Deleting files is one of the most common operations in computers. Deleting files is meant to clean data or free up more disk space. Usually, you can delete a file on Windows 11 in three ways :

  • Right-click the file, choose Delete from the context menu
  • Choose the file, press the Delete key on your keyboard
  • Select the file, and use the Shift+Delete option to remove it from your computer permanently  

Where do deleted files go on Windows 11?

When you delete files in the above ways, you only remove the entry, not the files themselves. The Windows operating system marks the space available but does not completely erase files. They are still there somewhere.

If you need to undelete Windows 11, you should stop using your device to avoid data overwriting. Then, take any of the following methods to recover deleted files on Windows 11. Each plan is clearly written down when it is applicable. Choose what works best for you. 

🔁Restore Recycle Bin  The deleted files are temporarily kept in Recycle Bin and not emptied.
Deleted file recovery software The most useful method for easy and quick Windows 11 file recovery. 
💻Windows File Recovery If you are a professional and can use the command lines.
💾File History Windows 11 If you have created a backup beforehand.

Restore Recycle Bin to Undelete Windows 11

In Windows 11, the Recycle Bin keeps recently deleted files. Unless you have permanently deleted them or emptied Recycle Bin without checking the items, you can open Recycle Bin and find the files that were deleted. As long as you haven't emptied the Recycle Bin, you can restore deleted files from Recycle Bin to the original location.

To recover Recycle Bin in Windows 11, right-click on it and select "Open". Find the files you want to recover. Right-click the file and choose "Restore", or you can also drag and drop the file anywhere to restore it.

recover deleted file from recycle bin

If you need to restore multiple files, you can click "Manage" on the top toolbar and choose "Restore the selected items" or "Restore all items".

recover multiple deleted file from recycle bin

Undelete Files on Windows 11 with Data Recovery Software

How to restore deleted files not in Recycle Bin Windows 11? The real data loss situation faced by many users who are searching for how to recover deleted files is that the deleted files are neither in the Recycle Bin nor have backup files available for recovery. In this case, don't be discouraged. You can still retrieve your files by using a professional data recovery tool.

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard is safe and reliable to undelete files in your Windows and Mac computers. It supports recovering deleted files from all storage devices, such as HDD, SSD, USB drive, pen drive, SD card, digital camera, camcorder, video player, music player, and more.

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard

 Download for Win Recovery Rate 99.7%
 Download for Mac Trustpilot Rating 4.7

Free download EaseUS Windows 11 data recovery software to recover deleted files in Windows 11 with three steps.

Step 1. Choose the exact file location and then click the "Scan" button to continue.

select the location to scan for deleted files

Step 2. After the process, select the "Deleted Files" and "Other Lost Files" folders in the left panel. Then, you can apply the "Filter" feature or click the "Search files or folders" button to find the deleted files.

check the results

Step 3. Click the "Recover" button and save the restored files – ideally, it should be different from the original one.

recover deleted files

If you still have problems, watch this Windows 11 file recovery video.

  • 00:00 - Lost Windows 11 Files
  • 01:13 - Recover Files with Recycle Bin
  • 01:59 - Restore Files with File History
  • 03:39 - Run EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard

Have you tried EaseUS Windows 11 file recovery software to retrieve deleted folders or files? If it is helpful, share it on your Twitter, Facebook, or  Instagram.


Recover Deleted Folders in Windows 11 Using File History

Windows offers users a free backup utility - File History, and recommend that users back up files to an externally connected drive, such as a USB drive, or you can save to a drive on a network.

File History only backs up files that are in certain system folders, including Documents, Music, Pictures, Videos, and Desktop folders, and the OneDrive files available offline on your PC or laptop. If you have files or folders elsewhere that you want back up together, you can add them to any of these folders.

Once you enable File History, you'll have a complete backup of your files over time. When you accidentally delete important files, or if the original file is corrupted or damaged, you can restore them from backups.

Step 1. Connect the external storage device that contains backup files to your computer.

Step 2. Open the Control Panel box. Type and search "File History". 

Step 3. Click "Save backup copies of your files with File History" from the list of results.

Step 4. Take the following instructions to undelete files in Windows 11 from backups. 

Save backup copies with file history

For the full guide to Backup and Restore in Windows, go to the official page of Microsoft. 

Restore Deleted Files Windows 11 with Windows 11 File Recovery

In addition to restoring lost files from backup, you can use Windows File Recovery, a command-line tool that helps to recover deleted or formatted files from HDD, SSD, USB flash drives, memory cards, and even SD cards. Windows File Recovery is available for Windows 10 2004 and above, including Windows 11.

You should note that this program can't recover all lost file types, and you need to apply it as soon as possible after the files have been removed. Download and run the app from Microsoft Store. Then, follow these basic steps:

Step 1. Press Windows key + X and select"Command Prompt (Admin)" from the listed results.

Step 2. Type winfr into the command prompt and press Enter. This will display all the syntax and options available for using the Windows File Recovery tool.

Step 3. Configure the drive from which the files were deleted and identify the location where you want to keep the restored files. It is recommended to use another external storage device to save the recovered files to avoid overwriting.

Use the command below to recover files from a specific drive:

winfr source-drive: destination-drive: /n file-type /r /f filename

Step 4. Press Enter to execute the command and wait patiently for the recovery to finish. The time required for recovery depends on the file size and disk health.

Windows File Recovery has two file recovery modes: Regular and Extensive. View the complete contents on the Recover lost files - Windows File Recovery page. 

Recover Deleted Files Windows 11FAQs

If you have any other questions about undeleting files on Windows 11, check out the following frequently asked questions.  

Are deleted files gone forever in Windows 11?

When you delete a file, it isn't gone forever. Normally, the deleted files will go to the Recycle Bin. Even if you emptied the Recycle Bin or the deleted files bypassed the Recycle Bin, they are still on your hard drive. Although you can't see them. You can use powerful data recovery software to undelete files.

How to recover permanently deleted files in Windows 11?

You have two ways to restore permanently deleted files in Windows 11:

Check the above step-by-step tutorial.

How to recover permanently deleted files in Windows 11 using CMD?

You can recover permanently deleted files in Windows 11 using CMD with Windows File Recovery. You can launch CMD and input the Winfr syntax to undelete files. However, this tool is suitable for pros, as wrong commands may lead to more data loss and make things worse.

It is recommended that you apply a user-friendly file recovery tool, like EaseUS data recovery program, that allows you to get lost files for accidental deletion, hard drive formatting/corruption or partition loss in simple steps.

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There are four practical solutions to recover deleted files in Windows 11. If you simply delete a file, it will go to the Recycle Bin, and you can restore it easily. If the data is no longer in the Recycle bin and you've created backups before, you can use Windows backup to restore deleted files.

EaseUS data recovery software supports data recovery without backup. No matter how you delete files, you can use this tool to quickly get them back. No technical skill is needed. Even if you are new to a computer, you can recover data in any case.

 Download for Win Recovery Rate 99.7%
 Download for Mac Trustpilot Rating 4.7

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Updated by Cedric

Cedric Grantham is a senior editor and data recovery specialist of EaseUS. He mainly writes articles and how-to tips about data recovery on PC and Mac. He has handled 10,000+ data recovery cases and is good at data recovery of NTFS, FAT (FAT32 and ExFAT) file systems, and RAID structure reorganization.

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Approved by Evan Galasso

Evan Galasso is a digital forensics and data recovery engineer with over 10 years of experience in the field. He presents opinions on the current state of storage media, reverse engineering of storage systems and firmware, and electro-mechanical systems of SSDs and HDDs.

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