Best file recovery software for Windows 10 [2020 Guide]

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
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One of the worst feelings a computer user can have is when he/she accidentally deletes some important file or folder. For most users, once the program is removed from the Recycle Bit, it’s treated as lost forever. But, that doesn’t have to be the case anymore.

Even though Windows doesn’t offer its built-in option for recovering lost data (you can try with System Restore, but that usually doesn’t lead anywhere), there’s still something that can be done. You’ve guessed it right, third-party software!

There are q handful programs for recovering your lost data, and each one of them offers something worth mentioning.

So, if you accidentally deleted some precious data, don’t panic, but check out our list of the best file-recovery software for Windows 10 (and older versions of Windows).

Best file recovery software for Windows 10

1. Recuva (recommended)

recuva windows 10

Recuva is one of the most famous, and most popular recovery software for Windows, that almost everyone heard about. And it’s like that for a reason.

The main advantage of this program is the fact that it makes recovering very easy, and almost effortless, even for not so advanced users. Once you open Recuva, the recovery wizard will pop-up automatically, asking you about a file type you want to recover (document, image, compressed, etc.).

When you choose the file type, it will start looking for all deleted files of that kind. You can also set up a specific location where you want Recuva to search for your file, for even more accurate results.

Depending on how hard it is for Recuva to get your files back, you can choose between a quick or deep scan. So, if you’re unable to retrieve your file with a quick scan, try the more complex solution. Once the search is done, all potential files will be listed, along with condition ratings. If your file is available, you can then recover it without any problem.

2. MiniTool Power Data Recovery (recommended)MiniTool Power Data Recovery


MiniTool Power Data Recovery is a staple of what it means to provide a powerful yet efficient software solution. The user interface is extremely simplistic, allowing users of all experience levels to make quick work of this program.

It is a read-only data recovery utility that helps you in recovering your all-important data, regardless of the circumstances that lead to their loss in the first place.

This includes accidental formats, virus problems, software malfunction, file or directory deletion, or even sabotage by a third-party. It works by scanning all volumes in a local machine and then builds a directory tree of all lost and deleted files.

It supports the following formats:

  • FAT 12/16/32
  • NTFS

The recovered files can then be exported anywhere, including network drives, removable media, etc.

All in all, if you are looking for a quick and hassle-free recovery solution, then MiniTool Power Data Recovery is the tool for you.

3. Stellar Data Recoverystellar data recovery

Stellar Data Recovery is yet another data recovery tool that scores high in both simplicity and efficiency.

It can recover all types of data, from text documents to full-length movies from pretty much any media. This includes:

  • Completely crashed & unbootable systems
  • HDDs, SSDs, external USB drives, and optical media
  • Lost or deleted Windows partitions
  • Scratched CDs and DVDs, and more

This program also doubles as an email recovery tool, so you don’t need to get a license for a program specifically for that scenario.

It can recover Microsoft Outlook (PST), Outlook Express (DBX), Exchange Server (EDB), Lotus Notes (NSF) and many other file types.

All you need to do is specify the type of file you are looking for, then specify the location where the program should start searching. Once that is done, the program will proceed with the recovery phase without further user intervention.

This automation makes the program especially useful for those that aren’t too computer-savvy.

4. Wise Data Recovery Wise Data Recovery windows 10

Wise Data Recovery is a great tool for quick recovering. However, this program doesn’t offer as many features as some other programs from this list, but it has a very clean and simple user interface, which makes Wise Data Recovery a very good option for beginners.

For example, you cannot choose a file type you want to recover or some more advanced options. All you need to do to recover data with this tool is to launch it, select a partition you want to retrieve files from, and that’s it.

Once you’ve selected a partition, Wise Data Recovery will quickly scan it, and show you all possible files that can be recovered from a select partition. So, even though it’s very simple and easy to use, it might take some time until you find a file you’re looking for.

Another nice feature of this tool is that it also supports removable hard drives. Even though you cannot select a file type, Wise Data Recovery recognizes most of them, including documents, photos, videos, emails, etc.

5. PhotoRec

PhotoRec windows 10

PhotoRec is probably the best software for recovering media on your computer, you would say. But it’s not like that, as this program does much more.

You can use PhotoRec to recover various types of files, not just from the computer itself, but also from hard drives, CD/DVD, USB flash drives, and memory, which makes this tool pretty flexible for any file recovering action.

PhotoRec has a massive knowledge base, with more than 200 various file formats. This tool even expands its range to recovering full partitions, if needed. So, if you need to recover huge amounts of data, PhotoRec should be in your top choices.

However, this program is not for every regular user, because it has a complex, command-line user interface, which some people might not understand.

The fact that it also doesn’t have mouse support doesn’t make it easier for users to understand how PhotoRec works.

However, the program constantly shows you various on-screen instructions, so if you at least know how to write a command, you shouldn’t have major problems using PhotoRec.