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Can I retrieve deleted files from the Trash can on Mac? Help!

Hi, I wanted to know how to retrieve excel documents from the Trash can from my MacBook pro. I have accidentally deleted an important file, is this possible to do?

Best Answered by

iBoysoft author Amanda Wong

Amanda Wong

Answered on Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Yes, it is possible to retrieve accidentally deleted files from Mac Trash. You can simply put the deleted files back from the Trash can. In case you have emptied the trash, or the deleted files bypass the trash can, you can also find other ways to recover them.

The deleted files are moved to the Trash can when you deleted the files in these ways:

  • Selecting files and pressing the Command-Delete keys
  • Dragging and dropping files into the Trash can
  • Right-clicking the files and choosing Move to Trash
  • Selecting files, clicking the File menu at the top menu bar, and then choosing Move to Trash

Then, you can open the Trash can, located at the far right corner of Mac Dock, select the files you want to retrieve, then right-click and choose Put Back, these files will go back to the folder where they were kept before the deletion. 

However, you can not get files back from the Trash can, if you:

  • Emptied Mac Trash bin after the deletion
  • Select files and press the Command-Option-Delete keys to delete
  • Select the files and choose Delete Immediately in the Trash bin on the Dock
  • Remove items from the Trash after 30 days feature is enabled on your Mac

If your case is one of the above, you should try to recover deleted files on Mac with the Command-Z keys to undo the deletion, Terminal commands, Time Machine backups, iCloud or other cloud storage, data recovery software such as iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac, or a data recovery service. 

Read more: How to Recover Deleted Files on a Mac (New Methods included)

Try iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac now!


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