Lost Word Documents Mac

To Recover Lost Word Documents Mac: use AutoRecovery, access the Mac temporary folder, or restore a previous version within the Word app.

Are you struggling with lost Word documents Mac? This is a common issue, but several methods are available to recover your precious files.

Our comprehensive guide will walk you through step-by-step procedures for recovering unsaved, deleted or lost Word documents in various scenarios.

Ready to embark on the recovery mission? Let’s get started!

Quick Summary

  • Several methods are available to recover unsaved, deleted, or lost Word documents on Mac, including AutoRecovery, accessing the Mac temporary folder, and restoring previous versions within the Word app.
  • It is important to act quickly when you’ve lost a document, as most recovery methods work best if applied shortly after the loss occurs. Additionally, adjusting Word’s AutoSave interval settings can help prevent future losses.
  • To recover deleted Word documents on Mac, you can try recovering from the Trash Bin, using a data recovery tool like Disk Drill, or utilizing Time Machine to restore lost files.
  • Implementing good habits, such as regularly saving your work, manually saving important changes, and adjusting the AutoSave interval setting, can help prevent losing important Word files on Mac.

How to Recover Lost Word Documents Mac

Recover unsaved Word documents on your Mac by following these three methods: using AutoRecovery, accessing the Mac temporary folder, or restoring a previous version within the Word app.

Method 1: Recover Unsaved Word Docs with AutoRecovery

AutoRecovery is a reliable tool for recovering unsaved Word documents on your Mac.

Recover Unsaved Word Docs With Autorecovery

Here are the steps you’d need to take:

  1. Launch the Finder application on your Mac.
  2. In the Go menu, select ‘Go to Folder’.
  3. Copy and paste this path: ~/Library/Containers/com.microsoft.Word/Data/Library/Preferences/AutoRecovery.
  4. The AutoRecovery folder will appear, revealing any unsaved Word documents that might have been auto-saved.
  5. Scan through the documents to locate your lost file.
  6. Once found, open the document and save it immediately.

Method 2: Recover Lost Word Docs from the Mac Temporary Folder

If you’ve lost a Word document on your Mac and didn’t have the chance to save it, don’t worry. There are several methods you can try to recover those precious files.

Recover Lost Word Docs From The Mac Temporary Folder

Here’s how you can recover lost Word docs from the Mac Temporary Folder:

  1. Open Finder by clicking on the magnifying glass icon in the upper-right corner of your screen or pressing Command + Spacebar and typing “Finder.”
  2. In the Finder menu, click “Applications” and then go to “Utilities.”
  3. Look for a folder called “TemporaryItems” or “TMP.” This is where your unsaved Word documents might be located.
  4. Double-click on the folder to open it and search for your lost Word document.
  5. If you find the document, right-click on it and select “Open With” followed by Microsoft Word.
  6. Once the file opens in Word, save it immediately so you don’t lose it again.

Method 3: Restore a Previous Version of a Word File from Within the Word App

If you need to restore a previous Word file version on your Mac, don’t worry. The Word app itself provides a convenient method for recovering your lost document.

Here’s how:

  1. Open the Word app on your Mac.
  2. In the menu bar at the top of the screen, click on “File.”
  3. From the drop-down menu, select “Open Recent.”
  4. A list of recently opened documents will appear. Scroll through the list to find the document you want to recover.
  5. If you can’t locate the document in the list, click “Recover Unsaved Documents” at the bottom of the menu.
  6. This will open a window showing all unsaved documents that can be recovered.
  7. Select the document you want to retrieve and click “Open.”
  8. The recovered version of your Word document will now open in a new window.
  9. Review and save the document to prevent any further loss or accidental deletion.

How to Recover Deleted Word Documents on Mac

To recover deleted Word documents on your Mac, there are three methods you can try: recovering from the Trash Bin, using a data recovery tool like Disk Drill, or utilizing Time Machine to restore lost files.

Method 1: Recover Deleted Word Documents from the Trash Bin

Accidentally deleting a Word document on your Mac can induce panic, but don’t worry! There’s an easy way to recover your deleted files.

Here’s how:

  1. Open the Trash bin on your Mac by clicking on its icon located in the Dock.
  2. Look for the deleted Word document that you want to recover.
  3. Once you’ve found the document, right-click on it and select “Put Back” from the dropdown menu.
  4. The recovered Word document will be restored to its original location.

Method 2: Recover Deleted Word Documents Using Disk Drill

If you have accidentally deleted a Word document on your Mac and cannot find it in the Trash Bin, don’t worry! You can still recover your precious file using Disk Drill.

Here’s how:

  1. Download and Install Disk Drill: Visit the official website of Disk Drill and download the software onto your Mac. Follow the installation instructions to set it up.
  2. Launch Disk Drill: Open the application by clicking its icon in your Applications folder or searching for it via Spotlight.
  3. Scan for Lost Documents: In the Disk Drill interface, select the hard drive or partition where your deleted Word document was stored. Click on the “Search for lost data” button to initiate a scan.
  4. Wait for the Scan to Complete: The scanning process may take some time, depending on the size of your hard drive and the amount of data stored. Be patient while Disk Drill works its magic.
  5. Preview and Recover Deleted Documents: You will receive a list of recoverable files once the scan is finished. Use the preview feature to ensure you are selecting the correct Word document for recovery. Select your file and click “Recover” to save it to a new location on your Mac.
  6. Save Your Recovered Document: Choose a safe location on your Mac where you want to save your recovered Word document. It’s advisable not to overwrite any existing files in case of conflicts.

Method 3: Recover a Lost Word Document Using Time Machine

If you have lost a Word document on your Mac, don’t worry! You can use Time Machine to recover it.

Here’s how:

  1. Connect your Time Machine backup drive to your Mac.
  2. Open Finder and navigate to the lost Word document’s folder.
  3. Click on the Time Machine icon in the menu bar at the top of the screen and select “Enter Time Machine.”
  4. A new Finder window will open, showcasing a timeline on the right side of the screen. Use this timeline to locate a backup that contains the lost Word document.
  5. Once you’ve found the backup, browse through it using the arrow keys or by clicking on dates in the timeline until you find the desired version of your document.
  6. Select the lost Word document and click on “Restore” to bring it back to its original location on your Mac.
  7. After restoring, please save a copy of the recovered Word document in a different location to avoid losing it again.

Tips to Avoid Losing Important Word Files on Mac

To avoid the frustration of losing important Word files on your Mac, make sure to save your documents regularly and take advantage of the AutoSave feature in Word for Mac.

Changing the AutoSave interval can also help prevent any potential data loss.

Read on for more valuable tips to safeguard your precious files from disappearing into thin air.

Save the Word Document Whenever You Create a New One

To ensure you never lose an important Word document on your Mac, it’s crucial to save your work regularly.

Whenever you start a new document, make it a point to hit that save button and choose a location where you want the file to be stored.

Doing this simple action can avoid the frustration and stress of losing unsaved work.

Even if you have enabled the AutoSave feature in Word for Mac, it’s still essential to manually save your documents.

This gives you control over where your files are stored and protects against accidental deletion or computer crashes.

Change the AutoSave Interval

To prevent losing important Word documents on your Mac, you can change the AutoSave interval. By default, Word for Mac automatically saves your documents every 10 minutes.

However, you can adjust this setting to a shorter time frame that suits your needs.

By decreasing the AutoSave interval, you ensure that changes made in your document are saved more frequently and reduce the risk of losing any unsaved work if something unexpected happens, such as a power outage or software crash.

This simple adjustment can save you from hours of frustration and help preserve your valuable data.

Regularly saving your Word documents is crucial regardless of the AutoSave interval setting. It’s always good practice to manually save your work after making significant changes or completing important sections.


In conclusion, losing Word documents on your Mac can be a frustrating experience. However, you can easily recover unsaved or deleted files with the right methods and tools. Follow the steps outlined in this guide to retrieve your important documents and avoid future losses by regularly saving and backing up your work.

Don’t let lost Word documents cause unnecessary stress – take control of your data recovery process on Mac today!