How to Recover Latest Windows Update Deleted Files (21H2/2004)

Losing important documents or files due to Windows 10 update or forced update really makes people annoyed. If your files are deleted by Windows 10 version 1903/1809/17763.107 update, or you lose important documents after Windows 10 update without backups, don't be panic. Follow effective methods and solutions here to get your lost files back.

 Download for Win Recovery Rate 99.7%
 Download for Mac Trustpilot Rating 4.4

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Windows Update Deleted Files - Files Missing After Windows Update

Windows 10 is a service, which means it gets better through periodic software updates. The great news is you usually don't have to do anything! If you have enabled automatic updates, new updates will automatically download and install whenever they're available, so you don't have to think about it. But some users say the Windows update wiped the computer. Files are missing after the update. Here are the real cases from the Microsoft forum:

"My 'Documents' folder is missing somehow causing all of my personal documents (Word docs, spreadsheets, etc) to disappear... My last backups are ancient," This is one case from Twitter."

related articles

Does Updating to Windows 11/10 Delete Files?

Does updating to Windows 11 delete files? You can get the answer in this post. Besides, you are going to learn the way to upgrade to Windows 11 for free.

does Windows 11 update delete files?

"Immediately after installing the latest Windows 10 update, my computer would power on, and the mouse would work until it was fully rebooted, and then the mouse would become unresponsive. Control alt delete would not work. I would have to shut the computer off using the power button. I tried this multiple times. Finally, I got where the mouse would work. Cleaned up some stupid random things off my desktop, emptied the recycle bin.  I tried to open an important file I use all the time, and it's gone.  I started finding several files gone.  Read online that others have found this update deletes files and puts in the recycle bin.  So, of course, when I emptied the recycle bin, there they went, I guess. What the heck???????????? You guys need to fix this and fix it fast before this messes up other people's lives. I don't even know which files are there and which aren't. Thankfully I have things backed up to Carbonite, but I will have to do a complete system restore. All thanks to a stupid Windows update."

windows update wiped my computer files

It's annoying to find that essential data or files get deleted due to system update. Things even become worse when Windows 10 updates automatically, causing quite many unexpected troubles to quite a lot of Windows 10 users. How to restore those deleted files due to Windows 10 update? Read and find effective data recovery solutions here now:

  1. Recover Windows Update Deleted Files with Software
  2. Restore Files via Windows.old Folder
  3. Check Your Temporary Profile
  4. Re-enable Windows 10 Administrator Accounts

Tip 1. How to Recover Windows Update Deleted Files (Recommended)

Whenever you lose files after Windows 10/8.1/8/7 update, you can try this reliable way. The quickest and most effective way to restore lost documents after Windows 10 update is using data recovery software. EaseUS data recovery software serves great Windows users with powerful data recovery capacity for restoring lost data due to system updating.

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard

  • Recover deleted, formatted, and inaccessible data in different data loss situations.
  • Recover deleted photos, audio, music, and emails from any storage effectively, safely, and completely.
  • Recover data from the recycle bin, hard drive, memory card, flash drive, digital camera, and camcorder.
 Download for Win Recovery Rate 99.7%
 Download for Mac Trustpilot Rating 4.4

Download EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard and restore lost documents after Windows 10 forced the update.

Step 1. Choose the file location to scan

Run EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard on your computer. Choose the drive where you lost files and click "Scan". If your lost files were on an external storage device, connect it to your computer firstly.

select the file location and click scan

Step 2. Scan the lost files

The software will start immediately a quick scan for deleted files, and later a deep scan will launch automatically to scan more lost files all over the selected drive. After the scan, you can use the Filter to quickly filter a specific file type.

scan the lost files

Step 3. Preview and restore files

Double-click on a file allows for a full preview. Finally, select the desired files, click "Recover" and browse another safe location to save all the files at once.

recover lost files

Tip 2. Restore Missing Files via Windows.old Folder

Windows create a folder named Windows.old and place all data of the previous version after each updating. The available time is 10 days for the folder, so pay attention to the date. The folder locates local drive C: and is easy to navigate. Here are the steps to start.

Step 1. Navigate to "This PC -> Local Disk (C:) -> Windows.old folder".

Step 2. Find the files you've missing after Windows 10 Update (version 1903/1809). 

Step 3. Copy and paste the files that you want from each folder to a folder in Windows 10.

For more detailed steps with screenshots, refer to how to restore windows.old files in Windows 10.

Tip 3. Check Your Temporary Profile to Restore Files

You can recover deleted files after a Windows update by checking whether you're signed in with a temporary profile or not.

Step 1. Go to Settings > Accounts > Sync your settings.

If you are signed in with a temporary profile, a message will pop up at the top saying you are logged on with a temp profile. Roaming options are currently unavailable.

check tem profile to restore windows 10 update lost files

Step 2. After this, Windows will attach an extra account to yours. Then please restart the PC and sign in again to get your account settings and data back.

Tip 4. Re-enable Windows 10/11 Administrator Accounts

Another way to retrieve Windows update deleted files is by enabling the Administrator accounts.

Step 1. Type computer management in the search box and select the Computer Management app.

Step 2. Select "Local Users and Groups", then open the Users folder.

If the user named Administrator has a down arrow, it's been disabled. You all need to re-enable it.

find  missing files after windows 10 update

Step 3. Double-click the Administrator icon and open "Properties". Then uncheck Account is disabled and then select "Apply".

log in to find windows update deleted files

Step 4. Log out and log in to Windows 10 as an Administrator account again.

Then you may be able to see your previous data or documents which were removed by Windows 10 update.

Important Suggestions from Microsoft (After Windows 10/11 Update)

If you have manually or automatically checked for Windows updates and believe you have an issue with missing files after an update, please minimize your use of the affected device and contact us directly at +1-800-MICROSOFT to find a local number in your area. You can also contact the support team to get help on the official website. 

If you have manually downloaded the Windows 10 version 21H2/2004 Update installation media, please don't install it and wait until new media is available. Microsoft promises to recover files deleted by Windows 10 bug. You have to wait for this solution.

If data recovery is an urgent issue for you, you must follow the first solution to get back deleted files after Windows 10 update.

Safe Steps to Update to the Newest Version of Windows 10

If you want to update to Windows 10, you must follow the steps below to avoid data loss.

1. Take A Full Backup Before Windows Update

A full system backup enables you to downgrade Windows anytime even if you've exceeded the 10 days' rollback limitation. It's time to make full preparation for a risk-free and worry-free update.

backup data before windows 10 update

2. Increase or Extend System Disk/C Drive

To install the update for your PC, you're strongly suggested to leave enough room on the system disk partition. EaseUS Partition Master can assist you well with increase C drive space by resizing or moving other drives like D, E, or F to get more space.

Add space to C drive

3. Free up disk space by cleaning up junk files in Windows 10 C drive

EaseUS CleanGenius clears system junk files, caches in browsers, and applications on the system C: drive. Click to free up disk space in Windows 10.

Step 1. DOWNLOAD and install EaseUS CleanGenius. On EaseUS CleanGinus, click "Cleanup" and click "Scan" to start cleaning up the system and make your PC as good as new.

system cleanup step 1

Step 2. The software will scanning all over your computer to find idle data files that take a huge amount of disk space, you can select useless large files, system junk files and Windows invalid entries and click "Clean" to start system cleanup process.

system cleanup step 2

Step 3. When the scan is complete, click "Done" to finish cleaning system junk files.

system cleanup step 3

If you have done the two steps above, then you can upgrade to the newest version of Windows 10 without any data loss problems. If you want to install the newest version of Windows 10, you can install Windows 10 from USB on your PC.


In a word, setting up a system backup is probably the best way to ensure against data loss before updating Win 10. Then users can recover lost files from the system back up after updating Windows 10 to the latest build version. If you don't have any backup, using EaseUS data recovery software is the best choice.

Restore Windows 10/11 Update Lost Files FAQs

If you deleted a file in Windows 10, you could recover it even if it's no longer in the Recycle Bin. If you still have problems, you can read these frequently asked questions to learn more.

How do I recover deleted files after a Windows update?

To restore missing files after Windows forced update:

Step 1. Run EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard on your computer. Choose the drive where you lost files and click "Scan". If you lost files were on an external storage device, connect it to your computer firstly.

Step 2. After the scan, double-click on a file allows for a full preview. Finally, select the desired files, click "Recover" and browse a location to save all the files at once.

Is it safe to delete Windows update files?

When you install updates from Windows Update, Windows keeps older versions of the system files around. This allows you to uninstall the updates later. It is safe to delete as long as your computer is working properly, and you don't plan on uninstalling any updates.

How long does Windows 10 update take in 2021?

About 20 to 30 minutes. If you've already installed that update, the newest version should only take a few minutes to download. But if you don't have the 2021 Update installed first, it could carry about 20 to 30 minutes or longer on older hardware.

Why is Windows 10 Deleting files?

Storage Sense in Windows 10 is a new feature. When you enable it, Windows will automatically delete unused files when the computer is low on disk space. For instance, it can automatically delete files older than 30 or 60 days from the Recycle Bin or delete temporary files to free up some space.

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Updated by Brithny

Brithny is a technology enthusiast, aiming to make readers' tech life easy and enjoyable. She loves exploring new technologies and writing technical how-to tips. On her spare time, she loves sharing things about her favorite singer - Taylor Swift on her Facebook or Twitter.

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Written by Tracy King

Tracy joined in EaseUS in 2013 and has been working with EaseUS content team for over 7 years. Being enthusiastic in computing and technology, she writes tech how-to articles and share technical solutions about Windows & Mac data recovery, file/system backup and recovery, partition management and iOS/Android data recovery.

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