Recover Deleted Folder on Windows: All The Methods Available

Robert Agar
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recover deleted folder via disk drill

I have accidentally lost my important folder. Is it possible to recover it?

Yes, it is possible to recover a lost or deleted folder. In fact, there are multiple ways in which this can be done. We are going to demonstrate four different methods you can use to recover deleted folders on Windows computers. Two of the methods make use of native Windows features and may not always work. Recovering from a backup requires that you have previously created a backup. Data recovery software is the most flexible way to undelete your data.

how to recover deleted folder with disk drill

Method #1: Recover a Deleted Folder Using Disk Drill

Disk Drill for Windows is a versatile data recovery tool that can quickly and effectively restore accidentally deleted folders. Follow these steps to retrieve a deleted folder with Disk Drill.

  1. Download and install Disk Drill on a different disk than the one that had stored the lost folders. This protects them from inadvertently being overwritten during recovery.
  2. Launch the application and select the recovery disk from the displayed list.
  3. Click the Search for lost data button.recover deleted folder
  4. Preview the folders and files that can be recovered.recover deleted folder by disk drill
  5. Click the Recover button.
  6. Access your recovered data in the location you select.how to recover deleted folders in windows
    free data recovery software Disk Drill for Windows & macOS Free Download

Disk Drill – Multipurpose Recovery Software

Disk Drill offers a complete data recovery and protection application featuring a user-friendly interface and advanced scanning capabilities. It can recover data in over 400 formats from virtually any type of disk-based storage device. In the space of a few click users can retrieve data from their computer’s internal disks, external hard drives, flash drives, and memory cards. The app can easily recover files that have been deleted from your Recycle Bin.

restore deleted folder with disk drill

Disk Drill is available by downloading a trial version that lets you test the software and recover up to 500 MB of data for free. You can also take advantage of the extra data protection tools that are built into Disk Drill. Designate important folders for protection against accidental deletion with the Recovery Vault feature. It’s a high-quality data recovery application that deserves to be in your software toolbox.

Try to Restore Deleted Folder Without Software

While data recovery software is the most reliable and effective way to recover deleted folders on a Windows 10 system, there are other methods available to you. Whenever you can’t find a folder or some files, here’s something you should always do first.

restore deleted folder with recycle bin

Method #2: Check the Recycle Bin

The Recycle Bin is where the Windows operating system temporarily stores files that have been deleted from your computer or laptop. Data is not permanently deleted until you empty the Bin, and even then it can be recovered with software.

To restore a deleted folder from the Recycle Bin, you need to:

  1. Open the Recycle Bin by double-clicking its icon.
  2. Find and select the folders or files you want to restore.
  3. Take note of the original location of the data so you can find it after recovery.
  4. Right-click on the selection and choose Restore.
  5. Wait for the process to complete and verify the files are in the expected location.restore deleted folder

how to retrieve a deleted folder with previous versions

Method #3: Try Restoring from a previous version of the Folder

You may be able to restore a previous version of a folder from a Windows restore point.

To restore a lost folder from the previous version you need to:

  1. Open My Computer.
  2. Navigate to the folder that previously contained the sub-folder you want to recover.
  3. Right-click and select Restore previous versions.
  4. You will be presented with a list of previous versions of the folder that includes those made with Windows backup or saved as restore points. 
  5. Click the Restore button to recover your folder.how to retrieve a deleted folder

how to retrieve a deleted folder via backup

Method #4: You Can Also Use a Backup to Retrieve a Deleted Folder

If one’s available, a backup is another way to restore deleted folders on your Windows machine. The difference with this technique when compared with the solutions previously discussed is that you need to have planned for this eventuality by creating a backup. Assuming that has been done, these are the general steps to follow when using a backup to recover a deleted folder.

  1. Locate the storage media that contains the backup and connect it to your computer.
  2. Fire up the backup and recovery application that was used to create the backup.
  3. Locate the folders to be recovered in the app’s interface and restore the data.

What Cause Accidental Deletion of Folders

Accidental data loss usually occurs for one of three reasons.

  • Human error is the primary cause of data deletion. Totally preventing it is impossible as long as people are involved with computer operations. Taking your time to double-checking before deleting data provides some defense against this type of data loss.
  • Environmental factors like heat and moisture can wreck your storage devices and lead to data loss. Keep your devices cool and dry to preserve the pictures and other data taking up space on them.
  • Viruses and malware can cause unexpected data loss. Maintain vigorous antivirus defense with a quality software tool. Avoid plugging in unverified flash drives into your computer as they can often carry malware.

Accidental implies that something unexpected has happened. While we cannot cover every eventuality, the general rules are to keep your computer and storage media protected and to exercise care when performing any type of file or folder deletion operation.

Did You Know?

The first version of Microsoft’s popular operating system was Windows 1.0. It was announced in 1983 and introduced in 1985. It employed what would today be seen as a primitive graphical interface that fronted an MS-DOS application. Windows 1.0 had some features like the clipboard, control panel, and Notepad that would be standards of future releases of the OS. Modern users would be horrified by the fact that windows could only be displayed side-by-side with no overlapping.

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Robert Agar
Freelance Writer at Self-employed specializing in technology-related subjects. Extensive experience in IT with a focus on backup and recovery, disaster recovery, cloud computing, databases, and data management.
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Senior Data Recovery Engineer. Master's degree in Physics, Information Technology for Science Experiments