Top Methods to Recover Deleted Photos on Windows Computer

By Jonny Lin in Others Tags: Data RecoveryWindows

Your important photos on your Windows computer were removed! Perhaps they were accidentally deleted by yourself or someone that had used your computer. Or you thought those photos are useless when you deleted them, but now they are needed again.

No matter what’s caused it, this accident can drive you mad. These deleted photos can be important for your work (your boss or clients want them immediately!) or your life (these are all your precious memory). And you may be thinking that you’ve ruined everything, or trying desperately to find out how you can bring these photos back.

But DON’T WORRY! Your photos can still be saved. The following are the methods that can help you resolve your problem plus a top tip to help you avoid this accident in the future. You can give them a try.

Method 1: Recover your photos from previous versions (This method will only work if you have backed up your photos previously.)
Method 2: Perform data recovery
Final tip: Back up your files regularly

IMPORTANT: Don’t copy, move or delete files or install programs on your computer before you recover your photos. This can prevent your photos from being overwritten and making it harder to recover them.


Method 1: Recover your photos from previous versions

(This method will only work if you have backed up your photos or the folder that stores them or if you have created a system restore point. If you have done neither of these, please use the second method to recover your photos. If you want to know how to back up your files, the final tip at the bottom will show you the detailed process.)

Windows can save the previous versions of your files or folders. These previous versions come from the backups or the system restore points you have created. You can recover your files in a folder by restoring the folder to a previous version before you remove its content.

To use previous versions to recover your photos:

1) Right click the folder you want to recover and select Restore previous versions.

2) Select a previous version from the list of versions. Then click the Restore button.

3) After the system restore you folder, a window will pop up showing you the location of your folder.

4) Open the folder and you will find that all the deleted photos have come back.


Method 2: Perform data recovery

If you have never backed up the photos you deleted, you can try performing data recovery to bring your photos back. Your Windows operating system cannot help you recover your files without a backup copy. You need to recover your photos with the help of a third-party program or a data recovery service.

You can find a lot of data recovery software on the Internet, and some of them have free versions. You can do some research on this type of programs and experiment with several to find out the one that can really help you. But please note that the tool you use should be able to open directly without installation (this helps you protect your deleted photos from being overwritten).

Or you can find a data recovery specialist to recover your deleted photos. Do some research about the data recovery service providers near you. Be extra careful though. A more reputable and trustworthy service provider is more likely to save your photos. If your storage device manufacturer also provides data recovery service, like Seagate, it is recommended you take your computer to them for help.


Final tip: Back up your files regularly

It is still possible that your files will be removed by mistake some day. If you don’t take any measure, you will still get into big trouble just like this. Data recovery does not always work for you, and, even if it does, it takes you a lot of time and money.  So it is strongly recommended that you regularly back up your important files — not just your photos.

To back up your files, you can routinely copy and paste them to your USB flash drive or external hard drive. But you don’t have to do this manually. Your Windows system can do the work automatically for you.

There are some differences between backing up your files on Windows 10 and on Windows 7. The following steps will show you the different processes on these systems.

If you are using Windows 7:

1) Click the Start button at the lower left corner of your screen. Then click Control Panel.

2) Under View by, click Large icons.

3) Click Backup and Restore.

4) Click Set up backup.

5) Select a destination to which you save your backup. You can save it on a partition of your hard drive or on your USB flash drive or external hard drive. You can also save it to another computer on the same network by clicking the Save on a network button. But it’s better for you to save on a flash drive or external hard drive or on a network location in case your hard drive fails. After you choose the destination, click Next.

6) Click the option button of Let me choose to choose what to back up manually. Then click Next.

7) Choose what you want to back up and whether you want to include a system image (this requires larger storage space). Then click Next.

8) Click Change schedule to change the back up schedule if you are not satisfied with it. Then click Save settings and run backup.

9) Your system will automatically run the backup for you.

To back up your files on Windows 10, you should turn on a feature called File History. To do so:

1) Select the Start button at the lower left corner of your screen. Then click the Settings icon.

2) Select Update & Security.

3) Select Backup. Then click More options.

4) Click See advanced settings.

5) Click Select drive in the left pane to select where you want to save your backup.

 6) Select a location from the list to store your backup. You cannot save your backup on the hard drive where the system is installed. It is recommended that you choose to save on your USB flash drive or external hard drive. If you want back up a file on a another computer on the same network, click Add network location. After choosing the location, click OK.

File History is now turned on. It will automatically save copies of your files to the designated location.

If you want to change the settings of backup, go back to the backup settings window and click More options.

You can configure the Backup options, such as when and what you want to back up.

You computer will routinely back up your files. You don’t have to worry about deleting your photos or any other important file by mistake any more.