Full Guide to Recover Unsaved/Deleted Word Documents [All-In-One]

2020-08-28
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Summary: Everyone should come to agree that by losing the unsaved Word documents or the document files got deleted accidentally using the Shift+Delete command, it can be a nightmare especially after you labour to finish them. In this article, we are going to provide the full guide that the users can easily follow to recover unsaved/deleted word documents on Word 2019/2016/2013/2010/2007/2003.

WIN VERSION MAC VERSION

Since the Microsoft developed the Word processing software – Microsoft Word on October 25, 1983, most of the users choose to use this useful program to write, edit or handle the Word documents no matter in their Windows or Mac computers. However, the documents might get lost, deleted, or formatted due to different reasons.

Common Causes that Word Document Files Got Lost

  1. Use the Shift+delete key.
  2. Empty the Recycle Bin.
  3. Accidentally formatted the hard drive.
  4. Wrongly used the command prompt to erase the drive.
  5. Computer crashed.
  6. Power outage.
  7. Deleted by the third-party trash cleaning software.
  8. Virus attacks or Trojan infections.

No matter how you got the Word documents deleted or accidents happened to cause the Word documents to be unsaved, we’ve worked out the ultimate guide, and you can follow to perform the unsaved/deleted Word document recovery easily and quickly.

How to Recover Unsaved Word Document

Solution 1: Restore to the Previous Version

Word document can be accidentally closed without saving due to the computer crashes or power outages, or the users might close it manually before saving. Then, how to recover unsaved word document? The users can rely on the Microsoft Previous Version Tool to recover Word document not saved. Once an accident happened, you can re-launch the Microsoft Word and select the previous version from the left panel.

word document recovery

Solution 2: Locate the Temporary File

As said that Microsft Word can deal with the previous version in most cases. Still, it can be failed for some extra reasons, if you can’t recover unsaved Word document as wanted using the solution 1, try this solution to locate the temporary File with the below steps:

Step 1: Type *.tmp after opening the search box.

Step 2: Users can scroll through the files after selecting the Others in Show Only Toolbar.

Step 3: Locate the temporary File named like this: ~wrdxxxxx.tmp (Be sure that find such files that match that last dates and times).

Step 4: Save these temporary files in a safe place and right-click on the File: Open With > Choose Another App > Notepad

notepad

Step 5: Copy the wanted contents out from the File and save it to another new Word document.

Note: As Microsoft Word can’t open the *.tmp File, hence, you should be able to use Notepad to open this file and copy the contents out to make this unsaved Word document recovery complete.

Solution 3: Find the Backup File

Users who have enabled the option “Always create Backup Copy” in Microsoft Word can recover unsaved Word documents from the Backup Document File.

Refer to the following steps to find the backup File:

Step 1: Open the folder where you lost the Document.

Step 2: Search for files with .WBK file extension (If you can’t find in this folder, type *.wbk in Windows Search box to search the entire computer).

Step 3: After the desired backup file has been found, launch Microsoft Word, navigate to File> Open, and then click on Browse.

Step 4: Click on the arrow next to the file type option to bring up the drop-menu, and then select All Files.

all files

Step 5: Locate the found .WBK backup file and open it.

Note:  Users can enable this important backup feature followed with this way: Launch Word, navigate to File> Options > Advanced, scroll down to go to save section, and check off the box beside Always create backup copy

Always create backup copy

Solution 4: Search for the Autorecover File

Here comes to the final solution to recover unsaved Word document using Microsoft Word Autorecover feature, before the solution starts, the users should know that Microsoft Word saves AutoRecover files as *.asd File, and we need to search for this .asd File. Here go the steps you can follow:

Step 1: Press Win Logo key + R and paste this path in the Run dialogue box to open. C:\Users\[Your User Name]\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Office\UnsavedFiles (Replace [Your User Name] to used computer profile name)

Step 2: Browse to the .asd File and save it to another safe place.

Step 3: Double-click on this File and open it using Microsoft Word.

Step 4: Click on File and Save As to save it to the place with the name of your choice and the suffix .doc or .docx as per you like.

Or if you prefer to open the Autorecover file directly in the Microsoft Word, please follow this way, navigate to File> Info > Manage Documents (or Manage Versions) > Recover Unsaved Documents.

recover unsaved documents

Note: Users can set the frequency with which Word automatically saves your documents. Navigate to File> Options > Save, and under Save documents section, check off the box before Save AutoRecover information every X minutes and set the number of minutes. It will ensure that you have an autosaved version of your Word document for recovery in case you need to do so in the future.

How to Recover Permanent Deleted Word Document

Whereas the problems listed above to recover unsaved Word document can be easily tackled with features offered by Microsoft Word Document Recovery, however, document loss resulted from accidental deletion, formatting, virus infection, Shift+delete command or any other possible accidents is tricky.

Hence, in order to recover permanent deleted Word document files, we should use a third-party utility – Bitwar Data Recovery Software to help recover word document files.

Steps to Recover Permanent Deleted Word Document files

First of all, download Bitwar Data Recovery for Win version, and then complete the installation and launch it, after that, follow the steps as below:

Step 1: In the main interface, check off the disk where you lost the Word files. Click on Next.

main interface

Step 2: Select the Quick Scan, which is tailored for most users. Then click on Next. If this mode doesn’t work for you, try Deep Scan mode next time.

scan mode

Step 3: Since you only want to retrieve Word files, check off Document, and click on Scan.

file types

Step 4: You can easily filter files according to their types, locations, or times on the left panel. And it is a more precise way to preview them on the right panel by double-clicking, or you can turn to the Preview tab to check all the generated thumbnails to check permanently deleted Word documents effortlessly.

docx preview

Step 5: Now, select the Word document files you want and click on the Recover button.

Note: To prevent the data from being overwritten and getting lost permanently, please do not save the recovered Word document files to the original location.

Other Solutions Worth A Try

There are still some workable solutions that give the methods of recovering the unsaved/deleted Word documents, and we strongly recommend you to give it a try if you have tried out all of the possible solutions.

Method 1: Search Through the Entire Computer

Sometimes you might ignore the Word document saving path and saved the Word document to an unknown place, hence, search for the Word Document using the Windows Search feature is an efficient way to locate the wanted Word documents:

Type in the document name or try with *.doc or *.docx to start the search. With luck, the Document would show up.

search

Method 2: Restore the Word Document from OneDrive Cloud

If you are luckily to use OneDrive to sync the Word documents or collaborate the documents with your colleagues, OneDrive stores your documents automatically, even if you have deleted the Word documents locally on your computer, you still have the chance to restore the permanently deleted word documents via OneDrive Recycle Bin.

All you need to do is visit the OneDrive Online Page and sign in your account, after that, turn to Recycle Bin and find your deleted Word documents there.

one drive

Method 3: Put back the Word Documents from Recycle Bin

The computer users probably had such experiences that the Word documents were deleted by some other trash cleaning software. Luckily, if the deleted Word documents stay in the Recycle Bin, we need to enter the Recycle Bin and put back the needed Word documents. Otherwise, the Word documents got deleted permanently and should be recovered manually using the third-party data recovery tool – Bitwar Data Recovery.

recycle bin

Method 4: Retrieve the Word Document Contents from the Clipboard

As you might have known that Clipboard is a buffer for storing the data in a short-term period, it saves your copied Word documents contents too! If you were lucky enough while copying the Word documents using Ctrl+A and then Ctrl+C, but the Word document closed suddenly. Don’t be panic, try immediately to create a new Word document now and Ctrl+V to paste the copied contents and save!

Conclusions

Nowadays, Microsoft Word is the must install software for Windows 10, 8, 7, or Mac. Both of us should rely on this best word processing software to handle all kinds of documents. However, we might lose no matter the unsaved/deleted Word documents in various scenarios.

We’ve already known that and have worked out all the possible solutions in this ultimate guide! Now we hope that some of the solutions can work to recover unsaved Word documents as needed. What if the Word documents have been deleted due to the accidental deletion, formatting, Shift+delete or other data loss reasons, then it’s an excellent choice to use Bitwar Data Recovery Software to recover permanent deleted Word document files. This tool severs well for recovering Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, Powerpoint files, images, photos, videos, audios or any other data types lost due to improper formatting, partition loss, etc.

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