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Category: Microsoft Office
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Experience:  I have been using Office Pro for 10 years and implemented applications for business use.
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does anyone know how to recover an autorecovered excel file

Customer Question

does anyone know how to recover an 'autorecovered' excel file that i deleted accidentally?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Microsoft Office
Expert:  cpugeek replied 4 years ago.

I'd be happy to assist you. This autorecovered file appeared in the autorecover panel in Excel, and you discarded it? Is that correct?

Thank you.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Expert:  cpugeek replied 4 years ago.
Thank you for the reply.

My suggestion would be to download a file recovery tool and see if it can be located; the challenge with recovery files is the naming used when it is in a "temp" state, and you may have to wade through a lot of files to see if you can determine which one it is.

A good one I've used many times, including this weekend to recover deleted images from a memory card, is called Recuva.
You can get a copy of it from this address:

You want the free version, which is essentially the same as the professional version, but it has no support from the vendor.

After you download and install it, run it and you will be presented with a Wizard.
Click "next" on the first screen
Click "Documents" on the file type screen
Click "next"
Choose the location (if you have multiple hard drives, select "in a specific location" and choose c:\, then click next)
If you're not sure of the location, accept the default selection and click "next"
On the final screen, click "start"

the scan will begin; when it's complete, you'll be presented with a list of deleted files; if it has a red circle next to it, it's unrecoverable.
If it's green, it's generally recoverable.
If it's yellow, it's been partially overwritten and may or may not be recoverable.

Put a check mark in the checkbox next to the file names you wish to recover, then click the "recover" button in the lower right.

If you don't find the file you're looking for, you can run a "deep scan", or you can go back to the beginning and select "all files", which broadens the analysis quite a bit and will provide you with much greater file recovery possibilities.

If you're on a Windows machine, the two places generally used for storing temp files by MS Office are as follows (which is where you'll want to focus your attention in the results list in Recuva):
C:\ Documents and Settings\\Local Settings\Temp

(replace with the name you are logged into your computer with)

Thank you, and please let me know if you are able to run this and how the results turn out.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.


i recovered an excel file but it says file ext or format not valid and won't open....

Expert:  cpugeek replied 4 years ago.
Thanks for the reply.

Try renaming the file as an xls or xlsx, which may allow you to open it.

You may also find tmp and similarly named files where your primary documents are, which you may also be able to recover and then rename to allow them to open.

Let me know how that works.

Thank you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

all i found where 5 files altogether. does that make sense? 3 are pdfs, one is a docx, and the third was this xlsx file.


By the way, when I changed the name to xls it opened, but it came out all jumbled....

Expert:  cpugeek replied 4 years ago.
Hello, and thanks for the reply.

It is possible that the file is not available to be recovered. They are temp files and are removed when discarded from the auto recover window. However, Have you tried the deep scam yet?

If not, you can run a new scan using the deep scan and all files options on the whole hard drive to be sure. You'll get many more files returned, but you can sort them by clicking on the column headings in the results window to make it easier to review the results.

Thank you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I told you i ran the deep scan

Expert:  cpugeek replied 4 years ago.


Thank you for the reply.

I don't see a mention of deep scan in any of your replies, but thank you for confirming that you have already run it.

When you run a deep scan you should see far more than 5 files in the results. When you have the scan screen open and you select "scan all files", the results screen will have a file type field in the upper right hand corner. That field should be empty in order to show all files of all types.


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