How to Recover Deleted Data from External Hard Disk for Free

4 effective ways about how to recover deleted data from external hard disk are given, you can choose one that you prefer to use.


By Bryce / Updated on April 2, 2024

Share this: instagram reddit

Can you recover deleted files from external hard disk?

An external hard disk is a portable storage product and can be used to exchange large amounts of data between computers. Sometimes, the data on the hard disk will be deleted by mistake. Then, you may wonder can you recover deleted data from external hard disk.

If you delete the data by Ctrl+D or right-click to delete, you can retrieve files easily from Recycle Bin. But if you empty Recycle Bin or delete files permanently, you may need other ways to restore them. This text displays 4 choices about how to recover permanently deleted files from external hard disk.

Option 1. Using reliable recovery software to retrieve deleted files from external hard drive

If you don't have a backup of your data and want to restore them quickly and efficiently, use MyRecover. It is a professional data recovery software. Quick Scan & Deep Scan can completely scan out all the deleted and other lost files. Apart from that, it has some other notable highlights.

❥ Graphical interface: It provides users with a graphical interface, so users can recover files with few mouse clicks.
❥ Widely use: This tool can restore data from SSD/HDD, and also supports FAT32, NTFS, exFAT, and ReFS in Windows.
❥ types of recovery:  It can recover many kinds of files, like PPT, Word, Excel, Photos, Videos, Audios, Zip files and etc.
❥ Good compatibility: It is compatible with Windows 11/10/8/7 and Windows Server.

Download this software by clicking the button below.

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.

MyRecover Step1

Step 2.  The Quick Scan & Deep Scan can restore all the deleted files and other lost files on your selected hard drive.

MyRecover Step2

Step 3. Choose a path to save the files, and then click Recover x files to retrieve your target data. 

MyRecover Step3

Option 2. Find deleted files on external hard drive from Previous Versions

Previous Versions is a built-in feature of Windows, and it’s also can recover deleted data from external hard disk for free.  You need to make sure you enable this feature before you lose files. The process is as follows.

Step 1. Start the Windows File Explorer on your computer.

Step 2. Find the folder where you save your deleted files, and click it.

Recover form Previous Versions Step2

Step 3. Click Properties > Tap Previous Versions > Select the version you want to restore > Tap the Restore button.

Recover form Previous Versions Step3

Option 3. Recover deleted files from external hard drive using File History

Firstly, you also have to make sure that you have turned it on before deleting files. File History is a very useful built-in tool for Windows systems. We can use it to recover wide kinds of files, like word, zip, pdf, images, etc.  You can follow the steps below to complete the operation.

Step 1. Open the Control Panel, and then click the System and Security.

Recover from File History Step1

Step 2. Tap File History, and then click Restore your files with File History.

Recover from File History Step2

Step 3. On the left list, find and right-click the Restore personal files.

Recover from File History Step3

Step 4. The deleted file will appear on your interface and then click the Restore button.

Recover from File History Step4

Option 4. Using CMD to restore deleted files from external hard drive

You can use a CMD file recovery software, Windows File Recovery. It supports Windows 10 and later. This software is very trustworthy, but it has a fatal disadvantage in that it is difficult to use. Users have to learn some strange parameters, which is complex for computer novice. The steps below show you how to recover deleted data from external hard disk by using the CMD tool. You can download this software first.

Open Start menu > Find and click Microsoft Store > Input Windows File Recovery on the search bar > click Get button.

Get Windows File Recovery

You will use these parameters to write the command line.


The command line format is like: winfr source-drive: destination-drive: [/mode] [/switches].

You should choose the right mode according to the file system.


If you don't know how to view your file system, you can refer to this process: Click This PC > Right-click the source drive > Tap the Properties.

File System

Then, you ought to Select the suitable switch depending on the mode.


After selecting the parameters you can start writing the command line.

Step 1. Open Windows File Recovery and click Run as administrator.

Run As Administrator

Step 2. Type your command line, and click Enter.

To sum up

There are a total of 4 methods on how to recover deleted data from external hard disk. The first one is recommended as the tool is easy to use, fast to recover data, and also has good compatibility.

Backup also plays a crucial role in the use of the computer. There is a useful backup tool to give you, AOMEI Backupper. It only backs up the newly added content every time, and you can also back up your computer regularly, which is very convenient.

Bryce · Editor
Bryce is an editor of AOMEI Technology, he covers backup & restore, hard disk & partitions management, cloud files transfer, website & database backup and so on for AOMEI. He enjoys helping people find solutions to their problems. He loves traveling, Sleeping, reserching and so on. He enjoys helping people find solutions to their problems. He loves traveling, Sleeping, reserching and so on. He would like to spend all time on reaserching computer problems. He is a very cute boy.