How to Recover Deleted Files and Photos on a Mac

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Sometimes and probably because of the multitude of things you do, you accidentally delete files that shouldn’t be deleted. It happens to all of us, whether you are a novice or an experienced multitasker. There are also times when you think you no longer need a document that unknowingly you delete them, but the cosmos has other plans, but then your boss suddenly asks for them. Or maybe you’re trying to free up space on your Mac by deleting old photos, only to find out that you were not able to back up

Unfortunately, for Mac, there is no undo functionality for deleted files. So what happens when you accidentally click Delete? Losing important files or memorable photos can be frustrating especially if you’re the one who deleted them. So, how do you recover deleted files and photos on your Mac?

Recover Files From Trash

The most important factor when trying to recover deleted files on any device is time. The sooner you realize your blunder, the higher the chance of recovery. It can also dictate the method of file recovery you need to perform.

Once you delete a file in your Mac, the usual destination is the Trash that you can find on the Dock. If you can’t undo the delete, you can access the Trash to restore the file from there. To recover your deleted files and photos, follow these steps:

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  1. Click the Trash icon in the Dock. This will open a list of all the deleted files on your computer.
  2. Find the document you are looking for by browsing through the list. You can also search the files by typing in the name of the file in the Finder window.
  3. Click on Trash instead of Mac. This will limit the search to the Trash folder instead of the whole computer.
  4. Choose the file that you want to restore and drag it back to the desktop.

However, keep in mind that this recovery method only works for files that have been deleted recently. The remaining space on your hard drive also affects the recovery process because if the drive is full, your Mac deletes files from your Trash to free up space. So here’s a tip: always clean up your Mac with Outbyte macAries to get rid of unnecessary cache and old files that eat up your hard drive space. Cleaning up your hard drive will not only free up space, it will also boost your computer’s performance.

Recover Files Using Time Machine

If the file has been deleted for quite some time now, there is a possibility that it is no longer in the Trash. In this case, you have to recover your file through the Time Machine. The Time Machine lets you go back in time to find the file that you need. This method is used when the file is no longer in the Trash folder. You can use this method for any type of file you want to recover. Here are the steps to follow and help you restore your deleted files and photos on Mac:

  • Click System Preferences > Time Machine.
  • Select Show Time Machine.
  • Once you’re in Time Machine, open the folder that contains the file that you want to restore.
  • Use the dial on the right to navigate back to the time until the file or photo that you want to restore appears in the folder.
  • Click the file to view, or click and press Space to preview.
  • Highlight the file and click Restore.

Recover Files Using Cloud

If you’re using Dropbox or a similar program, you’ll notice that your files are regularly updated to the latest version on your computer. This means that your uploaded files are also saved in the latest version. So even if you delete your file on your computer, you can always download it from the Dropbox website. Google Drive works in the same way as Dropbox.

Recover Photos on Mac

Restoring a deleted picture is different, especially when you accidentally deleted a photo and it is within the 30-day margin, from recovering a deleted file. The familiar Trash folder from the iPhoto is no longer available. Once you delete a photo on your Mac, the images are not deleted permanently. They are dumped into the Recently Deleted album and you have 30 days to decide if you want to delete them permanently or you want to restore them. If you decide you still want to restore your photos, follow these steps:

  • Select Albums and double-click the Recently Deleted album. It will give you a list of photos you have deleted within the last 30 days. Each photo will have a caption indicating how much time the photo has left before being permanently deleted.
  • Choose the pictures you want to restore and click Recover.
  • If you decide you no longer want to keep all the photos, click Delete All.
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