How To Retrieve a Word Document That Was Not Saved Easily

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how to retrieve a word document that was not saved

Word files are easier to recover than you believe. Unfortunately, forgotten records can ruin your effort, but Microsoft Word has a saving grace. Automatic backups, progress tracking, and document recovery are included. Try exploring how you can recover unsave Word documents.

Can I Recover an Unsaved Word Document?

Yes, you can recover unsaved Word documents in many ways. Microsoft Word has been a reliable tool for digital authors for a long time, and its developers have used several useful features to help in these situations:

  • AutoRecover: This feature will automatically save copies of your document at regular intervals. Usually every 10 minutes. If you experience a failure or accidentally close the program, you can easily restore the latest version of Autorecover.
  • Backup: Word has a built-in backup tool that creates a backup of your document each time it is saved. Select “Always Make Backup” under File > Options > Save to enable this feature. The backup will be saved in the same folder as the original document with the suffix “.wbk”.
  • Subscriber auto-saving. While working, Office 365 AutoSave saves your documents every few seconds. This function prevents data loss during failure or downtime. Check the Word window’s upper left corner for auto saving.
  • Document Recovery: When you resume Word, it may identify that the document was saved incorrectly and offer document recovery. Document Recovery windows appear on the left. Word allows you to view and revive documents that have not yet been stored.

If you are new to these features and haven’t set up automatic saving when you lose your documents, don’t worry. There are other ways to recover unsaved documents, make sure your hard work isn’t useless.

How To Recover Unsaved Word Documents

Now let’s see how you can recover unsaved Word documents using Microsoft Word. Whether you’re using Word 2007, Word 2010, Word 2013, Word 2016, Word 2019 or Word 2021, here’s a comprehensive list of ways to try:

Method 1: Search for Word documents that have not been saved manually in the AutoRecover folder.

To access the AutoRecover file, follow these steps:

  • Press Windows + R to open the run dialog.
  • Print “%AppData%” and click OK
  • Open Microsoft folders and search for Word files
  • If you can’t find it, please go back to the AppData folder. Open the local folder, then go to the Microsoft file. Search Office folder > UnsavedFiles.

Another way you can search for files with the.asd extension in the Explorer file to find the AutoRecover file. When you search for the open Word file, click on File > Open > Show information, change file types to all files and open the.asd file in Word.

Method 2: Go through the Word backup file

If the automatic recovery failed, try searching for the Word Backup file using the following steps:

  • In the File Explorer, search for files with the.wbk extension.
  • If you find a file with a closed backup in the image name, double-click the file to open in Word.

Method 3: Use Recover Unsaved Documents (AutoSave)

Word has an option called “Recover Unsaved Documents”, which allows you to find and recover lost Word files. Here’s how to access it:

  • Open Word and go to the information tab in the main menu.
  • Click on the document manager icon and select “Recover unsaved documents”.
  • Select the file you want to recover and click Open

Method 4: Use Word Document Recovery

If Word fails or your computer stops working, the Document Recovery feature starts playing. Follow these steps to recover the document using Document Recover:

  • Restart your computer and open Word again.
  • Search the document recovery window on the left side of the Word window.
  • Click on the recovered file and choose Open or Save as… From Options

Method 5: Remove unsaved Word documents from temporary files

Your computer creates a temporary file while you are working with the document. These files store relevant information about the file in the process. To browse the unsaved Word documents from the temporary files. Do the following:

  • Press Windows + R to open the run dialog.
  • Type “%temp%” and click OK.
  • If you find an unsaved Word document, please note the location of this document.
  • Open Word. Click File > Open > Find and find missing documents.
  • Change file type to all file to display TMP file
  • Select a.tmp file for an unsaved Word document, then click Open to open in Word.

Method 6: Recover Word Document from Recycle Box

If you accidentally deleted a Word file and it’s in the recycling tank, you can easily recover it by following these steps:

  • Go to your recycling tank and find the deleted Word file.
  • When you find it, remember its name for easy search.
  • Right-click on the file and select the recovery option.
  • Use the default search box or file explorer to search for files by name.

Method 7: Get lost Word documents with WinfrGUI:

In case the previous method failed, WinfrGUI can be a reliable solution for recovering lost Word documents. The main features of WinfrGUI include restoring lost or saved Word documents due to system failure, disk damage, virus attacks, and so on. It also supports recovery from a variety of storage media such as HDD, SSD, USB drives and SD cards.

To use WinfrGUI effectively:

  • Download and install WinfrGUI from the official website.
  • Open the application on your PC
  • Select the target disk or location where the lost Word document is stored.
  • Start the scan process and check the progress to the end.
  • Improve search results by selecting appropriate file types, such as Unsaved Files for Word documents.
  • Discover the contents of lost Word documents and repair any damage that may occur. Restore and save them securely on your PC.

By following these methods, you can increase your chances of successfully recovering unsaved Word documents. However, protection is important in avoiding loss of important documents in the future. 

How To Prevent Losing Word Documents in the Future

  • Regular saving: Make it a habit to save your document frequently while working with it. You can use the short log or keyboard buttons Ctrl+S after each line or section is finished.
  • Enable automatic recovery and saving: Set these properties in Word by going to the File tab. Select an option. Click on Save and enable auto-recovery saving. Furthermore, set the frequency of auto-washing and choose to keep saved versions, especially if you close without saving. You can also change the location of the AutoRecover file if desired.
  • Backup Settings: It’s important to have a backup on site. Think about using a cloud storage service like OneDrive or Google Drive, or investing in an external storage device to back up your important files regularly.


In conclusion, losing important Word documents may be a problem, but in the right way, you can recover unsaved documents. Take advantage of the document recovery features that are not saved in Word, or search for files manually. In more difficult situations, special recovery software such as WinfrGUI can help. Remember to take precautions such as regular saving, enable AutoRecover and AutoSave, and the non-saved Word file recovery settings can be a disappointing experience, especially when you’re working hard on important projects. However, Microsoft Word provides several features that can help you get your lost work back.

>>Also Read: Where Are Autosaved Word Files Stored and How to Recover