Excel Tutorial: How To Recover Excel Data Lost


Losing important Excel data can be a nightmare, especially when it contains crucial information for your work or personal projects. The frustration and inconvenience of having to recreate the lost data can be overwhelming. In this blog post, we will discuss how to recover lost Excel data, saving you time and stress.

Key Takeaways

  • Excel data loss can be a significant inconvenience and can disrupt work or personal projects.
  • Common causes of Excel data loss include accidental deletion, software crashes, file corruption, and hardware failure.
  • Built-in Excel recovery options such as autosave, recover unsaved work, and workbook repair can help in recovering lost data.
  • Using third-party data recovery tools and implementing preventative measures can help in preventing future data loss.
  • Best practices for Excel file recovery include stopping the use of the affected file immediately and keeping calm and patient during the recovery process.

Common Causes of Excel Data Loss

Excel is a powerful tool for organizing and analyzing data, but data loss can occur due to various reasons. Understanding the common causes of Excel data loss can help you prevent it from happening and recover lost data more effectively.

  • Accidental deletion
  • Accidentally deleting important data in Excel is a common cause of data loss. This can happen when you delete a cell, a range of cells, or an entire worksheet without intending to do so.

  • Software crashes
  • Excel may crash unexpectedly due to software bugs, system errors, or incompatible software installations, leading to data loss if the file was not saved prior to the crash.

  • File corruption
  • File corruption can occur due to various reasons such as sudden power outages, hardware malfunctions, or viruses, causing the Excel file to become inaccessible or unreadable.

  • Hardware failure
  • Hardware failure, such as a hard drive failure or a storage device malfunction, can result in the loss of Excel files if they are not properly backed up.

Excel Tutorial: How to recover excel data lost

When working on Excel, losing your data can be a nightmare. But fear not, Excel comes equipped with built-in recovery options to help you retrieve your lost work. Here's a breakdown of some of the key features:

Built-in Excel Recovery Options

  • Autosave feature
  • The Autosave feature in Excel automatically saves your work at regular intervals, helping you recover data in case of a system crash or accidental closure of the file.

  • Recover unsaved work
  • If Excel crashes or closes unexpectedly, you can recover unsaved work by navigating to the 'File' tab and selecting 'Info'. Here, you can find a list of recent unsaved workbooks and restore them.

  • Restore previous versions
  • Excel allows you to restore previous versions of your workbook using the 'Version History' feature. This is especially useful if you need to revert back to an earlier version of your work.

  • Workbook repair
  • In the unfortunate event of a corrupted workbook, Excel offers a built-in repair option. You can use the 'Open and Repair' feature to attempt to recover and repair the damaged file.

Third-Party Data Recovery Tools

When it comes to recovering lost Excel data, using third-party data recovery tools can be a game-changer. These tools offer a range of benefits and can make the data recovery process more efficient and effective.

Discuss the benefits of using third-party tools

  • Advanced Recovery Options: Third-party tools often offer more advanced recovery options compared to built-in Excel features, allowing for a greater chance of recovering lost data.
  • Time-Saving: These tools can save time by quickly scanning for and recovering lost data, reducing the manual effort required.
  • Increased Success Rate: Third-party tools are designed specifically for data recovery, increasing the likelihood of successfully retrieving lost Excel files.

Recommend popular data recovery software options

  • Stellar Data Recovery: Stellar offers a user-friendly interface and a range of recovery options for Excel files, making it a popular choice among users.
  • EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard: EaseUS is known for its powerful data recovery capabilities and ease of use, making it a reliable option for recovering lost Excel data.
  • Disk Drill: Disk Drill is another widely used data recovery tool that provides robust recovery features for Excel files, ensuring a high success rate.

Highlight key features to look for in a data recovery tool

  • File Type Support: Ensure that the data recovery tool supports the recovery of Excel files, including various file formats such as XLS, XLSX, and CSV.
  • Deep Scan Capability: Look for a tool that offers deep scan capabilities to thoroughly search for and retrieve lost Excel data from various storage devices.
  • User-Friendly Interface: A user-friendly interface can make the recovery process easier and more efficient, especially for those without extensive technical knowledge.
  • Preview Functionality: A preview feature allows users to view recoverable Excel files before proceeding with the recovery, ensuring the right files are retrieved.

Preventing Future Data Loss

Losing important data in Excel can be frustrating and time-consuming. To prevent future data loss, it's important to take proactive steps to protect your files. Here are some key strategies to consider:

  • Regularly back up Excel files
  • Regularly backing up your Excel files is the best way to ensure that you never lose important data. Set a regular schedule for backing up your files, whether it's daily, weekly, or monthly. You can use cloud storage services like Google Drive or Dropbox, or an external hard drive to store your backups.

  • Enable autosave feature
  • Excel has an autosave feature that automatically saves your work at regular intervals. Make sure to enable this feature to avoid losing your data in the event of a system crash or power outage.

  • Use reliable storage devices
  • When saving and backing up your Excel files, use reliable storage devices such as USB drives, external hard drives, or reputable cloud storage services. Avoid using old or damaged storage devices that may be prone to corruption or failure.

  • Avoid opening suspicious files
  • Be cautious when opening Excel files from unknown or untrusted sources. Malicious files can contain harmful viruses or malware that can corrupt or delete your data. Always scan files with antivirus software before opening them, and only download files from reputable sources.

Best Practices for Excel File Recovery

Losing important data in an Excel file can be a frustrating experience, but there are steps you can take to recover the lost information. Here are some best practices for Excel file recovery:

A. Stop using the affected file immediately

As soon as you realize that you have lost data in an Excel file, it is important to stop using the affected file immediately. Continuing to use the file can overwrite the lost data, making it more difficult to recover. It is best to save a copy of the file and work from that, rather than risking further data loss in the original file.

B. Use data recovery software as soon as possible

There are many data recovery software programs available that can help you retrieve lost Excel data. It is important to use these programs as soon as possible, as the longer you wait, the more likely it is that the lost data will be overwritten. Look for reputable data recovery software that is specifically designed for Excel files.

C. Consider seeking professional help

If you are unable to recover the lost data using data recovery software, it may be worth considering seeking professional help. There are data recovery services that specialize in retrieving lost data from Excel files. While this option may be more expensive, it can be worth it if the lost data is extremely valuable.

D. Keep calm and patient during the recovery process

Recovering lost data from an Excel file can be a time-consuming and frustrating process. It is important to keep calm and patient during the recovery process, as rushing or becoming frustrated can lead to mistakes that make the recovery process even more difficult. Take your time and carefully follow the steps recommended by the data recovery software or professional service.


Recapping the importance of recovering lost Excel data, it is crucial for individuals and businesses to minimize the impact of data loss. Implementing preventative measures such as regular backups and using error-checking tools can help safeguard against potential data loss. Additionally, recovery options and tools can be invaluable in retrieving lost data and avoiding productivity disruptions. By recognizing the significance of data recovery and taking proactive steps, Excel users can ensure the security and reliability of their important files.

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