How to Restore Backup Files from USB Flash Drive?

How to restore backup files from USB flash drive? If you have lost backup files or other types of files from flash drive, you could view this post to get back.


By Lora / Updated on April 3, 2024

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“How do you recover files from a flash drive?”

Have you ever used the USB flash drive to store your files or used it as a backup device?

Thanks to its tiny portability, usability, and compatibility, USB flash drives are welcomed among users around the world. People use it to keep their wanted photos, videos, important office files, etc.

But it is inevitable to suffer data loss, like accidental deletion.


How to rescue my USB flash drive data back?


Please, let me know whether there is a way for me to rescue my backed-up files on the USB drive. Last weekend, my little son deleted them anyhow. Could you give me some suggestions to get them all back?


- Question from Windows10forum


Have you met similar situations? No matter how you have lost your USB flash files, be it accidentally deletion or disk formatting, you could undelete USB drives with the help of efficient tools.


Reasons why files lost from USB

Before checking the solutions to recover USB lost data, it will be a better choice to figure out why your backup files get lost.

⊹ Accidental deletion. Perhaps, you have mistakenly removed the files from it, and the deleted files bypassed the Recycle Bin and got permanently removed right away.


⊹ Virus. Being infected by viruses can lead to file loss – they maliciously hide, delete, and encrypt your files. You may meet a flash drive folder empty problem.

⊹ Physical damage. If you have dropped the USB flash drive to the ground or bumped it, it may get destroyed by external forces and lead to data loss.

⊹ Improper ejection. Abrupt ejection without clicking “Safe to Remove Hardware” lead to interruption to the read-and-write process sometimes. Thus files can get lost and corrupted.

Some methods to recover flash drive files are corresponding to the reasons. Choose the one that fits you.

How to restore backup files from USB flash drive?

To get back deleted or lost files from USB, several tools could be utilized. Generally and commonly speaking, the backup will be the correct choice if you possess one.

But if you don’t, there is no need to worry, a professional Windows data rescue app can help you.

Method 1. Recover files from USB drive effortlessly

Firstly, for the sake of capability, usability, and also efficiency, turning to an awesome data recovery utility for help will be preferable.

  • Among the seas of Windows data recovery apps, you need the one that can help you restore data from external storage devices.
  • In addition, users will prefer a capable tool that can restore a wide range of files, such as photos, videos, zip files, etc.
  • Also, it ought to be compatible with multiple operating systems or generations.

Taking all these into consideration, MyRecover will be the best choice – it is specially designed for Windows users, helping them with multiple features:

The most efficient USB data recovery solution
  • Recover deleted and missing files from internal and external storage media: USB/HDD/SSD/SD card, etc.
  • Select files to restore during scanning, no need to wait.
  • Deleted data could be restored in its original format, filename, and path.
  • Restore 200+ kinds of files, including photos, videos, office files, compressed files, etc.
  • Support Windows 11/10/8/7 SP 1 & Server. You could also restore deleted files from Windows Server 2016.
Download SoftwareWin 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Step 1. Download and run the app > connect your USB to the PC > hover the mouse over the USB flash drive > click Scan.


Step 2. Filters like: Size, Type, Date modified, etc., are feasible to help you target what you need. You could input backup file extensions like “.bak” to target them.


Step 3. Go to Deleted files> check the original location > select the files you need > click Recover x files. Or go to Other missing files> select file types.


In this way, you could easily solve the problem of how to restore backup files from USB flash drive.

Method 2. Recover USB lost data via Windows File Recovery

Also, there are other methods to recover flash drive files. If you have used the Command Prompt, this app will be a bit easy to handle for you.

Windows File Recovery is the official file recovery app developed by Microsoft. It scans the hard disks for deleted and missing files using a recovery command.

But since it utilizes commands, it will be pretty difficult for ordinary users who are unfamiliar with commands and parameters.

The recovery command is composed of recovery modes and switches.

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

Check the file system first. Open This PC > right-click on the USB flash drive that has lost files > Properties.


Switches can help filter and target files you need.

Switches Meaning Supported mode(s)
/n Filter the scan range: scans for a specific file with its file name/path/type, etc. All
/y: Recovers specific extension groups. Signature
/k Recovers system files. NTFS Segment​​​​​
/segment Segment mode; recovers files under NTFS drives using file record segments. Segment
/signature Signature mode; recovers files under all file system types using file headers. Signature
/u Recovers undeleted files, for example, from the Recycle Bin. NTFS Segment

To learn more about the recovery modes and switches, refer to the How to use Windows File Recovery guide.

When meeting any errors, check the Windows File Recovery tutorial to fix them.

Step 1. Go to Microsoft Store > search for Windows File Recovery > click Get to install it.


Step 2. Run the app > input the recovery command.

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

E.g., winfr F: D: /extensive /n *.jpg


Please remember that the source drive must be different from the destination drive. Wait for the program to process and recover USB lost data.

Thus the backed-up photos could be recovered from the flash drive.

Method 3. Restore USB flash drive files when it goes corrupted

How to restore backup files from USB flash drive if it went corrupted? As mentioned above, the USB flash drive may also go corrupted due to viruses or physical damage, etc.

At this time, you need to recover corrupted hard drive. For ordinary users, it will be tough to make it on their own, but they could take advantage of the Recover command in CMD.

It scans the defeated hard drives, analyzes the bad sectors, and restores readable info from the good sectors.

But it is notable that, this command only restores 1 file at a time, which is pretty inconvenient.

Step 1. Input cmd in the search box > start Command Prompt > choose Run as administrator.


Step 2. Input diskpart > list disk > select disk 0 > list volume > select volume 1. Please replace the number here with the real drive letter of your affected drive.

Step 3. Input recover [drive:][path]filename

It requires the exact filename and the path.


E.g., you need to recover your backed-up photos from the USB. You could restore 1 picture at a time.

If the photo was stored in a folder named “photos” on the F: drive. Then you input:

recover f:\photos\travle01.jpg

Thus the file could be restored.

Related suggestions

How to restore backup files from USB flash drives has been introduced with a detailed explanation and methods in this post.

Since it is not that easy to recover USB lost data without the help of data recovery apps for Windows, it is recommended to take some actions to protect your data.

  • Do not delete files from USB in such a hurry.
  • Keep the USB storage devices from liquid, oil, dust, and untidy environment.
  • Connect and disconnect the USB properly.
  • Back up your important files at different places or using different tools/devices. You could try a professional data backup app for Windows.
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.