Comprehensive Guide: How to Recover Data after Reinstalling Windows 10?

How to recover data after reinstalling Windows 10? Learn how to recover files after reinstalling Windows 10 and get other ways for data loss prevention on this page.


By Penny / Updated on April 2, 2024

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How can I recover my data after installing Windows 10?


I recently ran into a problem with Windows 10 update that resulted in reinstalling Win 10. My drive C was completely wiped clean, and I need to reinstall all of my programs. But my D drive (a separate physical drive) was not affected. Luckily, it saves my most data. I have a cloud backup for both drives before Windows reinstallation. My question is: Is it safe to restore the backup to the C drive because the message says the selected hard disk is not empty. If I continue, all the data the disk contains will be deleted. So how to recover data from reinstalling Windows 10?


- A user from the Acronis forum

In computing, users usually need to reinstall Windows OS due to major operating issues like the user above. However, not everyone has developed a good habit of keeping their data on a separate disk in advance. Because expect factory settings, these added files, applications, or customized settings will lose after Windows reinstallation.


Meanwhile, it is also the reason why the C drive is not empty because the system drive still saves the factory settings. And it contains at least one hidden partition in Windows for system protection and vital files. Without a doubt, no one wants to suffer data loss, so how to recover data after reinstalling Windows 10? Please read on.

Part 1. Three ways to recover files after reinstalling Windows 10

Are you working to recover data after reinstalling Windows 10? Get three distinct ways to recover files in Windows. If you’ve made good use of these Windows features before, you can attempt to perform file recovery with File History or System Restore. If not, use the best software to recover the deleted files in Windows 10. Therefore, you’d better pay attention to its corresponding cautions as you settle to select a method.

Option 1. Recover files with File History

As you can see, the data saved in an external drive could be unaffected by Windows reinstallation. This method merely takes advantage of this point. At the moment, we’d like to introduce Windows File History for you because you can select a drive (network or external drive) before starting the backup process.

You can also set the time you want to save copies of your files and the period to keep saved versions in Advanced Settings.


First introduced in Windows 8, File History attracts more and more users in Windows 10. Moreover, it can backup copies of files in the Documents, Music, Pictures, Videos, Desktop folders, and those accessible offline OneDrive files on your PC. If your needed data is not in these folders, add your needed files or folders to these locations.

Given that you’ve saved data in the external drive like the USB flash drive, you can copy your needed files from USB to your PC after Windows reinstallation.

Option 2. Recover files with System Restore Point

The System Restore Point is a snapshot of the system configuration and Windows Registry settings that can be used to restore the Windows operating system to a previous date when it was running smoothly. In other words, System Restore permits you to revert system files, installed apps, system settings, etc.

Apart from Windows Server, System Restore has been included in the Windows Me (Millennium Edition) and later desktop versions of Windows. Users need to activate System Restore manually for Win 10. And personal files such as documents, music, pictures, and videos are unaffected. Therefore, it seems like a practical way to recover the deleted folders.

If you’ve turned on system protection for the local disk, you can recover files after reinstalling Windows 10 from this System Restore Point.

Step 1. Press “Windows” and type “Create a restore point”. Then “Open” it.


Step 2. Click “System Restore” > “Next”.


Step 3. Select a system restore point from the list, and click “Scan for affected programs” to reconfirm. Then “Close” it.


Step 4. After confirming your restore point, click “Finish” > “Next”.


Step 5. Click “Yes” to start the restoration process. After that, your PC will be rebooted and you can “Close” the last window to exit it.

Option 3. Recover files with MyRecover

The first two methods can work for you, but the premise is that there is an accessible full backup or a valuable backup including your needed files. It’s impossible to recover files after reinstalling Windows 10 without making a backup regularly. Moreover, you need to store the data on USB using Windows File History.

Is there any easier way to recover data after reinstalling Windows 10? Maybe MyRecover can resolve this issue. Supported by advanced technology, this powerful and user-friendly software could handle broader data loss scenarios such as disk formatting, system crash, or more.

To some degree, it enables you to recover data from the lost partition after reinstalling Windows. Besides the C drive, it could be possible for you to recover some files as long as there is no partition resizes and data loss for other disks/partitions.  

Get an overview of other powerful features below.

Recover the deleted/lost files from SSD/HDD/USB and other electronic devices.   
Keep its original format for the deleted/lost data.
It provides good coverage of 200+ types of data: Word, Excel, PPT, Photos, Videos, Audios, Emails, Webpages, and Compressed files.
The combined scanning method of Quick Scan and Deep Scan could detect all the deleted files and other lost files.
Support NTFS, FAT32, exFAT, and ReFS in Windows 11/10/8/7 and Windows Server.
Download SoftwareWin 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Step 1. Launch MyRecover on your PC. Hover the mouse over the drive saved deleted files before, and click Scan to scan.


Step 2. You’ll see all the deleted files and other lost files after performing Quick Scan and Deep Scan automatically. Please wait patiently.


Step 3. Confirm the scanning results and select files you want to restore. Then click “Recover x files” and save them in a new location.


Part 2. Practical ways for data loss prevention

It’s easy to see that data loss is inevitable in the information age. Our computers carry many files and working materials. Therefore, how to prevent data loss after reinstalling Windows? Since you’re not familiar with these Windows features, you could utilize a handy third-party tool for data loss prevention.

The freeware AOMEI Backupper is one of the best backup software for Windows and could be your second to none choice. You can select “System Backup,” “Disk Backup,” “Partition Backup,” or “File Backup” based on your needs. For instance, if you want to restore the D drive in Windows 10, select the “Partition Backup” option.


Wrapping up

Windows reinstallation could put you on the verge of data loss. At the moment, how to recover data after reinstalling Windows 10? This comprehensive guide lists three ways for you. If you’re going to follow one of them, please note its premises. Meanwhile, the handiest and most efficient way for data loss prevention is to seek help from AOMEI Backupper.

Penny · Editor
Penny works as an editor at AOMEI Technology, while she's a tester and editor for AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. She enjoys helping users with data recovery issues on Windows and iPhones using simple and practical solutions. Outside of work, she has a strong affection for pets, particularly giant pandas.