Top 6 ways to recover unsaved Word documents

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 When Word accidentally closes or the program crashes, your unsaved Word document may disappear. If this happens, you may have to work on the document from scratch, which is quite inconvenient.

However, before starting a new document, you can try to retrieve the Word document. Here's how you can recover unsaved Word documents from your computer.


This is the first action you should take when you lose a Word document. The steps are quite simple:
  • Step 1 : On the Windows Search bar , type the document name and press Enter .

  • Step 2 : If the result shows the file in the list of documents, double-click it and it will open in Word.


A file with the .WBK extension is a Word backup, while the .ASD extension represents an autosaved file. You can search if your Word file has a backup or an autosave copy by using the steps below:
  • Step 1 : In the Windows search bar, type .wbk or .asd and press Enter key .

  • Step 2 : Check the search results to see if you have any files presented this way:Backup: Backup of + Filename is missing.Automatically archived file: .asd extension.

  • Step 3 : Double-click the file name to open it.
It is important to note that in order for a Word file to have the .wbk extension, you must enable the backup function in Word. Here's how to check if the function is enabled:
  • Step 1 : Launch Word.

  • Step 2 : Click File .

  • Step 3: Select Options .
  • Step 4 : Click Advanced .

  • Step 5 : Scroll down to the menu titled Save and make sure you check the box that says Always create a backup copy .

  • Step 6 : Select OK to save changes.


You can use Task Manager on Windows to recover unsaved files. However, this requires ending any Word-related processes and restarting Word. Here's how it works:
  • Step 1 : Launch Task Manager .
  • Step 2 : Click the Processes tab .

  • Step 3 : In the application section, check Microsoft Word. If the application is displayed, right-click and select End Task .

  • Step 4 : In the background processes section, check the Word related processes. If a process is displayed, right-click and select End Task .
  • Step 5 : Close Task Manager .
  • Step 6 : Relaunch Word to check if the missing file shows up in Document Recovery . This pane is located on the left side of the Word window.
  • Step 7 : If there are files in the recovery pane, double-click them to open.


Another way to locate unsaved or corrupted Word documents is to search for temporary files. Such files have the extension .tmp. Here's how to locate temporary files on our desktop:
Step 1 : In the Windows search bar, type .tmp or ~ then press the Enter button .

  • Step 2 : Click the Documents tab .

  • Step 3 : Scroll through the list of search results. Do this to identify the names of the files that correspond to the date and time you recently worked on the document.

  • Step 4 : If you locate the file, launch Word and click the File tab .

  • Step 5 : Click Open and select the Folders tab .

  • Step 6 : Navigate to the location of the .tmp file you found earlier and select it to open the file.
Word has a feature called Manage Document that can be used to recover unsaved files. Here's how it works:
  • Step 1 : Launch Word.

  • Step 2 : Select the File tab on the Ribbon .

  • Step 3 : Select Info .

  • Step 4 : Select Manage Documents .

  • Step 5 : Select Recover Unsaved Documents .


If a file is accidentally deleted, it can be recovered if the Recycle Bin has not been emptied. Here's how to do so:
  • Step 1 : Launch Recycle Bin .

  • Step 2 : Search in the list of documents for the filename.

  • Step 3 : If you locate the file, right-click and select Restore .


If you forgot to save your Word document, you should be able to locate your unsaved Word document using any of the methods described above. However, if you accidentally delete a file and it's not in the Recycle Bin, you can use the Microsoft Windows Recovery Tool to recover it.

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