Recover Unsaved/Lost Microsoft Word Documents

Anju Chaudhary
Anju Chaudhary

Updated On - October 18, 2022

Sometimes when you happen to close a Microsoft Word document accidentally without saving or your work disappears or Microsoft Word crashes or your system shuts down due to power surge or due to shut down of power backup, your word document disappears or gets lost, or sometimes gets deleted for any reason. In the present blog, we are here to help you find those unsaved/lost/deleted documents.

Microsoft Word has an inbuilt feature of ‘Autosave’ as people sometimes forget to save their documents. This curtails loss of data and ultimately labor and time as well. In the present blog, we are going to discuss how we can recover unsaved Word data from different locations on your PC. In case, when a document is deleted, irrespective of any reason, we are going to discuss ways to recover those documents as well.

Let us discuss, how to recover unsaved Word documents through various methods:


Search for Word documents:

  • Go to Start and type the name of the document in the Search bar.
  • Document(s) containing that name will appear in a list.
  • Double-click the desired document and open it. It will open in Word.


Search for Word backup files

Names of Word backup files have the extension ‘.wbk.’ If you have selected the option “backup copy” in Word then, you may find a backup copy of the file. Before you start finding a backup copy, you first need to find if you have enabled this option of “backup copy.” To find this follow the steps given below:

  • Go to ‘Start’ and then to ‘MS Office Word.’
  • Right-click on ‘Word.’
  • Select ‘More.’
  • Select ‘Open file location.’
  • Go to ‘File’ on the extreme left at the top of the screen and click on it.
  • Select ‘Options’. This will open in Window for the ‘Folder option.’
  • Click ‘View’ in the top bar.
  • Scroll in ‘Advanced.’
  • Select “Always create backup copy.”
  • Press ‘Ok’

Check for a backup file at under given folder locations:

  • C:\Users\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Word
  • C:\Users\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Office\UnsavedFiles
  • Note: in place of User Name you have to type the name of the user

To find the backup copy of the file, follow the steps:

  • Go to ‘Start.’
  • Type ‘.wbk’ in the search box and press Enter.
  • If you find ‘backup of ,’ then to open the file double click it.
  • If this method does not work then you should try another method.


Check Recycle Bin:

If you happen to delete a word document and had not emptied the Recycle Bin then, you may be able to restore the document. To check the Recycle Bin follow the under given steps:

  • Find Recycle Bin on Desktop.
  • Double click Recycle Bin to open.
  • In the list of deleted items, search for your deleted Word document. If you do not know or have forgotten, the file name, then search for file types like .doc, .docx & .dot.
  • If you find your file, right-click on the file and select ‘Restore’ to recover your file.


Restart Word to open AutoRecover files:

  • Every time ‘Word’ starts, it searches for AutoRecover files.
  • Thus, by closing and restarting ‘Word,’ you may find your document using AutoRecovery.
  • If AutoRecovery finds any such file which is recovered automatically, the task pane of ‘Document Recovery’ will open and you can find your file in the list as “document name(Original)” or “document name9Recovered).”
  • Double-click this to open.
  • Go to File, select ‘Save as’ and save the document as a .docx file.


Search for AutoRecover files:

You can even look for AutoRecover files. You may search for backup files at the locations:

  • C:\Users\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Word
  • C:\Users\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Office\UnsavedFiles

If missing files are not available or found at above-stated locations then, open ‘Word’ and go to ‘File’ and open ‘Info.’ In ‘Manage Document’ select ‘Recover Unsaved Documents.’

You may even try manually to search AutoRecover files. To do this, follow the steps under given:

  • Open ‘Word.’
  • Go to ‘File’ and open it.
  • Browse ‘Files of type.’
  • Select ‘All Files.’
  • Right-Click the ‘AutoRecovered File’ and ‘Open.’
  • If no .asd file exists then try another method.


Search for temporary files:

Names of temporary files have an extension ‘.tmp’. To find temporary files follow the steps given under:

  • Go to ‘Start’ & type ‘.tmp’ in the search box and press ‘Enter’. (For Windows 8.1 type ‘.asd’ )
  • Select the ‘Documents’ tab.
  • Scroll to find the file name you wish to search.
  • If you find the file, then follow the further steps and if you do not find the file then follow the steps (a) to (c) with ‘~tmp’ instead of ‘.tmp’. Remember this location.
  • Now open ‘Word’, go to ‘File’, and click ‘Open.’
  • Select the ‘Folders’ tab.
  • Search for the folder where you found ‘.tmp’ or ‘~tmp’ file and select the folder name which will open pane of ‘folder contents’
  • At the top of the pane, select folder name.
  • ‘File Explorer’ will open in which you need to change the ‘file type’ to ‘All files.’
  • Open the ‘.tmp’ file.

When none of the above methods work, the issue may be Word file corruption. how to deal with Word file corruption? You should try some efficient third-party tool to fix corruption and recover your unsaved Word documents. Recoveryfix for Word Recovery is strong software which enables you to recover MS Word files of any format like .doc, .docx, .dot, .dotx, .dotm. Further, it can recover MS Word documents even in extremely crucial conditions like formatted hard drives, unexpected crashes of MS Office, virus attacks, registry errors in the operating system, etc. The more important thing to mention here is that it recovers Word files in the same and original format with the structure and properties of the file intact. Further, it facilitates a preview of all the items on your document like graphs, tables, forms, hyperlinks, images, and OLE objects which help you to check before you save it.

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The present blog is an endeavor to help our precious readers to recover their important lost Word documents with ease. We have given some tips to get rid of MS Word corruption. This helps our readers to avoid wastage of time and labor besides avoiding loss of data. We hope you found this blog helpful and appreciate our efforts.

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