Tutorial: Recover Excel File Not Saved in Windows 10

How to recover Excel file not saved in Windows 10? Feasible methods to achieve Excel unsaved file recovery in a breeze.


By Lora / Updated on May 9, 2024

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“Where can I find an Excel File that didn't save?”


Excel prevails around the world as the most frequently used data processing tool and spreadsheets both for enterprises and individuals.

Meanwhile, this is the deep reason why it would be so frustrating and stressful to lose the Excel data.

In general, you might encounter the following situation:

✐ 1. You have never saved your Excel workbooks ever. Maybe you just forgot to save, mistakenly clicked the “Don't save” option; or met a lag, system crash, etc., so you had to forcibly close without saving them.

✐ 2. You have saved the file, but when making more and further changes, you meet a system crash, unexpected shutdown, software crash, etc., resulting in previous changes and contents getting lost. And might don't know how to recover Excel file after crash.

Like the user case given below.


Recover an unsaved excel file


Could anyone help me to recover my data I working halfway and the excel application hung/did not respond. So, I have to end the task to quit the file. Is there any way to recover the Excel documents back? Because it is very important to me!


- Question from ExcelHelpForum


Don’t feel upset, it is actually feasible to recover Excel files not saved. This article will walk you through multiple tested methods to recover unsaved Excel files successfully.

How to recover Excel files not saved?

To achieve Excel unsaved file recovery, simply put, 2 inbuilt tools could be utilized.

Method 1. Recover unsaved Excel files that you have never saved

Excel has a built-in AutoSave tool that may have saved your files and you can get your files back with this tool. Now follow the steps below to restore unsaved excel files.

Step 1. Start Excel, and click File in the top left corner.


Step 2. Click Open > click the Recover Unsaved Workbooks button.


Step 3. Then locate the unsaved files you need to recover, and don’t forget to save the wanted versions of Excel to a safe place.


This can also help you recover unsaved PowerPoint files easily.

Method 2. Recover unsaved Excel changes/contents previously made

In addition, you may have made changes to a saved file, and unfortunately, the changes and contents you have modified have been lost due to system crashes, unexpected power outages, etc.

Don’t panic, Document Recovery could store the last edited version of your Excel workbooks. And thus you could recover overwritten Excel files in Windows using it.

You could also get something back using it. Half a loaf is better than no bread, at least you don’t have to start from the very beginning.

How frequently it will automatically save the files depends on your AutoRecover settings. 
The method to specify the AutoRecover settings will be introduced in the last part of this article.

Step 1. When your computer can work normally again, start Excel > a Document Recovery pane will show automatically.


Step 2. Browse and choose the versions of the file you want > double click it > save it to another place. It is suggested to give it a new filename.

And this time don’t forget to save a copy or create a backup in case data loss may occur once more.

Bonus tip: how to recover deleted Excel files with ease?

To lose the file that you have spent hours working on it is definitely annoying, however, putting aside this, you may also encounter a situation where Excel files may get lost due to multiple reasons.

Perhaps you have deleted Excel files accidentally, or you have deleted them and then inadvertently emptied the Recycle Bin – it got permanently deleted.

In this case, the AutoRecover tool might not be that helpful because you may have finished the Excel workbook and cannot afford to start from a half-done version or even scratch.

Given this, why not seek help from a Windows professional Excel files rescue tool? Relying on a trusty tool could both save you time and labor, and free you from any troubles.

Among the seas of Windows data recovery software, how could you find a good one? The tool you need must be equipped with these features.

Scan and recover deleted and lost Excel files from HDD/SSD/USB/SD card, etc. 
Get back deleted Excel files and keep the original format/contents/filename/path intact. 
Compatible with major Windows OS: Windows 11/10/8/7. 
Work perfectly with all File Systems: NTFS/FAT32/exFAT/ReFS, etc.

MyRecover is such a well-developed tool you will need. Apart from the above features, it can recover 200+ types of files, including 16 sorts of Excel files, which can solve your problems effortlessly.

Don’t hesitate to download MyRecover to recover deleted Excel files with ease.

Download SoftwareWin 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Step 1. Install and run the software > Hover the mouse over the drive saved deleted Excel files before, and click Scan.


Step 2. It will automatically scan your hard drive for deleted and missing files. Preview the scanning result or select files to restore now. Also, you could search for wanted files by inputting filenames/extensions.


Step 3. Go to Deleted files > navigate to the original path > select the files you need > click Recover x files to recover deleted Excel files in a breeze.


Using this powerful tool, you could also retrieve data from formatted hard drives.

Minimize the Excel data loss in the future

To avoid the same or similar contingency in the future and minimize the loss you may suffer from, first, you need to take precautions. Steps to operate are shown below.

Step 1. Start Excel, click File > Options.

Step 2. Go to Save > tick Keep the last AutoRecovered version if I close without saving.


Of course, you could also tick the Save AutoRecover information every x minutes > minimize the interval to 1 or any length you need or prefer.

In this article, methods to recover unsaved Excel files and deleted Excel files have been given with details and instructions. Refer to the tutorial here to seek more methods to recover deleted Excel files.

What’s more, it is a better bet to back up your important data using professional data backup software. AOMEI Backupper will be a good choice with its good features.

With backups prepared, you could restore from the backup file history or get back the previous versions easily without losing the latest changes you made.

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.