How to Recover Deleted Files on a Mac

We all know how stressful it can be to delete files by mistake. This is especially true if these files are important, work-related, and you put a lot of time into them.

How to Recover Deleted Files on a Mac

Luckily, not all is lost. There is a way to retrieve the files. Read on to find out how to recover deleted files on Mac.

How to Recover Deleted Files on Your Mac from the Trash Bin

If your files are piling up on your hard drive, you might be tempted to delete anything that’s seem irrelevant. A few days later, however, you realize that you need them.

We all have moments like these. That’s why your Mac has a trash bin. Here’s how to recover deleted files with this simple method:

  1. Go to “Trash Bin” on your Mac.
  2. Find the files you wish to recover.
  3. Right-click on the files.
  4. Select “Put Back.”

And voila, your files are back like they never disappeared.

How to Recover Deleted Files on Your Mac Once You Emptied the Trash Bin

Maybe you were 100% certain that you’d never need these files again. But Murphy’s law always rears its head and you need these files back at your disposal.

Don’t worry, we’ve got your back again. Here’s how to recover files after emptying the trash bin on your Mac:

  1. Download the “Disk Drill” app on your Mac.
  2. Give Disk Drill permission to scan your device.
  3. In the main menu of the app, select the drive that has your deleted data.
  4. Next to it, click “Recover.”

And that’s all there’s to it. Your files are back on your PC.

How to Recover Unsaved Excel Files on Mac Only Using Excel

You were working on an important project in Excel. In the heat of the moment, you exited it without saving the file. Does this mean you just wasted the last few hours of your life? No, it doesn’t have to. Just follow these steps to recover files on your Mac:

  1. Open Excel.
  2. Go to “File.”
  3. Click “Open.”
  4. Choose “Recent Workbooks.”
  5. Choose “Recover Unsaved Workbooks.”
  6. Look for your file in the list.
  7. Double-click to open it.
  8. Once Excel opens it, you can save it.

So much better than working again from scratch.

How to Recover Unsaved Excel Files from a Third-Party Cloud Backup Service

In case you got confused by the name, these are services such as Dropbox or Google Drive. They can be useful to have, as they let you store files online without using your computer’s memory, as well as easily share them with others online.

You can also use them to recover files you deleted from your computer. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Go to the cloud’s website.
  2. Log in using your e-mail and password.
  3. Select the Excel file you wish to recover.
  4. Download it to your computer.

Now the file’s back on your computer, for you to edit or distribute further.

How to Recover Files Using Mac’s Time Machine Backup

In case any of the above stated options don’t seem to work for you, here’s an additional alternative. This doesn’t require any additional installations, as this back up comes with your Mac computer.

Follow these steps to recover files using the Time Machine Backup:

  1. Launch the Time Machine Back up.
  2. Open a Finder window in the location where your deleted file used to be.
  3. Scroll through the Time Machine until you see that file.
  4. Select the file and click “Restore to Recover It.”
  5. The file will appear in its location prior to being deleted.

This was another easy way of recovering files that you need after all.


Why am I unable to delete certain files?

It might be confusing when your computer doesn’t let you delete a file. But there’re three things you should look out for when you find yourself in this situation. The file may be locked and read-only, you might not have permission to modify it, or it’s currently in use. Hope these help you solve your mystery.

Does sending a file to “trash” permanently delete it?

Files can be easily recovered from trash. So, the answer would be no. You’d have to go to the trash and delete them manually from there, to make sure they’re gone for good. In case you just wish to send a file to trash and deal with it later, you can press “Command” and “Delete.”

How can I empty the trash on my Mac?

In order to make sure that your files are really deleted from your PC, it’s best to empty the trash on your Mac. You can do that by going to the trash and manually deleting them. In case you want to delete everything from the trash, press “Shift, “Command” and “Delete.”

What happens when you delete a file?

Once you delete a file, the operating system marks this area as available. All paths that led to the file have been removed from the operating system. Other files will take up its space in the future.

What are professional data recovery services?

In case none of the methods mentioned in this article managed to get you your files back, you could try a professional data recovery service. This means taking your computer to a professional who has the equipment and know-how to deal with this issue. This option certainly can be helpful when nothing seems to work, but do bear in mind that it can come at a high cost. Some of you might also be uncertain about data privacy in this case. Since professional services do this for a living, it should be expected that they do that professionally, hence no need to worry that they will take advantage of your data.

Is it possible to recover files on a Mac guest account?

Even when you’re not using your own computer, or weren’t able to log into your account, you can still recover files. This will require administrative privileges on the computer though.

Can data be recovered after a factory reset on Mac?

Although a factory reset sounds like a way with coming back, there still is a possibility to recover your data after it. All it takes is a Time Machine or iCloud backup.

Even Technology Can Be in Need of a Recovery

Keeping your workspace fresh will help you concentrate easier and be better organized. So, there’s nothing wrong with deleting files. Especially when you know that there’re are options for you to easily recover them.

Luckily, there’re ways to recover deleted files on your Mac. Even after you emptied your trash can, and regardless of the processor your PC uses. However, technology can get flooded just like we do. So sometimes your Mac will need to get into recovery mode and delete some of the data.

Have you ever recovered files on your Mac? Did you use any of the tips and tricks featured in this article to retrieve them? Tell us in the comments section below.

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