How to restore deleted files after emptying the Recycle Bin

emptying the Recycle Bin
emptying the Recycle Bin

Here is how it happens: you have almost finished sorting through some files when you suddenly realize that you deleted one too many. This is one of the most common scenarios in the modern world: it is quite unbelievable, but even the original tape recordings of the first human mission on the Moon were erased. Mistakes like this happen all the time. The big question is how to restore the lost data with no sweat.

Fortunately, such a problem can be solved, at least in most cases. Let us consider the best methods, which will allow bringing your data back.

Recovering Deleted Files: How Is It Possible

First off, let us consider the main issue: is it possible to restore deleted files from recycle bin? If the answer is positive, how does it work? After all, the system claims that the “Delete” command actually deletes your files.
Luckily for all of us, there is a giant difference between merely deleting files and erasing them forever. When you hit “Empty Bin”, the system deletes only references to the files on your HDD. The files themselves remain on the disk, at least until you decide to overwrite them with new ones.

From the point of view of your operating system, those parts of the disk, which contain random data, are the same as those, which contain your files. Therefore, it never bothers actually erasing files from the disk. Instead, it destroys all pointers, which lead to them, and considers things done.

Following the flow of time, the files disappear, being gradually replaced by new ones. However, if you start acting quickly, you can manage to recover deleted files from recycle bin before such a loss actually happens.

Restore Your Data With/Without Specialized Software

In most cases, the safest bet is to try specialized software tools for the restoration of lost data. They scan through your disks, find forgotten files, and reopen access to them: almost all recovery tools work this way.
In addition to this option, you may try other approaches, which may help you recover deleted files after empty recycle bin — this guide will teach you how to combine built-in Windows features and the best solutions for data recovery to maximize your chances of getting your files back.

File History

File history is a very convenient feature of the Windows OS, which makes it possible to create, organize, and control a series of backups of the most valuable files on your device. Unfortunately, it is available only in the newest versions of this operating system. On the other hand, it would be unwise to become too attached to the older versions: hence, here is another reason to move on and try newer ones.

Hence, this option does not work for those users who still cannot say goodbye to Windows 7 and its predecessors. Nonetheless, if you have a newer version, you may restore your files by following these steps:

  • Find the folder from which you erased the file you are now looking for.
  • Right-click on it.
  • Find the “Restore Previous Version” option.
  • Enjoy!


If you don’t have this awesome feature enabled, you can try dealing with Windows Backups. This is hardly an ideal way to deal with empty recycle bin recovery — and yet it may work in certain cases. This feature makes it possible to create and regularly recreate backups of several important libraries.

Recovering your data from a Windows backup is a very simple and time-saving task: however, it is useless when you deal with those files that have not been archived in the said libraries.

Disk Drill

As for the best software solutions, which may help you with this problem, Disk Drill seems to be the most promising choice. Thanks to it, you can recover a deleted folder in Windows 10 in just a few clicks: compatible with hundreds of formats, fast and simple, it is a current leader in the industry.

Although it was designed predominately with average users in mind, it has found a warm welcome in business circles thanks to its reliability and versatility. Finally, it is compatible not only with the latest versions of Windows but also with its predecessors, including even XP!