How to Recover Deleted/Unsaved Microsoft Word Documents on Mac [2022]

|by Nitzsche, Updated on Jan 4, 2022

Microsoft Word is a great and one of the most commonly used apps for the creation and management of text-based content in the form of documents due to its simplicity and variety of options. Most users encounter the problem of not saving their data due to the fact that they focus on their work so much so that they even forget to perform the most essential part which is saving the work. Also, other users complete their tasks and mistakenly end up deleting their work after all their progress or even lose their work to viruses and to other unforeseen circumstances. This can feel frustrating to know all your progress has been erased with a single click or two especially knowing that Microsoft is a third-party app and Apple does not save its documents on iCloud hence no chances of automatic saves. Fortunately, there are 4 ways available for you to get back your Microsoft Word documents on Mac and these methods will all be covered below;

Part 1. How to Restore Unsaved Word Doc from AutoRecovery

Microsoft Word contains a built-in feature known as AutoRecover. This feature helps to save the Word documents every about 10 minutes. This permits you to perform automatic saves and having good restore points in case of any unexpected shutdown of the app.

If you have lost your Word document or it shuts down unexpectedly, going to AutoRecover save files can help you find part if not all of your Word document on Mac. To recover lost Word document on AutoRecover on Mac:

  1. Go to Finder on your Mac
  2. In the menu bar, click on "Go"
  3. Choose "Go to Folder"
  4. Then enter the following string (Including the username of your Mac’s Profile)

This will direct you to the "Containers" folder of your Library. Scroll down and find "" and search for the document. Also, it is possible for this document to be found in another Microsoft folder within the container folder. So this method may require patience from your part.

Part 2. How to recover Unsaved Word Doc from the Temporary folder

Every Mac has temporary storage (a folder) where it temporarily keeps stuff and this may include your Word document. To recover your lost or unsaved Word document on your Mac through this method, you will require the use of Terminal as follows:

  1. Open Terminal
  2. Type the command open $TMPDIR
  3. Locate the "TemporaryItems" folder from the various appearances.

If you are fortunate to find your Word document in the temporary items folder, you can restore it by right-clicking on it or pulling it out of the folder into another folder.

Part 3. How to Retrieve Deleted Word Documents from Time Machine Backup

Time Machine when enabled on Mac performs a backup every 24hours hence if your Word document is about that old or older then there is a possibility that your Word document was saved in a Time Machine backup making things easier for you. To proceed with recovering your unsaved or lost word file with Time Machine, you should follow the steps below:

  1. Locate and open Time Machine on your Mac.
  2. Using the timeline, locate the unsaved or lost Word document.
  3. As soon as you find the Word document, restore it by selecting it and clicking on the Restore button.

This method is a situation saver but will only function if Time Machine was turned on before the Word document was lost. Otherwise, this method will not help in any way.

Part 4. How to Recover Unsaved/Deleted Word Documents with Software

If you are still unable to get back your important Word document with any of the above methods, then the best way of recovering this is by using iBatsoft Data Recovery for Mac. This is the data recovery app that will handle the situation by helping you to find your Word document no matter the scenarios in which you lost your Word document. Very compatible with Mac OS as well as many different types of hard drives, you rest assured to find your file no matter the type of Mac or hard drive you use. iBatsoft Data Recovery provides two scanning modes for data recovery; a quick scan and a deep scan. This increases your chances of recovering your Word document. Very easy to use, you do not require any trained experts before being able to operate with it as it is user-friendly and not complex.

In order to recover your Word document, using the best data recovery software on Mac:

  1. Download and Install iBatsoft Data Recovery for Mac. Then launch the application.
  2. Select the location where the Word document was before it was lost and click on “Scan” beside the drive.
  3. By default a quick scan process will begin and the application will search for lost documents.
  4. When it is done, it will display what was found. Preview and try to locate your word document. If you don’t see it, perform a ultimate scan. It is a more intense search process and will take more time. As soon as the deep scan is completed, you should now be able to find your Word document.

This tutorial covers 4 different ways of recovering unsaved Microsoft Word documents on Mac. This should be able to provide you with the assistance you need during the recovery process. From now on, make sure you save your Word document as you progress in order to prevent unforeseen happenings that may put you into the same data loss troubles.

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