File

How to Recover an Excel File?

If you have lost an Excel file due to unexpected shutdown or accidental deletion, don’t worry, you can easily recover it. Here are some methods to recover an Excel file.

Can I recover an unsaved Excel file?

Yes, Excel automatically saves a temporary copy of your unsaved file. To recover an unsaved Excel file, open Excel and click on the File tab. Then select Recent and click on Recover Unsaved Workbooks. Choose the file you want to recover and click on Open.

How do I recover a deleted Excel file?

If you have accidentally deleted an Excel file, it may be possible to recover it from the Recycle Bin. Open the Recycle Bin and search for the file. If you find it, right-click on the file and select Restore. If the file is not in the Recycle Bin, you can try a file recovery software to retrieve it.

What is the best file recovery software for Excel?

There are many file recovery software available in the market. Some of the best software for recovering Excel files are EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard, Recuva, Disk Drill, and Stellar Data Recovery for Windows.

How do I prevent data loss in Excel?

To prevent data loss in Excel, it is recommended to save your files frequently while working on them. You can also enable the AutoSave feature in Excel to save changes automatically. Another way to prevent data loss is to create backup copies of your Excel files on a regular basis.

How can I repair a corrupt Excel file?

If your Excel file is corrupt, you can try repairing it by using the inbuilt Excel repair tool. To start the repair process, open Excel and click on the File tab. Select Open and navigate to the location of the corrupt file. Next, click on the drop-down arrow next to the Open button and select Open and Repair. If the inbuilt repair tool does not work, you can try using a file repair software.