How To Recover Unsaved Word Documents? [Hacks & Mods]

Have you ever accidentally closed a word document without saving it? Yes, we have all been through those typical OMG situations.

However did you know that there is a way to recover unsaved word documents, or create a provision to automatically documents?

Also Read: Microsoft Word Alternatives | Microsoft Office Alternatives

Microsoft Word 2007 and above has an option to setup auto recovery of documents.

Go to the Word option (Microsoft Word 2007) from the word menu and navigate to Advanced tab, you will find various unchecked boxes, now check Always create backup copy then Allow background saves that will help you to recover files automatically in the future. The backup of word files are saved with .wbk extension.

In addition to that you can also recover documents from temporary file locations, here is where you might want to look at.

  • C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Application Data\Microsoft\Word
  • C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Local Settings\Temp

Thanks to Rockstar Sid, for this useful tip.

Don’t Forget to Check Out Some Free Alternatives for Microsoft Office And Tips and Tricks for Office

65 thoughts on “How To Recover Unsaved Word Documents? [Hacks & Mods]”

  1. I’m trying to find a word file that i didn’t save by mistake but when i try to go to: C:\Documents and Settings\\Application Data\Microsoft\Word

    there is no ‘application data folder on my computer!
    what does this mean?
    thanks!

    1. @Narges – Which version of Windows are you using? If you are using XP it should be Application Data, if it is Vista or Windows 7 it should be AppData. Also make sure to enable viewing hidden folders.

      1. Where do I go on my computer to find the following File? I have Windows XP. C:Documents and SettingsApplication DataMicrosoftWord

      2. what if out of my mind i didn't save even if it ask to save my document and shut down my comp, and realize "shocks what ive done?" how can i recover that

        1. yes if you are using word 2010 if you open word go to the open tab there should be a folder down the bottom saying recover unsaved documents use that

    2. You need to enable your folder options to show hidden files/folders.

      When viewing your Documents and Settings directory, click tools>folder options>view>show hidden files and folders.

  2. Thanks so much for saving my OMG situation. Just recovered a document and sanity by following your advice. Thanks a million!

  3. hi,
    I’ve been saving changes to a word document (2007), but when i closed the window the changes were not saved to the source file (which was in a winrar folder and not extracted). is there any way to recover that?
    i’m using window 7 as well.

  4. please please please help me. I have sat here for hours on end completing work and my comp just turned off and didnt save any of the data please help me find it

  5. can i retrieve adcument on microsoft word if this keeps coming up. The document name or path is not validCheck the file permissions for the document or drive

  6. i downloaded a word document that i had sent to myself, worked on it and saved it, it doesant seem to be anywere on my laptop??? can anyone help?

  7. Same as everyone else. I emailed myself a document, worked on it for 7 hours ( a script) and when i went to save my masterpiece it did nothing, (even though i thought it did) and now it doesnt exist. How do i recover it?

  8. You are the man! It might be simple for you! but for me you saved me from OMG situation. Thank a lot and lot,
    Dinesh…

  9. i saved some work on my usb but my usb desnt wok anymore is there any way i can retrieve my work from the computer please help me it was coursework like 3 weeks wok and im going to have to do itall again p,lease please help

  10. Hi Guys, for the minority still using Office 2003 on WIN XP, the path to find these lost temp files is:
    C:\Documents and Settings\\My Documents\Word\Autorecover
    Phew!

    1. But I was using windows 7 and saw no file folder named appdata and have tried to find it – help neededd now

  11. I tried saving my Essay thats due tommorow and something must of went wrong because its gone now. And it says its located in temporary internet files but its not. i tried going into autorecover and clicked file location, autorecover,modify but its not there there is nothing there. what should i do now? am i completely Screwed?

  12. Ok so my computer shut itself down to install updates and shut itself down before I saved my doc on Word and I cannot find it anywhere, it didnt auto recover and doesn’t appear in ‘AppData’ ..?

    Any ideas?
    Thanks.

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