4 Best Free Methods to Recover Data in Windows

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Recovering lost data on a Windows computer can be a daunting task, causing anxiety and frustration. Luckily, the digital age provides a plethora of free methods to help you regain access to your precious files. In this article, we will delve into the most effective and free methods to recover data in Windows, each offering a distinct approach to retrieving lost data.

1. Stellar Data Recovery Free

Stellar Data Recovery Free stands out as a potent tool, designed to excel at recovering deleted or lost files from Windows systems. Its user-friendly interface ensures accessibility for users of various technical proficiency levels. The software boasts wide-ranging file type support, spanning documents, photos, videos, and more.

With Stellar Data Recovery Free, you have two scanning options: the quick scan promptly locates recently deleted files, while the deep scan meticulously searches through your storage device to recover data lost due to formatting, corruption, or other causes. The added perk of previewing recoverable files empowers you to select only the essential data for restoration.

2. Windows File History

Exclusive to Windows 10 and 11 users, Windows File History presents a built-in feature that serves as a robust method for data recovery. Beyond its backup capabilities, it equips you to recover lost or deleted files with ease.

Recovering a lost file using Windows File History involves a straightforward process. By right-clicking the folder where the file was initially stored, you can opt to “Restore previous versions.” This action prompts a display of available versions, allowing you to select and recover the desired file. This feature proves invaluable for retrieving earlier file versions that may have been inadvertently modified or overwritten.

3. Shadow Copies (Previous Versions)

Windows offers an additional tool known as “Shadow Copies” or “Previous Versions,” which automatically generates snapshots of your files at regular intervals. These snapshots serve as historical file versions that can be leveraged for recovery purposes.

To recover a file using Shadow Copies, initiate a right-click on the folder housing the lost file. By selecting “Restore previous versions,” you can peruse the versions at your disposal and choose the one you wish to restore. This method proves particularly effective for retrieving files that might have been deleted accidentally or lost due to unforeseen glitches.

4. CMD (Command Prompt) Recovery

For adept users familiar with command-line operations, the Command Prompt emerges as a potent tool for manual data recovery. This method proves effective, especially for restoring hidden files or folders that may have been concealed unintentionally.

Engaging in Command Prompt recovery involves navigating to the Command Prompt and employing commands such as “attrib” to unveil hidden files and folders. Additionally, the “chkdsk” command comes into play, helping to identify and resolve disk errors that could potentially grant access to previously inaccessible data.


Facing data loss on a Windows system may be unnerving, but a myriad of free methods is at your disposal for data recovery. Whether you opt for the user-friendly approach of a free data recovery software like Stellar Data Recovery Free or the built-in features like Windows File History and Shadow Copies, or the command-line finesse of the Command Prompt, you possess an array of tools to aid you.

Swift action is paramount in data recovery endeavors. Timely intervention maximizes the odds of successful data retrieval. Also, exercise caution to minimize drive usage on the affected device, as this will prevent further data overwriting. By selecting the method that aligns with your proficiency and following instructions diligently, you elevate the prospect of reclaiming your cherished data and mitigating the repercussions of data loss.

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