How to Recover Overwritten Files


Files and folders are often deleted by mistake and we have already shared our recommendations so many times. But there is a more complex case: the accidentally replaced file: for example, when a user-edited a document, he saved it and only then remembered that there was important data in the previous version.

In this article, we will try to do our best and help those who have faced this problem, and we will suggest several ways on how you can recover overwritten files.

Is it possible to rescue an overwritten file?

When you overwrite a file, a part of it (or the entire file) may be permanently lost. Therefore, unfortunately, it is not always possible to recover an overwritten file in its initial state.

Also, the more time has passed, the less chance of undoing the overwrite.

However, cases may differ. A file is not always saved on an old one, so it can sometimes be recovered using cloud storage or integrated Windows tools. This is what we will talk about later.

Recovering the previous version of a file (Windows 7/8/10)

Windows 7, 8 and 10 operating systems allow you to “go back” to the previous version of a document. This function is useful when you have accidentally overwritten a document (for example, made in Word / Excel) and now you want to quickly retrieve its content.

Use a simple Systemrestoreexplorer utility, if you want to make your life easier. This program allows you to open the contents of the system restore point as a folder and extract from there the files and folders that you need and that have been stored there.

Have you deleted a document from a folder and then emptied the Recycle Bin? With a restore point, you can recover the contents of a folder. To do this, select “Restore previous versions” in the context menu (all actions are the same as when a single file is recovered).

Recovering the previous version of a file through Dropbox

Dropbox users are likely to recover overwritten files since the version history of a file is kept in the cloud for up to 30 days.

The “Version History” function works in Dropbox by default and can be found in the context menu of a file or folder. To restore the previous version of the file:

• Go to your Dropbox folder

• In the context menu of a file, select “Version History”.

• In the open list, select the desired document. You should pay attention to the date of the changes.

• Recover the document with the “Restore” command. (Be careful: since the file will be saved in the latest version).

• Simply go to the service and select the version of the document you need. Alternatively, you can easily undo the overwrite through a file manager (Windows Explorer, Total Commander, etc.), if you use the Dropbox desktop application.


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