Efficient Guide to Recovering Orphaned Files

What does recovering orphaned files mean? How to recover orphaned files? Please find the corresponding answers below. Moreover, this post lists the best data loss prevention software for you.


By Penny / Updated on December 26, 2022

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Table of Contents

What is an orphaned file?

Orphaned files are deleted files with file metadata that stay in the file system but cannot be accessed from the root directory. Manual deletion or incomplete uninstallation is the common reason for orphaned files.


To be more specific, if you accidentally deleted parent programs, your operating system will automatically create a recovering orphaned file with the .dll extension.

How to recover orphaned files?

Plain and simple, an orphaned file is no longer associated with a parent program. Thus, many users could delete these orphaned files to make their PCs more organized. But after deletion, some various parent programs fail to run smoothly.

Some of you might raise questions:


I suddenly got a blue screen on Windows 11, how can I get my computer back to normal? How to recover orphaned files?

If it happens to be your case, please scroll down to get workable solutions for recovering orphaned files.  

Solution 1. Recover orphaned files using CHKDSK

CHKDSK is good at recovering corrupted hard drives. If there’s something wrong with hard drives, Windows OS will automatically check the disk and repair the detected file system errors or bad sectors using CMD.

Let’s perform how to fix computer errors and recovering orphaned file CHKDSK.

Step 1. Enter “cmd” in the search bar and click “Run as administrator” to open the command prompt window.


Step 2. Type “chkdsk” in the window.


Step 3. Type chkdsk d: /f” in the window.


Solution 2. Recover orphaned files using the Windows repair tool

Apart from that, you can also utilize the Windows repair tool to recover orphaned files. Let’s show how it works.

Step 1. Press “Win + E” to open Windows File Explorer.


Step 2. Click “This PC” on the left and right-click on your desired hard drive.


Step 3. Select the “Properties” option. Under the Tools tab, click the “Check” button.


Step 4. Click the “Scan drive” button. Please wait patiently.


Solution 3. Recover orphaned files via data recovery software

If the above methods are useless, you might need help from professional data recovery tools to recover orphaned files.

Besides, some users are also wondering how to recover missing files in Windows 10/11. At the moment, data recovery software provides another method for those users without backups.

Deeply engaged in the data recovery field, MyRecover seems as your top choice.   

Powerful features & friendly design:
Recover deleted/lost Word, Excel, PPT, PDF, photos, videos, audio, folders, and other 200+ types of data from HDD, USB, SD cards, and other storage devices.   
Keep the original format for the deleted/lost files.
During Quick Scan and Deep Scan, you can enter filenames in the search bar to find your desired files or wait to see all the deleted and missing files.
Support NTFS, exFAT, FAT32, and ReFS file systems.

Download MyRecover on your Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, or Windows Server computers to get your orphaned or missing files back!

Download Software Windows 11/10/8/7/Server
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Step 1. Launch MyRecover on your PC, and select the partition that contains the orphaned files you want. Then click the “Start Scan” button.


Step 2. Locate your desired orphaned files by Name, Date, Type, Size, or Path. After Quick Scan and Deep Scan, you can also wait to view all the files and other missing files.


Step 3. Go to the Deleted Files/Other Missing Files folder, and click “Recover x files” to get your selected orphaned files back. Please remember to store these recovered files in another path.


Bonus tips: How to prevent data loss with ease?

Since you’ve realized the dangers of data loss, it’s time for you to cultivate a good habit of creating regular backups to prevent data loss. In this case, you can try this free backup software for Windows to make a File Backup. Moreover, this tool also can back up your partitions, disks, or systems according to your needs.

These steps describe how to restore files from your prepared backups using this tool, AOMEI Backupper.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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Part 1. Make a File Backup

Step 1. After launching AOMEI Backupper on your Windows PC, select “File Backup” under the Backup tab.


Step 2. Click “Add Folder/Add File” to add the files/folders you want to back up.


Step 3. Locate a saved path to store your backup files/folders. Then click the “Start Backup” button.


Step 4. After the backup process, click “Finish” to exit the window.


Part 2. Restore files from backups

Step 1. Under the Restore tab, click the “Select Task” button.


Step 2. Select your File Backup and click the “Next” button.


Step 3. Select the specific files/folders you want to restore. Then click the “Next” button.


Step 4. Select “Restore to original location” or “Restore to a new location” as you need. Then click “Start Restore” to begin the restoration process.


Wrapping up

If you know nothing about orphaned files, get an overview of their definition in the first part. After that, you can begin recovering orphaned files via the above solutions.

Some users are concerned about how to recover missing files in Windows 10/11. Those users without backups will be prompted to utilize a top-rated data recovery software for Windows like MyRecover to recover missing files.

Undeniably, regular backups could be the best hedge against data loss. You’d better use Windows features or the recommended free backup software to make backups if you’re unwilling to suffer the second damage.

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.