How to Recover Unsaved Excel File


The shortest and most horrifying story one encounters in their lifetime.

“Microsoft Excel has stopped working”.

Imagine, while working on an important Excel file if the Excel suddenly crashes and you are forced to close it without saving the file, how will it feel? I know it is a terrible feeling and the best way to avoid this scenario is to use the autosave feature. But will this feature also help get back deleted files?

Sadly, it won’t. However, using Advanced Disk Recovery, the powerful data recovery tool you can restore any type of deleted file. In this post, we will explain how to use the Autosave feature and the excellent data recovery tool – Advanced Disk Recovery.

Read Here- How To Recover Lost Files After Upgrading Windows

To save your time, here are quick steps to use Advanced Disk Recovery

Step 1:  Download & Install Advanced Disk Recovery.

Step 2: Launch the recovery tool.
Step 3: Select the location from where you want to retrieve your deleted Excel files.
Step 4: Select the Driver you wish to scan > click ‘Start Scan Now.’
Step 5: Advanced Disk Recovery will give you two scan modes to select from – Quick Scan or Deep Scan. Select either, for thorough scanning we suggest using Deep Scan.
Step 6: Once the scanning is done, review the scan result and select the Excel file to recover.
Step 7: Choose the location where you want to save the file, remember it should not be the same from which you are recovering data.

This is how using Advanced Disk Recovery, you can get back a permanently deleted Excel file. To learn more about the tool click here to jump to the section.

Now, let us learn how we can use the built-in features to recover unsaved or overwritten excel files.

Check Here- How to Recover Deleted Audio files

Best Ways to Recover Delete Excel Files – Windows

Method 1. Recovering Unsaved Excel Files From Windows PC

1. Launch Microsoft Excel.
2. Click File > Open > select Recent
3. At the bottom of the screen, you will find the Recover Unsaved Workbooks button:

open excel file
4. Hit the button to get the list of unsaved files.

save excel file

Here, you will find the recent version of the file you forgot to save before Excel crashed.

Configure the AutoRecover Settings in Excel

1. Launch Excel
2. Go to the File tab > click on Options

3. Click on the Save tab > here check the box next to ‘Save AutoRecover information every <> minutes’ and Keep the last autosaved version if I close without saving’.

Tip: Keep the auto recover duration to a minimum. This ensures files get automatically saved and you don’t lose them.

4. Click on OK.

Must Read- How to Recover Deleted PSD Files

Method 2. Restore Previous Versions From File History

If the above step did not give you any results, you can try recovering your overwritten Excel documents using the File Version option. Remember the feature works only when enabled and when you are using Excel 2010 or 2013.

Note: This will only work if the File History in Windows is enabled. The feature allows you to find and restore older versions of a document, excel sheet, or other files.

1. Press Windows + E to open Windows Explorer.
2. Right-click the unsaved Excel file > select Restore previous versions.

file open with option
3. A window will appear, and you’ll see any previous versions that you can restore.

Additional Tip: Keep a backup of Excel files

Data backup always saves us from losing essential documents. To use this feature in Microsoft Excel 2010 and 2013:

1. Launch Excel > go to the File tab > click on ‘Save as’
2. Next, click on the Browse tab at the bottom.
3. You will now get a Save as a window; at the bottom of it, you will find an option called Tools. From here, select ‘General options’
4. In the new Window, check on ‘Always create a backup.

Every new Excel file you create will have a backup file associated with it. The backed-up Excel files have a .xlk extension.

Method 3: Recovering Permanently Deleted File Using Advanced Disk Recovery

To recover permanently deleted files, Advanced Disk Recovery is one of the most reliable software. Using it, you can get back accidentally deleted Excel documents. The tool is easy to use, and it helps restore files lost for any reason. To make documents recovery seamless, the tool offers two scan options: Quick Scan and Deep Scan.

Where, Quick Scan helps retrieve deleted files quickly from an assigned location Deep Scan option does a thorough digging and helps get back all the data you thought is permanently deleted. The tool is compatible with all versions of Windows operating systems.

Here are the steps to use Advanced Disk Recovery.

1. Download, install and launch Advanced Disk Recovery.

2. Select the areas and location from where you want to recover a deleted file or folder.

Advanced Disk Recovery
3. You will now get two options to select from. For quick scanning, go with Quick Scan. However, for in-depth scanning, choose Deep Scan.

Advanced Disk Recovery scan modes

4. After selecting the scan mode click Scan now to scan the selected drive and storage device for deleted Excel files. Wait for the scan to complete.

Advanced Disk Recovery scan
5. You will now see a list of deleted files. Select the deleted files you want to recover > hit the ‘Recover’ button.

Advanced Disk Recovery recover
6. Select a location where you want to save the recovered file or folder. Make sure it is not the same drive from which you are recovering data.

Advanced Disk Recovery location

7. Advanced Disk Recovery after recovering the files will show a confirmation message.

This is how using Advanced Disk Recovery; you can get back deleted Excel files from your computer.

Also Read- How To Recover Unsaved Word Document On Windows 10


To avoid facing these terrible situations, always create a backup to enable the autosave feature. These features will always come to your rescue. However, if, for some reason, you have forgotten to keep the backup or enable the Autosave feature, no worries, you have Advanced Disk Recovery.

Using this powerful data recovery tool, you can restore any file deleted due to any reason. We hope you find the information helpful and use the methods to retrieve unsaved excel files. Please share your opinion with us in the comments section. For any product-related information, you can contact the technical team at

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About The Author

Preeti Seth
Preeti Seth

A UX writer who loves explaining technical details in a clear, crisp, and concise manner. She loves writing about technical troubleshooting, How-To's, product reviews, etc. In her free time, she loves reading, meditating, and traveling.

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