How to recover an unsaved Word

retrieve word

It has happened to everyone at some point: we are working on a text document in Microsoft Word and suddenly the program closes, the computer shuts down, or the text simply disappears. Then we realize that we have not saved the document. These are moments of panic and frustration, as if all the work we have done had been for nothing and we had to start over from scratch. Above all, calm down: in this post we are going to see how to recover unsaved word

The truth is that there are some ways, more or less effective and reliable, to recover deleted or lost Word documents. Let's review them below.

Users of Word and other similar programs who already carry some experience often acquire the healthy habit of press the "Save" button as they progress through the text. By doing this, we make sure that we will always be able to rescue the text from that point. However, this is not a completely foolproof system either, since in some circumstances the document can go away and appear unrecoverable.

Install fonts in Word
Related article:
How to add fonts to Word

However, it is reassuring to know that, like other programs of the same style, Microsoft Word also incorporates the "AutoSave" function or autosave. To know if we have this potion activated on our computer we have to follow these steps:

  1. First we are going to "File".
  2. Then we open "Options" and we select "Advanced".
  3. Finally, we will "Save" and we choose the option "Always create a backup."

It should also be noted that it is possible recover unsaved files by various means– Through temporary files, self-recovery files, using the document recovery method, rescuing them from the recycle bin, and resorting to data recovery solutions. We are going to discuss all these solutions below.

We should also mention the possibility of automatically saving all documents in the cloud. To do so, we will follow these steps:

  1. Let's go to the menu "Archive" and there we select the option "Save as".
  2. We choose OneDrive.
  3. Finally, we assign a name to the file and click on "Save".

Restore from trash

paper bin

Hopefully, the unsaved Word document that we have lost may have ended up in the trash. In this case the recovery is very simple:

  1. We open the trash can.
  2. We search for the document (by name, file type, date of deletion, etc.).
  3. We right-click and choose the “Restore” option.

If the document is not in the trash, things get a little more complicated and we will have to use other resources than those that we present below:

Backup Recovery

This method is valid for Windows 10 and 11. Both versions of the Microsoft operating system include this new function of "Backup and Restore". Through it, any user can create backup copies of their data, in order to be able to restore them later, as in the case of recovering an unsaved Word.

This is how you can activate this system on our computers:

  1. Let "Control Panel".
  2. In the menu, we choose the option "Security system" and, within it, that of "Backup and Restore." 
  3. Then we select "Restore my files", after which a restore wizard for file recovery will start.

Recovery through Backup and Restore consists of replacing all the data on our device with backup data.

Using System Restore

system restore

Although we as users ignore it, the System Restore of our Windows is always taking snapshots of our operating system on a regular basis. This is very helpful when we want to undo a certain action, thus returning to a previous point in time.

This works, of course, if we have been careful enough before and have activated the System Restore option. If so, recovery is performed as follows:

  1. We go to the Start menu or the search bar and type "Create a restore point". we press "Enter".
  2. Then we select "System Restore".
  3. Among the different points that appear, we choose the one that suits us best for the recovery of the deleted document and click on "Next".
  4. Finally, it only remains confirm the chosen restore point and click on "Finalize".

After doing this, the computer will have to be restarted for Windows to apply the changes and return us to the point in time in which the lost Word document was still accessible.

It is a very effective method, but it also presents certain risks. One is that it can affect computer drives, as well as recently installed programs and browser updates. Of course, before starting the process, the System Restore function shows us the list of all the programs that will be affected, in case it is necessary to make a backup copy of them.

Unsaved Document Recovery from Word

The same program offers us some practical solutions to try to recover an unsaved Word document. Here are two methods that work:

If we have deleted the document by mistake

  1. Within Word, we go to the tab "Archive" (up to the left).
  2. In the menu that appears, select «Manage document”.
  3. Then we click «Recover unsaved documents«.
  4. We search and select the lost document in the list that appears.
  5. Finally, we restore it using the reset button "Save as".

If the deletion was caused by a Word crash

  1. We start Word again. In some cases, the document will reappear just as we left it. If not, let's "File".
  2. Within this tab, we first select "Options" and then "Save".
  3. The next step is to copy the file path of the AutoRecover file location to paste it later in File Explorer.
  4. Then open the folder with the name of the document and we copy the .asd file with the date and time corresponding to the most recent modification.
  5. Back in Word, click on "Archive", we are going to «To open" and we select the option «Recover unsaved documents».
  6. To finish, we paste the copied file in the folder that appears and open the file to recover it.

The content of the article adheres to our principles of editorial ethics. To report an error click here!.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *



  1. Responsible for the data: Miguel Ángel Gatón
  2. Purpose of the data: Control SPAM, comment management.
  3. Legitimation: Your consent
  4. Communication of the data: The data will not be communicated to third parties except by legal obligation.
  5. Data storage: Database hosted by Occentus Networks (EU)
  6. Rights: At any time you can limit, recover and delete your information.