How to Recover Deleted Data from Laptop Hard Disk?

How to recover deleted data from laptop hard disk? 6 feasible methods are covered in this article to help you out.


By Lora / Updated on April 3, 2024

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Can deleted data be recovered from laptop hard disk?

I accidentally deleted important data on my laptop hard drive. Can I recover the deleted data on my laptop hard drive? If so, what should I do to recover the data?


It is no doubt that almost every laptop user on the planet has mistakenly erased something from their laptop. For instance, some cherished pictures of family and friends, job materials, credentials, etc. Or sometimes they might have erased certain files and then one day discovered that those were still useful later in shock.

In this case, you might also be wondering: Can I recover the erased data on the laptop hard drive? The answer is YES, as long as you do not continue to use the laptop to get the data overwritten after deletion.

How to recover deleted data from laptop hard disk? The following content will help you easily recover data from your laptop hard drive.


How to recover deleted data from laptop hard disk?

As long as you use the correct data recovery method, you can easily restore the deleted data to the original location. Here are 6 simple ways to perform laptop hard disk data recovery.

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Tips: Please stop using the laptop after deletion! Once the deleted data is overwritten by the new content, the data cannot be recovered.

Method 1. Recover deleted data from the recycle bin

How to retrieve data from laptop hard disk? One of the most prevalent causes of data loss on your laptop is accidental deletion. If you just delete the data by moving it to the Recycle Bin, and you haven’t emptied it, it will be very easy to recover deleted files from recycle bin

Please follow the steps below to retrieve deleted data on laptop hard drive from the Recycle Bin.

Step 1. Start the Recycle Bin > locate your deleted data > right-click on it > choose Restore.


Step 2. The recovered data will automatically return to the original location before deletion, and you only need to follow the path before deleting it to find it.

Method 2. Perform laptop hard disk data recovery using CMD command

CMD is one of the powerful built-in tools in the Windows system. It can be used to solve many problems, including managing to recover deleted data on laptop hard drive. Some of the users may choose to recover hard disk data using cmd.

It is dangerous to some degree for a user who possesses no expertise and troubleshooting experience using CMD. Please use this method with care and make sure you have inputted the correct command every time.
The attrib parameters are used to remove or change the attributes of the files. This method will be useful when your files are hidden/read-only or so.

Step 1. Input cmd in the search bar of Windows, choose Run as administrator.


Step 2. Input the following command, ATTRIB -H -R -S /S /D X:*.* and press Enter. Here the X refers to the drive letter of the partition which contains the deleted data.


ATTRIB command parameters:
-H: Remove the hidden file attributes.
-R: Remove the read-only file attribute.
-S: Remove system file attributes.
/S: Process the matching files in the current folder and subfolders.
/D: also process folders.

Method 3. Use File History to retrieve deleted data from laptop hard drive

How to retrieve data from laptop hard disk? File History is a built-in software of the Windows system. When you activate it, it will regularly back up the versions of the files in the Documents, Music, Pictures, Videos, and Desktop folders and the OneDrive files available offline on the computer.

To recover the deleted data from the laptop hard drive, using the File History to recover the deleted data is also an effective way.

To use this method, you need to enable File History backup in advance. Check if you have activated it.
Press the Win+I key combination to launch the Windows settings, then select Update & Security > Backup, activate the File History backup under the Back up using File History option, and then select the disk.

Then you could follow the steps below to get back deleted data from laptop hard drive.

Step 1. Tab on Win+R to start Run, input control and press Enter to start Control Panel.

Step 2. Go to System and Security > Save backup copies of your files with File History.


Step 3. Click Restore personal files.


Step 4. Locate the deleted data you need and click the green Recover button to get it back.


Method 4. Restore the previous version

When you accidentally delete an important data file, you can try to recover the data file from the previous version. The previous version is a copy of the files and folders automatically saved by Windows. It can restore the deleted data on the laptop hard drive.

It can also compare the difference between a file before and now. In short, it records all the files from the creation to the abandonment.

The prerequisite for using this method is: you must have turned on the File History or Backup & Restore function in advance. If you did not turn on these 2 features before losing the data file, then this method cannot make it.
Please verify the file version by time and size to make sure you have chosen the correct version you need.

Step 1. Tab on Win+E to start the Windows Explorer, then find the deleted file or folder, right-click on it and choose Restore previous versions.


Step 2. Choose the correct version you need and click Restore.


Thus you could make it to perform laptop hard disk data recovery.

Method 5. Use Windows File Recovery to recover deleted data

If you want to increase the chances of recovering data, you can try to use Windows File Recovery to recover deleted data on the laptop hard drive.

Windows File Recovery is a free command-line application provided by the Microsoft Store. It is suitable for systems above Windows 10 2004.

Using this application can help you recover data deleted from the laptop hard drive and recover data files that cannot be recovered from the recycle bin. To get a more detailed introduction to recovery modes and switches, please refer to "How to use Windows File Recovery".

The original drive and the target drive cannot be the same. 
Please check if the command is correct in syntax before using it. 
If you meet the error "Windows File Recovery failed to create destination folder", please get help.

To use this tool, you need to figure out which recovery mode and switches to use. Firstly, check out your File System. Go to  This PC > right-click on the drive that has lost files > Properties.


Then recovery modes are available for all File Systems. There are two general modes: Regular & Extensive; under Extensive, two advanced modes are available: Signature & Segment.

Choose one according to your data loss situation and File System.

File system Scenarios mode
NTFS Deleted recently Regular
NTFS Deleted for a while Extensive
NTFS Formatted disk Extensive
NTFS Corrupted disk Extensive
FAT and exFAT Any Extensive

Narrow the scanning range using a switch.

Switches Meaning Supported mode(s)
/n Filter the scan range: scans for a specific file with its file name/path/type, etc. All
/y: Recover specific extension groups. Signature
/k Recovers system files. NTFS
/u Recovers undeleted files, for example, from the Recycle Bin. NTFS

Now, you could follow the steps below to recover data from laptop hard drive.

Step 1. To use Windows File Recovery, you need to download it from the Microsoft Store first.  


Step 2. Start Windows File Recovery, input related commands according to the instructions on the panel. The command structure is :

winfr source-drive: destination-drive: [/mode] [/switches]

For example, if you want to recover the deleted Excel files from E: drive to D: drive, the command will be:

winfr E: D: /segment /n *.xlsx


Step 3. Then wait for the processing. If you choose Extensive mode, it will last for a while to scan your drive. After you have recovered the data, a recovery folder named "Recovery_ (date and time)" will be automatically created on the target drive.

Method 6. Achieve laptop hard disk data recovery via Windows data recovery tool

If all these methods cannot meet your demands, there is one better choice for you. When trying to recover data from laptop hard drives, turning to a professional Windows data recovery utility is easier than using CMD.

Here MyRecover could be of great help. As an all-inclusive application, it can apply to all data loss scenarios, be it from accidental deletion, disk formatting, system crash, or virus attack, all users will get helped.

Keep the original file name/format/directory when recovering the deleted files. 
Recover deleted or missing files with a high success rate. 
Scan and detect files at a very fast speed. 
Compatible with all Windows OS, applying to Windows 11/10/8/7 SP 1 and Server.

Now don't hesitate to download MyRecover to enjoy a free trial. 

Download SoftwareWin 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download
Remember to save your recovered data to another place different from the source partition to avoid overwriting. 
Recovering data while scanning is feasible.

Step 1. Run MyRecover > hover the mouse over the disk/partition where you have lost data > click Scan.


Step 2. The software will automatically scan the partition with Quick Scan & Deep Scan to locate the deleted and other missing files.


Step 3. Select the files you need > click Recover x files to store your deleted or lost data.


In this way, you could easily and safely recover deleted or lost data from laptop hard drive at a high speed and recovery rate.

Possible problem: The laptop is damaged, but the hard disk is not

If the hard drive is dead, you may need to recover data from dead hard drive. But perhaps your laptop is damaged, but your laptop hard drive is not at this time. If you are facing this, you could use the following steps to transfer the data on the laptop hard drive to another computer.

♦ Take out the hard disk of the laptop, connect it to another computer with the dedicated data cable for the hard disk, and then copy and paste the data in the hard disk to another computer.

♦ If you have a large amount of data, you can directly use the laptop hard drive as an external hard drive.

To sum up

From the 6 methods given above, users could learn how to recover deleted data from laptop hard disks.

If you mistakenly delete your essential data on your laptop, please check the Recycle Bin to see if you could recover files from the Recycle Bin first. If not, please feel free to use Recoverit to retrieve the deleted data. You may also get back your data from the backup if you’ve enabled File History backup.

But one thing noticeable is that before attempting to perform data recovery, please stop using the laptop when you found deletion occurs to prevent the data from being overwritten and getting unrecoverable.

To prevent data loss, it is recommended that you keep regular backups of the data.

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.