Excel File Disappeared from Desktop? Here Are 5 Ways!

Many users are asking for help on how to recover Excel file disappeared from desktop. To fix this issue, here we will introduce 5 effective desktop disappeared Excel file recovery solutions.


By Kelsey / Updated on May 27, 2024

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How do I recover an Excel file from desktop?


My colleague worked on an Excel file this morning and saved it on the desktop. He has been working on the file for weeks. Later this morning, he found that the file had disappeared. Why was the Excel file disappeared from desktop? Is it possible to recover it?

Most people will put frequently used or recently-processed files on the desktop of the computer so that they can be accessed easily and quickly. However, some users report that they find the excel file opens then disappears from desktop. Why has my Excel file disappeared from desktop?

Common reasons are that files disappear due to accidental deletion or cleaning by anti-virus software. How to get back Excel file lost/deleted from desktop? If your excel document disappeared from computer desktop, don't worry. Five solutions offered in this guide can help you retrieve missing files without a hitch, whether you have saved them or not.

Section 1. Recover Unsaved Excel files missing from desktop

If you have not saved your Excel document before losing it, you can perform unsaved Excel file recovery from temporary files or with the native recovery features of Microsoft Office applications, AutoRecover.

Next, we will show complete guidelines on recovering unsaved Excel file missing from desktop within a few minutes.

Way 1. Recover disappeared Excel documents from temp files

In Microsoft Excel, temporary files are saved as backups, which means that they can be easily found and recovered. The excel recovery file location for temporary files is


You can directly go to the location of Excel temp files to recover Excel file disappeared from desktop on Windows 10 and other operating systems. Or, you could find and recover unsaved Excel lost files with the following steps:

Step 1. Open Excel and click on File.

Click File

Step 2. In the Open tab, click Recent and tap Recover Unsaved Workbooks.

Recover Unsaved Workbooks

Step 3. All unsaved Excel temp files will be listed on the pop-up screen. Open the one you want and save it to get it recovered.

Way 2. Recover lost Excel files from AutoRecover

AutoRecover is a powerful feature in Microsoft Office that allows you to retrieve lost Excel data, as well as recover unsaved Word documents, PDF files, etc. If you have saved the Microsoft Excel file at least once before it disappeared from your computer, it is possible to restore the last autosaved Excel.

You can refer to the guide below to restore Excel file disappeared on Windows 10 desktop and other systems.

Step 1. Start Microsoft Excel and navigate to File.

Step 2. Select Info from the left menu, tap on the Manage Workbook position, and choose Recover Unsaved Workbooks.

Info Recover Unsaved Workbooks

Step 3. Then, find your missing desktop document and click Open.

Select File To Recover

Step 4. Click the Save As button on the top to save it on your computer.

Section 2. Recover saved Excel file disappeared from desktop

3 options in this section enable you to recover saved Excel files disappeared from computer desktop. Let’s explore them one by one.

Way 1. Recover missing Excel files with free file recovery software [Recommend]

What if the file has been deleted from the computer desktop and is not stored in the Recycle Bin? You will need a professional data recovery tool, like MyRecover, to help you retrieve your lost Excel files.

This tool is a free file recovery software that supports the recovery of more than 200 types of files such as Excel, Word, PFT, PPT, etc. It can recover permanently deleted data from computer without any hassle.

Download Software Windows 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Step 1. Launch MyRecover on your computer, and hover the mouse over the drive, then click Scan to scan.

Scan D Drive

Step 2. The scanning process will start automatically. You can recover files during the scanning process.

Scan Lost Data

✍Tip: To locate your disappeared excel file quickly, you can use the Filter feature to sort the scanned data by file type or search for the filename in the “Search for files or folders”box.

Step 3. Select the Excel files you need, and then click Recover x filesto choose a secure location for saving the recovered excel file disappeared from desktop safely.

Select Excel Files To Recover

Powerful Data Recovery Software


  • High-speed recovery: It restores data at a quick speed and quick recovery rate.
  • Flexible data recovery: It supports you in recovering deleted data, restoring formatted data, recover files after Windows crashed, etc.
  • Easy to use: With a user-friendly interface, it allows you to recover data in 3 steps.
  • Widely use: It can be used to recover data from a computer local disk, external hard drive, USB drive, SD card, and so on.

Way 2. Get back lost Excel files from Recycle Bin

Occasionally, desktop files will be removed by accident or would be deleted by antivirus software that identifies your excel as a harmful file. In this case, you can first check and recover missing Excel files from Recycle Bin.

Step 1. Go to Recycle Bin

Open Recycle Bin from your desktop or File Explorer.

Step 2. Locate lost Excel files

Find your lost desktop files in Recycle Bin.

Step 3. Restore lost Excel files

Right-click on Excel files, and select Restore.

Restore Excel From Recycle Bin

Way 3. Search for Excel documents on computer for recovery

Excel files that have disappeared from the desktop are not found in the Recycle Bin? There is a possibility that it is only the shortcut to your file disappeared. You can perform missing Excel file recovery by searching for a specific file type on your computer.

Step 1. Press the Windows key and S key together or click to open Windows Search Box, and then enter the filename of your missing Excel file.

Windows Search Box

Step 2. Then, check if the file that disappeared from desktop is found.


If you are experiencing the "Excel file disappeared from desktop" issue, you can perform desktop file recovery by following the methods above. Besides, you are highly recommended to make a backup of your precious files on your PC using AOMEI Backupper, since data loss occurs unexpectedly.


Why did my Excel file disappeared?
There are many possible causes for Excel disappearing. Your Excel files may be deleted by antivirus software, regarding them as malicious files. But you can recover Excel files with professional recovery software MyRecover from any data loss situation.
How do I find a missing Excel file on my desktop?
When you encounter a missing Excel file issue, go to Recycle Bin to find it first. If your Excel files are not there, please ask for help from a powerful data recovery software.
Why is my Excel File open but not showing?
This could be as a result of an intentional or accidental hiding of the workbook. Go to the View tab and find the Unhide button to solve it.
Kelsey · Editor
Kelsey is an English editor of AOMEI Technology. She is passionate about helping people find effective ways to deal with all problems in computer. She has great insights into data backup and recovery, disk partition and clone, and other data protection measures. She likes learn computer skills to improve herself and enjoy quality time with family and friends.