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How to recover deleted files in Windows 10 using the new Microsoft tool

Microsoft offers a free tool called (Windows File Recovery) that allows you to recover deleted files in the Windows 10 operating system easily, as it allows you to recover files and documents deleted from the storage drives in your computer - either HDD or SSD - and external USB drives, Even SD memory cards.

However, you cannot use this tool to recover deleted files from cloud storage services, or files that you share across networks.

Here is a step-by-step guide for how to use this tool to recover deleted files in Windows 10:


First; What is Windows File Recovery:


The new Windows File Recovery tool does not have a graphical interface that allows you to click on deleted files and recover them, but it is based on writing commands and is available as an application in the Microsoft Store that you can easily install on your computer.

This tool requires the installation of the May 2020 version of Windows 10 - also known as (Windows 10 2004) - or any later version of Windows 10, as it does not work with older versions of the system.

Windows File Recovery allows you to recover a wide range of file types, such as: MP3 audio files, MP4 video files, PDF files, JPEG and PNG image files, and Microsoft application files, such as: Word, (Excel) and (PowerPoint).

It is worth noting that you must use the (Windows File Recovery) tool quickly after discovering the deletion of the file or document in order to be able to recover it successfully because the data that is deleted from the storage media is recoverable only before any other data is stored on it.


Secondly; How to use (Windows File Recovery) tool to recover deleted files in Windows 10:


  • Go to the Microsoft Store to download the Windows File Recovery application from here.
  • Once installed, Open the Start menu and search for (File Recovery), then click on it to run it.



  • Click (Yes) when prompted to allow the app to make changes to your device.
    You will see a command prompt window with admin access, and this is where you will run file recovery commands.
     
  • To use this tool; You will run the command (winfr), specify the drive from which you want to recover files, and where you want to save the recovered files, since the deleted file must be saved when recovering to a different drive other than the one that was deleted from it.




In the command prompt window, enter the command in the following format:


winfr source-drive: destination-drive: / switches

  • (source-drive): is the name of the drive from which you want to recover files.
  • (destination-drive): The name of the drive where you want to store the recovered files.
  • [/ switches]: are the various keys that control what the tool is looking for and how it is looking for. For example: When recovering from an operating system drive (usually C), use the “/ n <filter>” and “(/ y: <type (s>”) switches to specify user files or the folder.
  • Microsoft automatically creates a recovery folder for you called (Recovery next to it recovery time and date) in the drive you specified to save recovered files.

Microsoft File Recovery tool supports 3 modes that you can use to recover files, namely: (Default), Segment and Signature.

Here are examples of the default mode:


Suppose you want to recover a file named (QuarterlyStatement.docx) from drive C: to drive E, the command you type will be as follows:

winfr C: E: /n \Users\<username>\Documents\QuarterlyStatement.docx

Suppose you want to recover png or jpg images from folder (s) to a new folder in drive E, the command you type will be as follows:

winfr C: E: / n \ Users \ <username> \ Photos \ *. JPG / n \ Users \ <username> \ Pictures \ *. PNG 

If you need to recover an entire folder from drive C: to a folder in drive E:

  \ winfr C: E: / n \ Users \ <username> \ Documents

Always remember to place the backslash “\” at the end of the folder name.

To use other modes, the build of the command remains largely the same, with some minor changes. For example: when using Segment mode, there will be an addition of the command “/ r” before “/ n”:

Suppose you want to recover a PDF or Word file from drive C: to a folder in drive E, the command will look like this:

  winfr C: E: / r / n * .pdf / n * .docx

When using (Signature) you will use “/ x”, for example when trying to recover JPEG and PNG images, the command will be as follows:

 winfr C: E: / x / y: JPEG, PNG
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