How To Restore Permanently Deleted Files In Windows 10

In the intricate dance of digital existence, the accidental or intentional permanent deletion of files can be a heart-wrenching experience. Fear not, for in the vast realm of Windows 10, there are ways to resurrect those seemingly lost files. This guide takes you through the nuances of understanding the problem, presenting an arsenal of solutions, software alternatives, answering common questions, unraveling technical terms, and concluding with expert tips to empower you in the quest to restore permanently deleted files in Windows 10.

Deciphering the Permanently Deleted File Predicament:

The Weight of Loss:

In the realm of computing, losing crucial files permanently can be a harrowing experience. Understanding the depth of this problem is the first step towards resolving it.

Root Causes of Permanent Deletion:

  1. Shift + Delete Mishap:
  • Accidentally using the Shift + Delete shortcut bypasses the Recycle Bin, leading to permanent deletion.
  1. Emptying the Recycle Bin:
  • Manually or automatically emptying the Recycle Bin without checking its contents can result in permanent file loss.
  1. File Deletion from External Drives:
  • Deleting files from external drives or USB devices without proper backup can lead to irretrievable loss.

Embarking on the Restoration Journey:

Ten Solutions to Restore Permanently Deleted Files:

  1. Utilize File History:
  • Access “Settings” > “Update & Security” > “Backup.”
  • Choose “Add a drive” and select an external drive for File History.
  1. Previous Versions Feature:
  • Right-click on the folder containing deleted files.
  • Choose “Restore previous versions” and select a version to restore.
  1. Recycle Bin Recovery:
  • Open the Recycle Bin and locate the deleted files.
  • Right-click on the files and choose “Restore.”
  1. Check OneDrive Recycle Bin:
  • If using OneDrive, check its Recycle Bin for deleted files.
  • Restore the files from OneDrive Recycle Bin.
  1. Use File Recovery Software:
  • Utilize reliable file recovery software like Recuva, EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard, or Disk Drill.
  1. Restore from Backup:
  • If you have a backup system in place, restore the files from the latest backup.
  1. Shadow Copies Retrieval:
  • Access “Control Panel” > “System.”
  • Choose “System Protection” and select the drive. Click “Restore.”
  1. Restore from Windows Backup:
  • If you’ve created a Windows Backup, access “Control Panel” > “Backup and Restore.”
  • Choose “Restore my files” and follow the prompts.
  1. Check Cloud Storage:
  • If files were synced to cloud storage, check the cloud’s recycle bin or version history.
  1. Use Command Prompt:
    • Open Command Prompt as administrator.
    • Use commands like chkdsk or sfc /scannow to attempt recovery.

Software Alternatives for File Restoration:

Top 6 Software for Restoring Deleted Files:

  1. Recuva:
  • Pros:
    • User-friendly interface.
    • Deep scan for comprehensive file recovery.
  • Cons:
    • May not recover all file types.
    • Free version has limitations.
  1. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard:
  • Pros:
    • Intuitive interface.
    • Capable of recovering various file types.
  • Cons:
    • Some advanced features are in the paid version.
    • Previewing files is limited in the free version.
  1. Disk Drill:
  • Pros:
    • Comprehensive file recovery.
    • Extra features like data protection.
  • Cons:
    • Some features require the paid version.
    • Deep scan can be time-consuming.
  1. Wondershare Recoverit:
  • Pros:
    • User-friendly interface.
    • Supports a wide range of file formats.
  • Cons:
    • Free version has limitations.
    • Deep scan is only available in the paid version.
  1. PhotoRec:
  • Pros:
    • Open-source and free.
    • Capable of recovering various file types.
  • Cons:
    • Command-line interface may be less user-friendly.
    • Limited graphical interface.
  1. MiniTool Power Data Recovery:
  • Pros:
    • User-friendly interface.
    • Capable of recovering various file types.
  • Cons:
    • Some features are in the paid version.
    • Deep scan can take time.

Answering Your Queries:

Q1: Can I recover files deleted from an external hard drive?

A1: Yes, external hard drives are recoverable using file recovery software. Connect the external drive to your computer and use a reliable recovery tool for the process.

Q2: Will file recovery software work if I’ve formatted the drive?

A2: Some file recovery software can work after a drive format, but success may vary. It’s advisable to attempt recovery as soon as possible and avoid further data writing to the formatted drive.

Q3: Can I recover files deleted a long time ago?

A3: The chances of recovery decrease over time, especially if the storage space has been overwritten by new data. However, file recovery software may still be able to retrieve older files in some cases.

Q4: Is it possible to recover files without using third-party software?

A4: Yes, Windows provides built-in features like File History, Previous Versions, and Recycle Bin recovery. However, for more comprehensive recovery, third-party software may be necessary.

Q5: What should I do immediately after realizing files are deleted?

A5: Stop using the device to prevent new data from overwriting the deleted files. Begin the recovery process promptly to enhance the chances of successful restoration.

Q6: Can I recover files deleted by someone else on a shared computer?

A6: If you have the necessary permissions, you can attempt file recovery on a shared computer. However

, it’s crucial to respect privacy and adhere to relevant policies.

Demystifying Technical Terms:

  1. File History:
  • A Windows feature that automatically backs up versions of files in the Documents, Music, Pictures, and Desktop folders.
  1. Recuva:
  • File recovery software that can restore deleted files from hard drives, memory cards, external drives, or other storage devices.
  1. Command Prompt:
  • A command-line interpreter application available in most Windows operating systems, used for executing commands.

Expert Tips for Effective File Restoration:

  1. Act Swiftly:
  • Begin the file recovery process as soon as you notice the deletion to minimize the risk of overwriting.
  1. Use Reliable Software:
  • Opt for reputable file recovery software to enhance the chances of successful restoration.
  1. Avoid Writing New Data:
  • Minimize usage of the device after file deletion to prevent new data from overwriting the deleted files.


In the labyrinth of digital existence, the loss of files need not be a permanent farewell. This guide has unravelled the intricacies of restoring permanently deleted files in Windows 10. From understanding the causes to presenting an array of solutions and software alternatives, the journey has been comprehensive. Answering common questions, deciphering technical terms, and concluding with expert tips, this guide equips you to navigate the realm of file restoration with confidence. As you embark on the quest to revive your deleted files, may success be your companion.