How to Recover Deleted Files Mac from the Emptied Trash Bin

Daisy updated on Mar 09, 2020 to Mac File Recovery | How-to Articles


This tutorial provides you with practical solutions on how to recover deleted files Mac even emptied trash bin with Mac data recovery software. It can hopefully recover deleted files from a formatted hard disk, a crashed operating system and even a virus-infected Apple computer.

How to recover Mac deleted files from the emptied trash bin
How to recover deleted files on Mac without software

The following list shows the most typical ways to delete files/folders on a Mac. These deleted items (even not in the Trash anymore) are recoverable by using professional Mac data recovery software.

  • Directly drag files to the Trash and restart the computer.
  • Regularly empty the Trash to remove deleted files for good.
  • Permanently deleted files by using "Option + Command + Delete" hotkeys.
  • Deleted files by clicking on the Finder menu and selecting "Empty Trash...".
  • Bypass Trash to delete files by clicking "Delete Immediately" from the File menu. (On new macOS)

This picture below shows how people lost data on Mac, including intentional and unintentional deletions. This also proves how encouraging to have powerful software to help recuperate the non-existed data files!

this picture is about how you lost data on mac

Why Is It Possible to Recover Deleted Files Mac

Whenever you deleted a file, you remove the entry instead of the data itself. First, the space of this deleted file will be marked as "available" for writing new data. That's the key point why you can apply Mac data recovery software to trace the deep entry and eventually find the raw files!

Accordingly, once new data occupies the marked area for "available", it's getting hard for any piece of software on the market to retrieve replaced and overwritten files. That's it. The sooner you find data recovery solutions, the more deleted files you can get back.

How to Recover Deleted Files Mac Even Emptied Trash

Losing important data is devastating. Fortunately, EaseUS Mac drive recovery program can hopefully recover emptied trash Mac, a formatted hard disk, a crashed operating system and even a virus-infected Apple computer. 

It is capable of recovering permanently deleted files on macOS 10.9-10.15, including photos, audios, videos, documents, emails, and so on. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac supports recovery in APFS, HFS+, HFS X, FAT16, FAT32, exFAT, and NTFS. 

Now, download this ultimate data recovery program to restore trash Mac, even from emptied trash on Mac. 

STAGE 1. Install EaseUS Data Recovery Software for Mac

This is a quick download button for trial version:

File size: around 30 MB
Estimated download time: 2 minutes

The trial version is for you to download for free. It works till the last step when it found all deleted files. The "Recover" button appears grey if it's not activated to a full version using a license key.

But it's a nice try to download the free version to recover files under 2GB. Get it on the product page if interested.

STAGE 2. Scan -> Recover

Step 1. Select the location where your important data & files were deleted and click the "Scan" button.

select the location where data was deleted and click scan

Step 2. The software will run both quick scan and deep scan and work hard to find as many deleted files as possible on the selected volume.

scan the selected disk to find deleted files on your Mac

Step 3. The scan results will be displayed in the left pane. Just select the file(s) and click the "Recover Now" button to get them back.

click recover now button to recover deleted files on your Mac

STAGE 3. Sharing is caring. Help more people in need of getting deleted files back

That's how pretty easy to undelete files and folders from the emptied Trash with an all-in-one solution for Mac deleted recovery! As a matter of fact, the magic tool comes in handy anytime when you lose important data on an internal hard drive, a USB flash drive, a memory card, a pen drive... Why not share your happy moment in regaining the deleted files with others in trouble?

How to Recover Deleted Files Mac Without Software

This part shows you four practical solutions on how to recover deleted files on Mac without third-party software. The first three methods are only used for general deletion. For permanent deletion, you need to use professional Mac data recovery software or Time Machine backup. The following are the text guide you can follow steps by steps to recover trash on Mac.

Method 1. Restore Deleted Files on Mac from Trash

Where is the recently deleted file on Mac? If you drag a file to the trash or right-click on the file and click "Delete", and you haven't emptied the trash can yet, the recently deleted files to go the Trash, the file can be easily restored by the following simple steps.

Step 1. Open the Trash Bin icon on your desktop, and you can see all the deleted files there.

Step 2. Find the files you want to recover, drag them to the desktop. Or right-click on them and select the "put back" option to recover deleted files on Mac from the trash. The files will be returned to their original location.

Method 2. Recover Deleted Files on Mac with Undo Options

Just like on a Windows computer, if you accidentally deleted important files on Mac, you can easily restore them by the "Undo" option. But you should do it immediately after removing the files. It is invalid after you emptying the trash or permanently deleting files.

Option 1. Go to "Edit" and select the "Undo Move" option.

Option 2. Press Command + Z to undo the delete operation.

Method 3. Recover Deleted Files Mac Terminal

If you want to recover deleted files on Mac without software, using Terminal is a nice choice. But note that Terminal command can only recover deleted files from Trash on Mac. If the trash was emptied, look down for the next method.

Step 1. Go to "Finder" > "Applications" > "Utilities" and  double-click "Terminal".

Step 2. Type command cd .Trash and press the "Return" key on your Mac.

Step 3. Type mv xxx../ and hit "Return". (xxx means the name of the deleted file).

Step 4. Type Quit to exit the Terminal window. 

Step 5. Go to "Finder" your Mac. Enter the name of the file you want to recover in the search bar. Then the deleted file will appear.

recover deleted files Mac - using Terminal

Method 4. Recover Deleted Files Mac via Time Machine Backup

Time Machine application is Apple's backup solution for the Mac. If you have enabled Time Machine backup, you can recover deleted data on Mac via a recent backup even you have emptied the trash bin. This way is useless if no backup created before. In the case of recovering emptied trash, refer to EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac.

Step 1. Connect the disk used for Time Machine backup to your Mac and turn it on.

Step 2. You can find the specific files you want to restore using the onscreen up and down arrows to locate it. Then you can preview it by pressing Space Bar.

Step 3. Finally, click the "Restore" button, and then the deleted file will be returned to its original location. 

recover deleted files Mac - using Time Machine backup

Keep regular backups to prevent data loss in the first place

Creating a regular backup is a simple but most effective way to prevent data loss due to unexpected causes. macOS's Time Machine is a great built-in utility to handle backups automatically. All you need is an external hard drive. You can connect the hard drive to your computer, then go to "System Preferences"> "Time Machine"> "Select Backup Disk".

If you don't want to use the Time Machine, you can trust a reliable Mac data backup tool, which lets you back up in full, incremental, or differential modes.

People Also Ask

1. Is it possible to recover deleted files Mac?

Of course, it is possible to recover deleted files on Mac. This page covers a few useful methods to help you do it. You can choose to recover deleted files on Mac with or without software. If you delete a file and haven't emptied the Trash bin, you can restore the deleted files via the "Put Back", "Undo", or "Terminal" option. To recover permanently deleted files without a backup, you need to use EaseUS Mac data recovery software.

2. How do I recover permanently deleted photos from my Mac?

There are two ways available to recover permanently deleted photos from Mac. If you have made a backup, you can restore it from the backup. If not, use the EaseUS Mac data recovery tool instantly. The sooner you recover, the better your chances of recovery.

3. How do I recover permanently deleted files?

To recover permanently deleted files, you can use both Time Machine backup and EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac. Time Machine backup is only valid when you have created a backup recently. If not, try EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac, it can recover any permanently deleted files from HDD (support recovering data from fusion drive), memory card, USB drive, SD card, camcorder, iPod, and more. 


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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why choose EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard?

"EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard is the best we've seen. It's far from perfect, partly because today's advanced disk technology makes data-recovery more difficult than it was with the simpler technology of the past, but it's fast and efficient..."PCMag

"The first thing you'll notice about EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Pro is that its interface is very clear and uncluttered, with only a small collection of self-explanatory controls. You won't find lots of extra options hidden in a system of hidden menus, either; what you see really is what you get."techradar

"Recover lost files, even after deleting a partition or formatting your drive."Macworld

2. Why cannot I recover 2GB data for free?

It is recommended to check the version installed is Free or Trial because they are different versions.

Trial has data preview function but cannot save any files, while the Free version enables to recover 2 GB files. The default free space is 500 MB and you may share the product on social media to get another 1.5 GB.

3. Why cannot the recovered files be opened?

A file is saved as 2 parts on the storage device: directory info (which is comprised by file name, time stamp and size info, etc.) and data content.

If the files with original file names and folder structures cannot be opened, one possible reason is the corrupted directory info. There is still a chance to recover the data content with the RAW Recovery method in our software.

4. Why isn't it suggested to recover the files back to the original drive?

The storage structure of the lost files would be altered or damaged by any changes on the drive. If you save the recovered files back to the same drive, the original data structures and data content would be corrupted or overwritten, which causes permanent data loss. So you should prepare another disk to save the files.

5. How can I check whether my data is recoverable or not before purchase?

The Free version helps you save 2GB files, so verify the recovery quality of our product before purchase.

6. How long does it take to scan the drive?

It strongly depends on the capacity of your hard drive and the performance of your computer. As reference,most drive recoveries can be completed in around 10 to 12 hours for a 1-TB healthy hard drive in general conditions.

About Data Recovery Wizard

It's super easy to recover 250+ types of files after deletion, disk formatting and virus infection. Click the links and compare the difference of each version.