Document Recovery: Recover Unsaved or Deleted Word & Excel Files

Want to know how to achieve document recovery? Don’t worry, this post helps you recover deleted Word files/Excel docs in an easy way.


By Lora / Updated on September 5, 2022

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How do I find a lost document on my computer?

During work and study, people will create, edit, store, send, receive, and also, delete documents in Word or Excel. Some documents are of such importance that users cannot afford to lose them.


Deleted word document


While writing my book, I deleted the wrong file - I lost over 50 pages. About ready to accept it as a total loss just thought I would try one last option, is it possible to recover? It’s not in my recycle bin I already tried.


- Question from TechSupportGuy


But it will be too demanding to ask a user to commit no human errors like committing accidental deletion, clicking “Don’t Save”, or accidentally emptying the Recycle Bin.


So, quite a few users are seeking how to perform document recovery. This guide gathers a bunch of feasible solutions to help users recover deleted Word files and Excel sheets.

How to perform Word document recovery?

For users who have accidentally deleted Word documents or forgot/failed to save the Word docs, 2 feasible methods will do some help.

1. Recover unsaved Word documents via the AutoRecover feature

The inbuilt AutoSave feature is worth trying. It automatically stores the edited contents every 10 minutes by default. With the given access, you could easily recover unsaved Word documents.

Also, directly heading to the autosaved file location is feasible. Go to C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Office\UnsavedFiles 
This feature is also feasible for Excel document recovery.

Step 1. Start Word > click File > Open > Recover Unsaved Documents.


Step 2. Choose the unsaved Word doc > click Open > save the recovered doc in a safe place.


Thus you could recover Word documents not saved from the AutoSave folder.

2. Recover deleted Word documents using File History

If the Word doc was removed, you could recover deleted Word documents using an inbuilt backup tool in Windows – File History. It backs up the C: drive files from Desktop, Libraries, Contacts, etc.

If the Word doc was stored on the C: drive before being deleted, this method is suitable for you.

Step 1. Control Panel > System and Security > File History.


Step 2. Restore personal files.


Step 3.  Go to the original location where the removed doc was saved > select the Word file you need > click Recover. Click the left arrow to view earlier versions.


You could also use it to recover a deleted folder on the Desktop.

How to achieve Excel document recovery?

In addition to Word files, considerable users need to recover deleted or unsaved Excel sheets.

1. Recover Excel file not saved from the Document Recovery pane

Unexpected accidents like abrupt shutdown cause an unsaved Excel file. Usually, it happens too suddenly, leaving no time for users to save their work.

But don’t worry, you could still recover unsaved Excel file using the Document Recovery pane.

Step 1. Start Excel > a Document Recovery pane will show automatically.


Step 2. Browse and select the version you want > double click it > save it in a safe place.

2. Restore deleted Excel documents using Windows backup

Similarly, for a removed Excel spreadsheet, you still have chances to get it back. In addition to the File History, another comprehensive backup tool in Windows can assist you to recover deleted Excel file.

The Backup and Restore feature allows users to select the source drive/folder/file to back up; meanwhile, the target place is also optional. But it only backs up data from a local hard disk.

Step 1. Start Control Panel > System and Security > Backup and Restore (Windows 7).


Step 2. Restore my files.


Step 3. Browse for files > select the Excel files you need > Next.


Step 4. Choose a preferred target place or save them to the original location > click Restore.


With an available backup, you could even recover permanently deleted Excel files from the Desktop.

Comprehensive document recovery using a professional data recovery tool

Those methods and tools introduced above require backups in advance or are quite limited. But known to us all, it is way too demanding and strict to ask an ordinary user to predict the upcoming data loss issues.

Therefore, these users need a more comprehensive tool to recover lost or deleted documents easier.

With this, a professional and outstanding Windows data recovery app is to be recommended. With its useful features, all users could handle it without any difficulties.

Perform an easy and efficient Word & Excel document recovery
  • Select and recover 200+ types of data in 3 simple steps, including Word docs, Excel sheets, PowerPoint files, etc.
  • Restore deleted and missing documents from internal/external hard drives, e.g., HDD/SSD/flash drive/memory card, etc.
  • Choose files to restore while scanning, no need to wait.
  • Support Windows 11/10/8/7/Server. Even Server users could recover deleted files in Windows Server 2016, 2019, 2022, etc.
Download SoftwareWin 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Step 1. Install and run the software > select the source drive > Start Scan.


Step 2. Sort the wanted documents with extensions, file types, filenames, etc.


Step 3. Go to Deleted files > choose the documents in the original location > click Recover x files. Or go to Other missing files > Documents > Excel/Word.


In this way, you could easily achieve Excel/Word document recovery. Also, with this tool, it is simple to recover WordPad documents.

Wrapping up

This article is a comprehensive document recovery guide that gathers a bunch of feasible solutions to recover deleted or missing docs from the hard drive.

With the help of built-in AutoSave features in Word and Excel, recovering unsaved documents will not be difficult.

To recover deleted Word files/Excel files in an easier way, a useful data rescue tool will be the best option.

Lora · Editor
Lora is an editor of AOMEI Technology. She is also a tester and editor of AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. -- "Keep testing, write the most useful tutorials for helping people recover the lost data for Windows and phones" is the most meaningful thing for her. Dedicated to creating helpful tutorials, she hopes her tutorial can assist users to effortlessly solve data loss problems on their personal computers and mobile phones.